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Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting Paperback – November 29, 2005
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“Screenplay is one of the bibles of the film trade and has launched many a would-be screenwriter on the road to Hollywood.” —Library Journal
“Syd Field is the preeminent analyzer in the study of American screenplays.” —James L. Brooks, AcademyAward–winning writer, director, producer
From the Inside Flap
From concept to character, from opening scene to finished script..
Here are easily understood guidelines to make film-writing accessible to novices and to help practiced writers improve their scripts. Syd Field pinpoints the structural and stylistic elements essential to every good screenplay. He presents a step-by-step, comprehensive technique for writing the script that will succeed.
-Why are the first ten pages of your script crucially important?
- How do you collaborate successfully with someone else?
-How do you adapt a novel, a play, or an article into a screenplay?
-How do you market your script?
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Top customer reviews
But judging by the reveiews, it is a bible for aspiring writers as well as for many big-name Hollywod writers.
Like a finely crafted screenplay hooking and deeply touching an audience without a wasted word or scene, each inspiring chapter tells stories that share Field's wisdom accumulated through his own screenwriting practice and by interviewing many screewriters.
By referring to many excellent movies, Field illucidates the craft and highlights the persistence necessary to write and market better movies.
The annoying: his writing is extremely repetitive. He uses the same small set of metaphors and analyzes the same classic movies many times over. I set the book down around the tenth synopsis of Chinatown.
I think this book could have been a must-read resource for writers if Field had had a more aggressive editor. As it is, it's just okay--not a total waste of ten bucks, but not a gem either.
I loved it from page one through to the end. Thank you Mr. Field for the time and thought you spent on helping others reach their dreams.
In fact, I would recommend that any others aspiring to write a great script, or writers in general who are interested in sharpened the tools in the toolbox read this in concert with Robert McKee's "Story." McKee's book is more advanced and more complex than Field's by a good stretch -- it took me a couple of weeks to fully digest McKee's book, versus a few days for Field's -- but the works are parallel tracks, and reading them back-to-back provided me with a wealth of perspectives and ideas that work quite well together. Forgive me if it sounds elitist, but I think McKee's book is more of a cerebral, thinking-man's tome; though it is itself an incredible book that really helped me out. I would just read them both -- "Story," followed by "Screenplay" -- and you'll be on your way.
The only place I had trouble was in following his screenplay examples since I hadn’t seen most of the films. But, if I took it upon myself to see them, I’m sure Field’s remarks would make a lot of sense.
This book has definitely improved my ability to write screenplays and really gave me the confidence to get started in the industry of screenwriting. Thank you and Rest in Peace Mr. Syd Field!
Most recent customer reviews
Good, instructional read.