For my film, one of the most important parts is the script. A script is a document that actors, producers and directors all need in order to help set up scenes. There are multiple parts to a script, and a universal standard on how a script should be formatted.
The first page of your script should always be the title page. The title page includes the draft number (if the script is non-commercial or if it’s finalized, you don’t need to include this), the title of your film in all capitals, the author of the script, and credit for the story (e.g. ‘based off the story’). In the bottom left corner you put your name, address of organization, phone number and email. The bottom left should be used for your agent’s contacts, if you have one. The title page of a script looks like this:
The Slugline (or scene header) on a script describes the location and time. Sluglines are in all capitals, and usually begin with either INT. or EXT. INT. is short for interior (to be used when the setting of a scene is indoors), while EXT. is short for exterior (to be used when the setting of a scene is outdoors.) An example of a Slugline on a script looks like this:
Action blocks in a script describe what the character is doing in that scene. Action blocks are normal in terms of capitalization, except for character’s names. In the first action block of a script (where the character is mentioned for the first time) their name is in full capitals. After that, their names are in regular capitalization.
Before a character speaks, their name is shown at the top of the dialogue. In this case, (unlike action blocks) their name is always in all capitals. Character names look like this:
Last but certainly not least, dialogue. Dialogue includes anytime a character speaks. If there is an action between the character speaking, the dialogue will be split, it will say “CONT’D” (short for continued) next to the second part of the character’s dialogue. Dialogue in a script looks like this:
When writing a script, all these elements have to be kept in mind in order to follow the universal script writing format. I kept all of these in mind when writing my script, but of course no script is done in just one try. Many revisions have to be made before a script can be finalized and actually be used in a production. Here is the first draft of my script:
The more updated versions of my script will be available to look at during in-depth night at my learning center.
Brown (2017). Parts of a Script. [online] Slideshare.net. Available at: https://www.slideshare.net/JasBrown/parts-of-a-script.
Scott, J. (2017). How to Turn Microsoft Word into a Terrific Screenwriting Program. [online] Animation World Network. Available at: https://www.awn.com/blog/how-turn-microsoft-word-terrific-screenwriting-program.
Rider, A. (2017). For a few days more – Academy Nicholl Fellowships competition. [online] Oscars.org. Available at: https://www.oscars.org/sites/oscars/files/scriptsample.pdf.
Carless, M. (2017). Screenplay format. [online] bbc.co.uk. Available at: http://downloads.bbc.co.uk/writersroom/scripts/screenplay.pdf.