Tales of horror have always been with us, from Biblical times to the Gothic novel to successful modern day authors and screenwriters. Though the genre is often maligned, it is huge in popularity and its resilience is undeniable. Marc Blake and Sara Bailey offer a detailed analysis of the horror genre, including its subgenres, tropes and the specific requirements of the horror screenplay. Tracing the development of the horror film from its beginnings in German Expressionism, the authors engage in a readable style that will appeal to anyone with a genuine interest in the form and the mechanics of the genre. This book examines the success of Universal Studio's franchises of the '30s to the Serial Killer, the Slasher film, Asian Horror, the Supernatural, Horror Verite and current developments in the field, including 3D and remakes. It also includes step-by-step writing exercises, annotated extracts from horror screenplays and interviews with seasoned writers/directors/ producers discussing budget restrictions, screenplay form and formulas and how screenplays work during shooting.
A practical, theoretically savvy guide to writing a horror movie.
The truth is that the screenplay is a bastard form of literature. It is not a play nor book nor movie, and not just simply a blueprint for a film. All movies, regardless of genre, depend on the screenplay. However it is the director who makes the movie by realizing the printed words of the script on film. I have seen mediocre screenplays made into very good films. And I have seen excellent screenplays made into bad movies by incompetent directors. Again, it's important for people to understand that the screenplays essential role in film making is the same regardless of the genre of the film. --John Landis, 2012 Writing the Horror Movie is written in particular for anyone interested in writing a screenplay for a horror film, and in seeing that screenplay turned into reality. But it's also full of fascinating nuggets of analysis and useful information more generally for scholars, students and fans of the genre - whether this is musing on the aesthetics of disgust, offering nifty psychological profiles of major horror monsters, or advice on how to exploit your film and turn it into a lucrative franchise. Two dismembered thumbs up for Marc Blake and Sara Bailey! -- Darryl Jones, Professor, School of English, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland A lucid, well-structured and thought-provoking introduction that ranges widely across the genre. Intelligent and perceptive throughout. Recommended for aspiring writers and critics. -- George Green, Senior Lecturer, Department of English and Creative Writing, Lancaster University, UK