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Timing in Studio TV Scripts
Timing in Studio TV Scripts

How many minutes long is my script?

Alice DuBois avatar
Written by Alice DuBois
Updated over a week ago

NOTE: The timing feature is only available in the Studio and Classic Studio script formats.

When you have a script open, look up at the left side of the toolbar. See the time next to a clock icon? That's Scriptio's script timer. It calculates the estimated duration of your show, updating in real time as you write.

How does the timer calculate the duration of a script?

The timer adds up all the words of dialogue plus the duration of multimedia elements that are in brackets to calculate an overall time for the script.

Click on the total time in the toolbar and the timing menu will open, showing how the total script time breaks down between dialogue and brackets, as well as the timing details for each slug.

Dialogue Timing

Dialogue timing is generated automatically, based on the number of characters of dialogue in the script. Scripto takes the total character count of dialogue blocks and multiplies it by a customizable read rate, which is the pace that the show's host speaks.

The default read rate is set to 11.25 (meaning the host reads 11.25 characters per second). We will work with you during onboarding to customize the read rate to your host's speaking cadence.

To set a different read rate, contact

Adding a duration to Bracket blocks

The timing for brackets is calculated by adding up all the duration information in a script's bracket blocks.

Add timing information to a bracket manually, by typing T= followed by the duration of the piece of media. Eg. T=2:07 would be 2 minutes and 7 seconds

In the example below, the video clip would add 1 minute and 4 seconds to the timing.

In the example below, there is no timing information this bracket, so it will not add anything to the duration of the script.

Timing syntax

Make sure you know how to type a duration in a format that Scripto understands. Here are some examples of durations that are valid. Scripto will recognize these:

  • T=3 or T=:03 or T=0:03 or T=00:00:03 are some valid ways to write 3 seconds

  • T=1:04 or T=01:04 or T=00:01:04 are some valid ways to write 1 minute and 4 seconds

  • T=1:30:10 or T=90:10 are both valid ways to write 1 hour, 30 minutes and 10 seconds

Here are some examples of durations that are not valid. Scripto will not recognize these as durations:

  • T=0:1:4

  • T=5:

  • T=:3

  • T=10:10:10:10

  • T=1:30hello

A duration can be immediately followed by a space, a hyphen - or a closing bracket ] but not by any other characters.

Timing for Selected Text

If you select text within the script and then open the timing menu, you'll be able to see the timing estimate just for the text that you specifically have highlighted. This can be a useful way to see how much time you'd save if you cut certain sections of the script.

Exclude From Timing

There may be part of a document that you do not want to count towards the total script timing.

To exclude a single dialogue or bracket block from timing, simply put your cursor anywhere in the block and click the Exclude From Timing button in the toolbar.

Or select a larger section of a document and click Exclude From Timing. All the dialogue and brackets in your selection will be excluded from the script timing. (Other block types are never included in the script timing calculation so they will be ignored.)

You can also use the keyboard shortcut instead of clicking the button in the toolbar:

โŒ˜ + Shift + X

You can take the same actions a second time to include text in timing once again.

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