Shakespeare Montage



Bitstream released Charter BT to the public many years ago. If I were to pick my favorite five fonts, this one would certainly be in that group. It is an excellent general-purpose serif font. It serves as an attractive font for novels, stageplays, books, and reports. It is not a Unicode font. It only has the 255 characters of the ANSI character set, but that includes the alphabets of the Western European languages.


This font works well with ‹Fade In›, which is my preferred program for scripts for stage and screen. You can also use Courier Screenplay with other programs. It only includes the glyphs in the ANSI range of 0–255, which encompasses the alphabets of the Western European languages.

An almost identical font is Courier Prime, available for free on the ‹Fade In› website. If you go to the website, click on DOWNLOAD and then scroll down to see a bunch of free goodies, including templates and fonts. Generally, I use this font in ‹Fade In›, though I sometimes use Courier Screenplay.

Many people regard Courier Prime as superior to Courier Screenplay because Courier Prime has a true italic face (instead of the traditional pseudo-italics, made with a rightward slant, of other Courier fonts). However, I do not like one particular thing about Courier Prime. When I use it with Scrivener (a wonderful program for writers), the blinking vertical cursor is not right in the center of the horizontal axis of the line, as it should be, but for some reason is a little lower.

Both Courier Screenplay and Courier Prime are available on the ‹Fade In› website. These fonts are almost identical to (and are probably based on) Courier10 BT, below.


This is an attractive Courier font that Bitstream released to the public back around the time that it released Charter BT as a free font. Like Courier Screenplay, Courier10 BT includes the usual 255 characters of the ANSI character set.

The default line spacing of Courier10 BT includes a little more white space than you normally want in a screenplay. However, you can adjust this to a tighter line spacing in word processors and in dedicated screenwriting programs to have something close to the desired standard of «six lines per inch». (NOTE: To measure for the number of lines, you measure from baseline to baseline. The baseline is the bottom of a character like an ‹m›, not the bottom of the tail on a ‹y› or a ‹g›. To measure for six lines per inch, you measure from the baseline of line 1 to the baseline of line 7. Yes, line 7. If you have eactly six lines between those points, that is great. If you have five lines and half of a sixth line, that is probably good enough. The «six lines per inch» does not have to be exact.)


Hewlett-Packard released this font to the public about twenty years ago. I do not know whether it works in modern programs, but it is a True Type font and will probably work. Despite the name, the font is only medium dark, and is crisp in appearance. In my opinion it resembles the type of the IBM Selectric typewriter — for those of you who are old enough to remember such a contraption.


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The Courier Font

(NOTE: The file is in PDF. If you click the link, it may open or it may download automatically, depending on how your browser works. If you want to see a dialog window that asks if you want to download the file, try right-clicking on the link and selecting «Save Link As».)

A number of years ago I wrote an article on the Courier font. I included some history, a discussion of Courier in screenplays, and a plethora of examples of various Courier fonts. I am now presenting the original article in a revised and abbreviated version. The important information is still here, but I cut out some of the examples, because they were superfluous. The article also shows how to count lines per inch correctly.

Updated on 2017.12.17.