Friday, July 11, 2003

vignette: scriptease


MIRA
No, no, it’s just won’t do. You didn’t set the scene, it’s as if you expect the audience to know-

JON
Well-

MIRA
-just how everything goes. Remember that they’re only watching, not making decisions for the characters. It’s the characters that-

JON
I know-

MIRA
-make the choices, all the decisions that bring them to whatever point-

JON
Wait, wait-

MIRA
-we’ve placed them in. You’ve got to make it real, go for truth-

JON
I am going for truth.

MIRA
Well, not as it reads here.

JON
Where?

MIRA
Or here.

JON
I don’t-

MIRA
And especially here. I mean, read it yourself, you have-

JON
I think I did-

MIRA
Look, you have Chris and Angie just going for the idol. I mean, why? What’s their motivation? Is it love? It can’t be because we have no warning-

JON
It could be-

MIRA
Nothing at all that prepares us for this sudden romance, this, this, out-of-character declaration of undying devotion-

JON
It’s just an “I think I may be in love with you”, nothing undying-

MIRA
But that’s just the point! In comparison to the status quo, which, if I may remind you, was a perfectly blah relationship-

JON
I wouldn’t call it “blah”.

MIRA
It is “blah”. That’s what it is, “blah”. Look, they’re friends. Just friends-

JON
I don’t-

MIRA
There’s a term for that-

JON
I don’t-

MIRA
Gah. I hate it when this happens. What’s the word?

JON
I-

MIRA
Not “quotidian”, you know, more Greek-sounding, like “plebian”-

JON
Platonic.

MIRA
Exactly. What they have is platonic, and suddenly, suddenly, it’s whoosh! Love!

JON
But love is like that.

MIRA
Not in my book. Not in this script, it isn’t. You have to-

JON
I think I have prepared the audience.

MIRA
How?

JON
Act One, Scene 12, the diner scene. Look.

MIRA
What am I looking at?

JON
Look what they’re talking about. See what he says here? And then what she says? And then the telling pause?

MIRA
The telling pause?

JON
Chekhovian-

MIRA
They’re ordering food-

JON
Yes-

MIRA
They’re ordering food! He wants a burger with everything-

JON
And she wants a fruit bowl, exactly.

MIRA
Exactly? Exactly what?

JON
It’s a metaphor.

MIRA
It’s shit. We’re not doing a fucking art film. It’s action-adventure. The target audience is stupid.

JON
No, they’re not.

MIRA
They are. And this-

JON
Why do you-

MIRA
-this talk of burgers and fruit bowls won’t mean anything to-

JON
I think it will, you have to-

MIRA
Oh, come on!

(A telling pause.)

JON
I think I need a break.

MIRA
I think you need a refresher course in writing.

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