Thursday, April 27, 2017
Orange County Screenwriters Association


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A not-for-profit organization dedicated to bringing education and resources to the film community both amateur and professional.


logoThe Orange County Screenwriters Association is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to bringing education and resources to all aspects of the film community both amateur and professional!


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Ideal Home

This wonderful movie, "Ideal Home," could not have come at…

Cardinal

I admit that I am a sucker for these shows. …

The Good Fight

When I grow up I want to be The Kings.…

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OC Screenwriters - Articles

Articles

Is Deception in Romantic Comedies Rape?

Rape?

I frowned at the students' contention.  Then I started to think about it.  Is it?  Maybe they had a point.

overboardI had assigned the movie "Overboard" to my Intro to Scriptwriting class (Class Info) in honor of Garry Marshall's passing. I needed a romcom and that was the one that fit best when I looked at his filmography.  The discussion was to be about how these types of movies work and when done properly, reinforce the best of what is a fun genre.

The key words here are "was to be."

An interesting and troubling side discussion came up about the sex scene in which Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell have (loving) intercourse.  It comes at an appropriate time in the film and it's shot very beautifully and tenderly.

So why could it be considered rape?

The storyline is simple and funny.  Goldie plays a wealthy, obnoxious woman who is married to a vacuous and specious man.  They do nothing positive as they sail the seas in yachts that look like the Queen Mary.  She is not happy, never satisfied and constantly, consistently ultra-critical of everyone and everything.  He hates her (it's obvious) and yearns to be free from her constant screech.

Russell is Joe Everyman, a widower, laissez-faire father with three unruly boys who the school district is about to come down hard on because the boys are quite boisterous, even to toilet-papering the school's principal when she visits to welcome them to the area. The principal warns Russell that he has to get some supervision for the boys or else the next visit will be from social services.

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The War With Your (Creative) Self

Recently, my Intermediate class students all had a difficult workshop session.  Most of the comments on all of their scripts were not positive.  The comments were constructive to be sure but even constructive criticism is hard to take.  It still means "this isn't working."  I wrote them an open letter that then became this article.  I've expanded it a bit from the original form.

There's a war going on inside you.

Your head and fingers are in constant battle.  What you see with your mind's eye about your script never ends up to be what actually gets to your fingers.  Why is that?  I blame...uh, Canada (that's from the movie "South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut" and I'm just kidding so relax.)

war5 Here's the problem; it's too easy to write that first flush of great scenes that you see so clearly when that concept comes to you.  After that it's nearly impossible to clearly see the ramifications of that work.  You think you know the story but unless you've carefully charted out each moment, sh*t happens. 

Even if you've carefully charted out your script you take side trips; a character inserts himself or herself demanding more attention than you had intended.  Maybe a piece of information comes to you or you have to change something that you thought worked.

Also, each day you're a different person and your mood, attitudes, sense of life changes.  If you're doing the work properly, you are writing from your subconscious mind and that changes - a lot - as you process each and every moment of your life.

A script seems simple but is maddeningly complex. 

Most of the time, what you have in your head is not what ends up on the page. 

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Robert Schenkkan: "All The Way" from Stage to HBO

Robert Schenkkan:

Acclaimed writer Robert Schenkkan talks to Final Draft about Lyndon Johnson, Bryan Cranston and adapting his Tony Award winning, historical play for HBO.

All The Way premiers Saturday, May 21st on HBO. Check your local listings!

Original author: Final Draft
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"Empire" Writer Eric Haywood on Music Videos and Finishing Your Writing

Eric Haywood, writer and producer on Fox's hit show, Empire, shares his background in music videos and the mindset it takes to get your story on the page. 

Watch Empire Wednesday nights 9/8c on Fox!

Original author: Final Draft
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Bryan Sipe Discusses "Demolition" and His Own Creative Path Through Loss

Bryan Sipe Discusses

Screenwriter Bryan Sipe opens up to us about the origins of Demolition and his own struggle through the creative process. 

In the film, Jake Gyllenhaal's character is told, "to understand what's broken, you have to take it all apart," Sipe says. Here, Sipe deconstructs his writing process for us as well. 

Demolition is out in theaters today, April 8th!

Original author: Final Draft
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