If you were given the chance to rewrite the end of your favourite classic movie where would you begin?
Well, thanks to a Stockport firm, it’s time for the nation’s most innovative film buffs to get thinking.
Cartridgesave.co.uk is hosting a nationwide competition, with the chance to win £2,000 – and all you have to do is write a 750-word alternative ending to your favourite movie classic.
If you have ever been completely enraged by the ending of a film or tempted to add an extra dash of drama or sudden shocking twist, this is the perfect opportunity for you.
Ian Cowley, managing director of cartridgesave.co.uk, said: “We are massive movie fans and love the idea of challenging writers to imagine ‘what if …?’ with their favourite films from over the years.
“It’s the ultimate director’s cut – to re-do a classic movie the way they’ve always wanted to see it.”
Let’s say, for instance, that you’re one of the many who has never recovered from Titanic’s tragic and infuriating end. This is your chance to put pen to paper and lift Jack out of the freezing water and lay him safely beside Rose.
DISSATISFYING CLIFFHANGER? Could you rewrite The Italian Job? (Pic: Paramount Pictures via YouTube, with thanks)
Similarly, if you have ever been rattled by a dissatisfying cliffhanger, like the precariously balanced bus in The Italian Job, then you can use the opportunity to end the film conclusively; devise a magical solution for the gang to safely reclaim the gold or send them toppling over the edge of the cliff.
One of the judges of the competition, film and theatre critic Kevin Bourke is confident that everyone has got an alternate ending hidden away waiting to be released.
He said: “Every film has twists and turns right up to the end, that’s why we love them so much. Imagining a different twist than the one you see on screen is something everyone has done in the cinema.”
Bourke has also provided a few useful tips for anyone thinking about having a go: ‘It’s best to start with a film you really love and characters you know inside out – that will make it easier to imagine how else their story might have played out.
“After that, it really is limitless, these people are under your control and you can come up with a finale more explosive than anything, Spielberg, Coppola, Scorsese or Orson Welles could imagine!”
Re-writing a current ending to a classic is by no means an easy task, even the most confident screen writer would find it difficult, so here are a few more simple tips to help get started:
- Watch the movie you’ve chosen again before starting to write. This is vital to refresh the plot, characters and setting in your mind.
- Have a rough idea of where you’re headed. If you’ve got the seed of an idea work it through to an approximate ending, even if you don’t know the final line.
- Plan it out. Writing milestones in your story down is a good idea, allowing you to fill in the plot and dialogue between these larger events.
- Keep it tight. You have a word count to keep within, so edit as you write, don’t use 50 words where 5 would do.
- Fantastic first line. Grab the reader from the very start with something dramatic, whether it’s a piece of dialogue, an event or disaster.
- Plenty of twists. Every Hollywood writer knows the power of the unexpected twist – so have a few of your own up your sleeve.
- Big finish. Make it exciting, poignant or uplifting; just don’t let it fizzle out.
- Get a second opinion. Show your work to someone else when you’re done – first to check it for spelling and grammar and second to give you vital feedback on your story.
- Don’t be afraid to get started and have a go!
For full details visit www.cartridgesave.co.uk/thealties
Main image courtesy of 20th Century Fox via YouTube, with thanks.