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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Comedy Scripts  ›  Poster Girl Moderators: bert
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Don
Posted: October 5th, 2010, 8:24pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Poster Girl by Jay Rockberg - Comedy, Teen - When Kylie Dawson becomes the #1 pop star on the planet, we learn the biggest voice in the world has an even bigger secret. 114 pages - pdf, format


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ajr
Posted: October 6th, 2010, 8:04am Report to Moderator
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Okay, so I'm notorious for coming in and reading page one of the comedies to see if I get hooked. What drew me to this in the first place is that you say "we learn" in your logline - there is a big camp of writers, me included, who don't like to see "we see" in scripts, and when you see it in a log you know it's all over the script.

On to page one - you open with a concert of 60,000 people in a famous arena, and you have an explosion on stage. I also noticed that on your cover page you bill yourself "writer/director" which I suppose means you intend to shoot this yourself.

Lots of problems with this - first, with the crowd, the arena permit and the explosion, you've blown most if not all of the large majority of independent film budgets on page 1. Two, you say the concert happens at Madison Square Garden. As a born and bred NYer and huge New York Ranger fan I grew up in that place, and it holds 18,200 people without floor seats. Now I've never counted the floor seats while I was at a concert there, but I doubt you could get 30,000-40,000 people into folding chairs. Again, I could be wrong on that, but I doubt it.

I'd be interested to see what others have to say, but I would ask you to do your homework first - a producer, especially an East Coast one, will have already done theirs.

Anthony


Click HERE to read JOHN LENNON'S HEAVEN https://preview.tinyurl.com/John-Lennon-s-Heaven-110-pgs/
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screenrider
Posted: October 6th, 2010, 9:16am Report to Moderator
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Anthony, I'm not trying to undermine your feedabck, but I think you're kinda being a killjoy.   I read the first ten pages and it's not that bad of a script.   And as far as Madison Square and the crowd -- do we as writers really need to worry about that stuff?  

I don't think so.   We tell the story and let the Producers work out the details.   I also read the script "Hereafter" -- it was chalked full of "we's" but it got made.   What's my takeaway?  Don't sweat the small stuff.   Just tell the story.

Sorry, Jay, but I probably won't read the rest of the script as the plot just doesn't excite me, but best of luck with it.
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ajr
Posted: October 6th, 2010, 1:43pm Report to Moderator
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As far as writers worrying about this stuff? Yeah, I think they do Mike - if you put it in the script then you're supposed to be an authority on it.

And yes, producers start to think $$ immediately as they read something like this.

And yes, page 1 gets you to the yes or no pile, so it has to be perfect.

Not really any joy to kill IMO...


Click HERE to read JOHN LENNON'S HEAVEN https://preview.tinyurl.com/John-Lennon-s-Heaven-110-pgs/
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fionaman
Posted: October 7th, 2010, 4:44am Report to Moderator
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Cliched characters, very one-dimensional, almost stock. The bubbly, Pollyanna, you-can-do-it! support system of friends, who serve no other purpose, villainous record exec only out to make profits, etc. Also, from your logline, most readers would think Kylie is the protagonist, and she isn't. 25 pages in, and she was only briefly in one scene.

The character Mandy is in her mid-twenties, yet she acts like a 16 year old girl. I don't know any 25 year old women who hang posters of teen idols on their walls, let alone kiss them.

Awkward writing, everywhere. Just put the script away for two weeks and come back to it. Trust me, you'll notice it.

This script does have a warmth to it though. With a few more drafts, it could be something. Reminded me of Josie and the Pussycats, a very good teen musical comedy.

EDIT: Come on! You missed the biggest opportunity for a joke on page 85.
     
          
Code

COREY
You didn't really trip over the fact that you
were in the same room as "Corey
Edmunds".



Um, yes, she did. Quite literally in fact.

CLOSING THOUGHTS

CHARACTERS

I think you can combine Summer and Zoe because they basically fulfill the "best friend" archetype, but Summer is both a mentor and a friend, and the more well-rounded character, and you already have Cameron for the "domestic support" role.

