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Movie Treatment

By Author: Matthew Scott
Total Articles: 38

A movie treatment is the prose narrative of a movie screenplay, generally between five and twenty-five pages, or more accurately 10 percent of the entire screenplay. It presents the events and characters of the proposed movie script. It is longer and provides more details than the outline or synopsis and might include information about directorial style, not included in the outline.
A movie treatment is a short story narrated in the present tense, describing events as they take place. It lets the readers go sufficiently deep into the drama so that they can understand how the characters and story will be treated. The treatment communicates a dramatic sense of attitude followed by the story and its characters, the emotional movement and its connection with the story's theme.
Movie scripts and dramatic screens are divided into acts, comprising several reversals or turning points. The movie treatment focuses on both the smaller and the major reversals, one scene and beat at a time. You will be writing a dramatic and concise version of your screenplay, including crucial scenes. It is a sample of what viewers will actually hear and see.
While writing your movie treatment, if you find yourself writing a summary of a non-dramatic scene which does not turn, the possibility exists that it is redundant. You have to focus on delivering all the exposition and back-story through present time argument.
Place an important character in a dilemma and make it even worse, because conflicts create interest and drama. Make all circumstances go against the favorite character. If you cannot understand what events should follow, make the leading character's struggles even worse. Continually ask yourself what the characters are fighting and striving for.
Use your current expertise to write your movie treatment, which could possibly be losing a parent, scuba diving or being in a war, or conversely, you could write about things you are not familiar with by conducting suitable research about your choice of subject. Remember that looking briefly for information on the Internet is not sufficient, since authenticity is literally everything when it comes to a movie treatment.
Preferably, the conflicts should arise because of choices made by your characters rather than through coincidences or accidents. Similarly, resist the urge to make your lead character die due to the cliche effect. The finest approach in a movie treatment is forcing the most significant character to choose difficult, rather impossible options at every turning point, then making the especially wrong options result in pleasant consequences, occurring very naturally.

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