Added on June 26, 2019
Annabelle Coming Residence , Gary Dauberman , It , The Nun
Gary Dauberman is one scary screenwriter. Some may say he’s horrific. Solely as a result of he’s chargeable for writing The Conjuring film spinoffs including Annabelle and The Nun. As if he wasn’t busy sufficient, he even squeezed in a rewrite of Stephen King’s basic horror film It remake. The screenwriter sat down with Artistic Screenwriting Journal to discuss screenwriting, fame and being scary.
Dauberman’s love of horror stretches back to the times of video stores for many who keep in mind what Blockbuster was. “I would always gravitate towards the horror aisle. The horror movies always had cooler titles and VHS box cover art. Even if I was too young to see the movie, I would stare at the box cover and try to make up what the movie might be about.”
“There always seemed to be more people in the Blockbuster horror aisle on a Friday night. The films weren’t dependent on stars. They depended on being a cool concept more than anything,” he recollects.
The screenwriter is an avid reader of horror books. He grew up studying Edgar Allan Poe, R.L. Stein’s Worry Road, Christopher Pike, and Ellis Duncan before graduating to Stephen King novels. “Horror was something I was always into. I always wanted a little supernatural in my life.”
The screenwriter is lucky to unapologetically comply with his true ardour. “I don’t worry about being typecast as a horror writer. Some screenwriters see horror as a stepping stone to bigger things, but I’m doing what I love. Please typecast me as a horror writer. It’s a badge of honor,” laughed Gary.
The screenwriter speaks of the challenges of retaining a movie franchise recent, thrilling and vibrant. “They say that as a screenwriter you are the first reader of your script. I ask myself what I want to see and what haven’t I done before. Sometimes it’s the story and other times it’s a matter of how to approach the story.”
Dauberman isn’t solely fascinated with the present screenplay he’s writing. He considers a brand new and exciting tackle Annabelle: Coming Residence in the context of the other movies in The Conjuring universe.
Gary expounds the importance of character in every horror screenplay he writes, in addition to great scary set items, and a compelling narrative. “Good doesn’t necessarily have to triumph. We like to have an element of faith in there,” added Dauberman.
Aside from including the Annabelle doll in every film, there aren’t some other particular elements that must seem in each sequel. “We like what we like. We want real characters, in real situations, in real jeopardy which makes for real scares,” is the screenwriter’s components.
New scares may additionally mean a new execution of an previous scare. “We’ve all seen creaky doors in horror movies, but if you execute it in a new way, it will send chills up your spine,” continued Dauberman. “Some of the old horror tropes still work. And they work for a reason. They help set the table for what comes next. It’s okay to rely on these tropes so long as they’re not the only thing you’re doing and it’s part of the overall scare set piece.”
Repurposing or repeating, acquainted horror tropes reminiscent of a fluttering mild, a creaky floorboard, a whistling wind, or a tapping on the pipe creates a way of universality. Good horror depends on making “the ordinary, extraordinary through easily accessible elements.”
Familiar tropes could be generally skilled by audiences after seeing the film comparable to a loud thump within the night time. Such occasions act as emotional triggers in audiences “when they see or experience something similar that started off a scare in the movie,” mused the screenwriter.
In the case of Annabelle, a doll is usually found in many individuals’s houses. Attaching a demonic factor to a doll brings the horror experience closer to house and elevates it.
Gary is fortunate enough to work with James Wan, greatest recognized for guiding the Saw franchise. Wan brings a wealth of expertise to the storytelling course of and could be very generous together with his advice. “James averts wrong turns to create a more efficient visual process,” stated Gary. “He’s always a part of the process from developing the story, developing the screenplay, and physical production.”
Spinoffs, Sequels, and Prequels
The Conjuring Cinematic Universe is vastly totally different from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. There isn’t a underlying IP (aside from the prevailing movies), comic books or merchandise in the conventional sense.
Subsequently, the producers can’t determine which pre-existing comedian characters deserve a movie. For Dauberman, “it all comes down to character. In the case of Annabelle, James Wan said ‘the audience really responded to this doll. Is there a story there?’ There’s no secret room with a schedule of Conjuring films to be produced in the future. There’s no math to these things. We want to come from a very organic place where we’re inspired to tell the story. This isn’t clocking into the next installment. We go with the stories that inspire us. We don’t necessarily think this is the most commercial story, so let’s go with that.”
James Wan and Gary Dauberman are build up The Conjuring universe in real time. “We’re not building up to an Avengers: Endgame,” confessed Gary. “There’s something ambitious and exciting about telling a grand story over several Marvel movies, but it’s not what we’re doing.”
Dauberman has no quick plans to abandon horror for other genres. “Sure, I have ideas for action and sci-fi films. Much like James [Wan], I write other stuff, but I will always have my hand in horror.”
Dauberman is an astute screenwriter, completely in sync together with his audiences. As “a child of the 80s video store culture, I like what the audience likes. I’m always being true to myself,” he said.
He’s at a loss to define his unique screenwriting brand. “I don’t know what makes me special or how I stand out from other screenwriters. I feel very lucky to call James Wan, David Leslie Johnson (Orphan), and Jeremy Slater (The Lazarus Effect) my friends. “The only thing we have in common is that we’re all incredibly hard-working horror screenwriters.” Gary sees his friends extra as collaborators to get suggestions from than rivals.
Many screenwriters have sure life experiences that inform their writing voice. “For me, it’s more the small moments in my life that influence my work rather than specific events. It could be a particular smell or the way the light hits an object,” mused the screenwriter. “I grew up in the Philadelphia area which is steeped in history. I was surrounded by stories that felt real and authentic. There was always a creepy, haunted house somewhere,” that stimulated his storytelling.
Gary experiences life in addition to watching other films to spark his creativity. “I don’t have that steel trap brain that remembers certain scenes from films. That’s why I draw references from my personal life.” Some newer screenwriters overdraw references from other films, to their detriment. “Don’t draw from someone else’s personal experiences. It feels somewhat inauthentic to me,” asserted Dauberman.
“I read a lot as a kid and watched a lot of movies. I still read a lot. I take issues with newer screenwriters who claim they don’t have time to read. Reading helped shape my writing voice.”
Writing Course of
Dauberman has a selected writing process. “I don’t have index cards. I don’t outline. I write a rapid vomit draft until I can’t write anymore. I want to get the story out so I can see what’s there. The second draft is for the excavation of it all. I have to keep up the momentum.”
“It’s almost like a monologue on the page where I’m talking to myself. If I get stuck on a scene, I’ll skip it and get to the parts that I do know. I write in ALL CAPS. This is a psychological trick I play on myself because I know I have to back to fix it.”
“I like to write in coffee shops or late at night in a quiet room where I won’t be bothered. I can’t write to music.”
“I still ask what other screenwriters’ process is. We’re all facing the same blank page. Find time to write.”
Aspiring writers should push by way of the pain of the pen and get their screenplays finished. Many more recent screenwriters don’t recognize there are various eyeballs that read your script before it will get made. The learn have to be entertaining too. “A compelling story beats a dry and boring scene,” suggested the screenwriter.
Gary admires producers who’re collaborative as well as artistic. They need to make films greater than cash. In closing, the trail to success is “find your tribe and hang on to them,” in accordance with Dauberman.
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