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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Screenwriting Discussion    Screenwriting Class  ›  Formatting question Moderators: George Willson
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JohnI
Posted: February 24th, 2020, 11:17am Report to Moderator
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Okay - so Iím taking some advice and rewriting 7 days in La Suerte - been getting great reads with suggestions by producers and studios,

Iím flipping scenes.

So if I start with a flashback (first scene) (Guy is actually in daze looking out from his diner.)

And then go to a customer snapping him out of it in the diner (scene 2

Is the fhe first scene written as a flashback (youíre not flashing back from any previous scene) or is it better to just leave it (easy to figure out the way second screen starts.) or is it better o have a super: 3 years laters.

Thanks ahead of time.
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Zack
Posted: February 24th, 2020, 11:22am Report to Moderator
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Put FLASHBACK in the slug.

Example:

INT. HOUSE - NIGHT - FLASHBACK


If you put a super stating it's three years later, then the previous scene wouldn't be a flashback.
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eldave1
Posted: February 26th, 2020, 2:13pm Report to Moderator
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Is in most cases, clarity is king.

I do have a personal preference here. Not a fan of flashback because in an opening scene I don't really know who's flashback it is and from where. So I like to use a SUPER instead. E.G:

INT. DINER - NIGHT

blah, blah, blah

SUPER: Two hours earlier

blah, blah, blah -

INT. DINER - (PRESENT TIME) NIGHT

blah blah, blah.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Dustin
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 7:37am Report to Moderator
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The thing with the suggestions from studios and producers... unless changing the script means they're going to option it then their opinions are just opinions. If the script is worthy of being made and merely takes a few tweaks then why don't they option it?


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Dreamscale
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 10:23am Report to Moderator
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Never put FLASHBACK in a Slug.

Never begin with a Flashback, because as you correctly said, it's not a Flashback.

personally, I don't quite understand the scene you're trying to create.  It doesn't sound like a Flashback to me at all.  Sounds like a guy is dreamily looking out a window and someone slaps him "awake".

That has nothing to do with a Flashback.


To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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Matthew Taylor
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 11:31am Report to Moderator
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Using FLASHBACK in a slug is perfectly legitimate - https://www.keepwriting.com/tsc/flashback.htm

Although it's not a flashback as it is the first scene.

Do we need to know it's precisely 3 years later? if yes, then the super is the way to go.
If all we need to know is that this was in the past then I don't see the point.

Would be easier to comment if you posted up this first scene and the beginning of the next.



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eldave1
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 12:02pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Matthew Taylor
Using FLASHBACK in a slug is perfectly legitimate - https://www.keepwriting.com/tsc/flashback.htm

Although it's not a flashback as it is the first scene.

Do we need to know it's precisely 3 years later? if yes, then the super is the way to go.
If all we need to know is that this was in the past then I don't see the point.

Would be easier to comment if you posted up this first scene and the beginning of the next.




Correct IMO - and again - clarity is king - if it is clear, it is probably not going to matter.  

Side note: I did look up the Trottier link is he is usually be go to on formatting. Saw this:



Quoted Text
Don't tell the reader about the past until he or she cares about the future.

A flashback should not stop a movie just to provide exposition.

A flashback should move the story forward.


And my gut reaction was bullshit.  For every one of these guidelines you could find a stellar movie that violated the guideline and it turned out great.   i.e., he doesn't think Forrest Gump used flashback to provide exposition????

Anyway....just irked me cause he's normally so spot on.




My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Dreamscale
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 2:50pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Matthew Taylor
Using FLASHBACK in a slug is perfectly legitimate - [url]https://www.keepwriting.com/tsc/flashback.htm[/url


So, check this out...

If you use Flashback as part of your Slug(s), think about what happens in a Flashback scene with multiple Slugs.  You have to throw that old Flashback into each and every Slug of the Flashback, and if you have Slugs that are being used both in current time and in Flashback time, you'll have a whole bunch more Slugs showing up in your script report, when in reality, they're the same locale.

Also, how do you end the Flashback scene(s)?  Well, normally, you'd simply use BEGIN FLASHBACK and when it's over, END FLASHBACK, but if you use Flashback in your Slugs, you wouldn't use END FLASHBACK, because you never used BEGIN FLASHBACK.  You'd just have to hope your reader is paying very close attention and seeing FLASHBACK in the Slugs.

