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Hi everyone,

Suppose I have the following sentence:
  • I will not go to the cinema.
If I now convert it to reported speech, I'd have to say:
  • He said he would not go to the cinema.
What if I want to do it without a backshift in tense? Would "will not" still become "would not" or just remain the same?
In other words, does "will" become "would" only with a backshift or does "will" always become "would" when used in reported speech?

So, which of the following would be correct?
  • He says he will not go to the cinema
Or
  • He says he would not go to the cinema


Comments  
Hello

I too am a learner. What I understand about reported speech is as follows.

(o) Five days ago he said he would not go to the cinema the next day.
(x) Five days ago he said he will not go to the cinema the next day.
(o) This morning he said he would not go to the cinema tomorrow.
(o) This morning he said he will not go to the cinema tomorrow.

As to the construct of "he says", I think you can say both:
(1) He says he will not go to the cinema tomorrow.
(2) He says he would not go to the cinema tomorrow..
But, in this case, the meaning is different between the two. The sentence #2 is corresponding to:
He says, "I wouldn't go to the cinema tomorrow".

paco
Hi Paco, thanks for the reply.

I believe my question might have been a little vague, let me expand a little. Without a backshift in tense, we usually express general truths or situations that still hold true.

So, without adding any words to the sentence, if someone were to say "I will not go to the cinema." and if this were interpreted just as a regular statement, I could say "He said he would not go to the cinema.".

However, what if this person really never goes to the cinema? Could I say "He said he will not go to the cinema." (no backshift since this is a general truth in this case) or would I still need to say "He said he would not go to the cinema."

The actual question that's bothering me is whether "will" always becomes "would" in reported speech or whether "will" only becomes "would" when we use a backshift.

Thanks in advance everyone,

chompipe
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If the reporting verb is in the present tense, the reported part stays in the same tense as when it was pronounced:

He will be 40 next week >

I say he will be 40 next week

I said he would be 40 the following week.
Thanks pieanne
ChompipeHi everyone,

Suppose I have the following sentence:

  • I will not go to the cinema.
If I now convert it to reported speech, I'd have to say:

  • He said he would not go to the cinema.
What if I want to do it without a backshift in tense? Would "will not" still become "would not" or just remain the same?
In other words, does "will" become "would" only with a backshift or does "will" always become "would" when used in reported speech?

So, which of the following would be correct?

  • He says he will not go to the cinema
Or

  • He says he would not go to the cinema
There's nothing in English grammar that compels any speaker to backshift.

He says/said he won't be going to the cinema.

He said/says that he isn't going to go to the show.

He said that he wasn't gonna go to the movies.

The process that is described as backshifting is done NOT to change one tense into another, it's merely a signal that an ENL is using reported/indirect speeech.
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
hi, i have a question. If we say: I've caused an accident while running away from the crime sceene
and in the reported speech we would say; He said that he had caused an accident while running away?
Hi,

Yes.

Clive