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Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting [Englisch] [Taschenbuch]

Syd Field
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29. November 2005
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 RingsScreenplay 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.

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Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting + The Screenwriter's Workbook (Revised Edition): Exercises and Step-by-step Instructions for Creating a Successful Screenplay + The Screenwriter's Problem Solver: How to Recognize, Identify, and Define Screenwriting Problems (Dell Trade Paperback)
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  • Taschenbuch: 336 Seiten
  • Verlag: Delta (29. November 2005)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0385339038
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385339032
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 20,6 x 13 x 2 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (2 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 15.801 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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Screenplay is one of the bibles of the film trade and has launched many a would-be screenwriter on the road to Hollywood.” —Library Journal

“Syd Field is the preeminent analyzer in the study of American screenplays.” —James L. Brooks, AcademyAward–winning writer, director, producer

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Syd Field is a screenwriter, producer, teacher, international lecturer, and author of the bestselling books Screenplay, The Screenwriter's Workbook, Selling a Screenplay, and Four Screenplays. Published in 1982, Screenplay has been translated into sixteen languages, and is used in more than 250 colleges and universities across the country. At present he is creative consultant to the governments of Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Austria, and South Africa, and has been a script consultant for Roland Jaffe's film production company, for Alfonso Arau and Laura Esquivel on Like Water for Chocolate, and for Tri-Star Pictures. He lives in Beverly Hills, California.

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5.0 von 5 Sternen the best I've ever read on screenwriting 1. August 2011
This book of Syd Field is the BEST sofar I've ever read about screenwriting, together with Screenwriting Updated from Linda Aronson. Syd starts from the very beginning, explaining in details how a writer sets up his/her story. It also applies for novel writing (I'm a crime writer). With every sentence Syd teaches how to become the best writer ever! Read it - learn it - love it - because without it you'll miss out on the very teachings of a master. Learn how a story is expanding from I SetUp - II Confrontation - III Resolution. Read what Action = Character means in depth, how Character is formed. Without reading Syd's teachings one is a poorer writer.Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting: A Step-by-Step Guide from Concept to finished Script
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5.0 von 5 Sternen gut lesbar 29. Dezember 2009
DAs Buch ist sehr einfach zu lesen. Mit leichtem englisch geschrieben und verständlich gemacht. Aber für deutsch Sprechende empfehle ich die Deutsche Version. Es ist klar und deutlich geschrieben und man versteht sofort was der Autor meint.
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Amazon.com: 4.4 von 5 Sternen  131 Rezensionen
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3.0 von 5 Sternen Mixed Feelings 12. Juli 2007
Von Nick - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
To sum up my opinion of the book in a short sentence: it's not the most amazing book ever, but I don't regret having read it. The good side of it is that the three act structure and all sound like a good plan to start working on a script. It does help a tonload to be able to cover so much ground in such a short time and with such big lines. I won't deny that. The card system is quite nice too, but you don't need 300 pages to learn that.

The thing that struck me the most was how redundant Field could get. Seriously, there are entire blocks of sentences that you will read over and over again. At first I thought that sounded really bad... I mean, if you're a famous script-writer and all, your writing should reflect that. So I was confused. Then, and I don't know if that saves it or not, I figured that the repetition was perhaps not so bad, since it kept hammering the same basic things in your mind, and since that helps to remember. It's a bit like a class, I guess.

I'm not saying that Field can't write, however, I think he merely opted for a personal style, oral if you want, and I don't think it's any fair to criticise too much on this aspect as other critics did. He's not writing a novel, he's writing about screenplay and he's talking to you.

I didn't buy this because I wanted to write a movie, I was curious about the script as a form of writing. Now I feel secure enough to consider writing a whole movie even though I never intended to, and that's pretty cool, I have to admit.

On the flip side, I have my doubts about Syd Field. Now, maybe I'm a dumb person, but I wasn't able to find a single movie written by him. And he doesn't mention any of his own scripts! He mentions those of others, oh yes, that he does, but I can't recall him mentioning one of his own personal scripts. (My bad and apologies if he did and I didn't see or forgot.)

Syd Field hated "Pulp Fiction" when he first saw it. That's bad. I mean, if you can't see right off that "Pulp Fiction" is a great movie, moreover, as a specialist of films, then I worry. I saw it years ago when I was a teen and it struck me as special even though I was no film specialist. So I don't know. It seems that Field eventually liked it when he was able to put it in his 3 act structure, by dividing the stories as units onto themselves. Fine, but do you need that to enjoy a movie or think it's great? No. In fact, if you are rendered unable to enjoy a movie because of that, then it majorly worries me.

As to the 3-act theory itself, I think it's a great tool to use for structure and for the writing of a movie, but I wouldn't base everything on it more than that. See, I think anything has a beginning, middle, and end, and that you can find those 3 things anywhere. It's too vague to be really meaningful, although it can be useful. I see it as something like construction lines in drawing: you use them, but then you erase them. And I think that's also how Field sees it; he doesn't think of his "paradigm" as impossibly rigid.

Other thing that worried me about Field is that he claims to write biographies for his characters that encompass their parents, grandparents, and, yes, past lives. Alright, that can always give you cool ideas that you'd not think of if it hadn't been for the character's past life as a fisherman in Antarctica, but that sounds far-fetched.

There are other things in Field's style that antagonised me from the beginning. Cliché zen analogies and such didn't do much to make like the text, and repeating the same things without backing them up doesn't convince more.

