How to Get Your Screenplay Read, Not Tossed!


Apart from the well-known exception of the screenplay Basic Instinct that Joe Eszterhas wrote in a long weekend, it usually takes a screenwriter between 6 and 18 months to write and rewrite a movie script.

And it usually takes a reader 10 minutes to toss most of them. Because of basic flaws.

Don't let it happen to YOUR script!

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The Top 7 Deadly Flaws of a Bad Screenplay

Whether you are new to screenwriting or not, you may want to check that your movie script does not "suffer" from one of these basic and fatal flaws:

All of these flaws have the power to "kill" your screenplay and send it to the dustbin.


A Sample of What This Website has in Store for You:

Whether you identified one of these flaws in your screenplay and wonder how to fix it, or want to increase your skills in the areas of story, structure, dialogue, format and/or characters, you came to the right place.

We make available on this website the"source code" of screenwriting so that you don't have to spend months and years finding out how to structure a screenplay, format it and write great dialogues.

For example:

1. Discover 13 rules to write great dialogue.

Blablator, our dialogue expert, shares the tricks of the trade in a series of articles packed with examples and videos so that you can easily apply these 13 rules to your own screenplay.

For example rule #7 shows you with a quiz how knowing your characters makes it easier to have them talk; and rule #9 deals with subtext, the other side of "on the nose" dialogue.


Blablator rules! Totally! Such insightful and practical views on dialogue.
I use these rules now as a checklist when writing.

J.Williams, Los Angeles, CA.

2. Learn dialogue techniques from script characters

And spice your own dialogues with them. For example:

  • Alvy Singer, from Annie Hall, written by Woody Allen, shares with us 2 techniques: exaggeration and juxtaposition. Annie Hall
  • the dangerous and seductive Catherine Trammel from Basic Instinct written by Joe Eszterhas, unconceals the mechanics of the "unexpected response" dialogue technique

  • "Who wants to be a millionaire" host Prem Kumar from "Slumdog Millionaire" written by Simon Beaufoy and Vikas Swarup explains a technique he excels at, "put down".

I love the "twist". Having the characters speak is awesome. Together with the pictures and the script extracts, it makes it easier for me to learn the screenwriting craft.

C. Johnson, New York, NY.

3. Find out about the 5 functions of dialogue

Remember the Colonel Jessep who became famous for his line "You can't handle the truth" in "A Few Good Men" from Aaron Sorkin?

Well, he talks about the 5 functions of dialogue and shares examples from his own "life" to illustrate each of them.

A Few Good Men

Who said acquiring knowledge had to be boring? I learn so much - and have an awful lot of fun.

B. Wilcox, London, UK.

4. Recognize and apply the various spaces of a screenplay's structure

An interview with Neil Perry and General Maximus about screenplay structure.

The result? The structure of the screenplays Dead Poets Society written by Tom Schulman and Gladiator written by David Franzoni and John Logan, explained in detail and illustrated with 11 pictures.

Dead Poets Society

This site is great pleasure for me, who is new to script writing. Thank you.

A. Tanaka, Tokyo, Japan.

5. Live by the 10 formatting commandments

And get the reader to focus on your story instead of the formatting "rules" you broke.


What a script! and what a gift you spent all this time to allow us to learn from your experience. Thank you for your spirit.

V.Gupta, Mumbai, India.

6. Discover the stories of great characters

For example:

  • Will Hunting, from the script Good Will Hunting written by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck
  • Neil Perry, from the script Dead Poets Society written by Tom Schulman

And Jason Bourne from the "The Bourne Identity" written by Tony Gilroy tells us why he is a compelling character.


OMG. I just re-read Good Will Hunting. So different from the first time. I "saw" all the dialogue techniques and functions, the structure turning points, etc... Truly amazing the difference Whatascript! makes in my capacity to learn the craft. Keep up the good work!

S. Anderson, Austin, TX.

7. Enjoy free movie scripts

Our selection includes classics - like The Godfather and Fight Club - and recent award winners or nominees - like Argo, Django unchained or Silver Linings Playbook.

This is a great opportunity to study how the masters did it.

You'll find all the information you need to make an easy choice (e.g. screenwriter, genre, IMDB link, trailer, and related articles on this site).

Don't miss our 21 powerful tips to max out your reading of a screenplay.
They tell you what to look at and you get to apply this knowledge to your own movie script.


8. And so much more ...


What's in the Name?

We had the opportunity to read many screenplays.

And in some cases, there was this magic moment at the end when we paused and said to ourselves:

Wow, what a script!

