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How To Write Groundhog Day [Kindle Edition]

Danny Rubin
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $9.99

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Book Description

Why aren’t all movies as good as "Groundhog Day"? Did screenwriter Danny Rubin know what he was doing when he wrote it? That it would star Bill Murray and become a hit?  That it would become a touchstone for major religions? That psychologists would come to prescribe the movie to their patients?  

Follow this unique screenplay’s exciting journey through agents, directors, studios, stars and the writer’s own confused brain to emerge as one of the most delightful and profoundly affecting comedies of all time. For movie lovers and screenwriters alike, "How To Write Groundhog Day" includes the original screenplay, notes, scene sketches, and a personal tour of the Hollywood writing process from this popular screenwriting teacher.

Product Details

  • File Size: 2731 KB
  • Print Length: 287 pages
  • Publisher: Triad Publishing Company; 1 edition (January 27, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0072PEV6U
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #422,032 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is not just for screenwriters! February 5, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book was very hard to put down. What a great find. Both this book and the movie are an Alice in Wonderland trip down the rabbit... ahhh... groundhog hole. Groundhog Day is one of those great timeless classic movies. This is true because Groundhog Day mixes humor with metaphysics in the proper proportion to both entertain and enlighten. I am not a screenwriter. This book is not just for screenwriters. It is a great read for anyone. This book is a fascinating, entertaining, and humorous behind the scenes journey into the mind of a great screenwriter and the making of a classic movie. After reading this book I was compelled to watch the movie again and enjoyed it even more. Here is some of what I liked about the book:

1. It contains the original screenplay. So you get to experience the original unedited movie the way Danny Rubin created it.

2. The screenplay has embedded insider notes from the author.

3. This book shows how a timeless story was created from birth pains to major motion picture success.

4. The book contains fascinating insights into the screenwriting process.

5. The book answers interesting questions that remained a mystery in the movie, such as how long did the immortal Phil actually live? Was it months, years, or many lifetimes?

6. The book vividly portrays the tug of war between the writer and the studio as the screenplay was changed into a major motion picture.

In the end I found myself wishing there were two Groundhog Day movies made from Danny Rubin's screenplay; the classic that was produced by Columbia and a second one that fully matched what the writer had in mind for his movie. Buy the book and enjoy... then watch the movie again and enjoy... then wake up in the morning and do it all over again. It's Groundhog Day.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The perfect companion to the film February 18, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
How to Write Groundhog Day is a brilliant book. It's fascinating for fans of the film and essential for those interested in screenwriting.

It is NOT a step-by-step 'How to..' guide, however. There are other good books which cover that topic; Blake Synder's Save the Cat being the best deconstruction of how high concept scripts are (usually) structured. Danny Rubin's book, rather, explores in depth what happens when you come up with a genuinely brilliant idea and try to execute it in a fresh and interesting way.

It's an incredibly honest and therefore revealing account of what happens during the life of a script. From concept, through writing, development, casting, production and editing; it really paints a picture of how collaberative the business of making movies is. What makes it work so well is that Rubin's first draft is excellent and easy to fall in love with. This makes the decisions that shaped the final film, decisions which have created something so perfect in so many eyes, all the more fascinating. It is not the story of a poor screenplay made good. It's the story of how something that's already very good still inevitably has to change as the process rolls on. Rubin is very open about how the Studio, Harold Ramis and Bill Murray all helped shape the eventual film. This could easily have been the story of a lovely screenplay ruined, so it's to the credit of everyone involved that the script evolved in a way that didn't dilute its original charm.