Also, and maybe I'm dumb, but I would have started the book with the form of script-writing. That's the first thing you look at when you consider writing a script! That's what I bought the book for, originally. Very little of the book is consecrated to that, and it's among the final chapters.

So what's the result of my reading this book? Well, I feel like I could start working on an actual movie script right now, and that alone isn't so bad, but I don't know that another book couldn't have done the same. The read itself wasn't too bad, although the redundancy can get seriously annoying. I also felt like the chapters weren't properly delimited, like you'd talk of a topic in this chapter and 4 chapters further, you find yourself reading about the same thing again.

I would recommend that to anyone who's interesting in scrip-writing, but be careful. It does give you a good basis for working up the spine of a script, and that's what the book was written for, so even though I gave it only 3 stars, I'd still recommend it (for lack of a better, since I never read anything else on script-writing).
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Hollywood of the 80s 17. August 2007
Von Robert Baumgardner - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
I liked this book. Coupled with Syd Field's Screenwriter's Workbook, I managed to write a first draft of a screenplay. I've never been able to complete a play or screenplay before reading these books! This book gives you the background of screenplays and writing, plus his theory of what makes a good Hollywood screenplay. The workbook gives you a step by step process of writing one.

One drawback is that this book was written in the 80's. Sometimes it sounds so dated. The other drawback is it only explains one type of screenplay, the standard Hollywood 3-act narrative.

Overall, this book was a great help in writing a readable well structured screenplay.
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3.0 von 5 Sternen A good book, but disappointing 6. Dezember 2012
Von Ell Bee - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
Larry Brooks, whose "Story Engineering" I swear by, swears himself by this book. I couldn't wait to read it.

I was disappointed. Brooks presents Syd Field's information far more concisely, and in a much less anecdotal manner. If you buy "Story Engineering," you can skip this one.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Amazing Book (at least the first two thirds of it) 19. März 2010
Von Aerosynth929 - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
"Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting" by industry giant Syd Field is considered to be the bible of modern screenwriting texts, and has been for many years. It's a well-deserved badge of honor.

Field approaches the art of screenwriting logically, positively, explaining step by step the hows, whats, and whys of the biz. He addresses the technical points of length, description, planning, all in a way that makes absolute sense to any reader... regardless of their knowledge of the film industry, educational level, or age. He uses popular film examples to underscore his methods, which help enormously. This book gives any reader the right foundation to begin a screenplay with absolute confidence.

As an aside..... let's also not forget that the way Syd Field writes--his prose--is so reader friendly, and so understandable... he could be writing completely random crap and it would still be an absolute pleasure to read it. I've found that most writing "how-to" texts are extremely boring, procedural... very INSTITUTIONAL... this book is not at all institutional, and it's very easy on the eyes and brain when you're reading it.

My only criticism with this book is a big one... though it doesn't necessarily diminish the importance of the work itself. This book is 18 chapters long, but for all intents and purposes, it basically ends after Chapter 13 ("Screenplay Form").

Chapters 14-18 discuss extreme subjects unrelated to the "foundations of screenwriting." They discuss adaptation and collaboration... matters FAR ABOVE (and not particularly applicable) the neophyte, aspiring screenwriters that would be reading a book such as this one. Yet, Chapters 14-18 also discuss very simplistic matters that are likely FAR BENEATH those that would be reading this... things such as getting into the mood to write, devoting time to your writing, dealing with family who may be opposed to you spending so much time writing, et cetera. These same chapters are also filled with personal, broad philosophical observations about writing in general, the process... observations that any B-average Freshman English student could spit out without thinking too hard. There are also boring, stereotypical observations about the film industry and Hollywood society... things that any resident of Los Angeles can tell you even if they've never in their life been involved in the entertainment industry.

I recently discussed this book with my best friend, a USC grad who had read this book as part of a film course in college. I was shocked, but very soothed, to hear him exactly echo my sentiments about the last third of this book. I hope Field spices this text up a bit if he does another revision.

Yet, despite my disappointment with the latter third of the book, the first two-thirds are absolutely brilliant. This book is a must-read... dare I say a REQUIRED READ... for anyone interested in the whole screenwriting process.

Kudos to Field. I really learned a lot from this book. I most certainly recommend it.
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1.0 von 5 Sternen A disappointment 4. Juni 2008
Von Natalia Tikhonova - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Two years ago I was so anxious to read this "most sought after" screenwriting book I could hardly sleep until the Amazon courier knocked on my door. My God... What a disappointment. This book turned out to be the worst book on screnwriting I had ever read (and I read quite a few being a UCLA film student). Is the author seriously suggesting that, for example, plot point 1 MUST happen on a certain page??? That every 10 pages we MUST have a car chase, an explosion, a death - anything to keep the audience interested? Well... Why don't let a good solid story take care of that? The problem is that a good solid story is not usually based on the plot point/page correlations. Many reviewers here have praised Field's book for analyzing the structure of a story. Alas, no. What Field is offering is not a structure but a formula. Rigid, frosen, still formula. Knowing the principles of storytelling is mandatory for a writer; applying a formula without understanding the foundations is simply useless. And not in the least creative. Sadly, in spite of the title, Field does not give the reader any explanation as to what these foundations are. Again, many reviewers said how helpful this book could be for a beginning screenwiter. Frankly, I don't see how. Field does not present a clean solid introduction to what a story is, does not show the driving forces behind a good story - something any writer must know. Field simply offers you crutches. Here, if you fear you story will fall down, use these - make something important happen on page 27 (or is it 29?). Can a truly inspiring script be written by following Field's rules? I seriously doubt it.

Finally, o God, his writing style is so impossibly dull!
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