How To: Write the Action Adventure Screenplay - Act one

Write the Action Adventure Screenplay - Act one

How to Write the Action Adventure Screenplay - Act one

Hey everybody,

 This feed is about the traditional three act structure when writing an action/adventure story or screenplay.

Act I "The Setup"

Act 1 is a great time to begin throwing out a lot of foreshadowing. For many films, once you watch a few times the same film over and over, you can understand a lot of the early dialogue much better. That is because the dialogue involved at the beginning is written with the end in mind. Remember that for the action adventure storyline, it is extremely important that each piece of action and dialogue move the story forward. It is unwise to rant during a job interview, so be careful not to get carried away with this joke or that ideal.

 Act 1 is also the time when your main characters can be introduced. I love to start my screenplays out in a very simple way. Usually, one character will ask, "what are you going to do" and another will say "this is what I am going to do" GOAL From that point forward it is important to know a few things as the writer: who is your hero/villain, who are the supporting characters, and how does each character start out in the story (how will they change by the end).

 One of my favorite things about writing act one is that I love to start our character out on a mission (going to the market for example) and then have the entire plot spun on its head when the inciting incident occurs (our guy gets mugged) Inciting Incident. This can be really fun as a writer because it gives you a blank check to write anything you find relevant and exciting. I am a big fan of gang stories so lets go with that.

Lets review, we have a guy (GUY) who wants to go the market GOAL, but he ends up getting mugged (II) on the way there by, just to keep it simple, the villain (MUGGER).

So once we have reached the end of Act I it is great to throw in a great plot point. For instance here, I would say that the mugger gets away but drops his own wallet. Here our man can pick it up and go to the market. This is a great time (end of Act one) to add a central character. For this GUY I would insert a love interest. Lets say the cashier woman. To buy his groceries, the man uses the gangsters credit card. (PLOT POINT) Give a scene like this a real ominous tone as the story is bound to get wild in Act II.

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