Tuesday, March 19, 2013

2013 OSCARS: Argo (2012) - How to Introduce Action Characters

[Quick Summary:  CIA operative to get Americans out of Tehran, Iran in 1980.]

Action scripts need to mooooooooove.

Unfortunately, many scripts have a slow pace and rhythm, beginning with the initial character introductions.

ex. JOE, 25, a mild mannered mechanic with nunchucks in his back pocket, washes windows.

Do we really need to know Joe has a weapon? Can you see "mild mannered"?  

But Argo shows a new trend on how to keep the pace up:

- The character's initial introduction is at a bare minimum.
- The character is then fleshed out later by his/her actions.
ex. TONY MENDEZ, 40, asleep in his clothes from the day before.

ex.  JOHN CHAMBERS, Hollywood's first Oscar winner for makeup, walks onto set carrying a fishing tackle box of supplies.

ex. TOM AHERN, 48, the CIA station chief here.

WHAT I'VE LEARNED:  I like this trend because it gets the reader to the action faster.

Argo (2012)
by Chris Terrio

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