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thatguyoverthere
02-28-2008, 11:19 PM
Hey all!

I was wondering if anyone could tell me how to add non speaking characters to scenes in Final Draft 7. I like looking at the reports, but I don't get much use out of them if they don't indicate all the characters in a given scene, or all the scenes that particular characters are in.

Thanks very much for your help, I greatly appreciate it!

Plot Device
02-28-2008, 11:39 PM
Here's my sneaky, cheating little shortcut:

I deliberately write out just one entire line of fake dialogue for that character, and THAT gets his name into the "list of characters." And then I go back a moment later and erase his dialogue from the script, but he's STILL in the master list of names! (And there's no way to delete him from that list unless you manually go in and edit him out of the master list via some tricky drop-down boxes!)

And make sure that when you enter his fake and soon-to-be-erased dialogue that you "complete" his dialogue entry via hard-returns. That means you MUST use one entire hard-return after you've entered his name in a "character" line, and then write out the actual dialogue, and then place a period at the end of his dialogue, and then you MUST use one more hard-return after that period. Without those two hard-returns, it was never made "offical." Hard-returns are what seal the deal in FD programming.

thatguyoverthere
02-29-2008, 12:34 AM
Thanks a lot for your help, but I'm still having problems.

Here is my three scene example test script:

FADE IN:

INT. HOUSE - DAY

TOM and FRANK are standing inside a house.

TOM
Let’s go outside.

FRANK
Let’s!

Tom and Frank go outside.

EXT. HOUSE - DAY

Tom and Frank leave the house and walk down the street.

EXT. STREET - DAY

The two men continue to walk down the street.

FADE OUT.

Now, when I call up a statistics report, it looks like the following. The characters only show up listed in the scenes in which they speak:

CHARACTER STATISTICS

FRANK
Speaks 1 times (50%) for a total of 1 words (25%).
Interacts most with TOM
Appears in the following scenes:
INT. HOUSE - DAY
(page #1) (1 occurrence)

TOM
Speaks 1 times (50%) for a total of 3 words (75%).
Interacts most with FRANK
Appears in the following scenes:
INT. HOUSE - DAY
(page #1) (1 occurrence)


SCENE STATISTICS

INT. HOUSE - DAY
Page #1 23 words (52%)
Characters
FRANK, TOM
Other scenes at same location
EXT. HOUSE - DAY on Page #1

EXT. HOUSE - DAY
Page #1 10 words (22%)
Other scenes at same location
INT. HOUSE - DAY on Page #1

EXT. STREET - DAY
Page #1 11 words (25%)

~

What I'm trying to figure out is how to get Frank and Tom to show up in the statistics as also appearing in scenes two and three. Do you know if there is a way to do this? Even when I write fake dialogue into the scene and then erase it, while they appear in the SmartType menu, they still do not show up on the statistics report.

Plot Device
02-29-2008, 12:58 AM
Ahhh! You're tracking them through the script!

Hmmm .... I don't know. Those statistical tools are ones I've never bothered myself with (because I really don't care to). I suppose a continuity director and a scene coordinator would certainly need to do that sort of tracking, but I'm not at that stage yet.

Sorry ... you've stumped me.

I think Joe Calabrese might be the guy to talk to (if he ever shows up again ;) ).

Joe Calabrese is a one of the moderators for the scripwriting forum here at AW, and he's also worked for the Final Draft people as a beta tester for the software. So he's got more answers on Final Draft than (almost) anyoneone else would in all of AW. I suggest you send a PM to Joe and include a link back to this here thread of yours and wait for a response.

Your next best bet might be the NEWLY APPOINTED MODERATOR (yeah! :D ) named clockwork9 (his real name is Chris). He is also very FD-savvy. Send him a PM also.

Sorry. That's all I've got.

thatguyoverthere
03-02-2008, 10:08 PM
Thank you, I'll try that!

clockwork
03-02-2008, 10:54 PM
Hm... interesting. The problem is that in your descriptive text, Final Draft doesn't see any difference between the word, "Frank" and the word, "banana" unless you tell it they're different. Therein lies the problem.

I tried creating a custom element but could not get the programme to recognise the custom element as a character.

Not sure my solution is that practical but this is about the best I can come up with. NB: I'm using Final Draft 6 (not so keen on 7) users of 7 may know of a better way to do this since the upgrade. I'll look into it.

OK. Using your example, this is the troublesome scene...


EXT. HOUSE - DAY

Tom and Frank leave the house and walk down the street.


What you need to do is rewrite it so it looks like this...


EXT. HOUSE - DAY

Tom

and

Frank

leave the house and walk down the street.

It's important you put each character on his own line otherwise any surrounding text will be incorporating into the character name.

Then, highlight "Tom" and go into your elements drop-down box. Select "Character". It will move Tom into the dialogue section of the page and capitalise his name. Do the same for Frank. It doesn't matter that there's no dialogue beneath them. It'll look something like this...


EXT. HOUSE - DAY


TOM

and


FRANK

leave the house and walk down the street.


Generate your statistics report and they'll appear in the scene. You'll then have to go back and reformat those words so it doesn't make your script look weird.

Not the best solution but I can't think of what else to suggest. At least this way (with a bit of extra work depending on how many scenes you have) you can achieve what you want. Will keep digging.

Jon-Luke
06-08-2008, 05:34 PM
You could try to CAPATILISE your characters in the action parts of your scenes, this may help Final Draft recognise them as characters especially if the script already knows the characters.

This is actually a part of script formatting that many script writers do not know, but in the old days (Back when scripts were manually typed with typewriters) an indication that the script writer would give to the assistant direcors and production manager of which ators were required in the a scene would be that if the character name was capitalized then the character was in the scene but if the character name was not capitalised then the character was only being refered to (and was off-camera so to speak).

Give it a try. This does usually work in Final Draft.

regdog
06-13-2008, 09:19 PM
In Final Draft go to Documents and click

Click open Smart Type List it will open to characters

Click New and add the characters name in the top highlighted box then click okay. The character will be added to the Smart list