Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting

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A generation of screenwriters has used Syd Field’s bestselling books to ignite successful careers in film. Now the celebrated producer, lecturer, teacher, and bestselling author has updated his classic guide for a new generation of filmmakers, offering a fresh insider’s perspective on the film industry today. From concept to character, from opening scene to finished script, here are easily understood guidelines to help aspiring screenwriters—from novices to practiced writers—hone their craft. Filled with updated material—including all-new personal anecdotes and insights, guidelines on marketing and collaboration, plus analyses of recent films, from American Beauty to Lord of the Rings—Screenplay presents a step-by-step, comprehensive technique for writing the screenplay that will succeed in Hollywood. Discover:

•Why the first ten pages of your script are crucially important
•How to visually “grab” the reader from page one, word one
•Why structure and character are the essential foundation of your screenplay
•How to adapt a novel, a play, or an article into a screenplay
•Tips on protecting your work—three legal ways to claim ownership of your screenplay
•The essentials of writing great dialogue, creating character, building a story line, overcoming writer’s block, getting an agent, and much more.

With this newly updated edition of his bestselling classic, Syd Field proves yet again why he is revered as the master of the screenplay—and why his celebrated guide has become the industry’s gold standard for successful screenwriting.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Delta; Revised edition (November 29, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385339038
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385339032
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.7 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces

Customer Reviews

Resourceful read.

 on October 1, 2017
By Ariel Elliott
Field applies both his knowledge and experience to inform the reader. He provides many examples from himself and other’s works to futher delve into the subject, providing a greater understanding for screenwriting. He focuses not solely on successful screenwriting and useful techniques, but also advises how to proceed in the movie-making industry.

Good guidance

 on August 24, 2017
By Judith Petres Balogh
Very useful for a beginner who is considering this branch of literrature. It is not the book’s fault that so far I have not won an Oscar. Author and reader.

Syd Field’s Screenplay

One person found this helpful.
 on April 21, 2014
By j0hnnyw00t
This book was assigned for an online film writing course at Madison College in Madison, Wisconsin.

Looking for the best book about how to write a successful screenplay? This is it!

 on August 9, 2014
By Paulette L. Harris
I just finished reading this book and highly recommend it for beginner to successful screenplay writers and anyone inbetween who wants to learn the art. It’s the best book I’ve read on the subject, well-written and easy to understand, the reader is able to grasp and apply the methods Mr. Field recommends for a great story on screen. You won’t be sorry purchasing this book. There’s something on every page for everyone no matter what level they are at. This book will help you obtain your goals by showing weakness and strengths of a screen play.

Five Stars

 on August 7, 2017
By Shivweda
A great resource for aspiring screen writers

Great read.

 on June 1, 2016
By Jamie
Tons of good information in here. Valuable tips. Outlines what you need to know and gives lots more details and examples. Great read.

I highly recommend this book if your interested in screenwriting

 on March 5, 2017
By Chris Ballinger
I highly recommend this book if your interested in screenwriting. Syd Field really breaks down the process and repeats the points that he wants you to know. This book and his process is amazing and I’m going back through my scripts using his process.

Must read for any aspiring screenwriter

 on September 14, 2016
By Adam K.
What an excellent resource written by a true great. An in-depth look at the three act structure paradigm; plot points; character development; pitfalls all writers encounter including writer’s block and insecurity; getting your script read by industry execs and then sold — it’s all here in this one book along with a lot more.

Great place to start!

 on April 11, 2012
By Krick
I am a movie hound. I love movies. I love to study movies. I love to watch movies. I love to write movies. The problem was I didn’t know how to correctly write a story.

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