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Scriptnotes Podcast

Screenwriters John August and Craig Mazin discuss screenwriting and related topics in the film and television industry, everything from getting stuff written to the vagaries of copyright and work-for-hire law.
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Jun 20, 2017

Craig and John take on a new Three Page Challenge, looking at three listener scenes to see if they follow the exacting rules set by Screenwriters University. (Ahem.)

We also answer listener questions on vintage screenplays, maturity, Smash Brothers and writing with a budget in mind.

Links:

Email us at ask@johnaugust.com

You can download the episode here.

 

Jun 13, 2017

Craig and John look at how screenwriters describe locations, and how these choices impact production and the final product. Plus, we discuss how podcasts have become a new source of IP for adaptations.

Finally, we address how to deal with the note to make your characters "more likeable."

Links:

Email us at ask@johnaugust.com

You can download the episode here.

 

Jun 6, 2017

Craig and John answer listener questions about writer agreements, videogame properties, and page one rewrites.

How should a writer decide whether it’s better to keep revising an unmade project, or start on something new? We try to offer guidelines for when to buckle down and when to move on.

Also, John coins a new term that will forever change film studies.

Links:

Email us at ask@johnaugust.com

You can download the episode here.

 

May 30, 2017

In a new installment of How Would This Be a Movie, John and Craig take a look at three stories in the news to discuss how to adapt them into award-winning movies.

We also discuss why the studios are allowed to negotiate as one for the WGA contract.

Midnight Blue Scriptnotes shirts are back up at Cotton Bureau for a short time, so don’t miss out. Link below.

Links:

Email us at ask@johnaugust.com

You can download the episode here.

 

May 23, 2017

Craig and John look at The Addams Family -- not just the 1991 film and its sequel, but the property itself to see what lessons we can learn when adapting for the big screen.

We also answer listener questions on what makes a scene work and writing pilots based on existing IP.

Links:

Email us at ask@johnaugust.com

You can download the episode here.

 

May 16, 2017

Chris McQuarrie (THE USUAL SUSPECTS, VALKYRIE) joins us to talk through how he went from writing giant movies to directing them.

We talk about the pitfalls directors face as they move from indie features to tentpoles, and the advice he gives them. Chris is currently, and conveniently, in Paris directing the next Mission: Impossible.

Links:

Email us at ask@johnaugust.com

You can download the episode here.

 

May 9, 2017

Craig and guest host Dana Fox welcome Rob McElhenney (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia) and Rian Johnson (Looper, Star Wars: The Last Jedi) to the live show at the Arclight. The four discuss breaking into Hollywood, handling rejection and sticking to your vision as a writer/director.

We also answer audience questions on motivation and holding onto hope.

Links:

Email us at ask@johnaugust.com

You can download the episode here.

 

May 2, 2017

Craig and John take on a new round of Three Page Challenges. There’s a fat “Elvis,” a bounty hunter White Rabbit, and a guy locked in the trunk of a speeding Mustang.

We also look at how characters move, and how screenwriters can use character movement to their benefit.

Links:

Email us at ask@johnaugust.com

You can download the episode here.

 

Apr 25, 2017

Craig and John investigate the future of the 007 franchise, script-reading robots, and the realities of overhauling a movie in the editing room.

We also look at another How Would This Be a Movie idea turning into reality.

The live show at ArcLight is a week away and tickets are almost sold out. Get yours now!

Links:

Email us at ask@johnaugust.com

You can download the episode here.

 

Apr 18, 2017

John sits down with Damon Lindelof (Lost, The Leftovers) for a bonus-length discussion of all things TV.

We focus on getting that first job, breaking story, and how writing rooms work. We also answer listener questions ranging from knowing when to let a pilot script die, to crediting original ideas.

Finally, we talk about the notion of Idea Debt, and how to say goodbye to projects you’ll never complete.

Links:

Email us at ask@johnaugust.com

You can download the episode here.

 

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