Movie Magic Screen Writer 4.6 VS. Final Draft 7 script writing software at DVinfo.net

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Old December 8th, 2004, 04:21 PM   #1
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Movie Magic Screen Writer 4.6 VS. Final Draft 7 script writing software

Hi All,

(I hope this is the right forum for this question)

My Folks want to get me an Xmas Present,… a new XL2 is just a bit too greedy…

I have been eyeing two different scriptwriting Programs that seem to “foot the bill”.

Movie Magic Screen Writer 4.6

Or

Final Draft 7

I don’t trust many online reviews especially the negative ones. Movie Maker Magazine states a lot of these companies slag each other online as “product reviews”.

Price range is about the same, I’m a PC user.

So what do you like and don’t like about each?

My stories/scripts are some what “outside the box”. So I don’t need intuitive stuff to write the script for me.

I would appreciate anyone’s take on this software. Many in this forum are writing, directing, shooting, and editing as I am, so I hope to get some honest feedback from the Group.

Cheers and Thanks.
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Old December 8th, 2004, 04:25 PM   #2
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Chris,

Might not be able to help directly reviewing these programs, as I write with Scriptware, the first computer screenwriting software. It works great for me... BUT -

I have found in the industry that Final Draft seems to have an edge in terms of distribution. I've found more often than not that agents and directors will ask for a script in TXT or Final Draft.

So my reccomendation would be to go with final Draft.
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Old December 8th, 2004, 04:30 PM   #3
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I like Final Draft to write with.

I only use Movie Magic to break down scripts.
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Old December 8th, 2004, 04:31 PM   #4
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Personally, I would create or locate a screenwriting template for a word processing package that you already own ( I have one set up in Microsoft Word.), then put the money that would've been spent on software toward something else. There is no shortage of things to spend money on, so you might as well save it where you can.

Keith Loh provided a Word Template in this thread.

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthrea...d+AND+template
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Old December 8th, 2004, 04:45 PM   #5
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Thanks for the plug. The template is still working well for me and no one has ever complained about the way my script looks printed out. I suppose once I become 'professional' I may want to go to one of those programs so I am also interested in opinions. Final Draft or one of the other ones.
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Old December 8th, 2004, 09:02 PM   #6
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<<<-- Originally posted by Gary McClurg : I like Final Draft to write with. I only use Movie Magic to break down scripts. -->>>

Gary, could you elaborate more on that? I'm curious about using Movie Magic / Final Draft to help organize the production/scheduling process.
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Old December 8th, 2004, 09:47 PM   #7
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Michael,

I've found that Final Draft is a simple program. I'm one of those type of people who hate reading manuals.

Unless I have too. It seems like in Movie Magic you have to take three steps to do some things where in FD its only one.

Now I think FD7 has the scheduling features (I only have FD6).

I got Movie Magic just to use to breakdown scripts because at the time FD didn't have that feature. So if you're looking to save money just get Movie Magic.

When I'm ready to break down a script. I just bring the script over into Movie Magic and then you can start tagging it.

You tag props, actors, extras, costumes, stunts, cars, etc. The program itself will break down the scenes for you by your scene headings, location, day or night, etc. and how many pages a scene is.

I also change the script into a shooting script. For example.

INT. BOB'S HOUSE/LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Bob walks into his bedroom.

BEDROOM

Bob turns on the light as he comes into the room.

I change the script to read this way.

INT. BOB'S HOUSE/LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Bob walks into his bedroom.

INT. BOB'S HOUSE/BEDROOM - NIGHT

Bob turns on the light as he comes into the room.

So that you have each location down.

You can add the int/ext. day, night stuff in the scheduling program. But I find its easier to do it beforehand because when you export the file into the scheduling program each scene comes out on its on page and they're grouped together so its easier to keep track of things.

Then once in scheduling you arrange things by location, day & night. Then you arrange all the bedroom scenes together, all the living room so on and so on.

Now my int night stuff. I just figure shoot it in the day time and have my grips just cover the windows with tarps on stands to block out the sunlight. Of course the gaffer will throw in some light to fake moonlight or whatever.

Then I just use the program to rearrange my schedule to fit all the day ext scenes first, then I put all the night scenes together on another week so we can do the normal crew turn around times and I save my int's for the end.

So that I can move them around if it rains or some other part of natural is keeping me from filming outside. Trust me I was afraid on one shoot that we'd have to shoot all the exts in the rain because it never stopped raining the first week. All my int where shot that week.

Now of course an actor can throw this all into a whirlwind. Because I have fit schedules to get an actor in an out because he's a name and I'm paying him more money per day. So I rework the schedule to get him in and out as soon as possible even if I have to mix day and night, int or ext. It's cheaper to get rid of him or her.

I hope I haven't written a novel or covered things you already know.

Gary
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Old December 8th, 2004, 09:56 PM   #8
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Thanks Gary, that's what I was looking for.
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Old December 9th, 2004, 01:36 PM   #9
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I've heard Movie Magic has links into other software the company sells (budgeting I think). Don't know if that is important for anyone though.
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Old December 9th, 2004, 02:25 PM   #10
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Hi,

I have Movie Magic Screenwriter. Great software. But Im sure Final draft and all the other templates works just fine. It's a matter of getting comfortable with the software. They are pretty much all alike. (I tried Final draft - but now Im used to MMS which is what you want in order to be productive and getting those ideas down on paper. MMS has tons of features you'll never use. But it's reliable and never crashed and it has good back-up features.

You sit, you procrastinate - you drink some coffee - and then you WRITE!!!

Good luck!
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