Not Antonio Villaraigosa, but Russell Napolitano — the city's mayor in our LA Observed Script Project story Right of Way. This week's winning writer, Marvin Wolf, has written fifteen books, served four times as president of the Independent Writers of Southern California, and knows his way around a police station. He has taken the story in an unpredictable new direction and filled in a necessary missing element, as story editor Eric Estrin explains at his Script Notes blog:
My first staff job on a television series was story editing the popular, if not exactly highbrow ABC show, “MacGyver” back in 1987.
I was pretty surprised when, on my very first day on the job, the show’s executive producer Henry Winkler waltzed into my office on the Paramount lot, introduced himself to my then-partner and me, and proceeded to write a single word on the whiteboard:
I suddenly feared that word of my critical snobbishness had leaked out to my bosses, and they’d already sent the Fonz to straighten me out. Luckily, he was only there to share what he considered his most important advice on writing: Whatever else a scene is intended to do, it must also give the actors something to play.
Motivation. Spin. Attitude. Something’s got to be there, beneath the surface of all the dialog and action, for an actor, and later the viewer, to feel engaged.
Check out the new pages that won Wolf his very own LA Observed Script Project t-shirt, or start from the beginning. What happens next is up to the readers — you have though the weekend to send Eric your pages.