A sharp, funny book about comedy screenwriting from a successful screenwriter that uses recent - as in this century - movies you've actually seen as examples.
Greg DePaul (Screenwriter, Bride Wars, Saving Silverman) has sold scripts to Miramax, Fox, Disney, New Line, Sony, MGM and Village Roadshow. He's worked with comedy stars like Jack Black, Kate Hudson, Jason Biggs and Amanda Peet.
Now Greg takes everything he knows about writing comedy and breaking into the biz, tosses it into a blender and serves up this tasty, fat-free smoothie of a book that's easy to read, brutally honest, and straight from the heart ... of Hollywood.
Bring the Funny is chock full o' tricks, strategies and insider terms used by successful comedy screenwriters, including:
Comic Justice Wrylies Genre-Bending Shadow Characters
The BDR's The Two-Hander The Conceit Comedic Escalation
Gapping A.I.C. Fish Outta Water The Idea Factory
Really Important Comedy Screenwriting Rules Number 99 and 100
If you're looking to write funnier and better screenplays, you want this book. But if you're ready to pack up your car, drive out to L.A., and dive into a career as a comedy screenwriter, you need this book. Now.
Buy it, jam it into your pocket, and hit the gas. Greg's got your back.
Act 1: You vs. Yourself 1. The Funny a) What is the Funny? (An age-old question. Try my age-old answer.) b) Do I have the Funny? (I hope so.) c) Can I order it online? (No! It's like the force. Look within.) d) Pop quiz! 2. Everything Matters a) Prepare yourself (Sit down at your computer, roll up your sleeves and get ready not to write.) b) Follow your heroes (The all-stars of comedy screenwriting) c) Mind your mentors (Well, me, for one) d) Live the page (How to walk, talk, and blow your nose like a comedy screenwriter) e) Pop quiz! 3. Get on Your Horse a) What is a screenplay? (You think you know.) b) A.I.C. (Pardon my French!) c) Writing hat e) Editing hat f) Ass hat (Again, my French!) g) The long haul of the feature screenwriter (Pack a lunch.) h) Season to taste (the Michael Arndt example) i) Pop quiz! Act 2: You vs. the Page 4. Funny Peeps a) Character (The undefinable element you must define) b) Writing Inside-Out (starting with character) c) Writing Outside-In (ending with character) d) Relate-ability ("Hey, that idiot onscreen is me!") e) Your character stable (where live the confidante, the antagonist, the mentor ...) f) Pop quiz! 5. The Big Idea a) Act 2 is all. (Everything else is small.) b) High concept (This stuff comes from God. Or cocaine. Or both.) c) Low concept (AKA "Execution Dependent") d) Genre-bending (where X meets Y) e) Fish outta water (and flopping on the deck.) f) Comic Justice (Healing the world one script at a time.) g) The idea factory (Build it and they will come.) h) Pop quiz! 6. The String of Pearls a) The DWR's (Dramatic Writing Rules. Ignore them at your peril.) b) The Conceit (You get one big gulp at the beginning.) c) Escalation (A DWR that's so important it needs its own section.) d) Farce (It's everywhere. Ya just gotta see it.) e) Plotting (Get out your index cards ...) f) Sub-plotting (and cut them into little pieces.) g) Gapping (What not to write.) h) Really Important Comedy Screenwriting Rule #99 (which trumps all other rules.) h) Pop quiz! 7. The Pearls Themselves a) What is a scene? (Again, you think you know.) b) Master Scenes ("Supper's ready!") c) Scenes a Faire (They're obligatory for a reason.) d) Act Outs (AKA Buttons) e) Subtext (Much discussed, much misunderstood) f) Setpieces (Leave them in flames.) h) Pop quiz! Act 3: You vs. the World 8. The Biz a) The comedy-industrial complex (what's being made now) b) Pitching (Who needs it, who doesn't, how to do it, why not to) b) Agents (in Latin they are known as Tenpercenticus Exploiticus) c) Managers (AKA agents who want to be producers) d) Producers (What do they actually do?) e) Everybody else (There is anybody else?) f) Pop quiz! 9. The Life a) Sacrifice (You wanna be famous? Get out a knife and lay your son on a rock.) b) Collaboration (And you became a writer to get away from people!) c) Other screenwriters (Yes, they exist.) d) Pop quiz!