All screenplays on the simplyscripts.com and simplyscripts.net domain are copyrighted to their respective authors. All rights reserved. This screenplaymay not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.
3. DANIELA Oh, yes, well that gives it away now, doesn't it? I'm Daniela Reye.
4. MARTIN Hi, I'm Martin.
That all happens within three or four pages. You need to find an engaging and structured way to introduce the characters, in a way that tells the audience something about them.
For instance, have Juan go around looking into classrooms, observing their different styles. Brendan will be shouting at a kid, Daniella will be dancing around, and so on. The audience will not learn six, seven, eight names in ten minutes, especially when they're all introduced in the same, dull way.
Also, the way you introduce Juan has been done to death in films and television when somebody is new. Show him as an outsider. For example: open on him taking his first class, and have him swear by accident or something, so we know that he's new to the profession. That way we are with Juan from the beginning as he moves through and gets introduced to this new space.
I think with a rewrite it could be good. I'd be happy to read further into the script if you think my ideas have helped.
Thanks for reading what you did! That makes sense about how they should be introduced in different ways. Do you think it would work if they were all introduced in the same place, but in different ways (such as one being clumsy and bumping into him, and another who checks his watch for the time because their phone is dead or something and the clock in the library is wrong)?
I'll work on a different introduction. Would starting at the end, and then going back to the beginning (like something happening on Juan's first day of teaching, then going back one week earlier or something) work, or is that too overdone as well?
I'd love it if you read further! These thoughts were very helpful!
I don't think you have to into them all up front since they have no lines in the first scene. You can also shorten this by eliminating the Library since it is in the scene heading. I would do something like:
FADE IN:INT. VALLEY GLEN HIGH SCHOOL/LIBRARY - DAY
A table with seven chairs in the front of the room faces rows of high school students sitting in metal chairs.
Six of the seven chairs up front are filled by teachers. One chair on the end is vacant. Juan (2, takes the empty seat next to LYDIA (28 )
Sorry it took me so long to give it a read, having a new baby is pretty tough on finding a quiet moment for a gander at some scripts...that being said I finally got there!
Straight off, I liked it but I reckon it could flow a little better. My only concern was the dialogue was quite formal, as in there's not much colloquial or informal language used.
I grew up in the UK, and we had a brilliant show called Teachers, starring a young Andrew Lincoln (of Walking Dead fame) and an even younger James Corden (somehow of some kind of fame over your direction I gather). The language used in it was foul, the teachers misbehaved, and the entire thing was properly funny for the UK audience at least, not sure if it would work for the USA. As soon as I got stuck into your script it took me back to Teachers, I went onto youtube, found a couple of episodes and just wondered if a bit of it could be introduced into your piece, just to add some extra edge maybe.
I remember at the time it came out it caused a bit of fuss in the national papers about the way it portrayed the teaching profession, but my teachers in school who voiced an opinion on it actually agreed about the staff interactions portrayed on screen. I've stuck a couple of links to episodes down the bottom to compare, well worth a watch!
Also just a few little typo's/suggestions: Page 6 - Brendan's dialogue probably needs broken up re the yacht, lots of commas. Page 6 - Mr. Brendan Murphy, complete douche who is slowly - probably put an "A" in front of "complete" Page 25 - Teach the kids that math - maybe and an "ing" to "teach" Page 29 - "But, you just watch this will be interesting!" - change to "But, you just watch, this will be interesting!" Page 32 - "Well, then go!" - probably chop out the "well", it starts Daniela's previous dialogue too.
As I say I liked it, but maybe it could do with a little extra edge. Hope that isn't too fluffy a criticism. Also really like Brendan and Martin's characters. Let me know if you re-revise and I'll have another go!
Thanks so much for the read and the advice! This is so helpful. Hopefully I get around to do a rewrite on this soon, but it's looking like it may be a little while, May and June are going to be rather crazy.
Major apologies about the uber late reply, personal things (and the OWC) are now dying down a bit so managed to get back into it.
First things first, I couldn't see any typos or obvious formatting issues, so you've got no real worries there so far as I can tell, maybe someone with a better trained eye or real formatting experience can drag a few out.
Positives then. It's been a while since I read the first draft, where I don't really remember Albertson, not sure he was there or not, was a while ago. He adds a fair bit in the form of that "out there" type of character, a little bit of a loose cannon who doesn't seem to know how to handle himself.
