Writing An Interesting Act II

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Written by: HARINI SHREE


Wondering how to make your screenplay interesting?

Are you planning to write an interesting screenplay? Then you may have encountered various struggles while writing it. If that’s the case, then here are some tips to enhance your second act.

An elusive second act should adhere to the rising action of a screenplay. The main concept of the screenplay which is explained in the first act must be followed by the midpoint interpretation of the second act. And the second act should be followed by the resolution or a climax in the third act. It’s just as the sandwich concept. It tastes good only when the middle layer is blended good. Likewise, the taste of a screenplay is in accordance with the flavour of the second act. 

Act II encompasses the trials and tribulations encountered by the main character. In this, the hero/ heroine goes through a turning point. It is a tricky midpoint of a story. It is continued from the First Act and spins the story to the Third Act. It covers all characters of a story. While writing a good ACT II, the playwright can add a very special spice to the story by blending the second act into a quality screenplay.

PHASES OF ACT II: 

Generally, ACT II can be written in two parts.

  • ACT II, PART 1
  • ACT II, PART 2

In Act II Part 1, the main character, who is introduced in the first act, is given a deeper encounter. The main character faces many conflicts which are portrayed in a sequence. This increases the interest of the audience to stay tuned for the rest of the story. 

The increased tension is further forwarded in Act II, Part 2. In this, the story reaches the midpoint. And from here, the question’ What next? ‘is murmured inside the minds of everyone.

Obviously, the prime goal of alluring people through Act II is attained with this. That’s the reason for giving more importance in writing this ACT II.

INGREDIENTS WHICH ADD FLAVOUR TO ACT II:

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CONFRONTATION:

The hero/heroine faces various conflicts. These confrontations are shown in a series which enhances a coherent screenplay. It runs half of a story. It increases the danger faced by the main character and these dangers are depicted so that it increases the attention of the people. Act II reveals the main character’s challenges, what the reason that pushes the character to move forward is or what the aspiring dream that he/ she can ‘die for’ is. The ‘die for’ literally explains the importance that the main character holds towards his/her dreams. These challenges help the audience to learn about the character of the hero/ heroine. The main character’s willpower is explained here. This confrontation helps a story to depict how a problem is faced by the main character.

MIDPOINT:

As mentioned before, Act II is the midpoint of a story. So, the characters should be organized accordingly. It should come in a series of sequences. This sequence should not be interrupted. It should be written by focusing on the main characters as well as the flow of the characters in the story. Since Act II acts as a midpoint of the story, it should be written in such a manner that it gathers enough attention of the people. So, all the threats faced by the main characters are written in a flow. This spins the story to the next part.

RISING POINT: 

Act II is also a rising point of a story. The characters, after being explained in the First Act, gain more character development in the Second Act. It reveals the qualities of a character. It helps to explain how a story rises up by building its characters. The rising point of this Act II enhances the tension of the people. It takes a story from a relaxed introduction to a bombarding climax. It brings the audience to the edge of their seats. This is exactly what a story or a screenplay needs. This rises up a story and leads to the Third Act.

TRAPS: 

Various traps exist for the main character. They are explained in a sequence so that it makes the story interesting. This leads the main part of a story. The main character faces various threats which are followed by the resolution. They are built up in such a way that it rises up the interest of the people. 

EMPOWERED ACT II: 

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By including all these basic points in a screenplay, it can be made interesting and alluring. The harshness should be avoided while writing. It should be smooth and brief. It should not adhere to the same points over and over again. Act II should be the tale-twisting point. It should be a supportive part of Act I. It should bring out the resolution in Act III. The built-in curiosity in Act II, finds its solution in Act III. Thus, creating this tension in the Second Act and bringing out the main character’s destination is fulfilled in this ACT II.