Okay, I gave you guys fair warning. Back in December 2008 I drew attention to the lack of sex scenes in the scripts I see. 2008! And have you lot listened? In the last two and a bit years, have I been treated to MORE nice, juicy sex scenes??? No. Oh, I get plenty of rape scenes – **thanks** for that (bleeurgh). But rape is not sex. I find it deeply depressing rape and sexual violence is so prevalent in specs and produced films – but even more so that scribes will think nothing of including rape AS A MERE… Read More »This Is A Call: More Sex, Please
cops n’ docs
Bang2writer Jeremy Allen is back, this time with a fantastic two-part run-down of Ben Stephenson’s talk at De Montfort University earlier this year. Jeremy has made sure Ben has approved these articles himself, so you can be sure of their accuracy and depth. Enjoy!———————————————–Ben Stephenson has been controller of BBC drama commissioning since September 2008, with an annual budget of around £200 million at his disposal and ultimate say over what gets aired. Yet he’s still a sprightly 33. So far Ben has presided over the commissioning of several critically acclaimed pieces, from last year’s sweeping adaptation of Andrea Levy’s… Read More »GUEST POST: Ben Stephenson’s Talk at De Montfort University by Jeremy Allen (Part 1)
ANNOUNCEMENT: Due to threats of divorce by my Husband and my subsequent agreement to go into rehab regarding my internet addiction, The Write Here, Write Now blog is on its very first summer break. OMFG!! How will you manage?!! IT WILL BE OKAY: Script Reading. Please note I’m still available for script reads during this time: get in touch via Bang2writeATaolDOTcom: all the details including links to a price list, here. Peer Review. If you’re looking for peer review, please look through The Feedback Exchange and add your own name too. Please DO NOT spam everyone on the list. Social… Read More »Summer Break 2010
So, in the post about Character and Plot, I posted about the importance of having a protagonist with a definable goal and an antagonist with a need to get in the way of that goal. As mentioned in the post, those are the VERY basics – but all too often missing in the spec pile. If a reader hasn’t a clue who to root for, their interest isn’t going to be hooked; if their interest isn’t hooked — well, you know what happens. Applying the very basics then helps a writer understand where they could be potentially going wrong, especially… Read More »Screenplay Tips # 9: Advanced Characterisation
Gone are the days in which television was derided as the inferior cousin of film. When I first started writing I recall many of my colleagues pouring scorn on soaps, drama series and even serial dramas, especially when I was still at university: there was no “emotional truth” there apparently; all the writers doing it were hacks; it was one big sausage factory, end of. Yet in the last five years — less, even — all this appears to have changed. Once my spec pile would have consisted solely of shorts and features — now I have spec television scripts… Read More »Decision Time: Television or Film?
Two days at the Soho Theatre in Dean Street for The Script Factory’s take on TV drama. Mornings featured lectures by Rob Ritchie: four-act structure, handling multiple storylines, writing to immovable deadlines, dialogue vs. pictures, rules and conventions of British TV drama formats… and that was just the first morning. As ever with Script Factory courses, participants receive a helpful binder of notes covering the content in great detail. I’ve heard some Script Factory presenters simply read these notes out, which is dull, but Ritchie was far more adept, rounding out the printed content with explanation, anecdote and reminder, deftly… Read More »Guest Post: The TV Forum at The Script Factory by Hilary Wright
SPOILERS: CSI & WAKING THE DEAD Many thanks to the one person a week average who has emailed me over the last couple of months, telling me that my “10 on TV Drama” series has only 9 articles. I had noticed, ta: it was all part of a deliberate plan. Honest. Basically I wanted to see how the latest series of CSI and Waking The Dead would pan out before concluding this series in the hope that it would help me decide, once and for all, how I feel about the state of UK drama versus the US model. It’s… Read More »10 On TV Drama: UK versus US
News just in my pretties: Adrian Mead’s episode of the BBC’s awesome cop drama Waking The Dead is on tonight. Titled “Duty and Honour”, it’s on at 9pm on BBC1 (April 28th), with the second part airing tomorrow (April 29th) at the same time. Waking The Dead follows the fates of a “Cold Case” team – policemen and women who must investigate old murder cases that have never been solved or closed. This is one of my favourite programmes – I think Trevor Eve and Sue Johnston in particular are brilliant in it – so I’m thrilled to be able… Read More »STOP PRESS: Adrian Mead’s Episode of Waking The Dead STARTS TONIGHT – Don’t Miss It!
It’s no surprise that the sequel/spin off to the celebrated Life On Mars has caused quite a stir: it was kind of inevitable that Ashes To Ashes would be considered not quite as good by critics. All manner of negatives have been chucked its way: it lacks the ambiguity of LoM. It takes inspiration from stuff like Dempsey And Makepeace instead of The Sweeney. Even Gene Hunt has been accused of being more like a “horrible dirty old man” than in the original where he was apparently infinitely cooler. This hasn’t stopped ATA being a big hit of course: myself,… Read More »10 On TV Drama: Mark Greig, Ashes To Ashes Vs. Life On Mars
SPOILERS PRESENT AS ALWAYS Carrying on with our “Cops N’ Docs” theme, I am going to investigate a long-running medical drama that I have watched from the start: Holby City. What makes it work, what brings the audiences back, week on, week out? Let’s take a look… HOLBY CITY (1999 – PRESENT) LOGLINE: The everyday lives, professional and personal, of the doctors, nurses and patients who find themselves, for various reasons, in the wards of the frenetic cardiac unit of Holby City General Hospital. Casualty began back in the eighties and whilst I have also watched this from the start,… Read More »10 On TV Drama #4: Cops N’ Docs, Pt 2 – Dashing Docs and Naughty Nurses
WARNING: Spoilers Ahoy When TV Drama Bibles and pilot episodes come into Bang2write, I get a distinct lack of cops and docs, drama’s all-time staples. In fact, I would venture I get anything but. Yet why is this? Time has shown, over and over again, that “cops and docs” are favourites – and for this very reason, a new angle on this would surely be welcome on any commissioner’s table? If we look at the evidence CSI-style, we can see that cops and docs have any number of variations that people are willing (or have been willing) to watch. Here… Read More »10 on TV Drama #3: Cops N’ Docs, Part 1: Cops, 3 of The Best
WARNING: SPOILERSIn any franchise, there’s bound to be some dilution: if the subsequent Alien films lacked the shock value of that very first chestburst because we’d seen it before, then it’s kind of inevitable that CSI: Miami and CSI: NY are thought of as “nowhere near as good” as Crime Scene Investigation. I saw Anthony Zuicker on telly and he said he was literally whisked into an Exec’s office after a successful run of Crime Scene Investigation and told, “Come up with a city.” He said, “Erm…. Miami.” Whammo, said faceless Exec puts the wheels in motion: we’re gonna do… Read More »10 on TV Drama #2: CSI: MIAMI and CSI:NY