O.k. Let’s recap the process you’re going through to write your script for your short film:
So you’ve taken your basic idea and structured it into the four key elements of your logline:
1. Main character 2. Their want 3. Obstacle(s) 4. Ending
Remember: at this stage, we want to keep it really simple. The best ideas are the simplest idea. Have you done this as yet? If so – good. If not – go back and do it. Trust me: when we reach Script Doctor #9 – when you have to sell your film – you’ll thank the stars that you’ve already done this work.
Now, before we focus on these four individual elements, we’re going to take a little time out – and have some fun. We’re going to spend some time with logline’s “fifth element” – and one that is sometimes overlooked: the title of your script.
Making a short film can be challenging. You have so much to communicate in so short a time period. And if you want to share your film – or indeed, even sell it – you need to give yourself every opportunity of success.
And that’s where a great title can help.
Think of some of your favorite films and I’ll bet you that all have a title that a) evokes interest; b) creates a mood or feeling; and c) reveals something about the genre of the film.
How about these for some film titles? Die Hard. Armageddon. Avengers Assemble. When Harry Met Sally. Batman Begins. The Secret In Their Eyes. Anything For Her.
Does your title do all of these things? If not, then go back and think of a title that gets people interested in your film. Roadtest it with your friends and families. Remember: you don’t necessarily have to come up with your title now – sometimes it may emerge as your write your script.
On occasions, with films titles you’ll have a ‘Eureka’ moment –the moment when you think of the title for your film and know it’s the right one for you. If this happens, take time out to work out how this happened: was it a line in the script? Or an image seen? Or part of an overheard conversation?
Having worked it out, write it down and keep it safe. Sometimes, when you get writer’s block, you can go back to these techniques that have worked for you in the past and use it, as a springboard, to spark new creative ideas for your script.
EXERCISE: Come up with your film title, ensuring that a) it evokes interest; b) creates a particular mood or feeling; and c) reveals something about the genre of your film.