‘The Seventh 15 Minutes

Act III is all about confrontation with the villain. However, you can’t just throw the hero and the villain together right away. Instead, you have to drag it out and tease the audience.

The seventh 15 minute segment of your story needs to show your hero taking the step to confront the villain and force a face-to-face battle. There’s no turning back at this point where the hero makes a conscious choice (much like the end of Act I) to take action and send him on an inevitable collision course with the villain.

In the seventh segment, the hero doesn’t directly face the villain, but exists on the fringes. Instead of fighting the villain directly, the hero must still take on the minions and allies of the villain, defeating them one by one.

Initially, the hero faces a setback and then nearly loses where all looks bleak. Then he finally overcomes this battle and comes out on top.

In “Star Wars,” this is where Luke finally delivers Princess Leia safely to the rebel base and they plan their attack on the Death Star. The seventh segment is also the point where the villain succeeds in his plan. In “Star Was,” this occurs when Darth Vader reveals that he deliberately let the Millennium Falcon go so they could track its position and locate the rebel base.

In “Bolt,” the seventh segment occurs when Bolt finally returns back to Hollywood and sees Penny, but then discovers that Penny has a new dog to play the role of Bolt. Bolt then thinks that she doesn’t really love him, but with the help of Mittens the cat, Bolt learns that Penny really does love Bolt and still misses him.

The seventh segment is like a long set up to build tension and suspense for the eighth segment, which is where your hero and villain must finally battle it out, face to face, and determine who will really win once and for all.

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