Script Development is one of the most underrated parts of a production. Many people benefit from using agencies for video production because agencies force companies into forming a script. When not working with an agent, companies often skimp on script development and attempt to do things in-house. This often results in a lack of direction and can ultimately lead to a very inefficient and costly workflow. To resolve this we like to be heavily involved in the development of the script and decide from day one who will lead this effort between us and our clients. We see this as a spectrum where on one end you’re supplying the creative brief and story outline, and on the other end we work with you to develop your key messaging points which then turns into a magical script, budget and production.
Companies are often too engrossed in their own work to be able to remove subjective biases that might be good or bad for the video production. This is where a hired consultant can significantly add value and insight to a final video product. A proper Pre-Production phase is imperative to successfully casting interview subjects and planning shot selections while making sure your story is entertaining to your future viewers.
Our approach to Script Development starts with an intake meeting that helps discuss concepts, assets and materials that may already exist. This meeting is meant to identify all necessary details to construct a script, production scope and full production budget to meet the specific needs of your project. Some of the major topics we cover in our intake meeting are touched on below but we are always available to be contacted for a call or meeting to help consult you through these first steps of planning your production.
Do you produce an actual script?
The type of “script” depends on the type of project. At the very least, we will create a creative brief that outlines the story arch in a few paragraphs which is in line with our traditional documentary style, short profile videos. For more complex and directly constructed messaging we will develop a full script and storyboard.
Do you ever pitch projects?
Absolutely! We love to imagine video concepts and help develop narratives. We generally need to acquire some information in order to know what assets and angles are available. We typically create a series of alternatives based on a similar set of criteria and present the options in the form of a pitch.
What is the best format for a script?
The best case scenario is a script similar to a narrative script which illustrates what is being said, who is saying it and what visuals accompany the audio content. This is not always possible or necessary. Sometimes a bulleted list of talking points and the associated questions for interview subjects is fine. For non-speaking scripts a specific list of visuals and suggestive music might be enough.
Once we have a script how much can it change?
The direction of your script is determined by how much you plan in advance. If production goes smoothly and you captured what you set out to capture, there is a good chance you will end up with a product similar to your script. Like most things in life, you don’t always get what you want and sometimes it isn’t necessary to but time spent planning will save you hours and dollars at the shoot and multiple times that in the edit.
How do I decide who to include in my video?
Who you decide to include in your film may seem like a small detail, but it plays a very large role in the overall success of your video. Characters can have a serious impact on how people view your company or product. Imagine the difference between an actor, an internal employee or a client telling the story of your product and you will begin to understand the difference. Passion and presence always trumps knowledge and titles.
How detailed of a project brief or script do I need before approaching a production company?
The more well thought-out and detailed your outline is the better equipped a production company can be to begin to create a scope, budget and ultimately produce your video.