Filmmaking Tips- How Not To Tell A Story In Filmmaking

by Jack Dilange

Posted on Saturday 6th of August 2011

One of the most important film making tips that we can be given is how to craft a good story, better yet a great story. I've heard the lamest of story lines turned into absolute awesome productions just by giving life to it.
The First and most apparent aspect of creating a great story is having a story worth telling. This is vitally important!! Let me ask you this. We've all heard people telling stories were you really can't stand to listen to it for another second, so let's say your friend is telling you about his trip to the supermarket. He started it just like this.

"I Went to buy some food at my local Pathmark, it was a beautiful day and I wanted to enjoy the weather but I needed some food. First, I picked up some fruit in the produce section. Then after that I put some steaks in my wagon."

This went on and on, he went through his entire list of buying groceries in this way, if this was told to you wouldn't you be bored to tears? In fact if you went to the movies and this was how it went, you'd run, not walk out of the theater, right?

So let's take the same idea and add some flair to it, if we do this it could easily become a story that is worthy of the big screen. We could start his story like this.

"Did I ever tell you about the time that went to the store to buy some steaks to put on the BBQ and was stuck inside because of an armed robbery?

Come on, with that lead in you'd be atleast interested to see how I made it out alive at the very minimum. I'd want to know everything, were you scared? Did anyone get hurt? How long till you got out? I want all the details!

So, now we have a story that has some appeal to others, it gets people asking questions immediately. This doesn't mean that it still can't be screwed up. It still takes work to develop the storyline, but we now have a start. Make the story as interesting as possible. Let other people read it and critique it, to make sure it has the flavor and impact that your looking for. Just because a story sounds great to us, doesn't mean it will entertain others. You have to develop the knack for knowing what others like. I mean it goes without saying that we're going to like what the story that we created, c'mon, we wrote it.

Your story has to get people involved and interested. It must compel the audience to sit in there seats and wait for the next line, or next scene. It has to captivate. The last thing you want is to lose a crowd. It's bad enough to lose a "person" that your telling a story too, nevertheless lose an audience during a movie that you've worked so hard to put together.

So instead of losing the audience, learn how to craft an amazing and awesome story. One that will keep us on the edge of our seats for the duration of the production.

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