Short films



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  • Short films

    Does anyone have any advice on writing a character-driven two-hander 10 minute film. I can't imagine any character change beng done convincingly in such a short time. I could see a slice-of-life film, but then where is the beginning middle and end?

    Random thoughts welcomed.

  • #2
    random thoughts:

    try to write as few set ups as possible and make those set-ups count.

    if you're gonna shoot on dv, stick to interior locations as much as possible (i think moody, dark lighting tends to look much better than broad daylight; but i tend to dislike comedies when shot on dv; i just don't think the look matches the intended tone).

    think of the short not in acts, but like a joke. even if it's not comedy, try to find a punchline. if it is comedy, it's literally the punchline. if it's horror, it's the big scare. punchlines seem to be key for short pieces.

    watch a bunch of shorts on and; it'll give you a good idea of how to construct your "joke."

    that's about all i have right now. i may think of more later.

    good luck.


    • #3
      Very informative. I hope you do think of more later.


      • #4
        Do think of the short in the terms of acts. But a very short - almost non-existent Act II.


        • #5
          Thanks. Very helpful.

          I now do see the beginning middle and end.

          You don't specify it, but the beginning is implied
          in your joke analogy.

          The beginning is the inciting incident.

          "A priest, a rabbi, and an atheist, walk into a bar"
          "A travelling salesman knocks on a farmhouse door"

          About the end though, is it always a surprise?


          • #6
            Watch Jonah Lim's REQUIEM IN D MINOR... i guess it has an Act II, and there is a character arc in the end, very clearly defined.

            Although when writing a short, you'd have to rely on a "gag" or a u-turn in your ending to make it climactic.

            There was a saying A short film is like a joke where the punchline is located in the end.


            • #7
              Where can I watch it?