Craig and John look at why certain genres of movies — mid-budget thrillers, adult dramas and romantic comedies — aren’t getting made, and whether there’s any way to get them back.
We also look at Apple Music, and what streaming means for screenwriters. Finally, we chart the screenwriter’s job from pitch to premiere, and how few of those steps are actually paid.
Big news: we have brand-new USB drives with the entire Scriptnotes catalog available at store.johnaugust.com. Quantities are limited, so don’t delay.
John and Craig take an in-depth look at turnaround and reversion, and how screenwriters get their scripts back from a studio.
We also look at the latest developments in the Gravity saga, and answer a bunch of leftover questions from the live 200th episode.
From Wolverine to The Rock, male action heroes have literally gotten bigger over the last decade. Craig and John look at how that impacts story. Is there hope for the the ordinary man in an extraordinary situation? Will we ever get back to Kurt and Keanu?
Then it’s time for three new Three Page Challenges, with entries ranging from campus riots to suburban detectives.
John and Craig look at three current news stories from a screenwriter’s perspective, discussing how each lends itself to becoming a movie.
Would FIFA’s Stepp Blatter make a better Coen Brothers hero or a Sorkin villain? Could the Large Hadron Collider lend itself to a romantic comedy? Is there even a movie to make about campus sexual politics and academic freedom?
Also discussed: the trap of “Do what you love.”
Craig, John, and Aline record the 200th episode of Scriptnotes live with a worldwide audience listening in — and chiming in — as they discuss TV showrunning and whether quality really counts at the box office.
Then it’s time for listener questions, ranging from presidential plagiarism to locked drafts.
Hard to believe it’s been 200 episodes. We wouldn’t and couldn’t have done it without you. Thanks to all our listeners, both for the live feed and all the weeks that came before.
Craig and John discuss finding your way back to your story – and your enthusiasm – when writing your second draft. Craig has tips and suggestions. John has sympathy and war stories.
This week, we also discuss ageism and authenticity in Hollywood, the Mr. Holmes lawsuit, and unsung screenwriter heroes.
The 200th episode will be streaming live on the internet! Follow us on Twitter to get details about when we’ll be recording, and where to find us.
This week, we time-travel back to our first centennial, a live show in Hollywood with special guests Aline Brosh McKenna and Rawson Thurber. We discuss the rise of the “writer-plus,” the importance of early mentors, and the emails that outline the very origin of Scriptnotes.
Through the past 100 episodes, a lot has changed, so John provides updates on some topics, including how the Golden Ticket winner presaged the later full script challenge. So even if you listened to this episode 97 weeks ago, you’ll find something new.
Craig and John tackle a single topic: bad movies and how they happen. Having experienced the process first-hand, they report on how bad ideas make it to the screen, and how good ideas go wrong. There’s no single answer, but a range of patterns that end in terrible movies.
In follow-up, we talk about still-forming plans for the 200th episode, new USB drives, and favorite episodes.
John’s game One Hit Kill launches on Kickstarter this week. Check it out.
And if you work for Bethesda, Craig really wants you to make Fallout 4.
John and Craig dig into the listener mailbag and take questions on TV producer credits, jealousy over other writers’ success, writing tight vs writing long and plenty of other follow up.
It’s a jam packed episode worthy of a long commute.
We also have information on the card game we playtested in LA a few weeks back. It’s called One Hit Kill, and you can see some of the artwork and play our mini-game at onehitkillgame.com now.
Canadian screenwriter Ryan Knighton joins John and Craig to discuss how you sustain a career writing for Hollywood studios while living a flight away. Knighton’s first screenplay was the adaptation of his memoir about going blind. He’s since written for several studios, including a new project for Ridley Scott.
We also talk about general meetings, pitching, adapting true stories, and the Sundance screenwriting lab.