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I agree with Leonard on this one. What a few of you are talking about is after the contracts and details are signed, being on the set, the collaborative effort, etc.
When I sit down to write, it's me and my computer. When I research for a story it's me and my books and the library, and maybe the internet, depending on the subject. When I "dream up" a storyline or a character, there's not a whole group of people around me saying "what about this?"
So, in that respect, I think Leonard has a valid point.
Where I think all the other posters argument falls apart is your criticism of Leonard for the way he says things, but you're just as intolerant and insensitive and condescending of him as he is of you.
Read your posts again and I think you'll all realize you're just as bad as each.
Your intolerance of his intolerance shines through ladies.
What the hell is a sacred cave, anyhow?
I had no idea.
I guess we should all bow down now.
Color me impressed.
A lot of people write in to this website and others wanting to know -
How do I get an agent? What are producers buying? Which contests are legitimate? Which is better, an agent or a manager? What software is best?
Well, first you have to learn the basics. That's correct. Just like in grade school. Learn how to do long division either in your head or on paper, then maybe you can think about using a calculator.
Learn the margins, what kind of brads to use, spelling, grammar, story and sentence structure, what makes for a great story, the keys to writing dialogue that snaps, how to show and not tell.
Read a book on screenwriting very carefully, like the Screenwriter's Bible, take notes, absorb what you're reading. Read produced scripts.
Then you won't have to ask the kinds of questions you've been asking.
And above all, make sure your spelling is up to snuff.
It's harder than it looks to write a top-notch screenplay.
I recently conducted an interview with Robert Kosberg (Executive Producer of 12 Monkeys). Find his address and phone number in the HCD. He'll accept a pitch. If it's good, he'll get back to you.
E-Mail me. I'll get you a critique of your query letter.
Anna "The Hammer" Piazza? Makes you want to print it on the back of a T-Shirt.
I had a couple spare moments on my hands, so I did a quick group of searches.
There's nothing verifiable in the lead post on this thread.
I looked up Cavin. Nothing.
I looked up KDI. Nothing.
I looked up Triple-W. Nothing.
I looked up United Independent Productions. Nothing.
I looked up Kautz. Nothing, except an out of print book called "Sinkhole" and two books on channeling. Must be that Third Age stuff Anna's so fond of.
And Robert, aren't you that Champion of hers from South Africa? Has she sold any of your stuff yet? Or is she still hitting you with fees?
I couldn't even find anything regarding "Quicksilver Media," the ones responsible for the press release.
Besides, if this guy [Cavin] had over five thousand total credits, he'd either be older than dirt, or responsible for every film that's come out of Hollywood in the past who knows how many years? Or he'd be responsible for just about every Indie movie made in recent memory.
Somebody's yanking your chain, Pal.
Well, Mr. Kautz. Thanks for posting here. So is the press release accurate?
That remains the question here.
False rumors on the Internet aren't effective marketing tools for writers wanting to be taken seriously, though, at least not to my mind.
**I think The Blair Witch Project is the example you're looking for to disprove the Internet as a means of marketing a career. Just my opinion...
You can use this URL:http://www.law.utexas.edu/research/
Or you can type in "Law Library" in your favorite search engine and go to the university law library of your choice.
This kind of research is easiest over the internet. And most times it's free.
You might want to have a specific type of case in mind...just to cut the amount of time it takes for your research.
Just an FYI, I am not a lawyer; however, over the years, I have done a lot of research into copyrighting to protect myself and my work and have found several things to be true.
Copyright takes effect as soon as you put pen or other writing instrument to paper, and should be denoted with the copyright symbol (c in a circle), the word copyright, the year it was created and the author's name. This is a flag to let others know that the work is copyrighted.
Legal copyright can only be received from the Library of Congress, U.S. Copyright Office. The copyright, registered for a fee of $20, is in effect for 75 years. This is an extension over the former effectiveness of the copyright at 54 years, and was enacted on January 21, 1998.
It is commonly referred to as The Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act. I understand that this is hard to believe, but it can be found on the website for the Library of Congress, Copyright Office at
Also available on this website are the forms for copyright registration.
If anyone is interested...my interview with Bob Kosberg is in the May issue of Hollywood Scriptwriter.
In it, he talks about screenwriting, pitching and Hollywood.
Just a clarification...
Release forms are intended to protect the one to whom you're sending your material. That is what they were designed to do, and these forms, in all their forms, do exactly that. They curb writers from filing nuisance claims against production companies, studios and the like.
Release forms do not protect the writer. Protecting the writer is the job of the writer and the Copyright.
I would check with an entertainment attorney if I were you. Copyrights were enacted long before 80 years ago.
The "Berne Convention" is the Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works, signed at Berne, Switzerland, on September 9, 1886, and all acts, protocols, and revisions thereto.
That was Berne Switzerland I was talking about, because...
1790: US Constitution
Copyright law in the US is derived from English copyright law (Statute of Anne) and common law. The framers of the U.S. Constitution made copyright law purely federal: "The Congress shall have power . . . to promote the progress of science and useful arts . . . by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive rights to their respective writings and discoveries." Congress subsequently enacted the Copyright Act of 1790 and major revisions to it in 1831, 1870, 1909, and 1976.
In 1988, the United States became a Berne signatory.
The Walt Disney Company was slapped with a $50 million copyright infringment suit Oct. 30 in L.A. by Suzanne Lloyd Hayes, grandchild of silent film star Harold Lloyd and a trustee of the Harold Lloyd Trust. Hayes claims 1998's Adam Sandler movie The Waterboy lifted from Lloyd's 1925 silent film The Freshman. The plaintiff listed 56 similarities between the two films, in the suit.
Entertainment Weekly, Nov. 10, page 14.
Write original scripts and you don't have to worry about this sort of thing.
As announced last night by Jay Leno and Ben Affleck, the winner of Project Greenlight is Pete Jones with his screenplay "Stolen Summer."
Give them what they ask for, if they are interested, they'll ask to see the rest.
Afternoon folks -
I'm writing an article and I want to hear about your worst rejections. Whether you write screenplays, or articles, novels, short stories, or poetry, you've gotten one, that is, if anyone else has ever seen your work. I want to know how new writers are being treated these days (it's a tough racket but great work when you get it)...so let's hear 'em.
If they're really bad, I'll need proof, so don't just make up something. I'll send you a stamp and you can pop that baby in the mail to me. If you want your rejection included in the article but you don't want your name used, let me know up front.
Some writers hate the little blue postcards publishers used to favor.
Screenwriters hate not hearing back one way or the other from agents, producers, directors, studios, contests and just about everyone else.
