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I no longer do a film for the wrong reasons. I have to be convinced ethically and morally. Both the director and I have to be on the same page. There are just five songs in most films these days, and they have to be amazing. There has to be a twist in the screenplay. The editing has to be crisp. Your hard work should show, but effortlessly.
In doing the screenplay for 'Good Night, and Good Luck,' the most important thing for me was to constantly go back to wherever the opposition would argue. So I had to keep reading all the books and articles about why McCarthy is such a good guy.
Acting is fun and I refuse to get involved in the semantics and the politics of strategy and breaking out of something or doing something because you need to do something else. For me it's all about what fuels my soul and if I'm passionate about a screenplay then that's what I'll do next.
I wrote 'Yellow Submarine' for the Beatles. I wrote the screenplay for 'The Games,' about the Olympic Games. I wrote 'Love Story,' both the novel and the screenplay. I wrote 'RPM' for Stanley Kramer. Plus, I wrote two scholarly books and a 400-page translation from the Latin, and I dated June Wilkinson!
There's nothing more important in making movies than the screenplay.
I'm working on a screenplay right now for the BBC, but I hope to have the decks cleared soon so I can get into the studio with my pals and put down some more tracks, try to get a strong dance single together.
I don't begin a novel or a screenplay until I know the ending. And I don't mean only that I have to know what happens. I mean that I have to hear the actual sentences. I have to know what atmosphere the words convey.
The way you write a screenplay is that you close your eyes and run the movie in your head and then you write it down.
If you play it straight it's funny - the best comedy is always played straight down the middle. The adjustment is understanding from the screenplay that a moment is hilarious.
I found the structure of writing a screenplay harder than the structure of writing an essay. But it was definitely challenging to force myself to sit and write. I'm not used to having to force myself to work.
I always say when you write a book, you're a 'one-man band.' Whereas, when you finish a screenplay, it's just a sketch.
I like working with south Indian directors because they are very disciplined. They visualize their entire story and screenplay in their heads even before they start shooting, which I respect. They finish their work on time. Being a disciplinarian myself, this suits my style.
If you have a good story idea, don't assume it must form a prose narrative. It may work better as a play, a screenplay or a poem. Be flexible.
Normally you read a screenplay - and I read a lot of them - and the characters don't feel like people. They feel like plot devices or cliches or stereotypes.
I have always had trouble recognizing myself in the features of the intellectual playing his political role according to the screenplay that you are familiar with and whose heritage deserves to be questioned.
As human beings, of course, we're all compromised and complex and contradictory and if a screenplay can express those contradictions within a character and if there's room for me to express them, that's a part I'd love to play, so much more than a character who is heroic and one-dimensional.
Whether it's writing a monologue or writing standup or writing a screenplay or writing a play, I think staying involved in the creation of your own work empowers you in a way, even if you don't ever do it. It gives you a sense of ownership and a sense of purpose, which I think as an actor is really important.
About a year ago I got really exhausted from reading bad scripts and I know that I am a writer and that I have stories to tell, so I thought, 'Let's do this!' So I'm co-writing a screenplay now with another screenwriter and loving it. Absolutely loving it. And I would like to be the producer on the project and of course the lead is me.
My understanding of films was just as much as any young girl who watches Bollywood films. I had no idea about the whole process of filmmaking, about dialogue writing, scripts, screenplay etc. I had probably gone to two or three film shoots in my childhood.
If I want to write a movie, I'll write a screenplay, but if I have an idea for a book, it's something that I think can only be done novelistically.
Bret Easton Ellis
If you're writing a screenplay, you need to be prepared to let go: there's a good chance the words you write aren't going to be the ones that end up on screen.
A screenplay is not a finished product; a novel is. A screenplay is a blueprint for something - for a building that will most likely never be built.
Writing a screenplay is like writing a big puzzle, and so the hardest part, I think, is getting the story.
'Y Tu Mama Tambien' is one of the first unrated movies to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. But many video stores won't take a movie that's not rated, so I had to make the movie an R.
'Rent' was a special project for me. It was my first notable screenplay job. I worked with two wonderful directors on it, starting with Spike Lee in the summer of 2001. I wrote a draft for Spike and he was really good to me.
John F. Kennedy
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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