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Old 09-12-2019, 09:42 AM
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Banquet Bear is online now
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Wellington, New Zealand
Posts: 5,623
...the short answer is: you can do whatever you like. Its your script. You can cast Tom Cruise and Scarlett Johansson. Open with the Eagles and "Hotel California." Set it in the Oval Office. Or in space.

But a script like that is unlikely to sell. It is unlikely to get made. But there is nothing that stops you writing it.

The long answer is: when you've finished writing your script, what is it you want to do with it?

Do you want to sell it and have someone else make your movie?

Then the level of detail: the exact song, the exact location, these things are no longer in your control. You've written a writers draft, not a shooting script. You've provided the production team with a "rough blueprint." The Director and the bean-counters etc then takes over, and turns your blueprint into something that can be made into a film.

Originally Posted by Nash, Short Films
There are two types of screenplays – writers’ drafts and shooting scripts. The writer always writes what is known as the writer’s draft. This screenplay concentrates on telling the visual story and, at feature-film level, is usually read by a producer, development executive, commissioning editor and director. If purchased by a production company it will go into development, aka development hell, where it will be rewritten many times.

Once everyone is happy with the result the screenplay will be ‘locked’, the project will be ‘greenlit’ and put into pre-production. The writer NEVER writes camera directions, scene numbers, editing and technical directions in his screenplay.
Nash, Patrick. Short Films (Creative Essentials) (Kindle Locations 382-383). Oldcastle Books. Kindle Edition.

They would decide what music to use where, or what locations to use. The rights to the music or the location get negotiated at this stage. Its all out of your control.

So if you have scenes in your screenplay that absolutely must have a certain music track: it would have to be an exceptional screenplay for someone to want to buy it. It the hallmark of a screenwriter with "no professional training".

You could of course make the movie yourself. Most short films are made this way and you would retain almost all of the creative control. But then you are worrying about raising finance, getting people interested in your movie, finding a crew, getting the rights to the music and the locations yourself. This is a lot harder than it sounds.

I would reccomend buying the short-film-screenplay book I linked to earlier, and read it cover-to-cover. (Not an affiliate link: I'm currently studying film and this was our required text, and was very helpful to my studies)