How to Avoid Accidentally Writing A Dramatic Script

A common question most scriptwriters face when learning how to make movies is, “how do I make this a comedy, or even slightly funny?” I asked the same question for my own “comedy” short film.

Instead of using physical gags and random flat jokes like I did, take a page out of Steve Kaplan’s book on comedy.

Kaplan, a renown script doctor for Disney, Dreamworks, and HBO among others, breaks down the very root of what makes a comedy different from a drama.

He argues the difference between the two genres is that drama is how we would like humanity to be, and comedy as what humanity actually is. To him, comedy is showing an ill-equipped hero who struggles against all odds while never giving up hope, not a series of cheap gags or jokes.

Whether you’re part of the independent filmmakers’ club, or the Hollywood elite, everyone should reassess what it takes to write a comedy.

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  • Keaton is an actor and writer who works with the Initiative Production Company in Brisbane, Australia. Native to Alaska, he enjoys staring at the stars while contemplating the meaning of life.

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