It's just much cleaner and easier to follow if you don't do it that way.  


To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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Zack
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 3:47pm Report to Moderator
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I see no issue using Flashbacks in slugs. You know the flashback is over when the next slug comes along and no longer has Flashback in it. Simple enough.
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Dreamscale
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 3:59pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Zack
I see no issue using Flashbacks in slugs. You know the flashback is over when the next slug comes along and no longer has Flashback in it. Simple enough.


What if you have multiple scenes (Slugs) in that Flashback?

Do you think every reader pays close attention to each and every Slug?  Especially if they're seeing the same Slugs over and over?



To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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eldave1
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 4:07pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Dreamscale


What if you have multiple scenes (Slugs) in that Flashback?





What if you don't


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Dreamscale
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 4:30pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from eldave1


What if you don't


Oh boy, here we go again.

What if you have a single location, and you use HOUSE?  No problem, right?  But, what if you have numerous different HOUSE locations?  Obviously, you need to make it clear which house we're at, right?  This is why you shouldn't use HOUSE ever.

You should write the "right" way every single time, whether it matters for that script or not.

Exact same issue with using BEGIN FLASHBACK when you have a Flashback, and ending it with END FLASHBACK - every single time.  It's just dumb to put FLASHBACK in your Slugs, as you will make mistakes you wouldn't make if you didn't do it that way.



To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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eldave1
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 4:40pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Dreamscale


Oh boy, here we go again.

What if you have a single location, and you use HOUSE?  No problem, right?  But, what if you have numerous different HOUSE locations?  Obviously, you need to make it clear which house we're at, right?  This is why you shouldn't use HOUSE ever.

You should write the "right" way every single time, whether it matters for that script or not.

Exact same issue with using BEGIN FLASHBACK when you have a Flashback, and ending it with END FLASHBACK - every single time.  It's just dumb to put FLASHBACK in your Slugs, as you will make mistakes you wouldn't make if you didn't do it that way.



Dude, you gave the example of what if you had multiple flashbacks,  this confusing the issue. So, it seems as though your position is never ever.  Okay,  I got it. Don't necessarily agree with that,  but I don't think your view is crazy either.  Just don't share it.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Matthew Taylor
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 5:26pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Dreamscale


So, check this out...

If you use Flashback as part of your Slug(s), think about what happens in a Flashback scene with multiple Slugs.  You have to throw that old Flashback into each and every Slug of the Flashback, and if you have Slugs that are being used both in current time and in Flashback time, you'll have a whole bunch more Slugs showing up in your script report, when in reality, they're the same locale.

Also, how do you end the Flashback scene(s)?  Well, normally, you'd simply use BEGIN FLASHBACK and when it's over, END FLASHBACK, but if you use Flashback in your Slugs, you wouldn't use END FLASHBACK, because you never used BEGIN FLASHBACK.  You'd just have to hope your reader is paying very close attention and seeing FLASHBACK in the Slugs.

It's just much cleaner and easier to follow if you don't do it that way.  


Yep, the link I posted addresses multiple locations and recommends your method of format. Link also says you can end the flashback with either a PRESENT DAY in the following slug or an END FLASHBACK on its own line (for flashbacks in a single location where FLASHBACK has been used in the slug)

Only posted it because the method you mention is your personal preference (and mine too as it happens) but doesn't mean other legitimate format options should be recommended as "never" use.




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Matthew Taylor  -  February 27th, 2020, 5:36pm
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Dreamscale
Posted: February 27th, 2020, 5:41pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Matthew Taylor


Yep, the link I posted addresses multiple locations and recommends your method of format. Link also says you can end the flashback with either a PRESENT DAY in the following slug or an END FLASHBACK on its own line (for flashbacks in a single location where FLASHBACK has been used in the slug)

Only posted it because the method you mention is your personal preference (and mine too as it happens) but doesn't mean other legitimate format options should be recommended as "never" use.


I only recommend to "never use" because in many situations you'll find that you, the writer, will be doing more work, possibly missing/forgetting to add it to the Slug, and then your readers having more trouble, missing it in the Slug, etc.

If you "end" your Flashback by inserting PRESENT DAY in the next Slug, then you have yet another variation in your Slugs - the same Slug with and without PRESENT DAY or FLASHBACK.

Just so much easier and clearer to do it as was trying to say.  



To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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