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Old 06-27-2017, 02:13 AM   #1
slopnik
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Default Past and present in a slugline

Two questions about slugs:

1-I have a TV pilot in which I switch back and forth between the past (middle ages) and present day.

I wanted to avoid repeating that in the action line considering the limitations in the page count, which a TV script has and used something I found in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy screenplay:

INT. CIRCUS - RESEARCH - EVENING – PAST
INT. CONNIE’S HOUSE - DAY – PRESENT
INT. CIRCUS - CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY – PAST
INT. HOTEL ISLAY - SMILEY’S ROOM - DAY – PRESENT

Would PAST and PRESENT be accepted in a TV pilot (and other formats of scripts) or is there a better way to express that in a slugline?

I have established at the beginning the basic of the story, what happens where, but because of the time jumps, it must be clear to the reader in which time every scene takes place.

As addition to this, can I write the country in which a scene takes place as a part of a slugline if you switch between two different countries(I want avoid using a super for this because it could lead up to an extra page of unnecessary text).

This is how they did it in the same script:

EXT. HUNGARY - BUDAPEST - 1973 – DAY

2-I have an MC who does his work in the gardens of different customers.
Which of the loglines would be the best for this

EXT. CUSTOMER HOME #1 – DAY
EXT. CUSTOMER HOME #2 – DAY

Or

EXT. CUSTOMER’S HOME #1 – DAY
EXT. CUSTOMER’S HOME #2 – DAY

Or is it

EXT. CUSTOMER’S #1 HOME – DAY
EXT. CUSTOMER’S #2 HOME - DAY

I have in between scenes in which something important happens at a third location and do not want - cannot use a series of shots, a montage, or similar devices.
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Old 06-28-2017, 03:40 PM   #2
nmstevens
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Default Re: Past and present in a slugline

Quote:
Originally Posted by slopnik View Post
Two questions about slugs:

1-I have a TV pilot in which I switch back and forth between the past (middle ages) and present day.

I wanted to avoid repeating that in the action line considering the limitations in the page count, which a TV script has and used something I found in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy screenplay:

INT. CIRCUS - RESEARCH - EVENING – PAST
INT. CONNIE’S HOUSE - DAY – PRESENT
INT. CIRCUS - CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY – PAST
INT. HOTEL ISLAY - SMILEY’S ROOM - DAY – PRESENT

Would PAST and PRESENT be accepted in a TV pilot (and other formats of scripts) or is there a better way to express that in a slugline?

I have established at the beginning the basic of the story, what happens where, but because of the time jumps, it must be clear to the reader in which time every scene takes place.

As addition to this, can I write the country in which a scene takes place as a part of a slugline if you switch between two different countries(I want avoid using a super for this because it could lead up to an extra page of unnecessary text).

This is how they did it in the same script:

EXT. HUNGARY - BUDAPEST - 1973 – DAY

2-I have an MC who does his work in the gardens of different customers.
Which of the loglines would be the best for this

EXT. CUSTOMER HOME #1 – DAY
EXT. CUSTOMER HOME #2 – DAY

Or

EXT. CUSTOMER’S HOME #1 – DAY
EXT. CUSTOMER’S HOME #2 – DAY

Or is it

EXT. CUSTOMER’S #1 HOME – DAY
EXT. CUSTOMER’S #2 HOME - DAY

I have in between scenes in which something important happens at a third location and do not want - cannot use a series of shots, a montage, or similar devices.
I don't know if you're using numbers, (i.e. Customer Home #1) just because you don't want to be specific for the sake of the post or if this is how you really want to describe the location.

Usually, I dislike number things and/or people, because when I read that sort of thing in a script, I find it hard to identify locations and people by number.

If you can identify the location in some other way -- preferably by the owner's name or by the actual location -- New York Customer's Home and Idaho Customer's Home -- then you won't need numbers and the reader will immediately know which place you're talking about.

A number doesn't give you information and the best thing you can do when you've got multiple locations is to find a few words that tell you where you are.

HOUSE ON THE HILL

HOUSE IN THE VALLEY

EMILY'S HOUSE (TODAY)

EMILY'S HOUSE (1850)

Just try to make it very clear.

NMS
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Old 06-29-2017, 02:32 AM   #3
slopnik
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Default Re: Past and present in a slugline

Quote:
Originally Posted by nmstevens View Post
I don't know if you're using numbers, (i.e. Customer Home #1) just because you don't want to be specific for the sake of the post or if this is how you really want to describe the location.
I also prefer to identify the location with its owner’s name whenever possible.

