Today’s screenwriter must be adept at complex and unconventional script forms, such as the parallel storytelling of Pulp Fiction, Traffic, Magnolia, and Run Lola Run; the multiple-protagonist narratives of American Beauty and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; and the complex flashback forms of The Usual Suspects and The Sweet Hereafter.
Screenwriting Updated clearly explains how and why these forms work (or fail to work), and establishes the basic principles of their construction. The author presents these contemporary forms in relation to tried-and-true three-act structure, rendering the unconventional forms as easily grasped as the conventional. She also provides a unique guide to plotting problems, strategies for avoiding clichés, and other nuts-and-bolts screenwriting essentials. Screenwriting Updated combines solid, basic screenwriting craft with a thorough presentation of very contemporary script structures. The result is a unique, wide-ranging, in-depth screenwriting text and do-it-yourself script-doctoring manual suitable for both novice and seasoned writers.
“A lucid and eminently useful atlas of screenwriting technique. All the vague confusing things that teachers and studio executives say about flashback, turning points, and multiple protagonists are whipped into coherent shape here, in a comprehensive, precise, and extremely practical theory...an essential tool in any writer’s kit.”
—Christopher Vogler, author of The Writer’s Journey