It was a long time ago when I watched a Hollywood film that I really appreciate the beauty of scriptwriting or screenplay. My mind was blown away by dialogues among the characters which were if I remember right, an animation, “The Lion and the King.” I hope I am right. It was one movie where I learned moral lessons from the dialogues themselves.
This and other fantastic Hollywood movies inspired me to take a short course on Scriptwriting which was headed by a well-known screenwriter. He was popular and had been in the business for several years already and all his screenplays were a hit. When I read the ad about the summer scriptwriting course, I did not hesitate to sign up for it and was excited to be one of his students in scriptwriting. The seminar workshop lasted for two months. We attended it for five days a week, eight hours a day.
The first day was really exciting because I was expecting a small number of participants but when I got there, I saw that there were a lot of participants who I knew some of them. I found out we were singing the same tune of venturing into another kind of business, that is, show business as backline and not a member of a movie cast of characters/
We were supposed to be the unobtrusive figures in a movie, working not in the limelight but in the background. We came from different fields and I was happy to know that some of my friends had the same goal and interest as mine. We were also introduced to some of the resource persons in the seminar and some of the speakers were actors and screenplay writers themselves.
So, each and every day was an exciting and fun experience that I imagined myself working with popular celebrities and rubbing elbows with them. As time went on, I observed that our number was dwindling. From 100 participants, in a matter of two weeks, there were only 50 participants remaining. I was not able to know the reasons why some of us quit and discontinued attending the scriptwriting workshop.
Anyway, I had learned so much from that 2-month course and I understood how it was also stressful and taxing to write a good script because you have to know many things such as theories, formats of the script, the whys and hows including camera shots that should be included in the scriptwriting.
The stressful part was that we were assigned individually to write a script of a movie based on our own personal experience to be entitled “The Movie in My Life.” My excitement day by day was waning because it was really hard to write down the script because you have first to know and understand each character in the movie. Each character must have a distinct personality that should be consistent in every part of the scene. So that was called “characterization.”
The other thing was before writing the script per se, we had to make a summary of the story in one sentence, then we had to write the storyline. So it should be written in simple sentences that showed the plot or how the story began, the events that happened with the characters including the protagonist and antagonist.
So, after writing the storyline, each character must be described showing their personality and attitude in the movie as distinct from other characters.
The script also had a length requirement which was 10 pages for the first project. But in the end, we wrote a screenplay with 50 pages as our project. We were also required to critique some Hollywood movies such as Wyatt Earp and Citizen Cane which were really difficult to write about.
The script had a certain format that we should follow and the simple language that we have to use for the script. We brainstormed with my co-participants; we also had group activities, especially in critiquing movies that were really challenging for me. The fun part was when some celebrities came as resource speakers. We were able to talk to them personally and I was able to get some of their signatures in my small notebook.
For writing scripts, I have also learned to develop the theme and plot for my movie storyline. You have to be focused on this to make the movie more logical and as real as reality itself involving people or characters that played different roles.
Here are some characteristics of a good scriptwriter or screenwriter
Interested in the field of show business and be dedicated to your job
Observant of people as they move and and talk around you
Aside from being observant, you must also be a participant in the society which is the stage and you as an actor on the stage
Open-minded and humble that you can take criticisms constructively especially with your script or screenplay
Does extensive research to be able to draw facts about life and people
Possesses good communication skills, especially writing skills
Eventually, we finished the course and I was able to write my script for the movie in my life. It was hard and at the same time fun to do because it was my first time writing a lengthy script that was produced with blood and tears.
We ended up only with less than 50 participants during our graduation and were recommended as trainees for a certain TV show. It was worth all our efforts.
If you want to be a scriptwriter or screenwriter, I recommend writing your script on an ergonomic standing desk that can be found in FlexiSpot. One of the best for writing a script or anything that you want to do is the Esben Standing Desk UD5 which is height adjustable so you change from sitting to standing posture when you feel discomfort in excessive sitting.
This desk also has a storage shelf for you to keep your supplies within your reach. It is multipurpose as you could do anything that interests you on a simple yet outstandingly durable desk.