In this case, these locations come up only once in the story, and each of them consists of three to six lines of action.
No text, just what the MC does in each of them.

I often read that the upper-ups in this business love to count how many names are capped in the script and so determine how expensive the movie would be considering the number of actors.

To name each scene with the house owner’s name would increase the number of actors from maybe 7 to 12, which is (at least for me) ridiculously high, considering that this five play no significant role in the story ( I simply name them male house owner, a mother...)

I do like your suggestion with
HOUSE ON THE HILL

HOUSE IN THE VALLEY

I will try to find something similar for my five locations.

Thanks also for your second suggestion considering the time in a slug (past and present).

This is for my TV pilot, a sort of Game of Thrones, only on a worldwide scale.

I have combined Isis, Trump, and NATO with an idiot’s idea that slingshots the world on the verge of destruction.

The pilot has different locations around Europe and USA, switches between past and present showcasing the consequences of what was done in the past and how it reflects on the present day.

That is why I have used PAST and PRESENT in the slugs. Only in my case, I did not bold and underlined them. That seemed a bit too much for me to do in a spec pilot.
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Old 06-29-2017, 06:51 AM   #4
ComicBent
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Default Re: Past and present in a slugline

Re: First question
I think that using PAST or PRESENT would be fine. However, I would format it a bit differently. I would not use underlining. And it is trivial, but I would use parentheses:

INT. CONNIE’S HOUSE - DAY (PRESENT)
INT. CIRCUS - CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY (PAST)

As for the country in the slugline, you can do that if you want to and need to. But I would not put HUNGARY into the slugline. BUDAPEST is fine. If someone does not know where BUDAPEST is, let him/her look it up. I mean, you do not use something like PLANET EARTH - USA - CALIFORNIA - LOS ANGELES. Just using LOS ANGELES is fine, unless you really are switching back and forth between Earth and some other planet that has a Los Angeles!

Re: Second question
That is really confusing, because what you really mean is that the main character works for different customers, each of whom has a house. It would be better to give a customer's name, but if it is not convenient to do that (as you have explained), then the general form with numbers would be:

HOME OF CUSTOMER #1
HOME OF CUSTOMER #2
Etc.
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Old 06-30-2017, 11:44 PM   #5
slopnik
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Default Re: Past and present in a slugline

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Originally Posted by ComicBent View Post
I would not use underlining. And it is trivial, but I would use parentheses:

INT. CONNIE’S HOUSE - DAY (PRESENT)
INT. CIRCUS - CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY (PAST)

It would be better to give a customer's name, but if it is not convenient to do that (as you have explained), then the general form with numbers would be:

HOME OF CUSTOMER #1
HOME OF CUSTOMER #2
Great - thanks.
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Old 07-01-2017, 11:42 AM   #6
TwoBrad Bradley
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Default Re: Past and present in a slugline

Quote:
Originally Posted by ComicBent View Post
Re: First question
I think that using PAST or PRESENT would be fine. However, I would format it a bit differently. I would not use underlining. And it is trivial, but I would use parentheses:

INT. CONNIE’S HOUSE - DAY (PRESENT)
INT. CIRCUS - CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY (PAST)
How does FLASHBACK fit in?
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Old 07-01-2017, 01:10 PM   #7
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Default Re: Past and present in a slugline

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Originally Posted by TwoBrad Bradley View Post
How does FLASHBACK fit in?
TwoBrad,

I thought about FLASHBACK.

It was not entirely clear to me from what slopnik said, but I did not think that he was talking about a character having a flashback. I think the idea was that the narrative of the film was jumping back and forth between two eras.
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Old 07-06-2017, 01:44 AM   #8
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Default Re: Past and present in a slugline

Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoBrad Bradley View Post
How does FLASHBACK fit in?
Sorry for the late response, but I am not receiving any notifications about new posts in this thread – no idea why.

The storyline is told in a single line – team A ends in the past, does things, which cause a series of events in the present, where team B struggles to figure out how to deal with them.
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Old 07-06-2017, 01:45 AM   #9
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Default Re: Past and present in a slugline

Quote:
Originally Posted by ComicBent View Post
I think the idea was that the narrative of the film was jumping back and forth between two eras.
100% correct.
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