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Writing the Character-Centered Screenplay, Updated-Expandedby Andrew Horton
Synopses & Reviews
"We need good screenwriters who understand character." Everywhere Andrew Horton traveled in researching this book—from Hollywood to Hungary—he heard the same refrain. Yet most of the standard how-to books on screenwriting follow the film industry's earlier lead in focusing almost exclusively on plot and formulaic structures.
With this book, Horton, a film scholar and successful screenwriter, provides the definitive work on the character-based screenplay. Exceptionally wide-ranging—covering American, international, mainstream, and "off-Hollywood" films, as well as television—the book offers creative strategies and essential practical information.
Horton begins by placing screenwriting in the context of the storytelling tradition, arguing through literary and cultural analysis that all great stories revolve around a strong central character. He then suggests specific techniques and concepts to help any writer—whether new or experienced—build more vivid characters and screenplays. Centering his discussion around four film examples—including Thelma and Louise and The Silence of the Lambs—and the television series, Northern Exposure, he takes the reader step-by-step through the screenwriting process, starting with the development of multi-dimensional characters and continuing through to rewrite. Finally, he includes a wealth of information about contests, fellowships, and film festivals.
Espousing a new, character-based approach to screenwriting, this engaging, insightful work will prove an essential guide to all of those involved in the writing and development of film scripts.
Since it first appeared in 1994, Writing the Character-Centered Screenplay has become a "must read" for screenwriters everywhere and turned many a novice into a professional screenwriter. In this expanded edition, Horton surveys the New Hollywood while always emphasizing the one element of a film that truly holds our interest — character.
This updated and expanded edition includes:
The only screenwriting guidebook that focuses the writing process on character. Useful for writers in all genres, the book uses examples from Hollywood, independent films, foreign films, and television. This updated and expanded edition includes a new chapter and ten new exercises.
This updated text attempts to provide a definitive work on the character-based screenplay. It surveys the New Hollywood, where "Fargo", "Shakespeare in Love" and "The Truman Show" are able to succeed alongside the perennial special effects extravaganzas.
"I have been searching for a book such as Horton's for years—and finally it has arrived. Horton's penetrating analysis and graceful writing style open up the key topic of characterization as no other book has. . . . I recommend it highly."—Paul Lucey, University of Southern California
Includes bibliographical references and index.
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