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Writing Plays/Screenwriting/Script Formating : Voice message


One of my characters will play an old voice mail message on his phone and I am unsure how to format it properly. I thought that perhaps I should treat it as a character/dialogue but would like some clarification to be sure.

Your help is appreciated.


I would just show it as:

Joe pushes buttons on the phone.

Blah, blah, and more blah.

Joe throws the phone at the wall (or some such).

The only caution I would have for this kind of scene is that unless there is some forward motion out of the scene, it would be boring.  Does Jane's dialog really add anything new?

Does Jane's dialog cause Joe to do something that moves the story forward?  Purely expository dialog is not good for the story.

If you have formatting questions, Dave Trottier's book on screenplay formatting is a very useful tool.  The book is available at The Writers Store.

Keep Writing.

Writing Plays/Screenwriting

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John M. Lovett


I answer questions regarding film production and screenwriting. I will answer questions dealing with screenwriting style, ideas, film production, format, and agents.


Sixteen years working in the motion picture and television industries as a screenwriter, producer, and military technical advisor. Have two produced movies TWO WEEKS and CATHY MORGAN. Worked with Digital Ranch Productions, Warriors Inc, and Nichols Productions.

CSUF, BA, 1980 UCLA, Certificate in Screenwriting, 2009

Past/Present Clients
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Dreamworks Interactive
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Synergy Group
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