An excerpt from my script review for Synchronic which will be available 10/26/20:
3.) Quality of Characters
Here’s where we’re going to spend a bit of time.
Mary Kay Latorno meets Tanya Harding, this is DANIKA.
Didn’t know who the first person was, and didn’t really care since I knew it wasn’t important.
(Having just looked it up for the purpose of this review, Benson didn’t even spell Letourneau’s name correctly.)
These references are similar to including specific songs in the description. You’re not really impressing anyone and more importantly you might have just catapulted your reader from your story if they don’t know who you mean.
(Full disclosure, Benson was one of the directors so maybe he had someone particular in mind that fit the exact description.)
The Doctor — short Steve Jobs in Elvis Costello glasses —
He’s short and a trendy nerd?
What traits are important to take away from this comparison?
An oddly conservatively dressed man, like he’s the father on
a 90’s sitcom, gets in line behind Steve. Boyish face
exhausted, he looks like a MIDDLE-AGED HARRY POTTER.
We then continue to reference him as Middle-aged Harry Potter until we find out he’s the doctor who created Synchronic.
Why is this important?
Honest answer, it’s not.
Take the last example…
It has ZERO impact on the story if you change that to a Middle-aged Ron Weasley, aside from the fact he’d now have red hair.
When you introduce characters, the description should accomplish two things:
- Your reader should get an idea of how this character is going to influence the story.
- Start brainstorming potential actors they either worked with previously or have agreements to work with in the future.
This is why I enjoyed the Duffield description so much in the previous two weeks reviews.
It was presented in a fun and interesting way, but didn’t limit production to something so specific.
(Take that back, there was the one Trump joke he used in Spontaneous. Don’t do that.)
This script, for my tastes, had too many of these random combinations when presenting characters, some of which weren’t even main ones, like Doctor Jobstello.
I wouldn’t emulate this.
Want EARLY access to our videos, uploads, and movie/script reviews? Members get them FIRST! Follow this link to our Discussion Forum.