The screenplay is now at the midpoint and I very pleased with where we stand. Diana and I will be meeting in Manhattan near the end of April as she gets close to the end of the first draft. Below are her notes on where we are at the end of March:
In our last blog entry, the screenplay I’m writing for Ben Edwards was called “Kasey’s Story.” That title has evolved to “Casey’s Gift.”
The title of a screenplay can change many times before the final one is found. Even after the movie goes into development (when it is being produced), the title may still change.
We made this change for one simple reason: It’s hard to know how to pronounce “Kasey.” To be sure of its pronunciation, it should rightly be spelled “K.C.” And that isn’t the kind of name we want for our heroine: It is a little too abrupt and modern for this teen girl who, in high school, fights to dismantle a culture of cruel bullying.
She is helped in this endeavor by an unlikely assemblage of angels, some living, and some perhaps not.
As of this writing, I have reached p. 48 of the screenplay. If you have read prior blogs, you know that the working length of a well-written screenplay is 100 pages, give or take a few.
In “Casey’s Gift,” p. 48 is an important structural moment that we call the midpoint. This is the moment in a movie when the protagonist — the one who is fighting for something be it survival, justice, self-esteem, safety, health, family — comes upon a hurdle that is so great, it seems insurmountable.
On p. 48 of “Casey’s Gift,” Casey learns that she is under suspicion for a crime she did not commit. Just as she was making headway in her quest for justice, she is stopped by something completely unexpected that may drop her in her tracks.
Do I know how the rest of the story goes? A well-crafted screenplay is always outlined first, with all major events decided upon. While this doesn’t make writing easy, it does give control to the writer.
Happily, Ben is thrilled with the work thus far. The subject line of his email in response to the first 48 pages was, “Love it!” Music to a writer’s ears.