screenplay logo GNU Screenwriting Software
Industry Movie Screenplay Formatting
Features - Requirements - Download
Manual - Links - Contact
Screenplay is a commandline-based software that formats movie and tv screenplays and scripts - it is available for free under the General Public License (GPL) - Screenplay's page at
The only input format supported right now is screenplay's own flat file format. Screenplay files (*.sp) are written in a very simple markup - example.sp.

Screenplay generated PDF Files as output - example.pdf.
To run screenplay you only need the Perl interpreter (at least version 5.05) - available from CPAN

You will need one module that is not in Perl's core package: PDF::Create. You can install it on the commandline by starting the cpan shell: cpan. And then this command will install the module: install PDF::Create.

Perl is licensed under an open-source license as well and available for free for many operation systems, including Linux, Macintosh, Windows, Irix, Solaris, BSD and Amiga.
Download Page at Sourceforge.Net
Other Resources
General Public License (GPL) - txt html pdf ps

Screenplay Format Specification Sheets -
    Titlepage: pdf - Normal Page: pdf

There is no independent documentation available at this point. To get help, just start screenplay with the commandline option -h.
Open-Source Screenwriting Software
WritersForge - a large project with the aim to create a collection of tools for writing all kind of literature: prose, novels and screenplays

Screenwriting Software - lists also screenplay
Screenplay Formats
Screenplay vs. Sitcom Scripts - about tv screenplay format
Other resources
ScriptCrawler - screenplay database
If you have questions about screenplay or this website, mail to tokirc((at)) - I would really like to hear from you, if you wrote a screenplay using screenplay
This website was created by Tom Kirchner, a german media-computer-science student at the University of Applied Sciences, Wedel.
2006 - hosted by Logo
The Abyss
American Beauty
American History X
Austin Powers
Back To The Future
Basic Instinct
Being John Malkovich
Nightmare On Elm Street
Star Wars
Citizen Kane
House On Haunted Hill
The Cell
Lethal Weapon
Total Recall
Erin Brockovich
Thelma And Louise
Star Trek Undiscovered Country
Pulp Fiction
Saving Private Ryan
Fight Club
Men In Black
Silence Of The Lambs
Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Doom


4. mar. 2006 - sabbatical is over and the first working version of screenplay is available for download - it generates printable pdf files


24. jul. 2005 - screenplay format specification sheets updated - they contain now the official names for margins and page widths

9. jul. 2005 - screenplay format specification sheets available for download - pdf creation routine written - starting writing screenplay formatting routine

27. mar. 2005 - first previous working core and plugin collection are available for download - working means screenplay can read and write sp format only - manual updated

22. mar. 2005 - the core has been extended and development of the main plugins goes on - a first draft of the manual is available online

19. feb. 2005 - development of the screenplay core has been completed - entering testing phase - the core is available for download - starting development of main plugins

4. jan. 2005 - homepage updated

20. mar. 2004 - homepage got new outfit with more colors

18. mar. 2004 - screenplay itself will be just a program that does basic stuff and loads plugins for doing everything else - therefor there will be a core package containing only screenplay and a many plugin packages - there will be a startout-plugin-collection containing the most important plugins

13. mar. 2004 - all statements have been implemented (probably full of bugs...) - new statements can now be implemented using the plugin architecture - development of the output routines begins

11. mar. 2004 - the architecture of screenplay has (once again) changed - now screenplay consists of a main program and many modules that do everything else - screenplay itself therefor only loads modules - this makes it possible to easily add new modules (programmed in Perl) and start out as a screenplay developer - have fun ;-)

9. mar. 2004 - the documentation has been debugged and extended and is now complete - almost all header-statements (used in screenplay's own file format) have been implemented

1. feb. 2004 - a first complete draft of the english documentation has been finished - it will be part of the official distribution

28. jan. 2004 - an emacs major mode for editing the screenplay input format has been written - it includes basic syntax highlighting - the mode will be part of the official distribution

26. jan. 2004 - after a short break development on screenplay goes on - the format has been extended to support various kinds of links to external resources - e.g. URLs, pictures or other files - later these resources are browseable in the interactive mode


28. dec. 2003 - some internal design changes - the routines for creating an internal universal format with the screenplay broken into pages are in development - a logging mechanism has been integrated

18. dec. 2003 - the new format has been defined, a specification will be available soon - all routines parsing the new format have been written - work on filter and format routines begins

13. dec. 2003 - redesigned the homepage (hopefully it is a bit clearer now)

12. dec. 2003 - the new homepage has been set up. the screenplay format is defined, the initial features for the first version (0.1) are defined, development starts

10. dec. 2003 - I decided to rewrite screenplay in order to make the design more clean and maintainable


17. jun. 2003 - development of screenplay will be stopped until I find enough time to continue programming it - I do not know when this will be

4. apr. 2003 - development of screenplay v0.1 will continue slowly but constantly - check out the new development logbook on the website for the latest news - the major goal is to finish the first rough 0.1 draft till 1. of july 2003

9. mar. 2003 - the next version will be version '0.1' and the current 0.1 and 0.2 will be removed, because v0.1 will be the first complete, official and free-for-testing version - the current versions should therefore give you just a rough overview of screenplay

6. mar. 2003 - created a new homepage

15. jan. 2003 - development on screenplay version 0.3 - this time with a manual - will start at the 1st of april.

12. jan. 2003 - an early snapshot of screenplay 0.2 has been released - please notice, that it has not been tested at all! but still it gives an overview of what screenplay soon will look like

11. jan. 2003 - screenplay 0.1 is released and work on version 2.0 is prepared - selected features of 0.2: output formats html, txt, info - underline/bold/italic styles (only html) - more user-defined format