Presentation on theme: "Storytelling in Hollywood. Everyone Has a Story to Tell."— Presentation transcript:
Storytelling in Hollywood
Everyone Has a Story to Tell
Basic Plot Map
But Who Says? WHY do stories have to be told in this linear fashion? So DO they HAVE to? Where have you seen films NOT follow the plot map?
Examples Pulp Fiction Memento Sliding Doors 500 Days of Summer Slumdog Millionaire Love Actually
Pulp Fiction - Emotional
Pulp Fiction - Chronologically
Challenge? Want to tell their story Want to tell it in unique manner Can’t confuse the audience! – Not saying they need to “dumb it down”
History of Storytelling (in Hollywood) Beginnings (1910 – 1930) – Independent producers / directors banding together Studio Era (1930 – 1940) – 12 films a year – Actors with long-term contracts – Similar stories – Guidelines to follow
New Hollywood (1960s – Present) – Change in studios Auteur (within the New Hollywood) – Directors being individuals – Telling stories artistically – Spielberg, Coppola, Lucas, Altman
Return to Classical Storytelling (70s – Present) – Pattern you already and subconsciously know…
Plot Defined Chain of events occurring in time and space that are linked by cause and effect. – Events and actions don’t happen randomly
Easy to Follow? Classical storytelling may be easy to follow. But….that does not make them SIMPLE or childish!
Patterns Classical Storytelling – Plot Mountain – Three Act Structure Intro, Body, Conclusion – Hero’s Journey Remember from World Studies?
Understandings Movie making is TIME intensive Most scripts don’t make it to production Multiple revisions over scripts
Understandings Items are WELL thought out. Pretty much everything IS intentional – Words said – Order – Inflection – Costuming – Framing
Characters Traits assigned at first viewing Characters follow their traits IF they break traits, it must be explained why / how Characters are “round” and “consistent”
Double Goal Orientation Character has one goal Often forced to CHANGE to another Second line is often a love-interest line
Examples – Double Goals The Proposal – Margaret need to marry Andrew to become “legal” – Falls in love…for real Titanic – Jack wants to get to America – Falls in love with Rose Alien – Ship is heading home from space – Must fight off the Alien – NO love interest
Cause and Effect Character has a goal or set of goals. – Most have 1 or 2 related goals Something gets in the way of the goal. Time crunch for completing goal(s)
Examples – Time Crunch The Proposal – Must be married and have info on new husband before being deported Titanic – Ummm….the ship is sinking Back to the Future – Must reach the goals before his messed up history causes him not to be born (fading picture) Star Wars – Must destroy Death Star before Rebel base is in firing range
Tools to Make These Understandable Rule of Three – Important items will be repeated at least THREE times – Biblical (Think back to archetypes!) – May not be in the SAME EXACT method
180 Degree Rule
Sound Bridge Sound from one scene bleeds over to other scenes. Parents talking about daughter’s piano playing ability Shot of daughter practicing Piano music starts playing before the scene of parents ends. Hear END of parents’ talking while visually seeing the girl practicing.
Dialogue Hook Character will say something…. That “something” pops up on the screen Silence of the Lambs – Lecter: “Our little Billy must already be searching for that next special lady…” – Next scene: Woman who will be the murder’s next victim
Dangling Cause Something you see / hear early in the film. But….takes a while for it to return to importance
Dangling Cause Examples Raiders of the Lost Ark – Indy HATES snakes (plane) – In vault – snakes everywhere Back to the Future – Plutonium reported missing (stolen by Libyans) – Radiation box seen (in Doc’s room) – Plutonium needed to power the time machine – WHO comes to kill Doc?
How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days – Andie decides she will do more research on an article she wishes to write called "how to loose a guy in ten days." – Benjamin makes known the opinion that he can make any woman fall in love with him in less than ten days.