Author Topic: First scene of a film script im working on.  (Read 4313 times)

Offline writemike

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First scene of a film script im working on.
« on: July 28, 2013, 09:20:35 PM »
As per topic title this is the first scene from a film script im writing. Its only the first draft so its still a bit rough but im looking to get any critique and input offered. The scene i have posted may seem cliché, you'll just have to trust me that the plot takes a VERY different course than what one would expect after seeing this opening scene.

FADE IN:

INT. ATTORNEYS OFFICE - NIGHT

ALAN WATTS (36) sits behind his GRAND office desk thumbing through case notes, the phone RINGS loudly. Glancing at the CLOCK hanging on the opposite wall he reluctantly lifts the receiver.

ALAN

Hello?

CALLER

Mr Watts?...

ALAN

Yes, what can i do for ya?

CALLER

Listen closely Watts, drop the Valanci case. Get out now while you still can.

ALAN

Who is this?

CALLER

It doesn't matter who i am. All that matters is you drop out of the Valanci case before something nasty happens to that pretty blond and runt of yours. 'CLICK'

The phone goes dead, Alan clearly SHAKEN returns the receiver and picks up a FRAMED PHOTO from his desk. In the PHOTO CARRIE-ANNE (30) Alan's wife poses with her arm around JAMES (7) Alan's son.

Alan sits staring at the PHOTO clutched in two hands, the phone RINGS again. STARTLED he drops the the PHOTO and the glass SHATTERS from the frame.

ALAN

Shit!

Alan sweeps the shattered glass into a pile and AGGRESSIVELY picks up the receiver.

ALAN

Now listen to me you fu---

CARRIE-ANNE

Al-Alan??

ALAN

Carrie im so sorry... i thought you were someone else. Hows James honey?

CARRIE-ANNE

Hes fine, i just put him to bed its late. Alan... is everything OK?

ALAN

Everything's fine, Valanci's guys are trying to get me off the case. Their scared honey, they know im going to send that scum bag down for good this time.

CARRIE-ANNE

Are we safe Alan?

ALAN

Trust me Carrie, i wouldn't let anything happen to you or James ever... you know that. Look im just wrapping up here, I'll speak to you when i get home OK?

CARRIE-ANNE

OK Alan, i love you.

ALAN

i love you too honey.

Alan puts down the receiver and picks up the PHOTO from the floor placing it back on his desk before switching off the light and exiting.









Offline Skip Slocum

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Re: First scene of a film script im working on.
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2013, 09:43:36 PM »
This being your first post, instead of putting something up for review, how about introducing yourself first and maybe getting familiar with the rules, customs and limitations?

Here is the welcome board where you can say hello and tell us a little about yourself.

http://mywriterscircle.com/index.php?board=1.0

And then here is the forum rules and guidelines.

http://www.mywriterscircle.com/index.php?topic=7415.0

Welcome to the circle.

Skip
Moderator.

Offline writemike

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Re: First scene of a film script im working on.
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2013, 11:19:09 PM »
Skip: Thank you for the welcome, i'll head over to the welcome forum and introduce myself.

hillwalker3000

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Re: First scene of a film script im working on.
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2013, 11:37:21 AM »
Asking us to trust you that this takes a different course in the next part is taking rather a risk. If the opening is cliché not many will stick around to see if it changes for the better. You won't get the chance to sit next to a potential producer as he reads your pitch to tell him - "Don't worry, the opening is the weakest part." It's all about making the right impact from the off.

A couple of things stood out regarding the format. . . why do you capitalise random words like GRAND and RINGS and CLOCK etc.? It looks extremely odd. Do we even need to know it's a 'grand' office desk? Also I'm wondering how a phone can ring 'loudly'? Does it have a volume control?
It's best you keep the scenario as simple and basic as possible. Dialogue is more important at this stage.