This website is dedicated to all the screenwriters who caused this emotional response.

To YOUR writing a "what a script!" screenplay!



    and the team.


New! "Can I make a comment? - Go ahead, make it."*

Follow the example of J.Williams in LA, C.Johnson in New York, B.Wilcox in London UK, A.Tanaka in Tokyo and V.Gupta in Mumbai and let us know:

  • what you appreciate about our site,
  • how it empowers you in your writing endeavors,
  • what you learn and put into practice in your screenplay(s),
  • which articles you enjoy and why.

Thanks for your contribution.

* Defiance, screenplay written by Clayton Frohman and Edward Zwick

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Writing is Rewriting

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Live from Storyville

Good Will Hunting Good Will Hunting
Learn from the masters and apply the findings of our in-depth script analysis to your own screenplay.


patchwork of free movie scripts posters Don't miss these free movie scripts!
Easy online access and simplified choice thanks to our links.


Dead Poets Society Dead Poets Society
Learn from the masters and apply the findings of our in-depth script analysis to your own screenplay.

Live from Dialogueville

Great Movie Character Quotes 100+ Movie Quotes
Cool, funny, romantic. Always unique.
A goldmine to enjoy and to study.


Dialogue rule #9:
Applying this rule or not tells the reader immediately if you're a beginner or advanced screenwriter.


Dialogue rule #12:
Apply this rule and get a definite edge in your ability to write dialogues


Alfred Hitchcock Dialogue rule #1:
A background on all 13 rules and an answer to the question: How much dialogue do you need in your screenplay?


Dialogue rule #11 Dialogue rule #11:
Discover one of the deal breakers for the reader with a quiz - and how to avoid it


Dialogue rule #3 Dialogue rule #3:
It gives you a guideline regarding the number of words to use when writing dialogues


Dialogue rule #10 Dialogue rule #10:
It's about taking drastic measures and being clear about who your real friends are.


Repetition Dialogue Technique It's not your fault.
Sean Maguire on the repetition dialogue technique and how it works.


Will Hunting letter I had to go and see about a girl.
The setup and payoff dialogue technique and how it works.


"Take your Mother to Khandala and eat some chiki!"
Show master Prem Kumar on the put down dialogue technique.


Sam from Life as a House Dialogue rule #7:
It's probably the most important rule.
And you get to apply it with a quiz.


You know I don't like to wear any underwear,don't you, Nick?
Catherine Trammel on the unexpected dialogue technique.


I was a reasonably happy kid. I was brought up in Brooklyn during World War II
The juxtaposition dialogue technique and how it works.


Dialogue rule #13:
It's the ultimate test to know if your dialogues work

Live from Formatville

Formatville, city board The 10 commandments of screenplay format:
What they are and why you must live by them


Screenplay format commandment #10 Screenplay Format Commandment #10:
Phone calls. They are in every movie. How do you write them?


Screenplay format commandment #5 Screenplay Format Commandment #5:
How to direct without using camera directions.


Where am I? Screenplay Format Commandment #2
How to tell the reader where and when the scene happens so that he doesn't get lost.


Screenplay format commandment #9 Screenplay Format Commandment #9:
How to deal with foreign and sign language, accent and translation.


The 10 Commandments of Screenplay Format - 
     			#3: Thou shalt not slow down the reader Screenplay Format Commandment #3
How to have the reader turn the pages of your screenplay quickly.

Live from Dudetown

How to create a character, reveal it on the page and ensure 
		                that the reader connects with it. A Compelling Fictional Character in 11 steps (#5)
10 tips to create a powerful name, a quiz and how Bruce Wayne came up with Batman


How to create a character, reveal it on the page and ensure 
		                that the reader connects with it. A Compelling Fictional Character in 11 steps (#7)
Reveal your character through contrasts. Contrast with other characters, with the environment, with self.


How to create a character, reveal it on the page and ensure 
		                that the reader connects with it. A Compelling Fictional Character in 11 steps (#9)
Action is Character. How to reveal traits, skills, flaws and who your character really is.


Jason Bourne Why I am a compelling character?
Whatascript! interviews Jason Bourne

Live from Lake Structure

Gladiator and its screenplay structure in the background Gladiator - the script structure in 11 pictures
General Maximus about the 6 stages and 5 turning points that constitute his life


Dead Poets Society - the script structure in 11 pictures
Neil Perry about the 6 stages and 5 turning points that constitute his character's life

Live from Newstown

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News and movie trailers of produced screenplays currently showing

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