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Final Draft Blog

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All the Write Moves: Mary Poppins Returns

When the beloved Disney musical Mary Poppins was released in 1964, ideas of what constituted movie magic were very different than they are now. Not only was Mary Poppins made nearly 20 years before the first CGI movie scenes, but audiences didn’t liv...

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All the Write Moves: 'Operation Finale'

Presenting the real-life story of how bold Mossad agents snuck into 1960 Argentina and captured fugitive Third Reich officer Adolf Eichmann, Operation Finale is a serviceable thriller with stylistic echoes of 2012’s Argo. Like that picture, Operation...

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The Comedy Set-Up Character: Inspiration from Michael Bluth and Liz Lemon

Arrested Development may be one of the best “character comedies” of the last decade. If you aren’t familiar with the show, it revolves around Michael Bluth: son, father, brother, hermano, uncle (maybe), boss and client to some of the most outlandish ...

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Redemptive Character Arcs and Why We Love “Stranger Things”

Like many of you, I nerded out watching Stranger Things. It’s fun in so many wonderful ways. I loved the science fiction. I loved the nostalgia. I loved the visuals. But most of all I nerded out about the writing. The redemptive story arcs are a thin...

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Shake Up Your Research Routine

It’s no secret that research can give your script a leg up. Maybe two legs. Potentially an arm too. Research into your subject matter can flesh out your story making it feel even more realistic and grounded. Your script’s world will seem fuller, your...

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A Guide to Naming Your Characters

Choosing names for your characters is an important part of the writing process. The names you choose will not only indicate what type of character it is, but also make them easier to read on the page.

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How a "Bill Murray" Type Character Can Inspire Your Writing

Call him a lovable scoundrel or a dry wisecracker, Bill Murray has cultivated a very specific persona over the years. From his early days as Chevy Chase’s replacement on Saturday Night Live to his recent Netflix holiday special, A Very Murray Christm...

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Choosing and Introducing Your Focus Characters

Oftentimes the new screenwriter will populate their spec with numerous characters. But how many characters are too many?

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The Frame Story and the Flashback

Flashbacks can be utilized for several reasons in a script. If you want to reveal a plot point from the past or something about a character that needs illuminating, a flashback might be the best route to take. Sometimes this storytelling technique ca...

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