Picking intro song and setting tone. Good idea or not?

So now you have an outline. Where do you go from here? Discuss getting past FADE IN:.

Picking intro song and setting tone. Good idea or not?

Postby rickthomas77777 » Feb 11, 2013 7:28 pm

I picked out a song that would set the tone for the whole movie. Its about the dark, unloving upbringing of a bipolar girl and the things she does to cope with her life and get by. More in depth then that but you get the point. Here's what I have. This starts on page 3:


FADE to INTRO. Song words will set tone for movie. Alice in Chains “------------” is playing in the b.g. Before 0:41 in the song, production company information is seen. At 0:41, movie name. Credits between 0:42 and 3:25. At 3:26, cut to 4:25, FADE OUT song and begin movie.

The words in this Alice in Chains song work for what I want to portray. Is it a good idea to choose the song for your movie beforehand or describe how you want the song to be played so it "fits" the movie? How bad or good does the format seem? This is a well known band to so I realize money wise, for the production company, it may not fit either. Should I ditch this idea altogether or maybe reformat it? :?

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Re: Picking intro song and setting tone. Good idea or not?

Postby Rumourd » Feb 13, 2013 1:51 pm

Never do this. Never. Because music is so subjective that, unless you're also the director, your song suggestions will be ignored. It's also the mark of an amateur, especially when you're putting in time notations ("1:43 in, this happens").

Seriously, don't ever do this. I think you should read more professionally produced screenplays to know what you can get away with. I have several friends in development that, if they saw this on the first page, they would know they weren't dealing with a professional.

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Re: Picking intro song and setting tone. Good idea or not?

Postby Chris Huntley » Feb 14, 2013 10:01 am

I agree with Rumourd.

Also never call out timing, and avoid calling out credits unless it makes a difference. Those are decisions made during post production and unless the credits are intimately tied to the story itself, there is no need to mention them at all.

If you want to describe music, then describe the qualities of the song or music you imagine would be playing, such as "a soulful ballad," or "something light and breezy reminiscent of the 1960's". Music adds mood, background, and texture to a scene and call it out when you feel it is essential to dictate it AND it is important to the story.
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