In this section we are publishing the loglines from the participants of the Circalit / Story Department “First Draft Script Contest”. Our judges have reviewed the loglines and give you their considered feedback. It may help you craft a powerful logline.
by The Judges
“A suicide website lures its unsuspecting users into a trap set up by the vampire, Tatiana.”
The judges’ verdict:
Jack: “Rather than use the plural “users” why not focus on one user. A group creates less sympathy than an individual. How about – “A manic depressive (if that’s what he is) is lured into a suicide website, only to find it is a scam run by a vampire”..”
…focus on one user. a group creates less sympathy
Steven: “Firstly, vampires are boringly overdone. Secondly, a suicide website suggests that the protagonists are going to be unlikeable losers to start with. Better to have the website, say, a greenie one that attracts idealistic youth and traps them into a brainwashing conspiracy being masterminded by a doomsday cultist called “Tatiana”. ”
A suicide website suggests that the protagonists are going to be unlikeable
Dave: “An interesting premise that did have me interested, however, I don’t know who the main character is. Tatiana is the antagonist but I don’t see where the story is, or at least who it is about. ”
Let’s Make a Musical (About the Holocaust)
“Three immoral characters enter a playwright contest. The trio decide an emotional story would deliver them a sympathetic win. And what is more emotional than the Holocaust?”
The judges’ verdict:
Steven: “Firstly, it is questionable that a story set around the writing or making of a theatre production would be commercially viable to a general audience. Secondly, the logline labours over the cynicism of the protagonists without telling us what dire consequences they may risk. A better approach would be: “Three irreverent friends dare to write a spoof musical on the Holocaust for a culture festival. Despite the fact that their landlord is an Orthodox Jew.” ”
The logline labours over the cynicism of the protagonists without telling us what dire consequences they may risk
Adrian: “I don’t think I would describe the Holocaust as “emotional”. It would certainly evoke a lot of emotions, but not cheap tears, or for that matter, cheap laughs. It reminds me a lot of Mel Brook’s ‘The Producers.'”
It reminds me a lot of Mel Brook’s “The Producers’.
Jack: “This could be condensed. How about – “When three playwrights of dubious morality decide a sympathy vote will win a writing contest they hit upon an unbeatable emotional theme – the Holocaust.”
If you have an opinion on any of these synopses or the feedback from the judges, please share it with us in the comments below. Please keep the discussion constructive. Even if your first instinct may be subjective, try to give us as objective a reply as possible. The objective is to all (that includes us, judges) learn from the exercise.
So what is your verdict? Would you want to see these films? Why (not)? Did the judges get it right? How would you improve the synopses/loglines and what do you feel might improve the stories behind them?
Please give us your opinion in the comments at the bottom of this page.