Why 9 Out Of 10 Screenplays End Up In The Trash – Joston Ramon Theney

Joston Ramon Theney, Screenwriter, Author, Director, Producer: We went just thinking about it, if you go back and you think What do I remember from the film?

Film Courage: How often have you read a screenplay where nothing happens in the first 10 minutes, no scares, nothing?

Joston: All too often, all too often. I think that because the software now can format things for you and everybody learns about Final Draft or Movie Magic or whatever, they learn about these different programs, it’s easy to make your screenplay look professional. It’s only when you start to read it do you understand the level of craft that they’re at right now. In certain levels of craft there’s always that Oh we’re building to something great! We’re building to something great and that’s at a certain level right and they may be really really good at crafting a story and dialogue and things may seem but if nothing is happening and nothing is happening by Page 10, nothing is happening by Page 15, but Page 20, when is something is going to happen? I do read a lot of scripts where I wonder What is the point? What is the point? What are you trying to say even if you have nothing to say, what is the point of the film? Who’s your hero? What is this person going through? How does going through this change them? How does going through this and them changing help them deal with the truth and the antagonist? All those things, all those questions, they aren’t answered because they aren’t at that level yet, you’re going to get a mismatch. For the most part I would say if I read 10 screenplays something happens by Page 10 in one of them depending upon which week it is. Not every time does something happen, not all the time, it might be one out of 20 screenplays.

Film Courage: What if someone says I want to take my time with the suspense. If you look back at The Stepford Wives (I realize that’s not really horror, it’s more thriller), it was a long intro to them coming to this new neighborhood and seeing these wives and and she’s kind of confused about what’s going on. It took its time.

Joston: But the thing about it is it establishes its tone very quickly and I feel that’s another..(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).



Screenwriter, author, producer, director Joston Ramon Theney grew up in Atlanta, Georgia. He is known for films such as Wanton Want (2021), Axeman at Cutters Creek (2020) and Jurassic Hunt (2021). 










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