What makes a logline outstanding? Our directors explain what they hope to see among the entries.
The rules of writing a great logline
A logline is a one (or occasionally two) sentence description that boils the script down to its essential dramatic narrative in as succinct a manner as possible. Not sure where to begin?
These tips are going to help:
- A logline must have the following: the protagonist, their goal, the antagonist/antagonistic force.
- Don’t use a character name: Instead, tell us something about the character. A sous-chef. An ex-superhero.
- Use an adjective to give a little depth to that character: A mute sous-chef. An alcoholic ex-superhero.
- Clearly and quickly present the protagonist’s main goal: An alcoholic ex-superhero searches for his daughter.
- Describe the Antagonist: – An alcoholic ex-superhero searches for his daughter after she is kidnapped by his dementing, jealous former sidekick.
- Make sure your protagonist is pro-active: He or she should drive the story and do so vigorously.
- If you can, include stakes and/or a ticking time-bomb: These are very useful narrative devices that add urgency to your script.
- About the ending: Do not reveal the script’s supercool twist ending. The story, and thus the logline, should be good enough to hold up by itself.
- Don’t tell the story, sell the story: Create a desire to see the script as well as telling them what’s in it.