So - does the dialogue work? Well, you were right about it being clichéd. Unfortunately there's nothing original enough on display here at the moment to make this stand out from thousands of other scripts that recycle the same old story.

H3K

Offline midnight candle

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Re: First scene of a film script im working on.
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2013, 12:58:10 PM »
Asking us to trust you that this takes a different course in the next part is taking rather a risk. If the opening is cliché not many will stick around to see if it changes for the better. You won't get the chance to sit next to a potential producer as he reads your pitch to tell him - "Don't worry, the opening is the weakest part." It's all about making the right impact from the off.

A couple of things stood out regarding the format. . . why do you capitalise random words like GRAND and RINGS and CLOCK etc.? It looks extremely odd. Do we even need to know it's a 'grand' office desk? Also I'm wondering how a phone can ring 'loudly'? Does it have a volume control?
It's best you keep the scenario as simple and basic as possible. Dialogue is more important at this stage.

So - does the dialogue work? Well, you were right about it being clichéd. Unfortunately there's nothing original enough on display here at the moment to make this stand out from thousands of other scripts that recycle the same old story.

H3K


Nothing to add - sorry.

Offline writemike

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Re: First scene of a film script im working on.
« Reply #5 on: July 29, 2013, 10:02:51 PM »
Thanks for the replies both of you, all comments are welcomed both good and negative.

As for me saying "trust me it gets better", i completely agree with what you wrote and would never say something like that to a producer. The only reason i mentioned it here was because you are only reading this one scene, if you were to read the next 4 scenes you'd basically know the premise to the movie. An idea which could easily be stolen by a much better writer than myself.

Format: This isn't my first work and i get what your saying here, it does look weird if you are unfamiliar with what im doing... Its a screen writers "trick" to direct the director without him/her noticing (writing camera angles and such). Its not something ive made up and is used in quite a few successfully sold scripts, admittedly though its not 'standard' script format.

RINGS would indicate that not only does it ring, it does so loudly (on the films audio track) breaking the silence of a normally quite office. ('Loudly' shouldn't be there well spotted.lol)

CLOCK basically means i want that clock in shot/close up.

This being rough first draft the dialogue still needs tweaking a lot, i have already changed some in this scene and will more than likely change some again before the scripts finished. You wrote 'same old story' which was actually the intension of the scene, i want the viewer to think they know where the story is going only to be take in a completely different direction in the next two scenes.

Offline 2par

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Re: First scene of a film script im working on.
« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2013, 12:17:22 AM »
Write, it's fine if you want to lull the reader and viewer to think one way until you hit them with the "Real" stuff, but you're not going to get past the reader with this as an opening.
Obviously, you know that this is not in standard format and that others "trick" around. But, um, are you Steven Spielberg or Ronny Howard and able to do that? No? You haven't sold a script yet, let alone an outstanding one that's made lots of money? Well, then, you'd better stick to the format if you want anyone to read it.
And leave out the camera and directorial directions. Directors are the ones who have the vision. You just develop character and show you can write dialogue that moves a good story forward.
As for stealing your work, that's a hard story to tell any of us.

Offline writemike

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Re: First scene of a film script im working on.
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2013, 08:36:24 PM »
2par. Thanks for the advise, im going to rewrite the wholething... your right i shouldnt be messing with the format. If i ever hope to sell one of my scripts ive got to stop trying to control how every scene is filmed, maybe i should be directing instead of writing.

Anyway im truly stuck though now, i just can not think of another scene to open with... time to shelve this one for a while and work on one of my other scripts i think.

Back to drawing board.


Offline Jackson_Leigh

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Re: First scene of a film script im working on.
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2013, 04:04:10 PM »
In my opinion there seems to be no urgency, even though you try to write it into the script. The main character receives a threatening phone call that talks about the safety of his wife, yet he seems to take time to look at a photo and talk to his wife, when he should be moving, and then call his wife to make sure everything is O.K. other than that I can see you have a great idea here and would love to read more.
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