What Are Some Outside-the-Box Ways To Come Up With Movie Ideas?

Ways to come up with screenplay ideas
'Other Side of the Box'Credit: Short of the Week
How do you come up with your best ideas? 

Movies have the power to transport us to different worlds and immerse us in unique experiences. But where do these ideas come from? For filmmakers and screenwriters, coming up with a compelling movie concept can be a daunting task.

Sometimes, the best approach is to think outside the box and seek inspiration from unconventional sources. In this article, we'll explore some creative ways to generate fresh and unique movie ideas.

From adapting from other media to exploring personal experiences and embracing the absurd, these approaches can help you break out of your creative rut and come up with a truly original movie concept.

Let's dive in. 

Tom Hanks on the filmmaking process
'Forrest Gump'Credit: Paramount Pictures

What Are Some Outside-the-Box Ways To Come Up With Movie Ideas?

Coming up with movie ideas is not easy. Sometimes, you have to break away from the norm and think outside the box.

Here are some ways: 

  1. Draw inspiration from real-life events: You can get movie ideas by looking for unique or unusual stories that have happened in the past. These stories could be from news articles, biographies, or historical events.

  2. Explore your dreams: Dreams can be a great source of creative inspiration. Try keeping a dream journal and jot down your dreams, then see if you can extract any interesting or unique concepts to turn into a movie idea.

  3. Brainstorm with others: Collaborating with others can help spark new ideas. Consider hosting a brainstorming session with friends or colleagues to come up with fresh movie concepts.

  4. Combine genres: Try combining two or more genres to create something new and unique. For example, a horror-comedy or a romance-drama.

  5. Use visual inspiration: Look for inspiration in visual media such as paintings, photographs, or even architecture. Let the visual elements guide your imagination and help you generate new movie ideas.

  6. Adapt from other media: Adaptations from other media such as books, plays, or video games can be a great source of inspiration for movie ideas. Look for stories that have a unique perspective or a strong fanbase.

  7. Write about personal experiences: Personal experiences can be a great source of material for movies. Think about events in your life that have been particularly meaningful or challenging and try to turn them into a compelling story.

  8. Think about current events: Movies that tackle current events can be powerful and relevant. Look for topics that are currently making headlines and see if you can turn them into a movie idea.

  9. Experiment with different formats: Try experimenting with different formats such as found footage, mockumentaries, or non-linear storytelling. These techniques can help you create a unique and memorable movie concept.

  10. Embrace the absurd: Don't be afraid to embrace the absurd or the surreal. Sometimes the most outlandish concepts can be the most memorable and impactful.

'The Evil Dead'Credit: New Line Cinema

Summing Up Outside-the-Box Movie Ideas 

Coming up with a movie idea that is fresh and unique requires a willingness to think outside the box. By drawing inspiration from unconventional sources such as personal experiences, current events, and even dreams, you can create a movie concept that stands out from the crowd.

Collaborating with others, experimenting with different formats, and embracing the absurd can also help you generate new and exciting ideas. Whether you're a seasoned filmmaker or a first-time screenwriter, these approaches can help you break through creative blocks and create a truly original movie concept.

So go forth, get inspired, and let your imagination run wild!

Worst case scenario, you can always pace in the shower.      

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