The relationships also don't appear to have got lost in the re-write. I'm sure that every reader can relate to one of the characters in some way, which I guess is a fair staple of the USA sitcom setup.
Negatives. There still isn't enough edge, or maybe needle, in it for me. Now this I'm starting to think is due to differences in the USA vs UK idea of a sitcom. Whilst you guys have Friends, we kinda go a bit harder with things like Peep Show, or Teachers, which I gave previously as an example. Maybe there's a fight that one of them has to break up and gets smacked in the face by mistake, maybe someone's smoking round the back of the bike sheds and gets caught by a pupil. I'm not sure what it could be, but I just feel there could be that little punch in the stomach that they have to recover from, and everything's ok in the end. Again, however, this may not be what you're going for and could just be a personal preference of myself, so pay no attention if not applicable in your opinion.
Anyway, I liked it, you've done a good job and who knows, it may be ready made for the USA market. Maybe myself just chasing that little bit of nasty, might be a hark back to watching Teachers on youtube over and over again.
Regardless, well done for the re-write Hunter. If you've got something else that needs a read then let me know, now I've got myself back on the website I promise it won't take so long next time.
I like this premise a lot. I just wished you didn't 'spell out' every joke. The audience can see that things are funny or awkward without you setting up a joke and then explaining it a few lines later. It makes for an even MORE awkward exchange albeit unintentional.
Thanks for giving it another read, Ashlie! Really appreciate it! Is there a specific example of a joke that was spelled out that you could provide? I am just unsure what you mean by it, and an example would really help me find it throughout the script. Thanks for that note!
So I'm giving notes underneath and maybe a sample suggestion for a revision.
DANIELA What's going on in here? I heard you from down the hall. At first I thought, is Grace having sex in her classroom, but then I thought, no,if Grace were having sex, she wouldn't be shouting "no".
GRACE Do you think I'm a whore?
DANIELA No, just that you haven't had sex in a very long time.
This right here just doesn't make any sense as a joke. If she hasn't had sex in a long time why would anyone allude to her being a whore? And this goes absolutely nowhere...they just jump into the acting thing. Maybe revisit where you were going with this one.
*DANIELA Everything ok in here? I could hear you all the way down the hall-
*GRACE Yeah. Sorry it's just that-
*DANIELA I mean I half expected you to be having sex in here. (beat) But then I thought of course she is...That's 'Whore Grace' for ya being a whore.
*GRACE I just found out that I got one of those Friege kids in my class. Now to circle back- Whore Grace? You think I'm a whore?
*DANIELA No. Don't be silly. Not me exclusively...it's just hard to ignore the writing on the wall.
*DANIELA(cont') It's on the wall in the third floor bathroom.
DANIELA (cont'd)Wow, it's been a long time since I've role-played with another woman before.
GRACE Daniela, you teach drama.
The joke here is that she has been with a woman on a sexual level. I just think It can be conveyed better than here. Even if she does teach drama that doesn't help play up the humor because she works with children. You could have them doing a very uncomfortable acting excercise. A very physical one maybe.
(By the By she would never say ACTION as a drama teacher)
DANIELA Oh yeah. So, let's begin. Action!
GRACE Hello, and welcome to Algebra I.
DANIELA Your hair looks like crap.
GRACE Daniela, do you think that's something a fourteen year old boy would say?
DANIELA Oh, would he not say crap?
You should really use this opportunity to drive home some serious commentary between these two. Make it personal as hell. Personal attacks are the best.
LYDIA I can help you pick out some poems.
MARTIN Thanks, but I think it's best if I plan this out myself.
LYDIA No, I insist! I have nothing better to do, and you could use my help. I hope that didn't sound too condescending.
MARTIN Not any more than usual.
You don't need the condescending line at all.
I hope this helps not trying to step on your shoes here.
Cam, I somehow hadn't noticed your reply until now. Thank you for giving it a second read! I'm glad that you enoyed it, and Albertson was actually there a bit more in the last draft.
As far as edginess is concerned, I think perhaps UK television is edgier than US television when it comes to comedy especially. I tried to include a couple of jokes that were somewhat edgy, but I don't want to go too edgy for a general American audience.