The book shares this charm, and thus reveals Danny Rubin to be the source of it. You can't help but finish the book feeling happy for him. In an industry obesessed with making the same films over, and over, and over... it's nice to share in a rare moment when a good one makes it through.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Work of Humility and Genius February 4, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
If Groundhog Day is a movie you consider fondly, this is the literary equivalent of meeting the characters, investigating their past, finding their inspiration in the author, and continuing the story into parallel universes of fiction. If you are a screenwriter, well, then, you've just come across the most humbling, instructive, and entertaining guide to the craft available in mainstream publication. Get ready to take in the rivers and streams, gulfs and valleys, and the long stretches of nothing that aided the conception of a modern day classic. They spill out for you in all different directions as you read this book, like a map telling you new stories about the place you've walked so many times.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thanks Danny February 15, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
What a great gift to those who love the movie (me) those who wonder about screenwriting (me again) those who are interested in how Hollywood works (yes, me) and those who think Danny Rubin is a God. (so I'm 3 out of 4, not bad). A wonderful, marvelous book. It was not a book that had me, upon finishing, considering poking out my eyes knowing I could never read anything so worthy again. But it was damn good. I loved it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great examples, a lot to learn, and a great read! February 2, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Sometimes it is hard to take very much away from a book on screenwriting because many of them lack enough specific, in-depth, concrete examples of their principles -- and even if they have them, they're rarely shown in traditional screenplay-formatting. This book is full of them and it's very relevant and refreshing. It's exciting to see how the story and script developed over time and the links are a great feature that you get from the eBook. Plus, it's a fun read. I highly recommend it!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Get a front seat view of what happens when your screenplay is turned...
What a terrific blow-by-blow of what it's like to be the screenwriter of a successful - a classic - movie. Read more
Published 14 days ago by Joe Shapiro
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for lovers of the movie, and budding screenwriters!
Amazing read for anyone (like me) who loved the movie, and budding screenwriters!
Published 29 days ago by Gray Jones
4.0 out of 5 stars Good but brief
If you're more than a casual fan of the movie, I think you'll like this book. It was an enjoyable read for me. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Mark Wilsonwood
4.0 out of 5 stars great insight into a phenomenal movie
Excellent. Would love to see the finished script as well. This look at how Groundhog Day was made is unique and worth the time.
Published 4 months ago by Corey
5.0 out of 5 stars great book on the process of writing and revising a script.
Especially when you aren't looking to write a formulaic one. Very interesting and useful. And entertaining as well. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Twiggy Twerpkiss
4.0 out of 5 stars unrepeatable
A funny, honest insight into how one famous movie got written, rewritten and finally landed onscreen. Invaluable for any screenwriter who needs a reality check- and we all do.
Published 7 months ago by Bill Kay
5.0 out of 5 stars ... lot of books on screenwriting and this is the best one. The best...
I have read a lot of books on screenwriting and this is the best one. The best part of this book is that it contains the first draft of the screenplay and Danny's notes and... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Chris
5.0 out of 5 stars A great book about a great movie. Aspiring screenwriters should pick...
Groundhog Day is my favorite movie ever. Danny Rubin has written a wonderful book, providing excellent insight into his process and the behind the scenes story of the film. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Terry Metter
5.0 out of 5 stars "Screenplays are about change"
I love, love, love Groundhog Day, saw it like a hundred times and it never gets old. It was fascinating to read the screenplay's first draft and being guided through the... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Yoona 939
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun and Illuminating
A great read for anyone who wants to see how a story is created. Ranges from silly to philosophical, just like the movie. Highly recommended.
Published 12 months ago by K. Konetzka
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More About the Author

After many years writing for professional theater companies as well as scripting industrial films and children's television, Danny Rubin began writing screenplays. His screen credits include Hear No Evil, S.F.W., and Groundhog Day, for which he received the 1993 British Academy Award for Best Screenplay and the Critics' Circle Award for Screenwriter of the Year, as well as honors from the Writers Guild of America and the American Film Institute.

Rubin has taught screenwriting in Chicago at the University of Illinois, Columbia College, and the National High School Institute; at the Sundance Institute in Utah; the PAL Screenwriting Lab in England; the Chautauqua Institution in New York; and in New Mexico at the College of Santa Fe. He is currently the Briggs-Copeland Lecturer on Screenwriting at Harvard University.

Rubin holds a BA in biology from Brown University and an MA in radio, television, and film from Northwestern University.

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