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Script Breakdown 1/8th's


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#1 Kenny Williams

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Posted 05 April 2017 - 10:47 AM

I have recently been asked to take on the job of being a 1st A.D. on a short film I'll be working on. I have been able to find pretty much everything else online, but can't seem to find an in depth way to breakdown a script in 8th's. For example do I just draw the line AFTER EVERY scene? When do I start the breakdown on the first page of the script. I am very confused by this. If anyone can describe it in detail, or provide me with a link that really goes into this I'd appreciate it. 


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#2 John E Clark

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Posted 05 April 2017 - 12:02 PM

In a film script a SLUG LINE marks a scene. This is totally different from stage plays.

 

The 1/8 page = 1 vertical inch. Because Courier 12 is the standard, that means there are potentially 6 typed lines in 1 vertical inch. The writer may not have filled in those lines... but that does not matter for determining the 1/8 'line' location.

 

It would be easier to printout the script with the initial SLUG LINE at the start of a new page. The scene may have multiple pages, especially with dialog heavy scripts. This may be wasteful, but at least there's no question about the scene.

 

The 1 inch 1/8 page markers then begin just under the SLUG LINE, again regardless of whether there is typed material on that first line, and make lines every inch to the end of the scene.

 

I'd recommend getting a script writing tool like Fade-In, which is a commercial product, but it is only 79.95 at the moment. I receive no benefit by this recommendation...

 

I have used public domain tools, Celtx, etc. but for the price I think Fade-In is cheap enough but has sufficient capability to allow for one to get writing. It also has some export capability to export to say Final Draft, as well as some import capability (more recent FD formats.) if that is required at some point.

 

Fade-in will give the scene lengths in 1/8ths in the 'scene navigator window'. I'd have to check if there's a 'lined' printout option or not.

 

 

The more expensive tools may also have such features and more... but I'm cheap... well not that cheap... as one could type out the script, and use a ruler...

 

But these tools allow for easy reformatting of the script as editing proceeds.


Edited by John E Clark, 05 April 2017 - 12:04 PM.

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Visual Products