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10 Screenplay Structures To Flesh Out Your Formless Story

10 Screenplay Structures To Flesh Out Your Formless Story

How to write a screenplay structure

First Draft

Oneiric Structure

Oneiric Structure is unique as it depicts a cinematic story using dream-like visuals, exploring the structure of dreams, memories, and human consciousness.

Subtle usage of this structure is best represented by Cameron Crowe’s Vanilla Sky. The lines between real world and dream world get more and more blurry as the film moves forward. We’re not sure what is real and what is not.

The Tree of Life screenplay embraces the Oneiric Structure tenfold. Just watching the film feels like you are witnessing someone’s life—and the life of the planet overall—through vague and half-remembered memories and dreams.

These types of films are often presented by auteurs, likely because telling such stories—especially in the extreme cases like Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life—often requires one single vision and visionary.

These 10 structures are what you can choose from when it comes to deciding how to tell your stories.

Structure is less about hitting certain beats at certain page numbers on your screenplay and more about deciding what type of framework you want to build your story on. MM

This post originally appeared on the blog ScreenCraftScreenCraft is dedicated to helping screenwriters and filmmakers succeed through educational events, screenwriting competitions and the annual ScreenCraft Screenwriting Fellowship program, connecting screenwriters with agents, managers and Hollywood producers. Follow ScreenCraft on TwitterFacebook, and YouTube.

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