Saturday, December 3, 2011

TODAY'S NUGGET: #51 WGA Script of All Time - Broadcast News (1987)

[Quick Summary: A driven female news producer is torn between two men: the new, handsome, not-so-talented news anchor, and the older, talented news anchor-on-the-way-out who is her friend.]

The more I read scripts, the more I see that scripts operate on two levels: spectacle & heart.  You need both parts.

The better the two blend, the better the movie.

Broadcast News is a perfect example. 

It's got the spectacle and rush of the big news room. 

But it's also got the heart of a woman, torn between a guy who's probably the devil but exciting, and a schlub who's like a pair of old sneakers but brilliant.

The love story is enhanced by the spectacle of the news room.  If Jane doesn't pick the right guy, the level of journalism could disintegrate.

The spectacle is enhanced by the romance.  If Jane demands the journalistic integrity she's worked so hard for, she could be alone for the rest of her life.

WHAT I'VE LEARNED: The right amount of spectacle + heart = Fantastic story.

Too much spectacle = There's no heart.

Too much heart = It's maudlin & boring.

Broadcast News (1987)
by James L. Brooks

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