Anyone interested in teaming up?

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NickMichaels
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by NickMichaels » Tue Nov 18, 2014 2:08 am

@SteveRyan Thanks. I'll definitely work on it.
@SynthSin As my friends say, my jokes are pretty funny and I do like animation. I want to create an animation with my jokes, but the main characters and place is a thing I'm lacking badly.
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lwaxana
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by lwaxana » Tue Nov 18, 2014 2:55 am

Nick--It sounds to me like the main things that interest you about your project idea are the jokes and animation. You can create some Family guy style character rigs (or use characters that come with the program!) and just try making an animation of a couple of jokes. Plus you get to see the results faster! You don't need an elaborate story or a big team of people for it to be fun and funny. Plus in the process you'll be learning what works and what doesn't. There's something to be said for the thrill of just creating something, and not even worrying if its going to be good. It's unrealistic to expect that the first animation you make is going to be a hit tv show. It's usually an iterative process were you kind of feel out what you like and what works.
Danimal
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by Danimal » Tue Nov 18, 2014 1:02 pm

NickMichaels wrote:As my friends say, my jokes are pretty funny and I do like animation. I want to create an animation with my jokes, but the main characters and place is a thing I'm lacking badly.
This is the exact opposite way to write. Having jokes that you're then going to shoehorn into a flimsy or non-existent story just because "hey, the jokes are funny enough to carry it!" only results in an unwatchable mess. I will admit that it does seem more and more TV shows and movies are made following that formula, but also remember how many of them bomb badly.

Forget your jokes for now and focus on a basic story. It sounds like you have one, I guess what needs to be addressed is why moving to Vermont is so critical to the story? What's so inherently interesting about Vermont? There was a time I would have thought due to its gay marriage laws, but they're not alone in that anymore.
lwaxana wrote:just try making an animation of a couple of jokes.
This is a good plan, if you're serious. Do a short scene or even just a standalone joke. I don't remember who but someone on here used to do those all the time: little, 30 second bits of animated "guy walks into a bar" kind of stuff. Try that and see if characters or style emerge. And do something else: force yourself to remove all cursing. Find out if those "jokes" your friends find hilarious are in fact jokes or just cursing. If a scene or story or joke can't stand alone without the cursing, it's garbage. And if it can, you don't need the cursing anyway so get rid of it.
~Danimal
steveryan2
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by steveryan2 » Wed Nov 19, 2014 12:45 am

I created a new thread named "Zombie Story" in the "Animation Jobs" category. As we continue the effort on the zombie story we can use the new dedicated thread. I re-posted the story summary, storyboard and character designs on this other thread. I couldn't figure out how to link directly to specific posts of this thread (if that is possible).
NickMichaels
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by NickMichaels » Wed Nov 19, 2014 1:50 am

Okay. I didn't write a script yet, but did come up with some basic stories for the "new" Vermonters. The characters hobbies/jobs were quick, but might become better over-time.

Dom, Danielle, and Eric live in Vermont, in present-day. (They don't move or anything as in the old script).

Dom is 33 years old, works at Publix as a manager.
Danielle is 31 years old, works as a real-estate agent.
Eric is 10 years old, a soccer player.

Side Characters:
Chris and Kris: Still two gays who own a restaraunt called Rice and Beans (as in the original script).
Leo and Leslie: The neighbors of the Tocco's who are both virgins and are on an on-again, off-again relationship. (Changed the name's, new few side-stories with their on-off).
Jakob, Ean, and Nick: Still the kids of Newport, Vermont and current friends of Eric.

Okay, so in the first episode, Eric is ready to play the tournament in his soccer game next week. However, Danielle has a real-estate business party and both events are at the same time. While, both want Dom to come to their thing, Dom tries to support both events, which ends up really badly.

It's something I spent a few hours on, not much, but would you guys actually watch a story like that?

Any thoughts on it?
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by Danimal » Wed Nov 19, 2014 1:32 pm

NickMichaels wrote:would you guys actually watch a story like that?
Nick, I'm pretty sure I've already watched that story at least a dozen times, usually involving the main character coming up with some zany stand-in, possibly created by the Great Gazoo.

There are common stories in TV and movies, and this is one of them. Don't take that as discouragement - it's good. Writing something familiar but putting your unique spin on it is a good way to introduce your show and characters. I used to write a show with some friends where we did exactly that: take cliché plots and scenes and do the opposite of what's expected. It can really throw the audience for a loop and in itself be funny even without a gag just because it's unexpected, even if it's boring.

But that's just one way to go. It sounds like you've got a good starter of a plot to introduce your family now.
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steveryan2
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by steveryan2 » Wed Nov 19, 2014 4:03 pm

NickMichaels wrote: Dom is 33 years old, works at Publix as a manager.
Danielle is 31 years old, works as a real-estate agent.
Eric is 10 years old, a soccer player.

Side Characters:
Chris and Kris: Still two gays who own a restaraunt called Rice and Beans (as in the original script).
Leo and Leslie: The neighbors of the Tocco's who are both virgins and are on an on-again, off-again relationship. (Changed the name's, new few side-stories with their on-off).
Jakob, Ean, and Nick: Still the kids of Newport, Vermont and current friends of Eric.

Okay, so in the first episode, Eric is ready to play the tournament in his soccer game next week. However, Danielle has a real-estate business party and both events are at the same time. While, both want Dom to come to their thing, Dom tries to support both events, which ends up really badly.

It's something I spent a few hours on, not much, but would you guys actually watch a story like that?

