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Old 01-21-2012, 03:33 PM   #1
iggy
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Default Central Dramatic Argument

Is the Central Dramatic Argument different from a thematic statement (such as "Greed contains the seeds of its own destruction.")?

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Old 01-21-2012, 03:37 PM   #2
Biohazard
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Default Re: Central Dramatic Argument

Quote:
Originally Posted by iggy View Post
Is the Central Dramatic Argument different from a thematic statement (such as "Greed contains the seeds of its own destruction.")?
That depends on what your definition of Central Dramatic Argument is.

I think we will need more information to understand where you are coming from.

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Old 01-21-2012, 04:07 PM   #3
Craig Mazin
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Default Re: Central Dramatic Argument

They are not different, and we don't need more information. The central dramatic argument of the script is also referred to as the "theme." Aristotle used the word "unity" to describe this concept as well.

I know this, because I'm pretty much the only person in the world who says "central dramatic argument" for theme, so it's basically a phrase I invented, and what I meant when I invented it is THEME.

The reason I started saying "central dramatic argument" is precisely to help guide people toward the essence of good dramatic theme (which is to say, an assertion that can be argued) and away from the essence of bad dramatic theme (a neutral concept like "brotherhood" or "mortality").

Last edited by Craig Mazin : 02-04-2012 at 03:24 PM.
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Old 01-21-2012, 04:13 PM   #4
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Default Re: Central Dramatic Argument

It seems you are very influential:

http://books.google.es/books?id=atQi...ent%22&f=false

http://books.google.es/books?id=_OZ1...ent%22&f=false
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Old 01-21-2012, 04:22 PM   #5
Craig Mazin
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Default Re: Central Dramatic Argument

I didn't say I was the first person to chain those three words together.

I said that I am PRETTY MUCH the only person-- as far as I know-- other than people that have read the dumb crap I write about screenwriting-- that uses that phrase to describe the theme of a movie.

I said "pretty much" on the assumption that there might be an obscure book on theater from 1955, and one of fourteen billion screenwriting books as well, that might happen to also use that phrase once.

Good use of the internet!
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Old 01-21-2012, 04:29 PM   #6
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Default Re: Central Dramatic Argument

I was just looking if someone, somewhere, had defined "central dramatic argument" differently than "theme", before I read your reply, and found both books. Then read your reply and thought it was funny that those books used the same expression too. Maybe I should have added an emoticone:
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Old 01-21-2012, 04:31 PM   #7
BattleDolphinZero
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Default Re: Central Dramatic Argument

ETA: no delete button?

Last edited by BattleDolphinZero : 01-21-2012 at 04:50 PM.
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Old 01-21-2012, 04:42 PM   #8
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Default Re: Central Dramatic Argument

Wouldn't it be great if people focussed on the tenet of each other's arguments and debated that rather than the minutiae and pedantry?
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Old 01-21-2012, 04:46 PM   #9
Craig Mazin
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Default Re: Central Dramatic Argument

.

Last edited by Craig Mazin : 02-04-2012 at 03:23 PM.
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Old 01-21-2012, 04:48 PM   #10
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Default Re: Central Dramatic Argument

You got it all wrong, but anyway...
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