The premiliminary stage of storyboarding Ameviathan: The Green Machine is over. I finished the last frame Thursday afternoon. I have to redo a couple scenes, notably the opening, one scene in the middle and another near the end. Once this is done, I’ll scan the pictures and put together some sort of digital format of a storyboard/script combination. This will coincide with the final drafting of the screenplay, which I’ll say more about in a moment. My timeframe in which to complete the digital script/storyboard along with the final draft of the script is by New Year. After the new year, prop construction will begin.
The screenplay changed considerably during the storyboarding process, and in many ways the storyboards acted as my final revision of the script. This was something I also discovered while working on Young Goodman Brown. Some of the changes the storyboards brought about to the script I’ve already talked about in a previous post. These problems, as I indicated in that post, stemmed from spatial considerations (I would note that I am redoing the opening sequence to more accomadate my original idea after Dragon’s suggestions and talking it over with Bear). However, there were thankfully only two or three of these instances in the script. What is perhaps most intriguing about all these occurrences, is that their real difficulty was not a symptom of the action in the respective scenes, but rather in the staging of characters during conversation.
More common revisions that the storyboards brought about to the script were related to the dialogue itself. While storyboarding lines from the script, I often discovered that the dialogue didn’t visually propel the plot forward. Instances of this extended to cases where the dialogue told what visuals could better tell, where dialogue was redundant and/or where dialogue just fell flat on its face. This isn’t to say that the storyboards have negated all bad dialogue from the script, but they have definitely helped to curb it.
For me personally, the storyboarding process has been an invaluable step towards the realization of this project. As a learning aide, I depended quite heavily on Steven Katz’s, Film Directing: Shot by Shot, which focuses on the visual elements of moviemaking from pre-production and storyboards on through to production and actual film shots. At some point in the future, I plan to do a longer review on the book. For now however, anyone who is considering storyboarding a film, I give this book a strong recommendation as a resource.