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Wednesday, Oct. 8

October 8, 2014

CNF Workshop: Today: McNulty and Holley. Comments/annotations Wednesday for Thellman/Doban.

Screenwriting Workshop: Almost finished pitching. Screenplays were handed out. We’ll be doing Rosemary on Monday, Danielle T on Wednesday. Make sure to make annotations – good ones – and post your comments. Since the screenplays are significantly longer, it stands to reason that your annotations and comments should also be more intense. There should be more to say – so say it.

Due Dates:

October 15: Christy & Danielle B

October 22: Ariana G & Abby

October 29: Haley & Jenna

November 5: Ariana W & Brenna

November 12: Kelly & Jonnah

November 19: Johnna

Action Hero: Finished RED. Then we talked a bit about how it came to be. It started life as a graphic novel by Warren Ellis, back in 2003. (A very good comparison of graphic novel and film, complete with a couple of panels from the comic, can be found here.)

I shared the first 15 pages of the original screenplay, the complete version of which can be found here. We compared the excerpt to the first 15 minutes of the film, and noted the changes:

1. The screenplay uses scenes of Frank buying and shelving canned beans to illustrate his boring existence and isolation. The film uses the Christmas decorations to make this point. The Christmas scene is more visual, and underscores his lack of a family. (And the snowman he buys looks cool when it’s shot up.)

2. The screenplay uses roses as Frank’s attempt at being “domestic.” The film uses an avocado. The avocado is better because 1) it’s pathetic looking, and 2) roses might require Frank to be outside and interacting with neighbors. That, we don’t want any more than necessary.

3. The screenplay adds a quirky element: Frank’s obsession with Buddy Holly. The film ditches it. Good decision, because a) Frank already has one quirk: reading the same romance novels Sarah reads. That’s enough. And b) it makes Frank seem even older than he really is, which could make things between him and Sarah weirder/less believable.

4. Finally, in the screenplay, Frank reveals directly to Sarah that he was in the CIA. The film trusts the viewers to make that determination, based on the clues (his government checks, the reference to Chile, the fact that people are hunting him down). It’s a nice little moment of trusting your audience.

Four little changes, but all significant, and all with the goal of streamlining the first, crucial 15 minutes to make every moment count. We’ll probably come back to RED briefly on Friday before we move on to our next flick.


7/8 Lit Arts:

8th Grade:

Survey: Fiction:

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