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How to Adapt Anything into a Screenplay

How to Adapt Anything into a Screenplay

Richard Krevolin

ISBN: 978-0-471-22545-4

Mar 2003

218 pages

Select type: Paperback

In Stock



From concept to finished draft-a nuts-and-bolts approach to adaptations

Aspiring and established screenwriters everywhere, take note! This down-to-earth guide is the first to clearly articulate the craft of adaptation. Drawing on his own experience and on fourteen years of teaching, screenwriter Richard Krevolin presents his proven five-step process for adapting anything-from novels and short stories to newspaper articles and poems-into a screenplay. Used by thousands of novelists, playwrights, poets, and journalists around the country, this can't-miss process features practical advice on how to break down a story into its essential components, as well as utilizes case studies of successful adaptations. Krevolin also provides an insider's view of working and surviving within the Hollywood system-covering the legal issues, interviewing studio insiders on what they are looking for, and offering tips from established screenwriters who specialize in adaptations.
* Outlines a series of stages that help you structure your story to fit the needs of a 120-page screenplay
* Explains how to adapt anything for Hollywood, from a single sentence story idea all the way to a thousand-page novel
* Advises on the tricky subject of just how faithful your adaptation should be
* Features helpful hints from Hollywood bigwigs-award-winning television writer Larry Brody; screenwriter and script reader Henry Jones; screenwriter and author Robin Russin; screenwriter and author Simon Rose; and more
Foreword by Jeff Arch.



1. A Short History of Adaptations.

2. Professor K.’s Five-Step Adaptation Process.

3. Legal Issues of Adaptations.

4. How Faithful Should Adaptations Be?

Case Study: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.

5. Mining the Vein and Extracting the Gold.

Case Study: The Shawshank Redemption.

6. Truth, Lies, and Alternative Structures.

Case Study: Rashomon.

7. Compiling Characters, Cherry-Picking, and Captain Phenomenal.

Case Study: The Patriot.

8. Reinterpreting and Reinventing the Storytelling Wheel.

Case Study: O Brother, Where Art Thou?

9. I Know It Really Happened That Way, But . . . .

Case Study: Madison.

10. Learning by Writing Across the Genres.

Case Study: Glengarry Glen Ross.

11. Good, Evil, and the Eternal Combat Over Adaptations.

Case Study: X-Men.

12. Smart Choices with Source Material.

Case Study: Shiloh.

13. Hints from and Interviews with Hollywood Bigwigs.