Chris is in Disney World this week and he has sent me a couple of emails about his trip. He was surprised to see how each ride has its own story – with a beginning, middle and end – and relies on narrative structure and not just loops and turns to entertain.
As an exercise, watch this video of Star Tours (the Star Wars ride at Disney’s Hollywood Studios) and think about how the story can be broken down using The Four Magic Questions of Screenwriting.
Now think about a movie you’ve seen that doesn’t fit the typical “theme park” mentality and think about how you would turn that into a ride at an amusement park. How would you design a ride based on Citizen Kane, American Beauty or even 12 Angry Men?
Finally, consider your own story. What elements would you include in a 4-5 minute ride based on your screenplay. Is your story a fast-paced thrill ride through the old west or a harrowing journey into your main character’s psyche?
By taking the time to think about what other people would find interesting about your story, you’ll be able to think about why the other areas might not work.
Good luck and happy writing.