Freelancers hate the old - "great article, but not for us."
None of these are really horrible.
But, now's your chance. Tell me your worst rejection.
Now, see Marcel, you've stirred my curiosity.
What's your script about that spooks them and makes them uncomfortable?
E-mail me if you don't want to post it.
Just wanted to thank those of you who responded here and via e-mail to my post a while back.
I've caught some flack for asking writers about their rejections. There's worse things in the world.
The point of the article is this . . . If you are a writer, you WILL get rejections in whatever form; a short note, a form letter, sometimes even nasty remarks in the margins. Understanding that screenwriters and writers in general now held in the highest esteem have received rejections is important because they didn't fold under the weight of rejection(s). They improved their craft and kept plugging away.
Some screenwriters, myself included, have received rejections that leave the door wide open. "We'll pass on this, but we'd like to see anything else you've written." Easily, this is the best of rejections. But, I know some writers and have been contacted by a few off this post, that have slammed that door shut on this kind of response because it was a rejection. They failed to see the attached invitation to review more of their work. Seize the opportunity to get your name and your work into the offices of those who may be able to bring your efforts to the screen, even if they passed on the first thing you sent them. They liked your style enough to ask for more.
I received an e-mail from a pro writer at a different board who was told by an agency when she was first starting out, "they" were passing, but would be interested in looking at a re-write. The agent made suggestions throughout the script, in the margins and on the backs of the pages and couched his response stating that he couldn't promise an option or sale based on said suggestions. She refused because they wanted to make changes to an already perfect script and sent them a nasty letter to that effect. She admitted that she later regretted her little "psychotic episode," as she put it.
Are you going to persevere or are you going to fold? Or are you going to go off like a loose cannon, like she did?
As far as Hollywood is a Woman is concerned. It's a truthful metaphor of Hollywood. Your work better be top notch to be seriously considered. Premise - characters - story - AND execution.
The kicker is - truly fantastic screenplays have been changed and warped into truly crappy films bearing little resemblance to their former selves. Some truly crappy screenplays also get made into truly crappy movies. And there's the rub. But that's the subject for another article, isn't it?
What I didn't mention in the Hollywood is a Woman article because I was focusing on big studios and a word limit, is that there are actually several different women in the room. Indies typically make a different style of film than the top studios. Low/No Budget companies are also there, as are made for TV and direct to video. They all have different basic requirements and standards. You don't send a huge script, heavily laden with special effects and a main character that screams "A-List" talent to a low/no budget company. You don't send a "talking head" arthouse script to the top studios. And, you don't send scripts with nudity and four-letter words to TV studios. But wherever you end up sending your scripts, they had better be the best you can possibly write.
What I've come to find from my posts here and elsewhere, and my short interviews about this topic with some top screenwriters, agents, and producers is that readers, producers, script consultants, and studio chieftains , to whom I promised anonymity for the sake of honesty, they all want to read great screenplays. As one producer put it - "I want screenplays to WOW me!" And if you've ever read a bad screenplay, you can understand why. "Try reading more than one of those every few months," one director told me. Collectively, Hollywood makes every effort to be neutral albeit indifferent when rejecting screenplays, even agents. The agent I spoke with confided that "a writer who sucks now, may snap out something fantastic next month or next year and you want to get a copy of it when he starts sending out queries and his good work."
I spoke with one studio head who said when he was a producer, his policy was - "Silence. Never respond to a writer unless it [a script] is something I am absolutely positive about making." It remains his policy today. His reasoning? "I don't want to encourage untalented hacks but I don't want to crush promising talent either."
Perhaps this clears up some of the confusion regarding my interest in screenwriter rejections. Perhaps not.
But thanks for your help in writing the article.
Copyright 2002 - M.Gill
You may want to check out this website.
It will at least get you started with the how's and why's for the differences between Spec and Shooting Screenplays.
It's not exhaustive, but it'll give you an idea of where you're headed and if that's actually the direction you want to go.
The underlying question is - Do you want to be a screenwriter or a film maker?
PBS/Frontline is running a look at Hollywood, titled, The Monster That Ate Hollywood. It's also on one of their websites.
If you haven't taken a look, it's worth it.
Actually, short stories are a regular source of seed ideas for Hollywood.
They currently have an on-going love affair with Philip K. Dick's body of work.
Second Variety - Screamers The Minority Report - Minority Report The Impostor - Impostor We can Remember it for You Wholesale - Total Recall Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep - BladeRunner (Novel)
And there are countless other stories, novellas, and the like that became films.
Super-Toys Last All Summer Long - AI Alice in Wonderland Bicentennial Man The Birds Body Snatchers Quite a few of Stephen King's Novella's and short stories, including Cat's Eye.
However, it is rare that an unpublished short story by an unknown author will be turned into a film.
Up at the top, under Today's Feature, there is the word "discussion" in blue letters. You can get to the board from there.
and I mean that with every fiber of my being.
One of my pet peeves in screenwriting has been and, I fear, always will be the number of people who tout their "services" for screenwriters. For a nominal fee – we'll write your query letter, provide software that all but writes it for you, edit and polish your script to perfection and a host of others.
I think I'll start a new service geared toward screenwriters. For the low, low fee of a dollar a day, I'll send each screenwriter who signs up a personal e-mail each and every day, expounding on their virtues as screenwriters. How can they possibly ignore the power of instant self-confidence?
There is always someone who's willing to take your money, you know?
I think I just discovered the loophole that puts me back in the lead with your dog.
I type 90 to 105 words per minute.
I could beat that, but this board isn't rated for that kind of thing.
One of my screenplays (drama), after a final run-thru and edit has been requested by four different producers and one of them also requested a treatment of another story. None of them required a release because I'm represented. I turned down the fourth because they still required a release and it has some language in it that doesn't sit well.
My hit rate was four for four on query and request, so I have a pretty good idea I'm onto something with this one.
In the next week or so, I'm expecting coverage (not paid) back on two of my other screenplays. A wait and see kind of thing.
I need to line up a couple of interviews for magazine articles this year and I have to finish reading Billy Wilder's Fortune Cookie for an article due the first week of May.
I'm also negotiating with an illustrator on a children's book. But that will take a while, with all the legal aspects of a collaboration.
So, now, all this is almost out of the way and I'm getting back to a dark comedy script I began last year, before all this started up.
A good kind of busy.
A long time ago, I sent a query off to Saturn Films (Nicholas Cage's prodco). I didn't hear anything back and went about my business. And that's what writers need to do. Go back to writing.
A full year rolled by when they called me and requested the script. I had forgotten I had even queried them. They eventually passed on the project, but, it's indicative of the fact that they do things in their time. . .not in your time.
