What makes a script so compelling that it ends up with an Oscar nod? This week, Stu and Chas return to their first ever episode by tackling two Oscar-nominated screenplays. But this time – instead of exploring the rigid structures laid down by gurus – they use it as an opportunity to explore what they’ve learned […]
Are your story rules in your pilot strong enough to play out over the life of your show? Stu and Chas move away from the world of features and dive into the Pilot Episodes of some (New) Golden Age Television: THE SHIELD, THE WIRE, BREAKING BAD, and MAD MEN. And we sneak in some discussion about […]
Stu and Chas are joined once again by the inestimable Stephen Cleary to explore his idea of ‘key scenes’. Scenes like the diner scene in HEAT. Or the boardroom showdown in MARGIN CALL. These scenes are not only key to a film, they can also be key to developing a story. Why? Stephen’s observation is that if you put your protagonist and antagonist in a scene together for a period of time and they will instinctively play out the beats of your whole story… if you have the characters figured out.
An interesting theory and one we put to the test. In addition to HEAT and MARGIN CALL, we look at scenes and sequences from THE GODFATHER, NOTTING HILL, THE DARK KNIGHT, THE RAID 2: BERANDAL and Stu avoids mentioning STAR WARS by working in EMPIRE STRIKES BACK instead.