“Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!”
“I can’t believe you had THAT in your purse!”
If you’ve seen either movie, chances are you remember not only the lines, but the performer’s delivery even as you read the text now.
But I don’t want to talk about these types of intended memorable lines today. I want to talk about:
“Push it, buddy!”
Remember it? You probably don’t. I remember it because I was there at the recording session at the time, but honestly, I probably would have forgotten the line myself over time. It’s just not that memorable. Now there’s nothing wrong with the line. It was used in LucasFilm’s animated series “Droids” and it was perfectly suitable for the action of the scene: one character was encouraging the driver of the spaceship to floor it so they could escape danger. Here’s how it became memorable in my life:
A friend of the family and her young son moved to Canada from Hungary and stayed with my family for a spell. The boy didn’t speak much English when they arrived. Soon enough he discovered “Droids” (naturally, I have the whole set) and he totally got into it. All that action with C3P0 and R2 at the centre… who wouldn’t? Silently, he’d sit and watch the episodes over and over again. And what was the first and only line he quoted from the entire series? You got it:
“Push it, buddy!” (in a lovely, Hungarian accent)
Now, I don’t know if he knew what the phrase meant, but he took joy in the sound of the words and repeated the phrase over and over and over again – more frequently than I’d heard it during the making of the series (which is quite a lot when you consider auditions, recording sessions, rough cuts, etc.).
So, it goes to show that you can write a script, thinking certain lines are destined to linger in people’s thoughts… but those memorable lines may just end up being different ones that you intend!
So, what do you think? It all comes back to “just write a good script with good characters” (instead of stressing over creating memorable lines), doesn’t it?
Cheers & and great script to you,
P.S. Can you identify the movies associated with the memorable lines up top?
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Deb Patz is the author of “Film Production Management 101” and the upcoming “Write! Shoot! Edit! A Complete Guide to Filmmaking for Teens” both published by MWP Books. She uses a Canadian accent to say “Push it, buddy!”
WHERE IS DEB? (upcoming events and appearances)
Jun.3-7 – Guest instructor – PEI Screenwriter’s Bootcamp, Charlottetown, PEI
Jul.30-Aug.3 – UFVA Conference, Los Angeles, CA