There are also the ones that get back to you the next day on e-mail queries, which feels great when it happens.
Best I can say, is get used to it. And use the time waiting as time writing.
As a screenwriter and someone who recently interviewed Greg Beal at length for a published article, I want to take the opportunity to weigh in on the subject of the Nicholl Fellowships and also on their behalf.
By the way, just to clear things up. If you say it, it's slander. If you write it, it's libel.
Anyway - people like Ashley need to understand that the Hollywood industry as a whole is a very subjective thing. What is one's cup of tea can very easily be another's bathwater. Therefore, it is not difficult to imagine that reader opinions throughout Hollywood vary greatly from one to the next.
She may not like the screenplays that have won, placed or showed - but it's not up to her. It is the responsibility of a rather prestigious group of readers and judges who decide the final outcome.
Greg and I talked extensively about the readers, judges, and the process itself that governs the progression and advancement (or not) of screenplays through the Nicholl competition and it is actually quite, fascinating, somewhat convoluted in its complexity and as fair and unbiased as it can possibly be, given the nature of the product being judged. No names, no ages, no writer-specific information of any kind is provided to the readers or judges.
There is, however, specific criteria they are to consider in their assessments of the scripts.
No one draws the winning scripts out of a hat. And, Greg may correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe there have been years when all of the fellowships were not handed out.
I believe that Greg's integrity as the Director of the Nicholl Fellowships and their combined mission does coincide quite closely with the original intent of Mrs. Nicholl.
The bottom line is...
If you don't want to enter a contest - for whatever reason - don't. If you think there is value for your writing and your career by buying your "E" ticket and submitting a screenplay, by all means do.
If you happen to be one of those people who feels a contest is fair only if YOU win - disappointment lies in wait.
I've no doubt you're always so gracious and polite.
Buy Trottier's Screenwriter's Bible, or
or search for
from any search engine, and it will give you a choice of around 1,300 sites from which to choose.
If you're just learning the terminology, you may want to give yourself a little leeway on how long it actually takes to sell your script.
Over the past few months, I've submitted four pieces to them. They requested all four from the loglines, so I asked my rep to send them in. They've since passed on one of them, but still have the other three.
They're some of the good guys in the industry and thankfully, the good guys far outnumber the bad guys.
Flawed logic at best.
"A good writer likes to read what s/he has written."
Even lousy writers like to write what they've written. Misguided ego is often in direct inverse proportion to talent.
"A great writer is read by others, who like to read what s/he has written."
Then Farmers Almanac, Spiegel, Levenger, and a host of other catalogues, periodicals, as well as newspapers, tabloids, ad nauseum are therefore written by great writers.
"A phenomenal writer becomes famous for what s/he has written."
For this example, we can then assume using your criteria that, Tom Green is a phenomenal writer, as are the writer of Spider Man, Martha Stewart, Peter Jennings, and an almost infinite list of others...even romance writers, who by the way, are responsible for the vast majority of books sold in this country.
"The what, where, how and why do not matter."
If I understand you correctly then, the ends justifies the means, no matter what.
I don't buy it.
Even lousy writers like to READ what they've written. Misguided ego is often in direct inverse proportion to talent.
For someone who is a self-proclaimed "exceptional writer," I truly expected greater things from you, being a deity and all.
Bite me, Gill, you pretentious dick?
Better luck next time...
You do fascinate me, but only in such a manner as one's attention is drawn to a hangnail, a motorcyle accident, the contents of a broken garbage disposal or witnessing an obvious psychotic roaming around unattended.
You needn't flatter yourself further.
One more thing and then we can continue with our regularly scheduled programming...
I don't think Sparks owes Ashley an apology (anymore than I do) and I happen to be one of the...people...who congratulated Sparks offline.
Certainly, Ashley has the right to be the insensitive cretin she has amply proven herself to be, but that doesn't mean that Sparks, me, or anyone else has to put up with her nonsense behavior - on- or off-line. She makes me wish my delete key worked on people.
When words like those that follow spill out of her head, she obviously hasn't got a clue -
"On the other hand, I was introduced to this fellow, who was so lonely and depressed (being unattached) that he resorted to anti-depressants. To me, that's akin to alcohol/illegal drug abuse. Needless to say, I considered him a loser and expressed no interest in him."
The fact of the matter is, we all have our crosses to bear. We all find our way through, sometimes on our own, sometimes with the help of a few close friends, sometimes with assistance from someone we've never met before and may never see again, sometimes from doctors and medications.
Larry Gellerstadt, a hugely successful businessman and civic leader, recently revealed that he has suffered from depression his entire life. I've met him and spoken with him about a mutual business project and he is gifted in so many ways, but you wouldn't know it to hear how he views his own life. His admitting his depression caused the former CEO of CNN to admit that he's dealt with the same thing for many years. I would hardly consider either of these two men – losers.
By definition and her own admittance (refer to the excerpt from her post), Ashley would. I can't condone that. And I will continue to tell her when she steps over the line as I hope others will on this board. She regularly makes judgments about other people and proves each time how uninformed, infantile, belligerent, egocentric and vacant she truly is.
And it isn't up to you to be the moral barometer of this board so please stop telling people they need to apologize.
Chances are even if the author is dead, he has an estate and someone looking after the estate, much like the one in charge of Philip K. Dick's estate.
Send me an e-mail and I'll see if I can find the copyright owner.
Well, if they're not into making it a business, I would try the straight forward approach. Let them know you're interested in writing an adaptation for whichever of his books, offer them a "when it sells," deal and go for it.
Make sure you make the deal in writing. You don't want any hard feelings or anyone changing their mind part way through the process. And whatever you do, don't make it contingent upon their liking it.
Town and Country did pretty poorly, with a budget of $90M and a gross return of $6.7M.
Dylan Thomas (Welsh Poet) is the author...
Do not go gentle into that good night, Old age should burn and rave at close of day; Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Though wise men at their end know dark is right, Because their words had forked no lightning they Do not go gentle into that good night.
Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay, Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight, And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way, Do not go gentle into that good night.
Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay, Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
And you, my father, there on the sad height, Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray. Do not go gentle into that good night. Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
From The Poems of Dylan Thomas, published by New Directions. Copyright © 1952, 1953 Dylan Thomas. Copyright © 1937, 1945, 1955, 1962, 1966, 1967 the Trustees for the Copyrights of Dylan Thomas. Copyright © 1938, 1939, 1943, 1946, 1971 New Directions Publishing Corp. Used with permission.
