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The Complete Guide to Standard Script Formats, Part 1 (Pt.1) Revised Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 36 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0929583006
ISBN-10: 0929583000
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 170 pages
  • Publisher: CMC Publishing; Revised edition (December 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0929583000
  • ISBN-13: 978-0929583006
  • Product Dimensions: 10.9 x 8.5 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #118,300 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I have a lot of books on scriptwriting. This one by far is the best reference book I've found. Before you can sell your script, you need an agent; before you can get an agent, you need a script written in the proper format (I can't emphasize this enough!); and this book tells you everything you need to create an industry-standard script. This book is a "MUST" for anyone writing or thinking about writing a script!
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Format: Paperback
I run an annual screenplay competiton and read 100+ scripts a year - I recommend this book to ALL my writers. My copy is dog-eared, highlighted, and post-it flagged. THERE IS NO BETTER BOOK YOU CAN BUY!
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By A Customer on April 1, 2001
Format: Paperback
While this book is very informative on all the different types of scripts you can write, it has two major counts against it. First, it was written in 1983 for people using typewriters. All the margin information is thus useless to most of us now using wordprocessors. The hastily written section on wordprocessing considerations, doesn't remedy the problem. Also, the brief introduction with a list of DO's and DON'T'S for new writers does not clarify the enourmous confusion I encoutered when trying to figure out which set of diretions I should follow for writing a reading script. But if you are in the business and need to know how to write shooting scripts for either feature length movies or T.V. shows, this is a great book.
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Format: Paperback
This is the most valuable book anyone interested in writing a screenplay can own. It covers the history and reason behind the screenplay format better than any other book I've read on the subject. Although the format outline is primarily typewriter based, and the word processor settings actually differ slightly from the typewriter settings, anyone who really knows how to use their word processor will be able to create a template based on the format settings outlined in this book. There are even templates already available for download from the internet which have been designed based on the outline provided in this book, including one which I created. This book details virtually everything you'll ever need to know about writing either a reading or production script in the proper format, however, since this book is designed to teach script format, and not how to write, you'll have to look elsewhere for information on how to craft a good story. If you're serious about writing a screenplay in the accepted Hollywood format, then I highly recommend that you buy this book.
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Format: Paperback
The first time I looked at a screenplay script format, I thought I'd never be able to understand what went where and why. After a few days with "The Complete Guide to Standard Script Formats," I felt like an expert. It should be understood that this book is an excellent resource for understanding the format component of writing a screenplay. It does not address the art writing or the literary aspects of how to construct a story suitable for making into a film. If you've already got the story down and learning the proper format for your first screenplay is your task at hand, this is the book for you.
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Format: Paperback
I've worked in the hour-long TV business as writer's assistant, then staff writer, then producer, for almost 15 years, and I recommend this book to everyone I work with and all my students. This book was written by professional studio typists, back before there were word processors, when every produced script was typed by people who did that as their full time job. It contains THE industry standard for how scripts should look -- which is sometimes not the default setting of those expensive script programs. This book is MUST HAVE for anyone who wants to be a professional script coordinator or staff writer, and for anyone who wants their scripts to look just like professional ones. It isn't really designed for, or necessary for, people who are just starting out, although I personally think it should be required reading for every aspiring writer, especially in TV, because understanding how a script is used as a blueprint for filming, such how the scene headers are used to create the shooting schedule, can really help new writers to understand how to create a script that is not only interesting but filmable. Combine this with Ralph Singleton's Film Scheduling/Film Budgeting Workbook. Script formatting and scheduling programs are great timesaving tools, but you should be telling the programs how to format your script, not the other way around.
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Format: Paperback
This title seems to pop up in screenplay formatting circles more and more these days. Written by two folks who have been running their own script typing service for years, it's an exhaustive overview of how (and why) screenplays are formatted. I found it to be fascinating reading, but then, I was designing a script formatting program at the time... They receive credits in a lot of software, and they got another one in mine [Screenwright(R) - [...]
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Good but use with care. Formatting standards have changed a bit in the decade since this edition came out, so not every format example would necessarily be received well by green script readers.

One valuable thing is a clear explanation of the critical difference between MONTAGE and SERIES OF SHOTS not found elsewhere: the former is created in post, the latter made during production.

Another point that is missing from most other, newer books is advice on how to actually achieve the one-minute-per-page for single-camera film scripts. Everybody else mentions this truism but have little to say about making it so.

There is less content specifically for beginners than similar, later books. It could definitely benefit from an update/rewrite, incorporating new formatting standards and sensibilities, the reality of specialized script-sriting software, plus more guidance for novices. One star off for this.

Still, this book fills in gaps and omissions in Riley and Trottier, and IMO is much clearer than Trottier by providing examples that don't necessitate flipping back and forth or using the Index.

Recommended in conjunction with reading the other books. Has a deserved, proud space next to the others on my bookshelf.
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