ALL >> Education >> View Article
Screenwriting - What Each Scene Must Accomplish
Total Articles: 38
The scene is the basic building block of a movie. In screenwriting, every scene must move the story forward in some way, that is, show the protagonist taking the next step toward the goal, the antagonist attempting to thwart the protagonist or reveal information. If you write a scene that doesn't do any of these things, cut it.
A scene usually takes place in one location and for a particular time frame, unless the scene dissolves to a later point of time. Then it is usually considered to be another scene, even if it is still the same location.
According to who you ask, the definition of a scene may vary. Robert McKee, one of the gurus of screenwriting and author of the book "Story," says that a scene may take place in several locations if it is the continuation of a particular event. He gives the example of a couple arguing as they get ready for work in the bedroom, eat breakfast and drive to work. By his definition, that would all be one scene.
I believe it's best not to get too hung up on definitions, but focus instead on understanding the concept and using it. A scene is a usually single event happening at one point in time that moves the story forward. But even this idea can get tricky.
Say you're writing a courtroom script. Its' the scene where the prosecutor, who is the protagonist, interrogates a defense witness. He forces her to reveal that she is the girlfriend of the criminal and that she has been lying. That's one event.
She cries. That's a second event. The criminal grabs the bailiff's weapon and shoots the judge, That's a third event. The detective who arrested the criminal shoots the bad guy in the arm. Fourth event. Reporters rush out of the courtroom. Fifth event. And so on.
Still, despite all these things that are going on, this is essentially a single event-the prosecutor questioning a witness. Information is revealed, and the DA has moved closer to his goal of putting the bad guy behind bars.
Just like the screenplay itself, each scene must have a beginning, a middle and an end. It must be a complete unit of the story.
Begin each scene at what is called the last best possible moment. In the kitchen example above, don't waste time with a lot of preliminary action. Don't show the wife or husband, rooting in the fridge, cracking a couple eggs, putting bread in the toaster, dropping the eggs in the skillet if these actions don't move the story forward. Start the scene when the second person enters and continues the argument that started in the bedroom.
Another critical element of constructing a powerful scene is to consider, and reveal to the audience, what each character's attitude is at this moment in time. Are they sad or happy? Depressed or confident?
What does each character want? And what is his or her attitude about getting it?
Finally, who gets what they want and who doesn't? What is each character's attitude about this situation?
Education Articles1. Insight Of The Key Benefits Of Corporate Training
2. Which Are The Best Engineering Courses In India 2017?
3. Essay On Drug Crime Investigation
Author: jackson bird
4. Dyslexia Software Ready For Windows 10s - Ghotit Dyslexia
5. Fishy Things That Nobody Told You About Tax Accountant In Rockdale
Author: Austin Loader
6. Digital Marketing Training Institute In Chandigarh, Mohali India
7. Sap Online Training By Learn It Training
Author: Learn IT Training, Hyderabad Based Online Training
8. Prepare Your Child With Summer Tutoring Programs
Author: TAS New York
9. Engineers Have The Ability To Change The World
Author: ponting brown
10. Which Are The Best Engineering And Architecture Courses In The Construction Industry?
11. Past Responsive Webdesign: Tomorrows Technology
Author: Learn web designing course Bangalore, Infocampus i
12. Explore, Learn, Construct & Grow With Cept University
Author: cept university
13. Best Advice You Could Ever Get About Taking Online Classes
Author: Benjamin Williams
14. Numerical Simulation Of Flow Ower Flat - Sloped Stepped Spillway
15. How To Improve Academic Performance: 5 Things You’re Forgetting To Do
Author: Todd Manning