You’ll see, this article is not very long compared to most of the articles on the blog. There are two reasons :
- You’ll see that this topic has already been discussed (but today we go much further)
- I’m on vacation ;o)
But don’t worry. For the first reason you will still learn things. If this is not the case, you will be able to review…or put you back on the right path.
Frankly, I am sure that most of you pass by this step of the logline once you have your script written…and I can tell you that it is an IMMENSE Stupidity…this article is therefore also essential for you.
To be quite frank with you, you are going to learn things (a small part) in this article that I have shared with my students of the training scenario+
Then the logline what is it ?
Attention, drum roll…the logline , also called one-liner is, quite simply, the pitch of your story.
The pitch is your story told in a few words only, a maximum of two sentences.
Go ! Go immediately to this step. You have an idea for a film ? You are at this moment even in the midst of writing a screenplay, short, long or even series ? So get on you. Take a paper and a pen and write the idea of your film in one sentence…a maximum of two ! With a maximum of 30 words !
ATTENTION : Do not fool yourself with the Tagline is the phrase that you often see below a movie title.
- Meeting of the 3rd kind : We are not alone (We are not alone)
- Back to the future 2 : The return was only the beginning (Getting was just the beginning)
- Robocop : ” 50% man. 50% machine. 100% cop. “(Part man. Hand washable. All cop)
You will understand shortly that the Tagline and logline have nothing to do with each other.
Good, I already know that some of you will say : ” pfff this is not possible, it does not reduce the 120 pages of screenplay in one or two sentences “.
Another part is says : ” easy. So this is the story of… ” And realizes that she is lost in the details, whichwe do not understand really what is going to happen etc…
and to finish the last part says : “it is good, I’ve done a synopsis, the producer will understand what I mean…I don’t need to logline or I will soon, I know my subject by heart” (and will join the second category mentioned above).
The problem is that if you do not know how to write this pitch, logline, or one-liner, call it as you want, and this means that the concept, the idea of your film is not clear…
An idea not clear…it is a film that is messed up…or in any case improperly sold…or not sold at all.
And if this is not clear to you, this may not be clear to your interlocutor.
If you don’t know about your film so simple and catchy, how will you deal with a producer that you might encounter ? Or how to snag a producer or a financer potential with your production folder if your logline is…4 pages !?
How to make a pitch/ logline simple and that holds the road ?
Here is the recipe, you must put :
If your pitch does not contain at least these elements, you’re screwed.
Have fun with a pitcher of your favorite movie, you’ll not only see that it is a super exercise to help you practice, but most importantly you will get used to go to the essential.
If we were to go further to understand what it must be in your logline would be :
The first 3 points are essential, but coupled to the 4 questions above you have, for sure, a concept, an idea : Strong, clear and carrier.
The purpose of a logline is not to sell your script, especially in France, and for a beginner, but it is by taping your device or your contact person for more information. This is the kick starter for it to go further in the conversation or in the reading of the folder you just hand it over.
Because I am very nice and I’m on vacation, I want to help you understand this weird stuff that is the pitch/ Logline, so Let’s a little further away.
Here are 8 tips to help you write your logline :
I have already given you the 1 and the 2.
- Qualify your hero, tell who he is or what he is
- Qualify the antagonist , or give him the depth needed (if there is an antagonist to the main goal)
- Put or made to understand the issue or put an ultimatum
- Do not reveal anything to the end (leave doubt)
- If your film does not take place in our world or a world that is subject to other laws you must indicate in your pitch.
- Your hero must be at the center of the story
- Do not give first name to your hero
If your Pitch is well written, your contact needs to be transported. In your pitch you must feel the potential, want to know more, find a great idea and, as the icing on the cake, your interlocutor or your reader must start to imagine the story behind the sentence he has just read or hear !
To finish, I’m not going to leave you like that…you could take me for a liar or a donor of lesson…it is possible to make a logline for a movie of 2 hours. So, I will stick to it. For this I’m going to take one of my favorite films : Back to the future.
An adolescent hustler is pulled into the past where he has to do is meet his parents for not disappearing and re-establish the course of time it has changed.
This is perhaps not the logline of Zemekis , but it brings together many of the points mentioned above…and in 30 words, please.
So much for the article on the :the Logline.
I will tell you next week. Leave me a comment under this article to tell me what you think or if you have any questions.
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In the end I did as long as usual ;o)