The Play needs work

We did a couple of run-throughs last Thursday. It was at least a minute too long. Also, the guy who was pushing hard for something R-rated during the brainstorming session the previous week wants to see something more PG now.

So I’ve cut a page and a bit, and reduced the remaining dialogue. We’ll see what ‘The Incontinent Bomb Squad’ looks like Thursday night. No Shame Eugene is on the facebook, if anyone’s theater-curious.

Only a minute too long? Sounds pretty accurate to me… maybe you should jolly them along a bit & get 'em all to speak a bit faster :smiling_imp:


Bloody actors insist on taking time out for breathing! :unamused:

Maybe they are just acting like they are out of breath?

How can a live performance of a play have a margin of error that is only 60 seconds? A “five nines” systems is allowed more downtime than that over a year. I will never understand producer/director types.

Sometimes 30-60 seconds is a lot better!

Look at movie trailers. I see some of these trailers and I am like WOW! Then I go see the movie and I am like What?

Now the people that edit and direct those trailers may spend a long time on that 30-60 seconds but I tell you what. Many times I feel like they should take the trailer makers and have them actually make the movie.

My off beat analogy is summed up easily as this.

60 seconds may not sound like it should take a lot of time or effort, after all it is only 60 seconds. BUT you get that 60 seconds right and it could sell the whole thing. :slight_smile:

Good luck with your work!

Impossible to tell without knowing the intended length.

Percentage-wise, I’ve never known a “final draft” that wasn’t actually improved by trimming one or two per cent, usually at the hand of an editor rather than the original writer. Over four or five per cent however, salami-slicing won’t do and it’s better to lose digressions, sub-plots or minor characters. Nowadays audiences are sophisticated enough to make the necessary logical jumps; of course you can take that too far.

In any case, “Kill your babies”.

If my name shows in in a paper you will all know who to blame.

Do we need to warn the daughtitor?

She is 16. She has it coming.

The boy really should be warned though.

The time limit is 5 minutes. We run a darkroom timer attatched to a lamp. When the light goes out, it’s over.

“One theater. Five minutes. Three Rules: 1. All pieces must be original. 2. No breaking anything, including the law. 3. All pieces must be five minutes or less. Singing, dancing, skits, experimental; welcoming pros and no-talent hacks alike.”

Well, that timer thing does make the limit a bit more important. I prefer the brute force method so just beat the actors with a stick until the cram it all in there. If it helps think of them as dead horses (then you might get Mr Coffee, Eddy and me to help).

Or you could go the more mature (yet oddly less fun sounding) path and eliminate stuff.

Good luck.

I was so glad to find myself included in the roster of the venerable club. I had, perhaps foolishly, neigh, presumptuously, made reference to the subject of our little group in another thread not an hour or so prior to reading this post.

I am relieved that I did not put the cart before the corpse in this regard :unamused:

Yours with utmost sincerity,


You can time a monologue to the nearest few seconds, but dialogue… unless you have experienced actors, or many rehearsals, you lose time in cue pick-up.

People step on each other’s lines, interrupt each other, in ordinary conversation. Are your actors being too polite with each other?


Hah! Anything but… It was a cold reading, of course, but guys who’ve been at this longer than I have brought in 6-7 pages, and I brought in 9. Even allowing for messing around with blocking, and slow pickups it was just too long. And there was that unneccesary subplot, which now lies dead by the side of the road.

I can see it now…

“We did a couple of run-throughs last Thursday. It was at least a minute too short …” :slight_smile:

Seriously though, hopefully the trimming will be the solution. It often is in my experience.


Old Southern Saying said to many a kid.

“You know I could kill you and make another one that looks just like you. Would fit in the same clothes too.”

:open_mouth: & awe.


Hillbillies, Eddy, hillbillies. Not a lot y` can do about it. :confused: :frowning: … 771386154#

The frequently heard threat in my neck of the woods was:

This had more weight when the one who is quoted was cleaning a firearm.

Tonight’s run time was four minutes, twenty five seconds. I can put a few things back in. :slight_smile: