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September 14 at 8:15am

There’s Nothing More Important Than The Third Act

By Ted Hope

By Scott Meek

On this coming Sunday, forty years ago, Scott Meek took his first job in the film business.  I recently asked him if he had any lessons or advice he could share.

There is nothing more important than the third act as it’s the third act that carries the momentum of everything that preceded it, that allows the sum to be greater than the parts, creates the meaning and offers the truest emotion.

If I have learned that films work this way and I still believe in the truest possibility of film and of art, then I should also have learned that all of us have three acts too, and that there we have a great responsibility to ourselves to make the third act meaningful by making it truly ours.

It’s the act that is entirely owned by character. I have taken control of my own third act so that I can devote it to the person I love and the things I believe to be important,and to the experiences I am yet to have.

Enjoy your life, feel freed by its possibilities and here’s a toast to worthwhile dramatic structures…

Scott Meek is the one of the few folks who have been something of a mentor to Ted Hope.  Scott has done a tremendous amount of good and meaningful work in the film industry, including helping to launch the directorial careers of Hal Hartley and others.  Back when he had had cascading tresses of hair, on September 16 1972, Scott became Deputy Manager of the National Film Theatre. All he could think about was that he had a job which allowed him to see up to a 1000 films a year while getting paid. His wonder that one can earn a living by watching films or by helping to make up stories remains untarnished.

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47 Comments

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    Couldn’t agree more – true in film as in life. So many Hollywood films are destroyed by a third act with the thumbprints of studio execs all over them; a total shift of tone that negates all that came before. Tragic.

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