Has anyone noticed the ad for the Radmin Company's contest on the opening screen for MovieBytes that says,
"WRTITE YOUR FUTURE TODAY"
It doesn't bode well for their ability to pick a great script, when they can't get their one sentence catch phrase right.
There is essentially the same thing available on the internet for free. No need to spend $9.95 to get it.
Thanks for the info.
I couldn't get past the terms of their agreement, specifically -
V. I acknowledge that materials developed by you may contain similarities to the Material. I hereby waive and agree that I will never make any claim or demand or bring any action against you in connection with the use of the Material. In this connection, I hereby release and absolutely and forever discharge you of and from any and all claims, damages, legal fees, costs, expenses, debts, actions and causes of action of every kind and nature whatsoever, whether now known or unknown, suspected or unsuspected, asserted or unasserted, which I now have, or at any time heretofore ever had or which I may have in the future, against you which in any way arise out of or in connection with the Material. VI. I hereby acknowledge that I am familiar with Section 1542 of the civil Code of the State of California, which section reads as follows: “ A general release does not extend to claims which the creditor does not know or suspect to exist in his favor at the time of executing the release, which if known by him must have materially affected his settlement with the debtor.” I hereby waive and relinquish any and all rights and benefits which I have or may have under Section 1542 of the Civil Code to the full extent that I lawfully may waive and relinquish any and all such rights and benefits."
I've signed off on other releases that don't have such broad and sweeping statements in them. But I never felt bad about passing on Grey Line's.
We all make our own decisions. Best of Luck.
At this point in the game none of our actions are pre-emptive. The war's already begun.
Since when is cowardice a defense? History is rife with situations in which people chose to do nothing or say nothing and paid dearly for it.
A comment was made that we are at war and have been for a while now. This is absolutely true. Everyone likes the sentimentality of 9/11, but they fail to recognize it for what it was - an act of war.
Forget vengeance, revenge, etc. This is about ending this conflict, and if that means we go into the desert and smack around our adversary, then that's what we should do. If it means taking it to a new level and pulverizing them. Do it.
There will always be people with anti-war signs who believe a group hug cures all ills.
But when you're up against someone who doesn't abide by the same rules, you had better adapt to deal with the ensuing possibilities.
War isn't fun, but we can't simply wait until they do something really serious. Hussein has already broken the terms established at the end of the Gulf War. What more does he need to do before we say - "Hang on, just a minute."
It's our responsibility because we fought for and accepted the mantle as the world's Big Brother.
Others have asked about this on this board...
This was my response then and it remains unchanged.
I couldn't get past the terms of their agreement, specifically - V. I acknowledge that materials developed by you may contain similarities to the Material. I hereby waive and agree that I will never make any claim or demand or bring any action against you in connection with the use of the Material. In this connection, I hereby release and absolutely and forever discharge you of and from any and all claims, damages, legal fees, costs, expenses, debts, actions and causes of action of every kind and nature whatsoever, whether now known or unknown, suspected or unsuspected, asserted or unasserted, which I now have, or at any time heretofore ever had or which I may have in the future, against you which in any way arise out of or in connection with the Material.
VI. I hereby acknowledge that I am familiar with Section 1542 of the civil Code of the State of California, which section reads as follows: “ A general release does not extend to claims which the creditor does not know or suspect to exist in his favor at the time of executing the release, which if known by him must have materially affected his settlement with the debtor.” I hereby waive and relinquish any and all rights and benefits which I have or may have under Section 1542 of the Civil Code to the full extent that I lawfully may waive and relinquish any and all such rights and benefits."
I've signed off on other releases that don't have such broad and sweeping statements in them. But I never felt bad about passing on Grey Line's.
We all make our own decisions. Best of Luck.
Screenwriting software is a tool, period, that formats screenplays, stageplays, or novels properly. They may even take the place of 3x5's for some people, or help organize the structure. They may even pose questions that a writer may not have considered. What they can't do is come up with good, solid, original, viable ideas and concepts upon which one builds a screenplay. That comes from inside the writer.
At its finest, the creative ego is an engine of enormous power, innovation, and complexity. It possesses the strength to expose our emotions, the cunning to fool us honestly, wit clever enough to make us laugh out loud - even when we're alone, charm enough to waltz into our hearts, wisdom that draws upon our deepest envy and admiration, terror so compelling we forget it's just a movie, truth so universal it can't be argued, and the confidence and endurance to embrace the test of time.
REPEAT AFTER ME -
There is always someone willing to take my money.
Post it on your monitor, so that when you sit down to respond to one of these offers, you'll be reminded.
Regardless of the benefits, implied or real, if you multiply even a minor fee together with the pool of writers it becomes a significant sum.
For the low, low fee of X dollars, we'll put your name and logline/ synopsis in a magazine that may or may not be read by anyone.
If you want to spend your money on writing -
Buy a GOOD book about screenwriting
Buy brads and covers
Buy 3 x 5 cards
Buy a printer cartridge
Buy the upgrade to your favorite writing software
Buy an ergonomic keyboard
Buy a red pen, pencil, eraser, highlighter, and paper
Buy a subscription to a trade magazine
Buy a small note pad or a digital recorder for jotting down ideas and concepts
Buy an E-ticket into your favorite contest (Nicholl, Chesterfield, etc) or read this site from start to finish and identify which contests you like
Buy your spouse or significant other flowers for supporting and or putting up with your dream of writing -
But please stop buying into schemes like these and fueling this kind of rampant side industry. You don't have to do a cost/benefit analysis to understand what's going on here. Writers want to make it so bad, they'll pay whatever price if they perceive a quicker/easier way to break-in, even though it doesn't exist.
I'm a freelance writer and I've been in marketing for 15 years. I know how the spin goes. You think you're forwarding your career by buying into this type of thing. Here's the reality - Enough writers buy in and the "service" walks away a millionaire and you're no closer to your dream.
You want to make your dream come true - Here's what you need - and this is free -
You need a great concept, an equally great script, written very well, with terrific characters, crisp dialogue, and a fantastic ending.
If you can't do that, write until you can, then do the legwork, talking to agents, producers, and friends of friends in the industry. Yes, it's work.
What did this just cost you? Nothing, except the moment or two to read it.
Good luck with your writing.
As others have noted about this service, regarding what criteria will be used to weed out the garbage in your publication...if there is no way to weed out good from bad, you're simply developing a new version of the slush pile.
Also, since you're publication is supposedly geared toward producers and studio chieftains, your other content had better cater to their wants and needs.
The fact that you're planning articles and interviews, from what I can tell, geared toward screenwriters indicates that this is a moneymaking scheme not a venture to further the careers of writers.
Please do correct me if I'm wrong.
