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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Series  ›  Bounty Moderators: bert
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  Author    Bounty  (currently 2494 views)
Don
Posted: September 21st, 2015, 10:17pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Bounty by Gary Howell (Hawkeye) - Series - When a deep sea explorer goes missing in the Gulf of Mexico, his son must unravel a mystery embedded in his fatherís Last Will and Testament, and doing so will entangle him in a world of drug smugglers, murderers and back stabbers. 51 pages - pdf, format


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hawkeye
Posted: September 21st, 2015, 10:26pm Report to Moderator
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Thanks for posting Don!  This was a script that started out as a feature as part of the March 2013 1 + 6 Week challenge. I didn't finish that feature, but transformed it into a pilot for TV series about a Texas bounty hunter. Appreciate any and all thoughts on the script!

Gary


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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hawkeye
Posted: October 19th, 2015, 5:04pm Report to Moderator
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Based on some feedback I received from a friend, I've updated the initial draft which I think improves the flow and provides some much needed backstory for one of the main characters.  You can read the updated version here:


https://www.dropbox.com/s/auwym66vz1yhd2t/Bounty%20version%201.2.pdf?dl=0

Hope you have a look.

Thanks!
Gary


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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eldave1
Posted: October 19th, 2015, 5:58pm Report to Moderator
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Gary - I'm kind of slammed now - did read the teaser - I thought it was great!


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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hawkeye
Posted: October 19th, 2015, 7:48pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from eldave1
Gary - I'm kind of slammed now - did read the teaser - I thought it was great!


Thanks! I hope you have the chance to read further and have the same opinion!
Gary


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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eldave1
Posted: October 20th, 2015, 12:29pm Report to Moderator
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Okay - I got through this.

First - very well crafted - it flowed and was a real page turner. I am a fan of your writing style.
Many scenes were very vivid - it was easy to be there. The voices of your characters were realistic for the most part - I could sense who they were.

So, I have very little too offer in terms of specific improvements - but I do have thoughts for you to consider:

SPOILERS AHEAD


Quoted Text
KWAME
Mister Piersall.

MORGAN
What do you want, Kwame? Iím getting ready to shoot.


There are various places in the script where I think action would be preferred over dialogue. The above is an example. Kwame (as well as ourselves) know that Morgan is ready to shoot - you don't need to say it. Instead, I would use action. Something like:

KWAME
Mister Piersall.

Morgan lowers his gun- frustrated.

MORGAN
Christ, what do you want?

ON THE NOSE DIALOGUE

There are many places in the script where the dialogue is too on the nose (OTN). Yeah - I know that you are trying to get background and plot points out - but it ends up in dialogue that these characters would not really speak. Some examples to illustrate:


Quoted Text

KWAME
But thereís something else. Word
from our supplier is that Viktor
Azarov is trying to horn in on your
territory.

MORGAN
Who gives a good god damn about a two-bit pecker like Azarov? He has a good thing going in Eastern Europe and he wants to make a play here in Texas? Well, let him come on down! Weíll show him some of our Texas hospitality!


You can break it up to sound less OTN and more natural. e.g.,

KWAME
Thereís something else.

MORGAN
Well, spit it out.

KWAME
There may be trouble with Viktor
Azarov.

MORGAN
Who gives a good god damn about a two-bit pecker like Azarov? He has a good thing going in Eastern Europe - ain't no worry of mine.

KWAME
The word from our supplier is that he wants to make a play here in Texas.

MORGAN
Well, let him come on down! Weíll show him some of our Texas hospitality!

The point being - whenever you have a single large block of dialogue there is a risk that you are going to OTN to explain stuff - it can be easier on the eyes to break it up - seem like more natural conversation. Look opportunities in the script to do this.

Other examples of OTN:


Quoted Text
RACHEL
Of course. Rachel adores him.


First - typo - I think Rachel is supposed to be Allie

They both know that Allie adores him - she wouldn't say it. Instead use action - maybe pick up a picture with Allie on Rocky's lap.

Another example of OTN is when Jake and Robin are discussing how a Sat phone works - they would never do this - they're in the business - they know about Sat phones - you're using their dialogue to inform the audience about them - needs to be done a different way.


Quoted Text
EXT. ROCKYíS HOUSE - DAY A stylish residence in west Houston. Itís not ostentatious, but itís a home befitting an explorer such as Rocky Calhoun.


Calhoun or Murdock?

Another OTN example:


Quoted Text
JAKE
Whatever. I didnít start dating Robin until after the divorce, so if Rachel has a problem with her, then thatís on Rachel


They're close brothers - if Jake didn't screw around till after the divorce - Nick already knows that. I know you are trying to tell the audience that - but it is just a little unnatural. Try something like:

JAKE
You know I didn't fuck around with her while I was married.

NICK
Yeah, but Rachel always knew you wanted to.

Anyway - not to beat it to death - but there were several places in the script where I could tell that the only reason for a particular piece of dialogue was to inform the audience of a specific plot point or piece of background. Re-examine these areas to see if there is a more natural way to do it.

One last thought. Jake is pretty much the stereotypical bounty hunter. While that makes the script flow (i.e., we already know who he is) it also makes it a bit stale. It might be a bit more interesting if he wasn't run of the mill. Maybe he is a banker type or a sophisticate. Maybe gay - maybe weak of build and relies on his smarts rather than brawn - just a thought to make this something really different.

Ooops - one last nit - I think Rachel and Robin are too close in character name - gets a little confusing at first - e.g., Rachel and Charlene - or something like that.

