Writing Animation – where the action never stops.

June 4, 2019
Bob Eckhard


Hi all,

Today we consider dialogue versus action. One mistake many writers make is to overwrite spoken exchanges. A few years ago I heard a story about how Clint Eastwood – when making the film Gran Torino  – was faced with the task of learning an unnecessarily lengthy monologue in response to a question asked of him in the film. Reluctant to let the speech get in the way of the story, Eastwood reduced the prose to a gutteral ‘grunt’ and a grimace to camera which certainly seems to have worked well in the film.

In a similar way, animation is about action and not the spoken word which makes planning one just that little bit harder. Why?  Because there’s no let up in the action/adventure until the end. Yes, there are a few animation films with a story that deploys a slower feel but generally, these are the exception to the rule. The majority of animated films are lively and action packed.

Okay, the second part of my notes taken at Barbara Slade’s session on Writing for Animation can be found here. Til next time, keep it fast and animated! (pun intended!)

* part 1 of my notes on Barabara’s session can be found on the link from my post of a fortnight ago.

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