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Write a film script, short film

Write a scenario is a complex task, which requires to rely on a method. Having an idea is one thing, but knowing how to exploit it in a meaningful way, respecting the basic rules of playwriting, and writing for the cinema in particular, is another. Finally, if writing a screenplay of a short film and a screenplay of feature films are two approaches with some similarities, they are also very different on many aspects. If you press only on the editorial boards of scenario adapted to other formats, you have all the chances to miss your script and eventually your film.

This article will help you to write your scenario of the short film. It is both intended to the writers of which this is the first attempt that to the writers who have already written other scenarios : it is always positive to question and to seek guidance and advice on how to improve its work.

The process of writing short film

First of all, what is a short film ? According to the National Center of Cinematography, the whole film of a maximum duration of 59 minutes. However, it is more commonly regarded as a film of a duration between 30 and 59 minutes, is a medium-length film. Writing a film of this format should therefore rather be based on the method of writing a feature-length film, with some adjustments. A film less than three minutes will be considered as a very short film. The method will be the same as for any other work of less than 30 minutes. The approach presented below, therefore, applies to works whose vocation is to last between a few seconds and 30 minutes.

So there are several steps to follow to optimize the writing of your scenario and put all the chances on your side. We will introduce you to these different steps and give you a few tips each time, so that you don’t get lost. Even though we try to be as complete as possible with this guide, we do not claim to be exhaustive, and even less have the miracle solution. We strongly encourage you to explore other sites on the internet, to read books on script writing, and see other shorts of course… Well, let’s get to serious things. So what are these famous steps to write a screenplay of a short film ?

  • Find the idea for your short film (see below)
  • Write the synopsis and note of intent to your short film
  • Write the script for your short film

Find the idea for your short film

Start directly with the continuity of dialogue is the best way to easy to brick your film before it has even begun to turn. You must first think about the topic of your film, precisely define your idea, and the best way to do this is to set it all down on paper.

What is the idea of your film ? Summarize your idea in one sentence is ideal. Do not exceed more than three sentences. It sounds complicated, start with several sentences, and rephrase, cut.

Your idea can be inspired by many things : a scandal, a situation experienced personally or by someone close, an anecdote. You don’t know what is your idea ? then there is a problem and you would do well to think about your approach. Are you on that you really have something to tell with this scenario that you want to write ?

If you have a message to convey, you can be the starting point to define your idea. If you don’t it is not serious, a short film can come from a very simple idea, without necessarily having a message, but must still say something, contain a trigger, a resolution… Ideally, your idea should mention the trigger.

If the genre of your film (Comedy, Thriller…) does not seem obvious from reading your idea, it is completely normal, because every idea can be exploited in many different ways. You will be able to give more indications on the genre during the following steps, the writing of the synopsis and note of intent.

An example of the idea

“A filmmaker tries to convince a producer of the quality of his idea. He is interrupted by the assistant of the latter in the open position. “

These two sentences give us both a exposure and a trigger, but not the outcome. From this idea, we may as well make a comedy than a drama. Once you have placed your idea on paper, you can proceed to the following steps.

Next Page : the Synopsis and note of intent

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