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Film Directing Fundamentals, 4th Edition

Book Description

Film Directing Fundamentals gives the novice director an organic methodology for realizing on-screen the full dramatic possibility of a screenplay. Unique among directing books, Nicholas Proferes provides clear-cut ways to translate a script to the screen. Using the script as a blueprint, the reader is led through specific techniques to analyze and translate its components into a visual story. A sample screenplay is included that explicates the techniques discussed. Written for both students and entry-level professionals, the book assumes no knowledge and introduces basic concepts and terminology. Appropriate for screenwriters, aspiring directors and filmmakers, Film Directing Fundamentals helps filmmakers bring their story to life on screen.

This fourth edition is updated with a new foreword by Student Academy Award-winner Jimmy Keyrouz, who studied with author Nicholas Proferes, as well as an enhanced companion website by Laura J. Medina, available at www.routledge.com/cw/proferes, which features new supplemental material for both instructors and students, including two new analyses of contemporary films—Wendy and Lucy (2008) and Moonlight (2016)—study questions, suggested assignments and exercises, as well as the instructor’s manual written by Proferes in 2008.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title
  3. Copyright
  4. Dedication
  5. CONTENTS
  6. FOREWORD TO THE 4TH EDITION
  7. INTRODUCTION TO THE 4TH EDITION COMPANION WEBSITE
  8. FOREWORD TO THE 3RD EDITION
  9. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
  10. INTRODUCTION
  11. PART ONE FILM LANGUAGE AND A DIRECTING METHODOLOGY
    1. Chapter 1 Introduction to Film Language and Grammar
      1. The Film World
      2. Film Language
      3. Shots
      4. Film Grammar
      5. The 180-Degree Rule
      6. The 30-Degree Rule
      7. Screen Direction
      8. Film-Time
      9. Compression
      10. Elaboration
      11. Familiar Image
    2. Chapter 2 Introduction to the Dramatic Elements Embedded in the Screenplay
      1. Spines
      2. Whose Film Is It?
      3. Character
      4. Circumstance
      5. Dynamic Relationship
      6. Wants
      7. Expectations
      8. Actions
      9. Activity
      10. Acting Beats
      11. Dramatic Blocks
      12. Narrative Beats
      13. Fulcrum
    3. Chapter 3 Organizing Action in a Dramatic Scene
      1. Dramatic Elements in Alfred Hitchcock’s Notorious Patio Scene
      2. Notorious Patio Scene Annotated
    4. Chapter 4 Staging
      1. Patterns of Dramatic Movement
      2. Changing the Stage within a Scene
      3. Staging as Part of a Film’s Design
      4. Working with a Location Floor Plan
      5. Floor Plan for Notorious Patio Scene
    5. Chapter 5 Camera
      1. The Camera as Narrator
      2. Reveal
      3. Entrances
      4. Objective Camera
      5. Subjective Camera
      6. Where Do I Put It?
      7. Visual Design
      8. Style
      9. Coverage
      10. Camera Height
      11. Lenses
      12. Composition
      13. Where to Begin?
      14. Working toward Specificity in Visualization
      15. Looking for Order
      16. Dramatic Blocks and Camera
      17. Shot Lists, Storyboards, and Setups
      18. The Prose Storyboard
    6. Chapter 6 Camera in Notorious Patio Scene
      1. First Dramatic Block
      2. Second Dramatic Block
      3. Third Dramatic Block
      4. Fourth Dramatic Block and Fulcrum
      5. Fifth Dramatic Block
  12. PART TWO MAKING YOUR FILM
    1. Chapter 7 Detective Work on Scripts
      1. Reading Your Screenplay
      2. A Piece of Apple Pie Screenplay
      3. Whose Film Is It?
