BFI Bursary Award- Screen Arts Institute. 27th March.

 This week we each had to write three pages from a particulalry dramatic scene of our feature. We then read these outloud  to the group and discussed them. I chose to write an extract of the scene in which my two protagonists re-enact a dance routine which they used to do every year with their best friend. The only trouble is their best friend is now dead and the two remaining friends are now entirely estranged, one is very high and the other is pregnant. The high  friend opts to  constantly jump into the space where the dead friend  would have danced. She thinks it will be a chance for them to rekindle their lost friendship, it inevitably goes very wrong.  It is meant to be a very darkly funny moment in the film and one which sums up the core pathos of these women's struggle in an entirly non verbal way. As we are still in treatment phase, it was a little painful writing the scene as I am as yet uncertain about where exactly this scene comes in the film and therefore of how much weight it needs to carry. However jumping in to drafting was useful for a number of reasons. Firstly it made me realise how much more work I need to do on structure. Because I was not enitirely sure about this,  it became a difficult to pin down what the most essential feature of the scene was. It was also great to have people's intial feedback to the style and tone of the writing. My film is a dark comedy and people laughed (and gasped) during the reading,  which was encouraging. However I also quickly realised that I had overwritten the scene and that so much could have been conveyed with a look rather than through pages of dialogue. Coming from a theatre backgound this is my biggest challenge when approaching screen writing. Lastly it was great to realise how clearly the realtionship between the two protagonists, estranged bestfriends, translated to the film script. Through relatively simple action, a lot of the backstory that I had  struggled to explain through the text, was picked up on by the rest of the group. Heartening to hear at this stage.  It was also exciting to hear extracts of everyone's work. People can talk about characters and an idea as much as they like, but it is only through their writing that one starts to get an actual sense of what the film will be like. Everyone's work was really strong and distinct and I think it made us all hungry to get to the drafting phase. Only a few more weeks left.