The Writing Journal #29

What a weekend it’s been for 21st Century pop culture! Avengers Endgame has brought ten years and 21 films of planning, plotting and story-telling to an epic and magnificent conclusion (along with a “decent” $1.2billion at the global box office in 5 days…), whilst the Battle of Winterfell in Game of Thrones continued to redefine what is possible in television in terms of scale, genre and character. Regardless of your personal views on either, it is hard to deny that these properties have made a deep impact on cinema and television that will be felt long into the future.

Endgame is a moment in cinematic history; James Bond may (just) have more films over the course of its history, but as a collection of interconnected, related stories, nothing has come close to the narrative scale and ambition of the MCU, nor indeed handled it with such style and substance. Some films struggle to have enough story to cover 90 minutes, but the MCU has shown that it’s possible to create an overall narrative with the ability to energise a huge global audience and keep them hooked for over a decade, thanks to patience, collaboration, and meticulous structuring. Many will now try to emulate this success in their own way, and this could indeed be the future of cinema to come, but I think it will be some time before we find another cinematic phenomenon quite like Marvel’s (which is still, after all, expanding).

Meanwhile, Game of Thrones has shown that TV can be every bit as epic as cinema, whilst still retaining the intimacy of character that has drawn audiences into television’s Golden Age. S3 Ep8 went hell for leather in delivering a truly special TV moment, and whilst I didn’t think they got everything right – there’s a fine line between authenticity and engagement, which for me they got wrong in their lighting decisions – it was a mesmerising, breath-taking 90 minutes that, again, built on years of character work and precision to deliver an emotionally complex gut-punch.

Having done whatever it takes to survive The Long Night, unlike (REDACTED) and (REDACTED) but without so much glory as (REDACTED) and Hodor, it’s time for me to get back to work again, which is now a much more terrifying/invigorating prospect, knowing that anything I ever write from now on will have to follow in the footsteps of both these behemoths…

Target Number 1: Write a treatment for a drama feature.

Editing this treatment has been a slow and steady affair but one that is still making progress. Having finished the first draft last week, I had hoped to finish the treatment entirely by now so that I could be sending it to my producer, but there’s no sense in rushing it for the sake of speed, particularly in this instance when it is the quality that will be the determining factor in my continued involvement in the project.

Target Number 2: Write a treatment for a horror feature.

No news is good news, at least for my workload and the other three features I’m currently working on! No movement here also gave me a day to be able to see and process Endgame, so swings and roundabouts really…

Target Number 3: Research 5 Welsh production companies for potential collaborations.

There are a few rough edges to polish and a couple more pieces of information I’d like to include in this document before sending it along the chain. Otherwise, I’m happy that I have enough information now to move onto the next phase with this particular project.

With the drama treatment still to be completed, and a request to write the horror treatment possible at any time, it’s not going to be entirely plain sailing into the first Writing Journal of May. Unfortunately, there’s no way alter the relentless march of time. Well, not unless you __________

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