We Need To Talk About Dialogue
"I think anything is possible to anyone who dreams, dares, works and never gives up." - Xavier Dolan, Director of It's Only The End Of The World.
This week we looked at dialogue: text and subtext. We took a scene from another filmmakers script and rewrote it with particular attention paid to the tactics the characters used to try and achieve the ends of their opposing agendas. I tried a new technique, writing the intention/direction in parentheses above each line. Interesting stuff.
Week two of the London Film Festival was just peachy. Highlights included Love Song, a subtle, sensual, semi-improvised film from the director of For Ellen, So Young Kim and It's Only the End of the World, directed by Xavier Dolan, with memorable performances from Marion Cotillard and Vincent Cassel. As with every film from that aggravatingly talented and youthful bastard, there were scenes that will stay with me always.
THE LONDON FILM FESTIVAL
It never feels any easier. It always feels like with every new film you’ve hit the reset button, and though all the experiences feel familiar and deep down you know how things all work on the day to day, it feels like you’re experiencing them for the first time, again. - Antonio Campos (Director of Christine)
It's the London film Festival, and seeing some of the latest and greatest films around has provided some much needed inspiration as we grope around trying to latch onto our second drafts. Christine (from the director of Martha Marcy May Marlene) is my film of the fest so far - a humanising look at the life of Chirstine Chubbuck, a driven but emotionally crippled local news reporter who killed herself live on air.
We had a great talk from Johannes Roberts this week about his background and process. This is a filmmaker who will forcibly get things made, and it was inspiring to hear him talk about his methods, from coming up with a half formed idea to publicising his work.
Roberts is definitely from the Rebel Without a Crew school of filmmaking. You have doubts about the script? You have concerns about cast? You have very little time and even less money? Don't wait around for someone to give you permission. Make the film no matter what.
All in all, an inspirational couple of weeks. Alongside all this, I've spent a lot of time focussed on reworking the characterisation of my protagonist and in particular the opening of the film. Starting over and facing down the blank page to free up the opening of the story from the constraints of the previous draft is daunting, but hopefully it will lead to bigger and better things.
STORYTELLING FOR THE SCREEN
A blog about The Screen Arts Institute's 'Storytelling for the Screen' course, taught by Stephen May and supported by the BFI.