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A screenplay or script is a written work by screenwriters for a film, video game, or television program. These screenplays can be original works or adaptations from existing pieces of writing. In them, the movement, actions, expression, and dialogues of the characters are also narrated. A screenplay written for television is also known as a teleplay.
The format is structured in a way that one page usually equates to one minute of screen time. In a "shooting script", each scene is numbered, and technical direction may be given. In a "spec" or a "draft" in various stages of development, the scenes are not numbered, and technical direction is at a minimum. The standard font for a screenplay is 12 point, 10 pitch Courier Typeface.
The major components are action and dialogue. The "action" is written in the present tense. The "dialogue" are the lines the characters speak. Unique to the screenplay (as opposed to a stage play) is the use of slug lines.
A slug line, also called a master scene heading, occurs at the start of every scene, and is usually made up of three parts. Part one states whether the scene is set inside (interior/INT.) outside (exterior/EXT.), or both. Part two states location of the scene. Part three, separated from Part two by a hyphen, refers to the time of the scene. Each slug line begins a new scene. In a shooting script, the slug lines are numbered consecutively. These scene numbers serve as mile-post markers in a script. This allows any part of the script to be referred to by scene number.
The format consists of three aspects
The style consists of a grammar that is specific to screenplays. This grammar also consists of two aspects:
American screenplays are printed single-sided on three-hole-punched paper using the standard American letter size (8.5 x 11 inch). They are then held together with two brass brads in the top and bottom hole. The middle hole is left empty as it would otherwise make it harder to quickly read the script.
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