SHANG-CHI AND THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS: Let's discuss things you should notice as a screenwriter if you understand story structure. #SpoilerAlert
Because we learn in the opening backstory that Chiu-wai was basically unlovable before meeting Leiko Wu, as soon as you learn she died, you should know that this is his core wound - grief and guilt - which creates an internal need - to bring his wife home - only realized by achieving an external goal - opening the gate. Though Chiu-wai is our antagonist, understanding what motivates him makes him an even larger risk. He will try to achieve his goal by any means necessary putting our actual protagonist Shang-Chi in a position to be prepared to kill his own father.
You should also already know that the gate MUST be opened. Why?
1. It's the worst thing that can happen, and you always want to put your characters in their worst nightmare.
2. Opening the gate forces the broken family to work together. This is what each of our characters wants and needs and strengthens the theme of family above all.
3. It would be terribly anticlimactic if it didn't. All of this talk about the gate and we never get to see it open? Oh, come on!
All of the above is why setting up the normal is so important. It's where we learn our characters' existing wants and needs before the inciting incident. So after a goal is created, we understand how the journey to reach that goal will help our characters achieve their personal wants and needs. 💚
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