Any thoughts on it?
The plot is fine. It has been done before and will be done again, but it works as a basic context for your story. The main thing is to more fully develop your characters so that you can generate as much conflict as possible. Yes, even sitcoms have conflict; lots of it. The personalities of the characters create the conflict in the first place from their unique and different personalities. The comedy comes from how they try to resolve it.
Remember that all comedy is about deception; or at least has a deceptive component to it. Watch any sitcom episode and see how deception plays into it.

You have enough characters now. Spend some time on how to make each one unique. Their ages are a start but is still very vague. Are they short or tall? Thin or fat? Physiology effects our personality.
What is their education? Did they drop out of high school or complete a masters degree? This will affect their view of the world.
Did they grow up poor or middle class? What did their respective father's do for a living? Was he a cop? A soldier? A politician? A cook? A day laborer? A parent has a great influence on how someone grows up, and their occupation greatly influences the parent.
Is the character politically conservative or liberal or somewhere in between? Even if they are not into politics they will lean in one direction or the other.
What are their hobbies? Do they play a musical instrument? Do they play a sport? How good are they at it?
What are they like emotionally? Are they quick to anger? Do they resent certain people? Are they sympathetic?
How smart are they?
How do they resolve conflict? (this is probably one of the biggest things to ponder and is influenced by all the other answers). Some resolve their conflicts with technology, some with intelligence, some with brute force, some with their looks and sexuality, some with ingenuity, some with money or influence. This is not all-inclusive, but you get the idea.

Each character should be developed so that they are different and unique as possible from the other characters. Not just the family characters but the gay neighbors, the virgin neighbors and Eric's friends as well. Their personality will dictate what they think and therefore how they react and what they say. When doing dialog try to think in terms of general attitudes rather than specific dialog at first. The dialog should be the result of the conflict and their attitude and personality. For example, a nervous person will have a different reaction than a confident person.

In some ways you are engineering your characters; building and tweeking them for the purpose of generating as much situational conflict as possible. It is kind of the opposite of how we think in real life so it can be difficult. In real life we try to avoid conflict and smooth it over and solve problems. When writing stories you want a lot of conflict so that the characters have the opportunity to use their unique personalty to deal with it.

There is nothing more boring that characters that all react the same. If that is the case, no amount of jokes or clever plot lines will save the story.
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by Danimal » Wed Nov 19, 2014 4:44 pm

steveryan2 wrote:Remember that all comedy is about deception; or at least has a deceptive component to it. Watch any sitcom episode and see how deception plays into it.
Some does, but not all. Misunderstanding plays way more into sitcoms than deception. Pride is a huge one when a character is full of himself only to fail. There's also just good, plain, old-fashioned getting hurt as in slapstick. Then there's parody or satire or just out and out making fun of something/someone.
~Danimal
steveryan2
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by steveryan2 » Wed Nov 19, 2014 8:24 pm

A misunderstanding is usually the result of deception (in comedy; not necessarily in the real world). Deception can be used used as a means to create the situation in the first place, but also as a solution to how the characters deal with the problem.
Danimal
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by Danimal » Wed Nov 19, 2014 8:59 pm

steveryan2 wrote:A misunderstanding is usually the result of deception.
Misunderstanding usually comes around because a character doesn't have all the information or isn't smart enough to process the information and in either case they jump to the wrong conclusion.
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lwaxana
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by lwaxana » Wed Nov 19, 2014 10:13 pm

Nice discussion on writing. Very useful info.

Nick-- I am wondering why the gay characters are in the story. I like to think it's going to be a reasonable representation, but the treatment of gays in the original script was quite offensive, so I worry that the intent here may be similar. Besides this, the rewrite looks like a good start!
NickMichaels
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by NickMichaels » Wed Nov 19, 2014 11:38 pm

Thanks for the support.

I chose two gay neighbors because I feel the show needs a little inappropriate matter in the show. Not alot as in the original script, but only a little. Plus, I had two men who said they are "business partners" living next to me a few years back, and turned Chris and Kris into them.
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by Danimal » Wed Nov 19, 2014 11:43 pm

NickMichaels wrote:I chose two gay neighbors because I feel the show needs a little inappropriate matter in the show.
Go with it. Every show needs a little goofiness. There will be some people who say it's offensive or demeaning. Take that as you're doing something right.
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hayasidist
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by hayasidist » Thu Nov 20, 2014 1:17 am

NickMichaels wrote: I chose two gay neighbors because I feel the show needs a little inappropriate matter ...
... and there's Greg and Terry in American Dad...so there's a clear precedent and should not be an issue as long as (mindful that this is adult humour) "inappropriate" doesn't stray into the realms of downright offensively unacceptable that will get episodes banned (as happened to one Family Guy episode in the US - but which was aired in the UK).
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lwaxana
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Re: Anyone interested in teaming up?

Post by lwaxana » Thu Nov 20, 2014 2:25 am

Having gay characters is not inherently offensive. But using the term "f*****t," (as appears in the previous script), is offensive. I'm just letting you know in case your intention is not to offend people.

Actually the main reason I'm compelled to say something is because I would hate for anyone reading here to think that every participant in the forum agrees that that kind of treatment is just fine and "a sign that you're doing something right." Especially in the context of glowing consensus to remove every other "offensive" part of the script. What message does it send within our community to say that f*****t gets a pass, but f**k is taboo? Personally, I find f**k innocuous in comparison.

I know some others feel differently, I just want to go on the record that my view does exist. 8)
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