Screenwriting is the art and craft of writing for film, television or video games.
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- [Screenwriting] is no more complicated than old French torture chambers, I think. It's about as simple as that.
- It seems to me it's the hardest thing 'cause you're starting from nothing and creating something. Everybody else is interpreting what you've written. Everybody else is an interpretive artist. Even the best of them. Stanley Kubrick was an interpretive artist. The best actors in the world are interpreting what's on the page, and they use it as a springboard to something else, but if it's not there, there's nothing to spring from. So the writer is the only person who's taking absolutely nothing, and 120 pages of it, and dirtying it up in such a way that it's gonna gross hundreds of millions of dollars and make a lot of people happy.
- Screenwriter Paul Guay in the documentary Dreams on Spec
- A rule says "You must do it this way". A principle says, "This works... and has through all remembered time." The difference is crucial. Your work needn't be modeled after the well-made play; rather it must be well made within the principles that shape our art. Anxious, inexperienced writers obey rules. Rebellious, unschooled writers break rules. Artists master the form.
- Robert McKee, Story: Style, Structure, Substance, and the Principles of Screenwriting (2010)
- Well, Jack Warner may have been celebrated for calling writers "Schmucks with Underwoods," but 20 years earlier Irving Thalberg … said, "The most important person in the motion picture process is the writer, and we must do everything in our power to prevent them from ever realizing it."