Once your script is done and polished, it's time to worry about your cover page and binding. Not much goes on your cover page, but it is imperative that what does go there is in place flawlessly as this is the very first thing a reader will see.
In the center of your cover page, vertically and horizontally, belongs the title of your screenplay in bold Courier 12. Underneath the title belongs an empty space followed by "Written by". Underneath that belongs another empty space and then your name and a co-writer's name if applicable.
In the lower right hand corner is where you list your contact information. A mailing address, phone number, and email address are the standard. If you have multiple phone numbers or email addresses, just list your primary ones. Try to keep the page as uncluttered as possible.
In the lower right hand corner is where you should place your copyright information, if applicable. If you've registered your script with the WGA East or West, this is where you would list the registration number.
Many writers are overly paranoid about someone stealing their screenplay and will list multiple copyright numbers and warnings about unauthorized duplication. Please do not do this. One copyright reference is enough to show the reader that you've done your diligence and are looking out for your, and their (if they choose to produce your script) best interests.
The final thing your script needs is binding. This is done with brass brads.
They can be bought at any office supply store and are very inexpensive. They come in a variety of lengths, but 1 1/4 inches is the standard and will be more than long enough to bind your screenplay. Resist the urge to splurge and buy the 3 inch long variety as they are sure to stab the unsuspecting reader. Acco Brand #5 brads are the industry preferred fastener due to their rounded tips. Use these brads in only the top and bottom of your three holes which have been punched in your script.
The reason why scripts are bound this way is because many people will prefer to remove the brads and turn the pages, loose leaf, on a desk for an easier reading experience. Do not use a third brad, this will do nothing but to give off a poor first impression of your screenplay and first impressions are what a cover page and binding is all about.
The Screenplay Page - An overview of how every page of your screenplay starts out.
The Basics - The elements of your screenplay page and where they belong.
Slugline - Also called the Master Scene Heading, it lists the setting of a scene.
Action Description - What is currently happening within a scene.
Character Name - The listing of the character who is currently speaking.
Dialogue - What a character is saying listed in a near centered column.
Parenthetical - An indication of verbal or tonal delivery.
Transition - A noted transition of scenes.
Cover Page & Binding - Finish off your screenplay with a cover page and proper binding.
About the Author
Derek Lindeman is a writer, director, and actor. His screenplays have been produced into films which are currently being distributed by Lions Gate, Kevin Smith's SModcast Pictures, and Phase 4 Films.