Actually, I've interviewed Kosberg and you don't have to buy his CD to pitch ideas to him. You only have to buy the CD to pitch to him through that site.
MG: A lot of people out there think that the only way you can get an idea to Bob Kosberg is to buy his CD.
RK: I'm wide open to ideas from anyone and everyone. A certain percentage of people buy the CD. Terrific. People want to get to me without the CD? Just as terrific, and I take their ideas just as seriously as any idea that comes in the door. It doesn't matter to me where an idea comes from, I'm going to try and develop it and get it to the studios. The CD is a peripheral business for me. It's not the only business I'm in. Yes, I want to make a profit and I want to make a good living, but the most important thing is to find a good story and hopefully get it made into a movie.
I appreciate your asking that question though. I'm listed in the Hollywood Creative Directory, and anyone who calls me is never asked to buy a CD. I'm not an elitist or trying to make so much money off something like that, that I would exclude people who don't want to pay for a CD.
Hope this clears things up for you.
If you want to read the entire article, go to:
I believe it addresses your other concerns.
Since we've spiralled into the realm of personal attacks and insults, hopefully, this thread will end here...
If you set the way back machine, you'll find that Saddam Hussein, Osama, Sakarno (Indonesia), Ayotallah Komeni (Iran), and a whole host of others were/are actually the product of America's choices in fighting communism on a global level.
America trained and armed Osama to fight against the Soviets in Afghanistan. It was the USSR's equivalent of our Vietnam. We trained him well.
We armed and placed Saddam to fight against Komeni when the Shah was ousted for being a corrupt American Puppet regime.
Hell, the US was responsible for Mandela going to prison because the African National Congress was backed by Moscow. Now Mandela is considered an "American" hero by the liberal populace.
This is our foreign history in a nutshell and is by no means intended to be comprehensive or exhaustive.
To paraphrase...the sins of the forefathers will be visited on the sons.
Ever done anything you wish you could take back, undo, wipe from existence. To move forward to peace, sometimes you have to roll up your sleeves and get your hands dirty by making the effort to correct past mistakes.
To all those who want peace, go organize a group hug somewhere away from me.
To all those who know war is sometimes the only option - or - who are in the military. God's speed.
The fact remains - we have a military that is superior, advanced not only in training but also technology.
Never mistake our military men, women, families, or weaponry as luxury. We have them because they are a collective necessity in this world.
STOP WHINING !!!
AND FOR GOD'S SAKE START A NEW THREAD !!!
I hate little notes on my pillow. Like this morning. 'We're all out of cornflakes. F.U.' It took me three hours to figure out that 'F.U.' was Felix Unger.
Oscar Madison - The Odd Couple
The original author may no longer have the copyright, but a studio or producer may already have secured the rights.
Do the research and find out.
For a group who understands the importance of words choices, please note what Odai Hussein said just before the United States landed in Iraq...
"a U.S.-led attack will force Iraq to BROADEN the war against the United States."
...not enter into, not begin, not start, not fight. BROADEN !
That means, they were already at war with America, whether we chose to understand that or not.
Peace is a wonderful thing, but the Iraqis don't follow established rules for war, so why were any of you surprised that they didn't follow the rules for the past 12 years.
For all you peace boys and girls out there, your peace demonstrations have a tendency to turn violent. Hmmm.
I know the favorite movie quotes thread is separate from this one, but, D.G.?
What the hell are you on about?
I've never met anybody who spoke in tongues, but man, you crossed that line a long time ago. While you're busy transcending peace and love and time and space, and God knows what else, the rest of us are living life and dealing with reality.
The nitrous is making you light-headed, but you've got the foundation for one hell of a cult rattling around in that brain-bucket you call a skull.
Peace and love, brother. Time for you to put on your nice white "huggy" jacket, you know, the one with the leather straps and let them take you back to the farm, 'cause you shouldn't be out unattended.
...this just in from Dennis Miller. I particularly like his reference to non-troglodytes. Get your finger out of wherever you have it, D.G. and read this.
"TRYING TO HELP
By Dennis Miller
All the rhetoric on whether or not we should go to war against Iraq has got my little brain spinning like a top. I enjoy reading opinions from both sides, but I've detected a hint of confusion from some of you. Maybe this can help.
As I was reading the paper recently, I was reminded of the best advice anyone ever gave me. He told me about the "KISS" method ("Keep It Simple, Stupid!"). So with this as a theme, I'd like to apply this theory for those who don't quite get it.
My hope is that we can simplify things and recognize a few important facts.
Here are ten things to consider when voicing an opinion on this important issue:
(1) Between President Bush and Saddam Hussein ... Hussein is the bad guy.
(2) If you have faith in the United Nations to do the right things, keep this in mind: the UN has Libya heading the Committee on Human Rights and Iraq heading the Global Disarmament Committee. Do your own math here.
(3) If you use a Google or Yahoo search and type in "French Military Victories," don't be surprised if your computer panicks at its inability to respond to your inquiry.
(4) If your only anti-war slogan is "No War For Oil," hire a pit bull lawyer and sue your school district for having allowed you to slip through the cracks and robbing you of the minimum education that any non-troglodyte deserves
(5) You can take this one to the bank: Saddam and bin Laden will NOT seek UN approval before they try to kill us.
(6) Despite common belief among some, Martin Sheen is NOT the President. He only plays one on TV.
(7) If you are anti-war and even an outright "America Basher," to bin Laden you are still an "infidel" whom he wants dead.
(8) Be careful: if you believe in a "vast right-wing conspiracy," but not in the danger that Hussein poses, the only job you may be able to get is as an Ivy League college professor.
(9) Even multi-culturalists who try to browbeat us into believing that all cultures are equally deserving of respect have trouble explaining the past 500 years of Islam.
(10) Whether you are for or against military action, our young men and women overseas are fighting to defend our right to speak out on these issues. They deserve our unreserved support.
I hope this helps."
That's the U.S. Department of State. You should be able to find information on U.S. Foreign Policy.
The best way to win an argument, is to agree with those who so vehemently decide what's right or wrong and declare anything other than their hard line something akin to spap.
>>>So, deception for your brand of betterment of humanity is not only acceptable but encouraged. My aim is not to argue. My sole aim is to try to get at least one person to wake up and smell the coffee. One person who will be in the right place at the right time to make a difference for all the world to witness.
>>>Then what are you doing around here? You need to organize a global coffee klatch. Screw the filthy bastards who drink tea!
My initial query was to ask any of you why those enlightened souls came here to teach love, peace and understanding?
Because it's what matters most. And every dead Iraqi, American, Earthling, will tell you the same thing:
We are here to create happiness and eat good food in a safe place by teaching with example.