      4. Character
      5. Circumstance
      6. Spines for A Piece of Apple Pie
      7. Dynamic Relationships
      8. Wants
      9. Actions
      10. Acting Beats
      11. Activity
      12. Tone for A Piece of Apple Pie
      13. Breaking A Piece of Apple Pie into Actions
      14. Designing a Scene
      15. Visualization
      16. Identifying the Fulcrum and Dramatic Blocks
      17. Supplying Narrative Beats to A Piece of Apple Pie
      18. Director’s Notebook
    2. Chapter 8 Staging and Camera for A Piece of Apple Pie
      1. Staging
      2. Camera
      3. Conclusion
    3. Chapter 9 Marking Shooting Script with Camera Setups
    4. Chapter 10 Working with Actors
      1. Casting
      2. Auditions
      3. First Read-Through
      4. Directing During Rehearsals
      5. Directing Actors on the Set
    5. Chapter 11 Managerial Responsibilities of the Director
      1. Delegating Authority While Accepting Responsibility
      2. The Producer
      3. The Assistant Director
      4. A Realistic Shooting Schedule
      5. Working with the Crew
      6. Working with the Director of Photography
    6. Chapter 12 Postproduction
      1. Editing
      2. Music and Sound
      3. Locking Picture, or, How Do You Know When It’s Over?
      4. An Audience and a Big Screen
  13. PART THREE ORGANIZING ACTION IN AN ACTION SCENE
    1. Chapter 13 Staging and Camera for Over Easy Action Scene
      1. Development of Screenplay
      2. Director’s Preparation for Directing an Action Scene
      3. Where to Begin?
      4. Over Easy Action Scene/Staging and Camera Angles for Storyboard Artist
  14. PART FOUR ORGANIZING ACTION IN A NARRATIVE SCENE
    1. Chapter 14 Staging and Camera for Wanda Narrative Scene
      1. What Is the Scene’s Job?
      2. Choosing a Location
      3. Staging
      4. Camera Style in Wanda
  15. PART FIVE LEARNING THE CRAFT THROUGH FILM ANALYSIS
    1. Chapter 15 Alfred Hitchcock’s Notorious
      1. Overview of Style and Design
      2. First Act
      3. Second Act
      4. Third Act
      5. Summary
    2. Chapter 16 Peter Weir’s The Truman Show
      1. Overview of Style and Design
      2. First Act
      3. Second Act
      4. Third Act
      5. Summary
    3. Chapter 17 Federico Fellini’s 8½
      1. A Masterpiece?
      2. The Director as Auteur
      3. Dramatic Construction
      4. Overview of Style and Design
      5. Detective Work
      6. First Act
      7. Second Act
      8. Third Act
      9. Summary
    4. Chapter 18 Styles And Dramatic Structures
      1. Style
      2. Narrative, Dramatic, and Poetic Visual Styles
      3. The Variety of Dramatic Structures
      4. Tokyo Story, Yasujiro Ozu (1953, Japan)
      5. Some Like It Hot, Billy Wilder (1959)
      6. The Battle of Algiers, Gillo Pontecorvo (1965, France)
      7. Red, Krzysztof Kieslowski (1994, Poland, France, Switzerland)
      8. Sex, Lies, and Videotape, Steven Soderbergh (1989)
      9. Shall We Dance?, Masayuki Suo (1996, Japan)
      10. The Celebration, Thomas Vinterberg (1998, Denmark)
      11. The Insider, Michael Mann (1999)
      12. The Thin Red Line, Terrence Malick (1998)
      13. In the Mood for Love, Kar Wai Wong (2001, China)
      14. Little Children, Todd Field (2006)
    5. Chapter 19 What Next?
      1. Building Directorial Muscles
      2. Writing for the Director
      3. Begin Thinking about Your Story
      4. Concocting Your Feature Screenplay
      5. “Writing” Scenes with Actors
      6. Shooting Your Film before You Finish Writing It
      7. The Final Script
      8. Shooting without a Screenplay?
      9. Questions Directors Should Ask about Their Screenplays
      10. Conclusion
  16. BIBLIOGRAPHY
  17. INDEX