Overall - I think this displays a lot of talent on your part. You do an outstanding job of interweaving multiple characters, plot points and scene locations without ever causing confusion. Solid effort IMO.





To otn with protag Ė


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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hawkeye
Posted: October 20th, 2015, 8:48pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from eldave1

First - very well crafted - it flowed and was a real page turner. I am a fan of your writing style.
Many scenes were very vivid - it was easy to be there. The voices of your characters were realistic for the most part - I could sense who they were.


Thanks, Dave! I really appreciate the great notes and I'm glad you liked it. You had some great suggestions --- it's funny how you can review your work a dozen times and still miss glaring things.  Which is why it is so important to get others to review your work.



Quoted from eldave1

There are various places in the script where I think action would be preferred over dialogue.


If there is one area that seems to be a recurring theme with my writing, this would probably be it. Sometimes I will overwrite, primarily in dialogue, and the suggestions you give above make a lot of sense.




Quoted from eldave1

ON THE NOSE DIALOGUE

There are many places in the script where the dialogue is too on the nose (OTN). Yeah - I know that you are trying to get background and plot points out - but it ends up in dialogue that these characters would not really speak.


You're right -- another area that needs work. With a series, I think get it in my mind that there's more you have to explain, but I was just watching "Fargo" last night and it struck me how much they did by just showing a deflated balloon or a pair of ears cut off in a bucket.  It's a great reminder of how powerful an image can be and what can be conveyed by that single image. The suggestions you make are spot on.



Quoted from eldave1

One last thought. Jake is pretty much the stereotypical bounty hunter. While that makes the script flow (i.e., we already know who he is) it also makes it a bit stale. It might be a bit more interesting if he wasn't run of the mill. Maybe he is a banker type or a sophisticate. Maybe gay - maybe weak of build and relies on his smarts rather than brawn - just a thought to make this something really different.


Good points -- I think as the series develops Jake reveals himself to have a lot of flaws.  I think the effort of the pilot sets you up to think of Jake as a certain type of person and we'll come to find that maybe he's not who we think. At least that's the plan!


Quoted from eldave1

Ooops - one last nit - I think Rachel and Robin are too close in character name - gets a little confusing at first - e.g., Rachel and Charlene - or something like that.


That's funny -- I originally had Robin named something like April, but then I thought the long "a" may it sound like Rachel! I should go back and change it again.


Quoted from eldave1

Overall - I think this displays a lot of talent on your part. You do an outstanding job of interweaving multiple characters, plot points and scene locations without ever causing confusion. Solid effort IMO.


Thanks again, Dave! I greatly appreciate the time you put in looking at this and the great feedback you had -- let me know if I can return the favor!

Gary


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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Equinox
Posted: October 21st, 2015, 2:14am Report to Moderator
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Hey hawkeye,

I didn't read it completely, just flew over it and read some passages so far. I think this is a really good tv pilot script, the act breaks seem well placed and the twist in the end is a good way to end it. Probably a few too many characters for my taste, so it gets a bit difficult to keep up with who is who, but that's me.

The teaser is great. Act one gives us an idea of who Jake is and what he is doing. Maybe a bit clichť there, especially the dialog with the cop on the phone, which could be copied into any other private detective / headhunter character setup.

Overall this seems like a good read, it's not my genre, so I'll probably not complete it, but I wish you good luck with it.


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hawkeye
Posted: October 21st, 2015, 9:52am Report to Moderator
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Thor, thanks for the read!  No worries about not completing it  -- I'm just glad that overall you liked what you read.  You're probably right about the discussion between Jake and the police sergeant.  I'll take a look at that in the next draft.  Appreciate the input!

Gary


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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hawkeye
Posted: October 21st, 2015, 9:54am Report to Moderator
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FYI -- just got word that "Bounty" is a quarterfinalist in the Screencraft TV Pilot competition! Also have gotten a couple of inquiries about the script -- one from out of the country wondering if I could turn this into a feature. Hopefully the script has a future in some format.

Gary


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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eldave1
Posted: October 21st, 2015, 10:12am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from hawkeye
FYI -- just got word that "Bounty" is a quarterfinalist in the Screencraft TV Pilot competition! Also have gotten a couple of inquiries about the script -- one from out of the country wondering if I could turn this into a feature. Hopefully the script has a future in some format.

Gary


Wow - great news! I do think it could work as a feature as well. Best of luck.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Angry Bear
Posted: October 21st, 2015, 10:26am Report to Moderator
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Congrats Gary! I got an email from them this morning, but I didn't have time to read the QF list at the time. Cool to know someone from here is on it.  


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hawkeye
Posted: October 21st, 2015, 11:29am Report to Moderator
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Thanks Dave and Pia!

Pia, been awhile since we last visited. Hope all is continuing to go well and you're staying super busy with scripts going into production!!

Gary


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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Angry Bear
Posted: October 21st, 2015, 6:17pm Report to Moderator
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Gary, I'm too busy, but that's good. Keeps the mind sharp'ish.

I had a bidding war going on on Two Psychos and someone offered me a writing assignment for real money. Had to turn it down, but I guess it's still a positive thing to be offered. Will try to concentrate on prose for 2016, see how that goes. Got a pen name too, so if it suck donkey balls, it won't point to me.  

What are you up to?


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hawkeye
Posted: October 21st, 2015, 9:46pm Report to Moderator
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Pia, busy is good! Better than the alternative.

Good luck with Two Psychol That's great news!

Hoping to get this pilot in the hands of the right people, and I'm starting a second episode just in case anyone asks. And if you start turning down work, send them my way!

Oh, and I'd love to read your prose sometime!


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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