I hate scripts. I hate reading them. I hate the stupidity around them, the tacky screen directions. Plays are different. Scripts are written so the lowest common denominator can understand them, and even then, most can’t read or understand them.
The conventional screenplay is a throwback to the days of the Hollywood factory. It is written so everyone involved knows their place in the process, the makeup artists, the cinematographers, the teamsters and so on. Kubrick (yeah, I know, I keep using him as a reference, why not?) gave up on conventional scripts when he did A CLOCKWORK ORANGE. Terrence Malick writes elaborate scripts, so the actors know their characters for improvised sections, but then ignores the written words. Sean Penn (and a few others) didn’t understand this and have criticized Malick.
John told me that Cassavetes had improvising sessions to develop the characters but wrote everything down but still left room for improvisation during filming. A friend, a great cinematographer, left one of Cassavetes shoots because John wouldn’t use marks. He would use multiple cameras to be sure he captured the performance. My friend, just out of AFI thought he would be judged.
Kubrick wrestled with the notion of a script and referenced my Michelob commercials as a new way of looking at film but never moved on that notion. Despite his efforts, Kubrick’s films were still conventional narratives (sortof).
I was having trouble with my submissions to Tracey and the agents never made any attempt to understand, but Tracey did get me a copy of FULL METAL JACKET before it was released, and I was elated after seeing the format.
I can’t find that copy and those published on the internet seemed to be derived from the movie and put into conventional form. I found this ‘page’ that seems to support what I’ve heard, but…