Joss Whedon: The Five Things Your Script Has To Have

Joss Whedon: The Five Things Your Script Has To Have

Joss Whedon is a screenwriter, director, and producer. He's best-known for creating the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Firefly, and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Whedon also co-wrote both Cabin in the Woods and The Avengers feature films.

Recently, Whedon was part of a roundtable discussion for aspiring writers hosted by actress Lily Cole for the website Impossible.

Here are a few of his most valuable tips:

  1. In a script everybody matters.
    It became apparent to me very early on, that not only do I need to understand my characters, I need to understand the characters that you don't generally need to understand. I think it's almost insulting to hire someone to be someone and you don't know who he is...it will ultimately inform what happens.
  2. 2. Lean on your genre.
    I need genre, I lean on it, because there's always structure as well. If it's a musical video – they're going to sing – if it's a horror movie, they're gonna be scared...I love that – the humanity obviously comes within. Every – every – story is a story about people, or it sucks.
  3. 3. Believe in your concept.
    Time travel is a concept that has been done and so is every other thing you will ever think of. So the thing that makes it worth saying is only going to be you.
  4. 4. Enjoy your craft.
    I myself have never enjoyed anything more than writing. I love to live in that world. In fact, I need to. I've had so many people come and be like, "Y'know, I'd like to write,"...and I'm like, "Just leave." I know writers who, it's torture for them, they hate it, it's like "AARGH AARGH!" but they can't stop.
  5. 5. Embrace your weirdness.
    Whatever makes you weird is probably your greatest asset.

A version of this article was originally published on MoviePilot.com.