Rebecca, for a first time post, you hit a grand slam! I think your sequence analysis is excellent and agree about the ‘location’ of the Act One end. Didn’t mean to suggest in my comments that when Judy and Nick team up = Act One end, rather that them becoming a ‘team’ — which is a key part of the Plotline — takes as much time to get to as it does.

As you note, there’s a lot of stuff going on plot-wise involving (A) Judy’s conscious goal (become a cop) and need (make a difference), and (B) the caper. That combined with the ongoing revelations of life in Zootopia keep us entertained. My point was that we don’t need to be bound by some slavish commitment to a ‘rule’ re page count, as Zootopia proves, by spending time with characters and getting to know the emotional stakes of the story.

In fact, even per your sequence take where Act One ends at minute 36, that is ‘late’ per the Scripturalists (Script Literalists), coming about 10 pages after it ‘should’.

Reminds me of one of my writing mantras: The story rules. Instead of a blind commitment to a so-called ‘rule’, we are far better making a commitment to OUR STORY and letting IT rule. Obviously the filmmakers of Zootopia felt like they had to spend MORE TIME setting the narrative into motion and making sure the reader / audience had a clear understanding of the characters and what’s at stake emotionally. If Act One ends on 36, and Nick and Judy don’t team up until 42…


If the story WORKS, as Zootopia demonstrates, THAT should be the rule.

Anyway thanks for your observation, Rebecca. Great take. Glad you joined our 8+ year conversation… and welcome you back for more of your insights and observations.

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