Billy Wilder’s Ten Rules of Good Filmmaking
My friend Beverly sent me this list, with a note, “Works for novels, too.”
Billy Wilder’s ten rules of good filmmaking:
1: The audience is fickle.
2: Grab ‘em by the throat and never let ‘em go.
3: Develop a clean line of action for your leading character.
4: Know where you’re going.
5: The more subtle and elegant you are in hiding your plot points, the better you are as a writer.
6: If you have a problem with the third act, the real problem is in the first act.
7: A tip from Lubitsch: Let the audience add up two plus two. They’ll love you forever.
8: In doing voice-overs, be careful not to describe what the audience already sees. Add to what they’re
9: The event that occurs at the second act curtain triggers the end of the movie.
10: The third act must build, build, build in tempo and action until the last event, and then—that’s it.
Don’t hang around.
Does this make me famous?
very good rules
Extremely helpful. I’d gotten a couple of my shorts into local film festivals in the past and, while that’s a nice accomplishment, I never really felt confident in my work– I never felt like I’d told an interesting story. This small little blog entry was an enormous help and, along with the five point story arc, played a crucial role in the development of my most recent film, my best work by far. Thanks again!
I’m glad you found it — and thank you for drawing my attention back to this post. Bethany