>>>You've obviously never eaten Iraqi food.
If YOU THINK THAT'S CRAZY, then so be it.
>>>Honestly? It is crazy.
What if re-incarnation is real?
>>>Then, I'd say as a deerhunter, you're pretty muched f***ed from the get go.
>>>I don't know why but I figured you were a gun-toter.
What if your hatred is what's keeping you from being happy?
>>>Perhaps, but it has the side benefit of keeping you at a distance.
Isn't it time to drop the company policy and take back this great country?
>>>The country's doing fine. You want to make a difference - vote. Don't believe voting works? Then buy a little plot of land in Idaho, dig a big hole and build a reinforced bunker for armageddon, but do try not to kill any more deer.
Isn't it time?
>>>Actually, you missed it. It was about 4 weeks ago, 'cause we didn't want anyone to confuse it with the first day of spring.
GOT SANDS IN AN HOUR GLASS!!!d.g.
>>>...these are The Days of Our Lives.
>>>Love your soap opera reference, must be part of that whole soapbox theme you have going on.
>>>Don't forget to load up on canned goods and buy a good peephole for your bunker.
Nothing says white trash like a cheap peephole.
>>>Say that ten times fast, and you win a can of Spam for the top shelf of your bunker.
Now go away, before I taunt you a second time.
You must observe them diligently, for this will show your wisdom and discernment to the peoples, who, when they hear all these statutes, will say, “Surely this great nation is a wise and discerning people!”
Something to aspire to...
However, dissent does not make one noble, smart, intelligent, wise, lofty, altruistic, or any other virtue in and of itself. It merely means one is exercising the right to disagree.
There are plenty of morons who are contrary.
In Michael Moore's case, he is too nerdly to be a brute, so he has traded in being a bully for being inappropriate.
The site is up and working fine folks.
I'm in as we speak.
Oh, D.G. Do shut up.
The actual Orwell Quote is:
"We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm."
"The principal feature of American liberalism is sanctimoniousness. By loudly denouncing all bad things—war and hunger and date rape—liberals testify to their own terrific goodness. More important, they promote themselves to membership in a self-selecting elite of those who care deeply about such things.... It’s a kind of natural aristocracy, and the wonderful thing about this aristocracy is that you don’t have to be brave, smart, strong or even lucky to join it, you just have to be liberal."
P.J. O'Rourke, Journalist
Psychic children...April 1 (April Fool's Day - Hmmmm)...Send the e-mail to all your friends...Gather together as one mind...
What time does the spaceship land?
What, no vernal equinox? No black Nikes and sweatsuits?
I'm not goin' if there's no Kool-Aid.
I've heard of dailies in film making, but not monthlies.
If I may...
Perhaps there needs to be a level of understanding here that we currently don't have.
With any group of people you are going to have a certain amount of teasing, sniping, fighting, and back-biting.
That's human nature and if you figure out a way to avoid it short of locking yourself in a closet in perpetuity, you've got yourself a zillion-dollar product on your hands.
The fact is, we're writers. We have more quirks, hot buttons, opinions, thoughts, passions, idiosyncracies, and frustrations than your average folks who dig ditches Monday through Friday.
Some of us have stronger opinions than others. Some of us have rather pointed senses of humor. Some of us use words more liberally than a redneck uses duct tape. Some of us make typo-s and others dunt. Some of us have trouble staying on topic. Some of us are male, some female, and a few...well, I don't know what the hell they are.
If you want to get into the pool dive in, but over in that end. This end can get pretty shallow sometimes.
If you don't like splashing, don't get in the pool or find a lap pool that suits you.
That's enough of that analogy...
We're writers and typically, if they hope to survive, the new writers who visit here will lurk about for a while, maybe glean some helpful tips from the rest of us, or find some bit of information useful, but whether a new writer decides to stay here or move on, they had better develop a thick skin like the rest of us.
Take it all personally if you want, but no matter where you go, there you are.
Which means, if you have trouble like this on every bulletin board, maybe this bulletin board and those others out there aren't the problem.
The best advice I can give you from one writer to another is...
It isn't about you or me or them, it's about writing.
And whether someone here or a producer or a studio chief or director or agent voices their opinion about your writing, you better be man, woman, or child enough to take it without biting the hand that may feed you someday. That's just survival.
Now, if you want to be here - weigh-in, roll up your sleeves, try to help, learn all you can, have a sense of humor, don't take the last dinner roll (it's rude), and ease up a bit.
And for God's sake, if you have a name like Leslie, Tracy, Stacy, or any of what might be considered gender-ambiguous names, don't get offended if we call you dude or sister and it's not right. Hardly our fault.
Welcome aboard and wipe the snot off your nose (it's unsightly).
Don't for a minute think rules don't apply to screenwriters.
There are some hard and fast rules governing screenwriting.
There are some don'ts that will hamstring your screenplay.
There are some don'ts that will label you as amateurish.
There are some don'ts that will land your script in the nearest round file before it's been read.
I didn't say might, I didn't say if...I said they will. Those are rules.
Writing a compelling, original, lucid, well-crafted screenplay depends on a solid working knowledge of every element that combines to make a script. This list isn't by any means exhaustive, but it does mean:
1. Follow the rules, from brads to format, to VO, to flashbacks, to cont'd.
2. Learn to write 3 acts (structure).
3. Learn to flip dialogue as easy as you flip a quarter in your hand. If it sounds the least bit stiff (out loud), it doesn't belong.
4. Learn which genre you have a real command over. Play to your strong suit and scrap the rest. If you write horror the best, why are you wasting time writing a romantic comedy?
5. Don't mistake novel, or odd, or bizarre, or quirky for original. They are two completely different things.
6. Don't soft sell. If it's a drama, it better damn well be dramatic. If it's a comedy, you better be funny on every page. If it's horror, scare them honestly without the "Boo Factor."
For those of you who don't know, the "Boo Factor" is when a sudden flash of movement or a loud enough noise or a combination of both is used in lieu of anything actually scary occurring in a film. Psycho didn't need it, nor did countless other great films. Dead teenager movies are famous for using it.
Back to the issues...
7. Make sure your concept is great. If it's not, it won't hold together for the entire script. It's one of the leading causes of writer's block - The idea wasn't that good in the first place and down deep inside you know it.
8. For your screenplay as a whole and for each scene...Get in as early as possible and get out as early as possible.
9. Research is one of the most under-utilized tools writers have. If you don't know your topic, whatever it happens to be in your screenplay, the reader will know you haven't the faintest idea what you're talking about.
And that goes for making contacts - get off your dead ass and find out rather than asking everyone else for names and addresses.
