Adobe Story Plus - Collaborative Screenplay Software

1/30/2013 11:40:29 AM

Metadata gets creative with Adobe’s collaborative software

Store Plus Build 1091


Price: $9.99/month

Requirements: OS X 10.6.6 or later

Store Plus Build 1091

At the heart of Adobe Story is a powerful, cloud-based screenwriting tool also available in the free version.

(+) Free version offers full-featured screenwriting for those on a budget. Tight integration between script and schedule. Offline mode for working without an Internet connection.

(-) Web- or AlR-only interface. Can be sluggish to respond at times. Plus version requires subscription, no standalone version available.

Hollywood is a veritable poster child for Apple products, where Macs have long been favored over Windows PCs, from scriptwriting to post-production. Adobe has offered solutions for the latter nearly forever, but it only recently dipped its toes into the former with Adobe Story. Available in free and subscription-based editions, Story attempts to go beyond simply writing a screenplay or scheduling a production, uniting both in a collaborative workflow that will help producers see their vision through from inception to completion.

Story lives in the cloud. There’s no Mac-native desktop app, but because it’s written using Adobe Integrated Runtime (AIR), you have a choice of using a modern web browser (Safari, Firefox, or Chrome) or an AIR-enabled build for Mac and Windows. Subscription-based Adobe Story Plus can work offline when you use the AIR app. Coming from an old-school film production background with Final Draft and Movie Magic, the web-based workflow was initially a turn-off, although a younger, always-on generation accustomed to Google Docs will surely feel more comfortable with the concept right away.

For those of us still living in the past, Story is happy to import files from just about anywhere, including Microsoft Word and the aforementioned Final Draft and Movie Magic. In fact, Story can create a variety of documents, including character bios, synopses, even pitches. The Ul is familiar to users of Adobe Creative Suite, with projects on the left-hand side that can include any number of document types.

Story is happy to import files from just about anywhere, including Microsoft Word and the aforementioned Final Draft and Movie Magic

Story is happy to import files from just about anywhere, including Microsoft Word and the aforementioned Final Draft and Movie Magic

For film or TV scripts, you can get started with a template, which you can alter to your satisfaction and save for later use. Opening a script in Editor view shows an outline of scene changes at left, with the script itself rightfully dominating most of the screen.

Competing applications first need to export script data in order to use it in schedules or other production tools, but Story integrates everything in one place using metadata. After creating a schedule, just select the script you want to link to, and within seconds, scenes appear in a table, ready to be rearranged. Story shines in its ability to generate production reports, which can be as simple as a cast list or locations needed, to more extensive options including a full character breakdown, a beta feature that worked great.

The true power of Story becomes apparent under the pressure of an ever-changing production. Last-minute script changes can be synced back to any linked schedules, all by just saving the screenplay and then clicking Sync from the opened schedule. Adobe also allows a team to collaborate on individual documents or entire projects, with granular controls over which user can access what by tagging them as a co-author, reviewer, or reader.

New Adobe Story and the Future of Script Writing

New Adobe Story and the Future of Script Writing

Although powerful, Adobe Story isn’t quite perfect. We were unable to get any further than logging in using Safari 6, although Story worked fine in the Chrome browser and desktop AIR app. Because it’s web-based, Story tends to be less responsive than a native Mac app, occasionally missing button clicks, for example.

The bottom line. Adobe has gone a long way toward making film and TV production more seamless, but ultimately we’d still prefer Story to be a native Mac application. But it’s a worthy rival to standalone tools, especially for those who need to get things done quickly.

Most View
Adobe Photoshop CS5 : Advanced Selection Techniques (part 2) - Calculations Command
Grouptest Headphones: $150-$210 - Phone Home (Part 4) - Grado SR60i
BlackBerry Z10 - A Contender For The Best Smartphone (Part 2)
Panasonic Flagship Camcorder HC-W850 Review
Iphone SDK : Working with the Address Book Database - Person Photo Retriever Application
Windows Tip Of The Month – October 2012 (Part 2)
NUC Intel Review - A Small But Promising Desktop PC (Part 2)
Windows Server 2008 : Using ntdsutil - Performing an Authoritative Restore, Removing a Domain Controller from Active Directory
The Archos 101 XS - Media magnetism
Canon Powershot G15 With Immaculate Photos And Superb Controls
Top 10
SQL Server 2012 : Validating Server Configuration (part 2) - Evaluate the Policy, Using the Central Management Server
SQL Server 2012 : Validating Server Configuration (part 1) - The Need for a Policy, Create Policy on a Local Server
SQL Server 2012 : Encryption (part 2) - Certificate-Based Encryption, Transparent Data Encryption
SQL Server 2012 : Encryption (part 1) - Encryption Primer, Password-Based Encryption
SQL Server 2012 : Auditing in SQL Server (part 3) - Database Audit Specification Object, User-Defined Audit Event
SQL Server 2012 : Auditing in SQL Server (part 2) - Server Audit Specification Object
SQL Server 2012 : Auditing in SQL Server (part 1) - Auditing Objects, Server Audit Object
Sharepoint 2013 : Introducing jQuery for SharePoint developers (part 2) - Understanding jQuery methods,Understanding jQuery event handling
Sharepoint 2013 : Introducing jQuery for SharePoint developers (part 1) - Referencing jQuery, Understanding the global function, Understanding selector syntax
Sharepoint 2013 : Introducing JavaScript for SharePoint developers (part 3) - Creating custom libraries