Basic script elements
Scene Heading: The scene heading can also be referred to as, Slug line, Heading, or Scene Caption.
The Scene Heading use abbreviations EXT. for exterior, and INT. for interior. This explains where the scene is taking place.
INT. WAREHOUSE – DAY
EXT. PARK – DAY
(Everything in the scene heading is capitalized.)
Scene Headings can be simple, or if more detail is needed you can add more. For instance:
EXT. PARK – DAY – 2PM
When writing a script keep in mind that you never want to end a page with a scene heading. Move it to the top of the next page; also, never go straight to dialogue after the scene heading. You have to explain what is going on: (ACTION LINE.)
EXT. PARK – DAY
RYAN is seen standing in front of the swing set. – (Action Line.)
PRIMARY SCENE HEADING, AND SECONDARY SCENE HEADING.
INT. WAREHOUSE – DAY (PRIMARY SCENE HEADING.)
When writing a script, and your character moves throughout different rooms of the same building use a Secondary Scene Heading instead.
OFFICE (SECONDARY SCENE HEADING.)
RYAN grabs the files from his desk.
In the Scene Heading you can add flashbacks/fantasy sequence/dream sequence.
INT. WAREHOUSE – DAY (FLASHBACK)
(Then when you exit the flash back.)
INT. WAREHOUSE – DAY (PRESENT)
WHEN TO USE CAPITALIZATION IN YOUR ACTION LINES.
When introducing a character for the first time in the script you want to capitalize the name.
- KYLE enters the lobby. (ACTION LINE.)
Capitalize any sounds, books, or anything you want the audience to read and hear.
- The gun SHOT silences the room of people.
- Ryan opens the letter. It reads: I HAVE BEEN WATCHING YOU!
LETS MOVE ON.
Dialogue is what a character is saying.
VOICE OVER DIALOG:
A voice over is when a character is off screen, or in another room narrating parts of a scene.
Voice over = (V.O.)
My name is Ryan I live
here in Michigan.
OFF SCREEN/OFF CAMERA DIALOG.
Off screen, or off camera dialog is when a character is physically in the scene, but not seen by the audience. An example would be a character that is not on camera calling to someone who is on camera.
Breakfast is done.
These are used when you have multiple people in a scene, and a character is speaking to one specific person.
We need leave here pretty soon.
This is the basics on getting to know how a script is written.