If you can write a screenplay then you can sure as hell dial a phone, flip through a phonebook or go to the library. Don't be so lazy.
10. Learn how to play well with others and that means other writers, agents, producers, directors, ad nauseum. If you can't take criticism, can't bear to make changes, can't stand to take advice, can't accept the fact that the reason they didn't "get it" was because you didn't write it well, then writing isn't for you.
I didn't start this off as a top ten, but it ended up that way, with one final bit of advice that hits for any kind of writer...
It's not from me, so I suggest you take it -
Nearly every beginning writer sooner or later asks (or wishes he dared ask) his creative writing teacher, or someone else he thinks might know, whether or not he really has what it takes to be a writer.
First sentence of "On Becoming a Novelist" John Gardner 1983
Anyone else want to inhabit the soapbox? I believe I've finished.
You want to know who's tops in the field of screenwriting?
Pick up a copy of Premiere Magazine, a blue cover with Bruce Willis' mug on the front.
There is a list of the top screenwriters inside, along with their credits, a thumbnail of them, their strengths, weaknesses, and what they're working on.
These are the men and women you have to be better than, not as good as.
It also has the ones who are just hitting their Hollywood stride.
I didn't have anything to do with the article or the magazine, so I'm not selling anything or self-promoting, but it is information you should read.
I sent you an e-mail. Let me know if you want me to find them for you.
That's good to hear. Good luck with it.
Actually, if the meek do in fact inherit the earth, it's not a problem because we can just push them down and take it back from them.
Somewhere in the constitution our forefathers should have substituted freedom of speech with freedom of thoughtful speech so the ramblings of morons could be silenced legally.
As well, freedom of expression, freedom of assembly, freedom of religion and all the rest could have benefitted from a few well-chosen qualifiers.
Perhaps a few examples of what's appropraite and what's not would have made a lasting difference too.
'Til the day when nonsensical yammering buffoons can be taken out and slapped around for the sheer act of compounded and wanton idiocy the remainder of us, have to listen to the almost silent revolution of our ancestors in their graves each and every time some blithering idiot sites their deaths as the reason they can say or do something completely and utterly stupid without so much as a second thought or a modicum of remorse.
Just because you have the right to say something stupid doesn't mean you should.
To paraphrase something I heard a while ago...
Better to stay silent and keep them guessing than to speak and prove you're an idiot.
It is better to remain silent and thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt
The quickest is on-line. You will get your registration number immediately after you complete your information and payment method.
Print it out and you'll receive your certificate in the mail, but the important part is it's registered immediately and you have the number.
HEY EWE GUISE!!!
Sheesh, what a bunch of loosers! Ye doth gloat waaaaay too much! What if you found out that your blood-bath was "wrong"? What if you found out that the whole thing was created to bale a woefully ignorant appointee from actually providing proactive solutions to what ails this nation, continent, world?
What if D.G. is "right"? What if????
>>D.G. – you're not right and you certainly can't be serious. So, let's put that false notion to rest right now. And even on those rare occasions when you might skirt the perimeter of being correct, you fail to provide more than a single coherent sentence in proximity to another. If you'd stop your swaggering and posturing, jargonized d.g.-speak long enough to construct something that at least approximates intelligible communication you might gain an audience.
>>Fortunately, we have every reason to believe that won't happen any time in the foreseeable future. As is, you're merely an irritation.
All aboard! The D.G. bashing bandwagon is on a role!! Stake your claim to fame as one of the founding bashers of your time.
Why doesn't anyone address the query I put forth about the taliban offering up Osama to a third party? Cuz, deep down in those nice little boxes you so ineptly call craniums, you cavemen and women know that I have just trumped your NEED for war on weapons of mass destruction.
>>Because there's probably very little basis in fact. Show us the article or provide a credible source for your allegations and then we can make up our own minds, rather than relying on your speculative ramblings in the form of the gospel according to d.g.
It's amazing what happens when there's so little "Must see Tv" and America needs some kind of "entertainment" fix.
>>You've found us out. We start wars in whichever region of the world we believe will be the most entertaining. Can't wait 'til you see the ballistics and landmines we have lined up for the fall season.
GO WAG THE DOGGIES!!!d.g.
p.s. Also, Go stick your head back in the sand and while your at it, wipe some of that blood off too.
I am so sorry that our brothers and sisters were sent to kill our brothers and sisters, but maybe, just maybe, this catasrophe will teach by example; that killing each other over spiritual/cultural/economical and greedy purposes is a pardigm that is shifting like the birthplace of civilization's sand dunes.
>>You can eschew the idea that other cultures in the world would and have killed Americans without cause all you want, but sometimes, it is necessary to go to war to defend ourselves. You need to either check out of reality all together, or check in and see how things really work.
Get a grip!!!
If you so need to validate your "right-ness" by gnashing your gnarly incisors toward me, here's a clue - I'm rubber, you're glue, whatever you SAY, bounces off me and sticks onto EWE!!!
Baaaaaaaa! They too are led to the slaughter, not knowing, unknowing, yet reaping and sewing.
>>A truly inventive use of prose, d.g. Originality and anything more than sophomoric ramblings must cause you real physical pain. There simply is no other explanation for your behavior.
Peace on earth IS possible, when you teach/lead/live through example, not the company line of KILL-KILL-KILL your brother because it's expedient to your bottom lines ...
... as for my insane/inane/know-nothingness and "name calling", I calls 'em like I sees 'em, and if that's included you, well, my condolences. I mean NO HARM to anyone at anytime and if that's happened, well, may I suggest group counseling, a twelve step program, spiritual enlightenment, or just a plain old lobotomy?
>>You absolutely mean harm. You're regularly abrasive, nonsensical, and far more guilty of intolerance than anyone else on this board. You can shout from the rafters about love and peace and hugs all you want, but your words belie your nature. You're one of two things – mentally unstable – or an adolescent playing grown up who has no idea what he's talking about. If you're off center, start taking the appropriate prescribed medications to calm that bi-polar nature or whatever the hell you've been diagnosed with. If you're a child – then your parents need to be hauled up short so they cut your internet usage.
Either way, you're in it for the shock value. That's as obvious as it can be. You're not shocking. You're simply irritating.
"No body won the last war and no body will win the next." --ELEANOR ROOSEVELT
>>So that means that we should all marry presidents, have lesbian affairs and speak out against war? She obviously didn't read the headlines of her time. Because we're still speaking American English.
GET OUT OF THE MOUTHS OF BABES!!!d.g.
