Amazon Studios, the film and series production arm of Amazon.com, has launched Amazon Storyteller, a free online storyboarding tool.
Creates boards automatically from text
To use Amazon Storyteller, users simply upload a script to Amazon Studios in RTF format.
Storyteller then processes the text, looking for character and scene descriptions, and matches them to a library of “thousands of characters, props and backgrounds” to generate boards.
A base from which to refine boards manually
To judge from the website, the results are fairly simple line art, but you can upload custom backgrounds.
At the minute, the service – which is still officially in beta – is still fairly limited: Amazon’s FAQs state that it works best with contemporary dramas or romantic comedies, and that the assets don’t include “robots or spaceships”.
Still, it’s free, and at least it gives you a base from which to refine the results manually.
Budding directors should note that while you don’t have to make a project publicly visible to use Amazon Storyteller, by uploading your script to the site, you do grant Amazon the exclusive right to buy it for a flat fee during a 45-day option term – although, for Storyteller’s target users, we imagine that might be a positive bonus.