Also, Vince was supposed to be the villain I'm guessing, but you really didn't do anything with him. A completely flat, useless character. Margie needs to be just that... marginal. She has too many lines, and you already have enough characters.

STORY/PLOT

I think you hit pretty much every cliche, here. From the pratfalls to the friend getting mad after being stood up, to the over the top fight scene. I could predict every single "beat" in those scenes, it was so tritely written.

The premise does not really work. I understand that Mandy didn't want to be in the spotlight, but in the beginning you hint at Vince bamboozling Mandy when Cameron says she was tricked by the "slipperiest of suits". We never find out how she was deceived. That whole plot point was completely dropped.

Besides the radio interview scene, there weren't any huge laughs. Also, drop the "love" story completely or rewrite it extensively. Very VERY weak.

As it stands, it's a mess. 4.5/10 stars. But as I said, there's a charm/warmth to it that kept me reading, but the premise is a little weak, and there are one too many mindnumbing cliches.

Revision History (2 edits; 1 reasons shown)
fionaman  -  October 7th, 2010, 6:04am
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conwall
Posted: October 16th, 2010, 11:03am Report to Moderator
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Okay, I had high hopes for this script based on the log line which caught my attention.  I made it to about page five.  Here are some thoughts.

"Stop wining."  Is stop whining.  Make sure you check for spelling.

In the second scene you call it a montage, except there is no montage.  It's just an establishment shot, which I would leave out entirely.

Zoe and Mandy are supposedly 20 minutes late, but they still have time for this long gabfest.

Turn off the more's and cont'ds in the script totally.  Screenwriters don't use these anymore, AT ALL.  Except at the bottom of a page.  Makes it looks old fashioned.

It's obvious you are trying to direct the movie.  This slows the script down a lot.  "Over Black."  Editor and director and sound designer can decide.  "Crowd Surf" calls for a dolly shot, also not in your purview.  Don't describe shots, just tell me what the characters say, and what the characters do.  That's all you're on the hook for.

Formatting,  Girls wearing, "KYLIE" T-shirts.  

When the girl walks up behind Mandy at the concert and says something you call it V.O.  Again, you are blocking this shot.  Just name her and let her start talking.  The director can decide what the 'framing' looks like and when we see who.

"I don't have words."  This dialogue is pretty weak.  I can't imagine anybody saying it.  The next morning she is a lot more eloquent in describing the concert for Zoe.  Give her something to say that gives us an idea of her character.  

Immediately, it goes to voice-over.  This felt a little quick to me.  The whole story is how this girl is the talent behind the star.  Let it unfold a little more slowly.  This whole point comes out in the next scene anyway, so why not just dump it?  Plus anybody coming to see it in the theater, probably knows the set up already.

I would write it like this:

INT - MADISON SQUARE GARDEN - NIGHT

Arena is packed with teeny boppers eagerly awaiting the big show.

Light go down.

A huge roar.

KYLIE takes the stage to thunderous applause.  Launches into her #1 smash, "MIRROR, MIRROR."

Crowd goes wild.

Anyway, something like that.  

Like I said at the beginning.  I kind of like this story idea.  You get credit for that at least.  Polish it up, cut it up, and stop thinking like a director.  Think like a reader, or a watcher.


Your comments welcome on:  GOD GETS FIRED.  Comedy, 89 pages.  Humans are such a failure that God loses his job.  Worse, his ex-wife is appointed to oversee Earth’s destruction.  Luckily, God has a plan…but it’s not about saving us.  It’s about winning her back.

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/GodGetsFired.pdf
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mike1322
Posted: October 19th, 2010, 1:07am Report to Moderator
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I think this story is the type that would be popular among the intended market.

I don't think anybody is being a killjoy just giving honest feedback as long as it's not insulting.  In fact, Anthony gave great advice and made really valid points.

It's a cute idea but I personally think that the expo on page 3 and 4 felt too fast with the "we've had his conversation before..." type stuff where she says she doesn't like the spotlight, etc.  I know you got to get to this but I'm just giving honest feeback that it felt like exposition and felt a bit early to me as I read it.

I look forward to checking out your other work.  Good luck to you.
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