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Old 04-09-2010, 03:17 PM   #251
TwoBrad Bradley
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Default Re: Fatal Flaw?

Jim, you are correct.

If you (or anybody) "updates" the definition of Protagonist or Main Character then, of course, it will take on a different meaning than what is commonly accepted. Your story analysis will make sense to anyone familiar with the revised definitions. (Casablanca would still be Casablanca.)

The good thing is a writer can write a good screenplay without ever assigning any specific labels to the characters.

The problem is that if you talk about your story there's the great possibility that not everyone would be speaking the same language.

BTW: Did you just update the definition of loglines to now include the sum total of the story?
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Old 04-09-2010, 03:47 PM   #252
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Default Re: Fatal Flaw?

LOL -- no, I'll start another thread for that
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:54 PM   #253
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Default Re: Fatal Flaw?

I don't understand Jim's theory/model, its quite complex, something an engineer would devise. But I see the benefits of separating the Protagonist and Main character--at times.

When the protagonist and main character are allowed to be two different characters, I think we can be more flexible and creative when developing a story.

The protag and MC can be the same character. It's our story, our choice.

No longer must our main character pursue a single external goal that affects everyone. Our main character, the character who our story is about, the character we will learn the most about, can pursue a variety of internal and external goals as the story progresses.

Meanwhile, another character, call him the protagonist, pursues the story goal and is instrumental in driving the complete story forward as our main character faces all kinds of obstacles not even related to the story goal.

Let's call these characters, what they are.

Character 1. Character Who The Story Is About. (Once called the Main Character)

Character A. Character Who Pursues The Goal That Shows Up In Our Logline (Once called the Protagonist)
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Old 04-10-2010, 02:56 AM   #254
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Default Re: Fatal Flaw?

Jim

What's your take on The Departed?
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Old 04-10-2010, 10:51 AM   #255
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Default Re: Fatal Flaw?

What I have learned from personal study of films is that there is no "One Way" to write a story. Compare the timelines and structure of Memento, Hitchcock's Psycho and Magnolia. Each was a successful and popular movie, although not necessarily everyone agrees on their greatness. Each told a story in a unique manner.

We could dissect these films or their respective screenplays and force them into some structure, I suppose, but why? I have to believe that storytelling is an art, not a science.

To the OP: write your story in such a way that it makes sense and entertains.
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Old 04-10-2010, 12:01 PM   #256
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Default Re: Fatal Flaw?

while i personally don't feel a separation exists, i respect that there are other views with different levels of experience. i'm just not really sure how this helps, rather than hinders, understanding of story dynamics.

i keep imagining the chaos of sending a script off to be reviewed, and the notes come back as: protagonist doesn't arc enough. "well, no, that's my mc, and he arcs just fine. the protagonist is the other guy."

i have followed these boards for awhile, and it seems from my limited view, like there is already a big enough problem in hw, getting us new writers to respect commonly applied aspects of structure...? i don't know, maybe that's on cue or maybe it's overly dramatic. but, really, a common language does have its advantages.

Last edited by asjah8 : 04-10-2010 at 01:00 PM.
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Old 04-11-2010, 05:47 PM   #257
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Default Re: Fatal Flaw?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonpiper View Post
I don't understand Jim's theory/model, its quite complex, something an engineer would devise. But I see the benefits of separating the Protagonist and Main character--at times.

When the protagonist and main character are allowed to be two different characters, I think we can be more flexible and creative when developing a story.

The protag and MC can be the same character. It's our story, our choice.

No longer must our main character pursue a single external goal that affects everyone. Our main character, the character who our story is about, the character we will learn the most about, can pursue a variety of internal and external goals as the story progresses.

Meanwhile, another character, call him the protagonist, pursues the story goal and is instrumental in driving the complete story forward as our main character faces all kinds of obstacles not even related to the story goal.

Let's call these characters, what they are.

Character 1. Character Who The Story Is About. (Once called the Main Character)

Character A. Character Who Pursues The Goal That Shows Up In Our Logline (Once called the Protagonist)
This my friends, is a sick post.
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Old 04-11-2010, 06:20 PM   #258
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Default Re: Fatal Flaw?

In what sense of the word Sick?
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Old 04-11-2010, 06:26 PM   #259
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As in..."dynamite!"
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Old 04-11-2010, 06:33 PM   #260
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Default Re: Fatal Flaw?

Thanks, Bros. You had me doubting myself. I thought I wasn't clear.
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