GOOD SCRIPTS - THE BASICS

Posted by: beya in Untagged  on Print PDF

In my blog last week, how to get Nollywood to the Next Level was the subject of my discourse. This was discussed in general terms. As promised, we would examine the issues raised in that blog in specific terms in the coming weeks. So in this week’s blog, let us get down to one of the specifics. THE BASICS of a good motion picture is the script. The script is about the most strategic aspect in the production of a good movie. The scriptwriter creates the images that the director interprets, he creates the words the actors speak, and he even helps set the pace of the movie for the director. Without a good script there can be no good movie. Scripts should be well crafted so as to have excellent dramatic elements, plots and sub plots. The scriptwriter's work is the source of all that happens in a film. Although the director moulds the film into his or her own creative vision, it is still the scriptwriter that creates the original idea. He/She invents a make believe world in which the audience can learn, be engaged and entertained. Many people underestimate the amount of serious effort and work put into writing a script. The intent of a good screenplay is to keep the audience engaged, while developing memorable characters; expressing thoughts intelligently and creating interesting plot twists. Writing a screenplay is both a learned skill that must be practiced over time and a natural gift. Scriptwriters use their imagination to create and weave stories. You can become a good writer only by writing. Doing lots of writing. Most successful writers spend years writing before they start "getting it right." The more one writes, the better confidence, skill and ability one will attain. Scriptwriters are also quite familiar with rewriting and revising their material. A good script, like a good poem needs a good edit. Good scripts express ideas beautifully, intelligently, creatively and clearly in writing. They create brilliant characters, depict landscapes and historical scenes and describe awesome images that viewers grow to love, hate and know by heart. The idea is to entertain an audience through the writing. However, scriptwriters should not become emotionally attached to their original work, because directors, producers and other writers will definitely change a few things around. Although rejection is more prevalent than acceptance, (scriptwriters must learn to accept rejection and not take it personally), true scriptwriters are known for their persistence, self-discipline and tenacity. There is no required educational path for becoming a scriptwriter. Nevertheless, many scriptwriters have university degrees in English, theater, film, creative writing or journalism. Since a postsecondary education does not ensure success as a scriptwriter, experience is the best teacher in this field. University or college training can be useful in developing research skills, film and theater knowledge. Attending scriptwriting workshops and conferences can help one with the technical aspects of the craft. One can also find a correspondence course on script writing useful. Again, the best training a scriptwriter can gain is by writing and writing as much as they can. Find websites that publish plays and scripts for free and study those that are relevant to your area of interest. Keeping a journal and constantly jotting down thoughts and ideas will help writers develop their own voice, characters and ideas as a scriptwriter. Your comments and contribution to this blog are welcome.