22-step great screenwriting and genre pronunciation

The best action stories have tricky plots, complex characters and a profound effect on the audience. Comedy is the single most successful story form. But one reason comedy is so difficult is that it has at least eight different structures, each with very different story beats. If you approach comedy as a professional, you can become one of the few writers to work steadily in this popular form.

22-step great screenwriting and genre pronunciation

Because of the First Rule of Hollywood. The First Rule of Hollywood is: Genres are different kinds of stories, like Action, Detective, Love and Thriller. More importantly, genres are really good stories, the all-stars of the story world that have been popular with audiences for decades and sometimes centuries.

Many writers wrongly believe that they are competing against thescripts written every year. In fact, they are competing against the other scripts in their genre. Which is why you have to know your genres cold.

Mastering your genre seems like it should be easy, since these are forms we have all seen at the movies since we were kids. Unfortunately, each genre is a complex story system where all the crucial elements exist under the surface in the structure.

Each genre has a unique hero, desire line and opponent, asks a key question, uses a specialized storytelling strategy and expresses a highly detailed set of themes.

Most importantly, each genre has anywhere from unique story beats that must be in your script or your script will fail. But you have to be careful when choosing one of these forms. While they all involve a crime, they are very different forms with very different structures.

Confidential, Chinatown are about searching for the truth, so you need lots of suspects who could believably have committed the crime. This form also has more reveals than any other, and many writers have trouble sequencing these reveals, since they normally occur in reverse chronological order.

Crime The Usual Suspects, No Country for Old Men is a genre that places less emphasis on detecting the criminal and more on the cat-and-mouse beats of catching him. This pushes Crime toward the Action genre, and means that the opponent is best when he is some form of master criminal.

Like Detective, Thriller involves detection, but there are typically far fewer suspects, and emphasis shifts to the detective being an average person who enters extreme danger. Thrillers are surprisingly tough to structure because you have to coordinate two opposing desire lines: Writers of Love Stories, and particularly Romantic Comedies, are always surprised, and a little chagrined, when I tell them that they have chosen probably the most difficult genre to write well.

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No other genre has this peculiar structural element. The hero wants the lover, but the lover is also the first and main opponent.

22-step great screenwriting and genre pronunciation

The good news is that the love story, when written in an original way, is extremely popular with audiences worldwide. Myth and Action are two genres that rule in the summer months.

Myth Lord of the Rings, The Dark Knight is the foundation genre of more blockbusters than any other form. The big problem with Myth is that the story, which usually involves a journey, tends to be extremely episodic. To fix that, Hollywood almost always combines myth with one or two other genres that update and unify the Myth story.

Action Ironman, the Bourne films, the James Bond movies is one of those genres often combined with Myth. This form was practically invented for the film medium, which is based on the split-second cut. If Love Story has the trickiest story structure, Action has the simplest.

The hero has a clear goal and goes after it with great speed and relentless energy.

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Action is much harder to execute well than it looks. Because the form has such a simple desire line, most action scripts lack plot.

You need a complex opponent and as much information hidden from your hero as possible. The second major family of genres is Horror, Fantasy and Science Fiction.

Horror 28 Days Later, Jurassic Park, Nightmare on Elm Street is about humans in decline, reduced to animals or machines by an attack of the inhuman. Horror scripts are often very predictable, with a reactive hero and a monster who is just a killing machine.

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So one of the best ways to set your Horror story apart from the crowd is to make your hero active and force him or her to go up against the most intelligent monster possible. If Horror is about man in decline and society shutting down, Fantasy Enchanted, Big, The Truman Show is about an individual discovering the hidden possibilities of life, of society opening up.

The Harry Potter stories have shown us what an appealing form this is, worldwide, partly because the audience gets to explore an imaginary new world. One way to do that is to establish a deep psychological weakness in your hero that will be severely tested when the hero enters the fantasy world.

This grounds the story and makes it personally meaningful to the audience. Science Fiction The Matrix, Children of Men is about human evolution on the grandest scale, literally the universal epic. Film is the perfect medium for this genre, which is why Science Fiction has become a favorite form of Hollywood.He has worked as a story consultant and script doctor for Disney Studios, Sony Pictures, FOX, and HBO, among others, and has taught his Step Great Screenwriting and Genre classes to over 20, students worldwide.

Tag: Step Great Screenwriting and Genre. A-List Screenwriting Teacher John Truby starts 3 Week Global Masterclass Tour, Follow with #TrubyTour. A-List Screenwriting Teacher John Truby is known in Hollywood for his masterful storytelling Read More. Search for: Gift Guides. Recent Articles.

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Skip Press, The Complete Idiot’s Guilde to Screenwriting This guy is the best script doctor in the movie industry, and this program makes you tell a good story whether you want to or not.

The key to writing great stories lies in the techniques you use. Many of us have wasted hundreds of hours on stories that don't work.

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and in text form, Truby's complete 22 Step Great Screenwriting Class. Quiz below by looking at the Genre title and writing your short description of the genre BEFORE you look at the Truby definition of.

A movie with a great message is a great movie. See if your movie or screenplay can relate to a theme that is larger or more universal than the story you are telling. Fade Out. He has worked as a story consultant and script doctor for Disney Studios, Sony Pictures, FOX, and HBO, among others, and has taught his Step Great Screenwriting and Genre classes to over 20, students worldwide.

22-step great screenwriting and genre pronunciation
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