'Survival' by Theo Schofield (TC)


Three naval officers at the bottom of the Mariner Trench. Has one lied to keep humanity going?
'Survival' by Theo Schofield (TC)
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Comments: 5
  • #1

    Christopher Dane (Tuesday, 04 June 2019 12:44)

    I find the idea very appealing but the writing extremely hard to follow... some of it is to do with the formatting, which you probably need to look at as this is a script competition entry and therefore would have to adhere to the industry standard, but also that I don't really understand where we are? Is it a submerged base, a submarine or something else? If they are in a submarine that's there for 'experimental' purposes then it feels very convenient that they're right by a The Kirsk... not withstanding that the Russians wouldn't let three british officers on board their submarine... and finally I have no idea why Abbas gives Leticia his wedding ring? All of this may make sense to you but it doesn't come across on the page... may spend a little less time describing the people and more on giving us a sense of the space? Just my two cents :-)

  • #2

    Natalie Teming-Amoako (Tuesday, 04 June 2019 13:37)

    This is a nice idea, the group is separated from the rest of mankind and are having a very unique experience before the world is destroyed. It has a lot of potential.

    I'm sure you struggled to write the script without software, you can use free ones if Final Draft is too pricey. Have a look at these options, you may want to try out some to find the one that works best for you: https://www.scriptreaderpro.com/free-screenwriting-software/.

    In the first half of page 1 you start off with a lot of description which is quite a lot to get through, try breaking up the descriptions in between dialogue, it should help to create a steady pace throughout your script, at the moment the action makes the story feel like it has paused until the dialogue comes back.

    Abbas' feelings about wanting to see his kids can be projected a lot more. They all come across a very calm, but he could be the one really showing panic at the situation. Where he says "I'm married, I love my wife", it feels more like we are being told this rather than being showed this. Think more about how you can show his feelings, so it doesn't feel like subtext being given as dialogue. Alice's feelings about her dad and Leticia's story could both be explored more. Also perhaps Leticia's character could be a different age from Alice in order to diversify your characters a bit more.

    My last note is how come Alice is the captain when she's only 20 but Abbas is in his mid-30's? I would have thought he would be the captain of the two young ladies.

  • #3

    Chris Arosnten (Wednesday, 05 June 2019 08:44)

    I agree here with my fellow Talent Campers - there is real potential here in this isolated, pressure cooker world you have created. You have touched on the idea that these people MIGHT technically survive the meteor because they are deep under the ocean - but in reality might die because they can't agree on what to do. From your writing, it looks like you come from a playwriting background (like me), but as the others have said, correct formatting is very important.

  • #4

    Dylanne (Wednesday, 05 June 2019 13:34)

    Hi Theo, I have to honest I found this difficult to follow, particularly the climax.. 'stares at the novel'? Definitely look at software - it will change your life! The 'world' set up could be clearer and some of your exposition is sticky, 'only terrestial down here - remember?'
    However, there is some good character description and the premise is pretty cool.

  • #5

    Bianca (Thursday, 06 June 2019 13:00)

    Hi Theo, couple of questions. Did you mean Marina Trench or Mariana Trench? The second scene (where you describe Alice) could be fusioned with the next scene. As far as I see it, the only reason why you split them up, is because first she is in front of the door, and later in the room. I think when the action is continuous and a character goes from one location into the next, maybe to have an easier read you can avoid splitting up the action. I didn’t get what Leticia’s position is and if Alice - being the captain - can resign just like that. (I’m not aware of the protocol in those situations). Also how can Leticia outrank Alice, if Alice is the captain? (Also I think having a young captain makes the conflict between Abbas and her deeper, as we always assume wisdom comes with age.)I’m not quite sure I understood which is supposed to be the lie? Also the sudden appearance of The Kirsk might seem a bit too convenient, what if Alice decided to take course toward its direction after the call? Thatw as it’s a conscious character choice which shows already the conflict of her taking such a decision without wanting to take into account how her colleagues feel. I’m sorry to pester you with questions! Overall I think you have a strong premise, the dynamic between those three characters is lively and interesting and the choice of making this a ‘huis-clos’ works very well. I imagine the main struggle was to keep this in the 2 pages, I imagine this scene working better if you had more pages :)