Saturday, June 7, 2014

Optimus Prime - Transformers 3.5 - R.A. Wonsowski

Layout is 3 rows, 2 panels each. The setting is Paramount's "green screen" chroma key studio.

Panel 1- SHIA LABOEUF and MICHAEL BAY are sitting on folding chairs facing each other. BAY is flipping through pages on a clipboard, SHIA is leaning forward expectantly. OPTIMUS PRIME is sitting on his haunches in the background, mostly to fit him in the panel.

BAY: ...sorry, Shia, it's a done deal. You're out, Wahlberg's in.
PRIME: Is this the one on Blue Bloods?

Panel 2- SHIA is about to flip out, dragging his fingers down his face. BAY is talking to PRIME earnestly.

BAY: That's Donnie. Mark was the underwear-modeling Funky-Buncher.
PRIME: Your assessment is harsh. The Italian Job was entertaining...
SHIA: Aauugh! Guys...

Panel 3- SHIA is out of his chair, shouting arms wide at BAY, upset and hurt. PRIME regards it all as a bored spectator, begins to stand himself.

SHIA: You can't get rid of me! I'm your gateway character in this franchise!
SHIA: I represent the audience! I'm the Everyman!

Panel 4- SHIA is now standing on his chair, in the stance of a petulant child shouting at the sky. BAY looks bored. PRIME is now standing, and all we see is his legs.

SHIA: I am Everyman who dreams of having the coolest car, while the popular guys drive Honda minivans!
SHIA: I am Everyman who fantasizes about hot girls out of their league, but could be "the one" if they only had a chance!

Panel 5- BAY flinches and shields his eyes as SHIA and his chair explode in a sudden blast of pink laser fire from above.

SoundFX: kaBWOW!!!

Panel 6- PRIME is still standing, BAY is looking up at him as the ashes of SHIA and his chair spark and smolder.

PRIME: Sorry, Michael. "Everyman" was an asshole.
BAY: Did you learn nothing after the Megan Fox incident?!?


    I kid, Ray. But I was totally hoping Optimus would blast Bay as well.
    As for the script, I feel you could have cut down on the panels. Perhaps double up on some panels - for example Panels 3 and 4 could be combined. I've found the use of gutters as a way to cheat time and space extremely helpful in my writing. There is no reason why Shia could not be sitting in one panel, then standing in the next.
    May I also suggest perhaps changing up the panels somewhat. They all are described to be very similar, and this may not hold the reader's attention. A few close ups on Bay and Shia would break up the page a bit.

  2. All great points. "Talking heads" have been cropping up in my scripts lately, and it's good to be called on it. These types of scenes are tough to write well, let alone in such a way that an artist can make interesting...
    As for Optimus's last line, the whole gag comes from when Peter Cullen read David Letterman's Top 10 list in the voice of Prime for a week. Couldn't stop laughing.
    Thanks for the insights, Ben, especially the gutters tip. Gonna have to play with that one...


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