Friday, 15 January 2016

@Phil - From Script to Screen: Story Ideas

These are my two most fleshed out ideas for the story. A few other ideas I've had started out okay, but I then find myself struggling to include either the see-saw or the factory into the story without it simply just being there for no reason. I am still frequently writing down ideas and notes in my journal, but this is what I have so far:

Idea 1: 

  • 2 children find abandoned park near a derelict mannequin factory, cut off by a small river.
  • Not wanting to get wet, the children take apart a rusty, broken see-saw to make a bridge across and make their way to abandoned factory.
  • Old fortune teller lives inside, sitting at a table, surrounded by mannequin parts, tells the children they will read their fortunes if they give them an item in return. The children agree, and the old fortune teller uses what appear to be small bones to read their fortunes.
  • The first child's fortune has a mixture of good and bad, but they are told everything will work out in the end.
  • The second child's fortune is fairly similar but they are told they must change their attitude in order to be successful.
  • The first child pays the fortune teller with their pocket money and a bag of sweets, the second refuses to pay as their fortune wasn't very good, they storm out, taking their friend with them.
  • As they reach the see-saw, they realise it has disappeared and somehow returned to its place in the park. Not knowing of any other place to cross, they decide to jump in the river and climb up the bank to the park. 
  • The first child jumps in and makes their way across and up the bank no problem, but the second is half way there when mannequin hands spring up from the water and begin dragging them down. 
  • The first child goes to help their friend, but the mannequin hands push them back, they scramble up the bank and run for help.
  • The second child stops fighting, and the water goes still.

Idea 2:
  • An old fortune teller is living in an old factory which they have converted to a living space. 
  • The factory used to make fortune teller machines, found in arcades. The old fortune teller was once the owner.
  • Never having any children of their own, they took apart some of the machines and built them into a living, mechanical girl. 
  • The two of them read the fortunes of some of the few clients the fortune teller still has. 
  • From one of the windows in the living area, the mechanical fortune teller can see children playing in a park, and frequently asks their creator if they will go with them to play on the see-saw. The old fortune teller repeatedly tells them they are far too old to be playing in parks, and would most likely hurt themselves.
  • The old fortune teller uses small machines parts (screws, bolts, cogs) to read her own fortune; the pieces land in the vague shape of a skull. Realising they have little time left, they are worried about leaving the mechanical girl on her own, and after some thought she gets to work, taking apart some of the few remaining machines in the factory.
  • The mechanical girl attends to clients, while the old fortune teller works in secret.
  • One day, the old fortune teller presents the mechanical girl with a sister, built from the remaining parts (the parts are mixed and of varying condition as all the best parts were used to make the first girl).
  • The two girls, though at first unsure of each other, are sent outside to the park, at which the first girl is overjoyed.
  • The girls play on the see-saw together as the old fortune teller watches from a seat at the window, they are happy, knowing the girls will have each other once they have gone.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Eleanor - I think there's too much complexity here - certainly for a 1 - 2 minute animation. You need to streamline everything - and maybe think a more laterally about that pesky see-saw.

    When I think 'see-saw', I also see stuff like this:

    So the idea of the see-saw as something that is about 'up or down' or 'good or bad' or 'happy or sad' - in other words, we use the term see-saw to describe a fluctuation between two states, and also in terms of coming to an important decision. In this way, I think the see-saw could align with the fortune teller in terms of ideas of 'destiny' and 'fate', as in:

    I did like the idea of the factory that makes the fortune-telling machines...

    I'm suddenly thinking of a Dr Caligari meets Final Destination inspired idea... What if Character A visits a fortune teller at a travelling fair. The fortune teller predicts the character's death. The character doesn't believe it, but as the story progresses, we see him experience a number of near-death accidents at the factory where he works - you know, lots of machines, and hooks on chains etc, things falling etc - but he survives them all. Happy, he things he's fine when we see him standing on some kind of platform (all a bit vague this bit, sorry!) and then suddenly, something drops onto the other side of the platform (or see-saw-like thing) and he's launched upwards and killed horribly somehow. Final shot - we're back in the fortune-teller's tent, and the fortune-teller looks up, and it's the grinning skull of Death himself... or something like that...

    I think you need less characters and a quicker set-up.

    Another idea - maybe the factory (which is a place that manufactures stuff) is something more fantastical - maybe it's the factory that creates good luck and bad luck; maybe it's the factory that manufactures destinies, before distributing them out to the world, and the 'Fortune Teller' is like the head of operations, dishing out destinies to the world; any maybe the 'see-saw' is like the device that decides who gets what? Not sure what the story might be... Maybe it's a story that starts with someone crossing their fingers or finding a four leaf clover, and we're shown how the 'Destiny Factory' swings into operation to create a good luck scenario...

    Anyway, a few ideas for your own umming and ahhing...