Righto. After watching an hour of Field's approach to screenwriting - my brain is absolutely fried. Right there on the couch, I peered from the distance beyond the television screen to my bud Baikie, and he was just chilling - playing within the fantastic galaxy of San Andreas with a several hundred humans from around the globe - here on Earth.
Syd's Hollywood Screenwriting Success Story Instructional Video Tape (presented in 240p)
Righto. Since I could really only stand the first half of that video, or 'the workshop', I will comment on Syd's unique starting approach.
Instead of starting right from the Beat Sheet, where you're given the time to think about what the story is going to be about, who's going to be involved, where things are going to take place and what you, as the screenwriter, are wanting others to discuss or think about (themes, real world issues etc.), Syd Field wants you to immediately throw these ideas, after conception, into the following structure:
- Plot Point #1
---MIDDLE NOT FOCUSED ON---
- Plot Point #2
After this, a four page treatment, which is intended and supposed to be of a shit and poor quality, should be written with the ideas thought out and scribbled under the bulletpoints above.
I suppose this is great, since you're given time afterwards to go back and refine it - which I think Syd may come back on later and start recommending the viewer to start thinking about the action and drops within the middle chunk of the film.
I will have to continue watching this to see how I could use this technique in future screenplays - not thinking that I could adapt it this year, because this workshop is focusing more on feature length scripts.