>>War is sometimes a necessity – Just as our military is a necessity. If you believe war is some sort of sport or entertainment, you're mistaken. Our freedoms in America also include the bad freedoms, like profiting from just about anything. In which case, you need to get on a bulletin board specializing in the media and leave us screenwriters alone.
>>You are a prime example why America has to step up implementation of drug testing and finely controlled euthanasia.
>>D.G. – Don't forget to follow this up with stuff and nonsense – your usual fair - your entries on this board are like belching after a meal - it's not really necessary, but what the hell, right?
From the U.S. Copyright Office -
Why should I register my work if copyright protection is automatic?
Registration is recommended for a number of reasons. Many choose to register their works because they wish to have the facts of their copyright on the public record and have a certificate of registration.
Registered works may be eligible for statutory damages and attorney's fees in successful litigation.
>>WGA does not provide this kind of protection, merely a record of when the work was created. Copyright actually does hold more weight in court.
Finally, if registration occurs within five years of publication, it is considered prima facie evidence in a court of law. See Circular 1, section Copyright Registration and Circular 38b on non-U.S. works.
>>I would recommend both, simply because, the WGA is immediate and the Copyright Office is anything but immediate, and the WGA only lasts for 5 years, where Copyright lasts for I believe it's 94 years after your death. You can also will a copyright if that's important to you.
I wrote an article in 2000 (published) regarding Copyright vs. WGA Registration. If you want a copy of it, send me an e-mail.
I thought it was on my website...I'll have to correct that when I have some time.
It's got step by step instructions. You shouldn't run into any problems. MS Word is perfectly acceptable.
Good luck with it.
Thank God. I thought D.G. would never leave. Too early to tell if it's final, but here's hoping.
Back to the business of screenwriting.
English is Crazy
There is no egg in eggplant or ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in pineapple.
English muffins were not invented in England nor french fries in France.
Sweetmeats are candies, while sweetbreads, which aren't sweet, are meat.
We take English for granted. But if we explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square, a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.
And why is it that writers write, but fingers don't fing, grocers don't groce, and hammers don't ham?
If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn't the plural of booth beeth?
One goose, 2 geese. So, one moose, 2 meese?
Is cheese the plural of choose? If teachers taught, why didn't preachers praught?
If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?
In what language do people recite at a play, and play at a recital?
Ship by truck and send cargo by ship?
Have noses that run and feet that smell?
Park on driveways and drive on parkways?
How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites?
How can the weather be hot as hell one day and cold as hell another?
When a house burns up, it burns down. You fill in a form by filling it out and an alarm clock goes off by going on.
When the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are invisible.
And why, when I wind up my watch, I start it, but when I wind up this essay, I end it?
H.J., sometimes you just have to let things go, but since you can't here's the answer to the question that's been eating at you.
If you're wearing this year's polyester, you may be wearing part of one of last year's big movies.
Ideas are not the only thing Hollywood recycles: The thousands of prints left over after all those blockbusters have run out of steam at the nation's multiplexes have sparked a thriving industry that helps transform old film into other products, including polyester fabric.
With movies opening at theaters virtually everywhere at the same time, the number of film prints needed for a single title is monumental. Last year's "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets," for example, required 8,400 prints for the U.S. and Canada alone. For that three-hour movie, the total for those prints amounts to about 29,000 miles of film.
After movies go out of release, an enormous amount of film, minus the few hundred prints that will be retained for archival purposes and future industry screenings, has to be disposed of. "We have to do a huge junking three or four times a year," says Nancy Sams, vice president of film print control for Warner Bros. "If not, we would have to pay storage on film and it would cost us millions of dollars."
Where do all the film prints go? Once upon a time they went straight to the landfill, but these days the polyester-based film stock gets the green treatment. Some of the recycled plastic becomes the base for other photographic products, such as X-ray film, but it has other, more surprising uses as well.
"There continues to be a huge demand for recyclable polyester," says Kathleen Beckhardt, chief executive of Film Processing Corp., a division of Eastman Kodak. "The material can be washed by other suppliers and vendors and typically can go back into the fiber market, so any polyester that's in the clothes you're wearing right now could have at one time been a movie print."
"We guarantee that all our processed film is not being burnt or put into the ground in a landfill in any shape, manner or form. It will be recycled," says Sam Borodinsky, chief executive of Filmtreat West and Filmtreat East, a bicoastal corporation whose services include certified destruction of obsolete film prints.
The Sun Valley warehouse of Filmtreat West brings to mind the final scene from "Raiders of the Lost Ark," with crates of film reels stacked floor to ceiling, all of which will be put through a custom-designed chopper and reduced to glittering black confetti.
In addition to recycling the polyester plastic, which the company uses as a base for products it manufactures, including film reels and cores, emulsion from the film can also be recycled to make such products as ceramic.
"We're making products that go back to the industry at a lower price because of the recyclable product that we're getting," says Filmtreat West President Larry Zide. "Ninety-nine percent of everything we get we reuse."
About 1.5 million pounds of film is processed each year by Filmtreat's East and West coasts' facilities, according to Zide. The company also won an Emmy in 1998 for its proprietary rejuvenation process, which cleans and removes scratches from existing prints.
While Filmtreat processes all brands of film stock, Film Salvage, a division of Film Processing Corp., handles only Kodak stock. Virtually all of the material recycled at the company's facilities in Mountain City, Tenn., and in Italy gets returned to Kodak.
Rejuvenation has become an increasingly common form of film recycling as well. The process varies, but the goal is to take the best available prints and revitalize the image for less than it costs to strike a new one. "If a picture is not in the main theaters for a very long time, they may rejuvenate those release prints and repurpose them for international distribution," says Tim Maurer, president of Technicolor Cinema Distribution, whose facility based in Wilmington, Ohio, does rejuvenation work.
Not all prints are destroyed. A few to a few hundred are invariably archived for future use. "I still have about 1,200 of the original 5,500 prints of the first 'Lord of the Rings' because they may reissue it," says Gisela Corcoran, vice president of print control for New Line Cinema. "You don't get rid of everything right away. We have a special library where I keep beautiful, pristine prints plus just nice prints for USC or UCLA, who may want to borrow them for their film classes."
The number of prints for the current "Rings" feature, "The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers," was increased to 6,085 for the U.S. alone. By contrast, Corcoran ordered only about 800 prints for the much chancier "About Schmidt," which was released on what is known as a platform basis, starting with a few theaters in New York and Los Angeles and gradually adding markets (it is currently in about 1,200 theaters).
The journey that prints make from film laboratories to the 33 distribution depots in the United States, then to theaters and back to the depots once they have been pulled from screens, and ultimately on to the destruction facilities, is accompanied by a flurry of tracking paperwork to ensure that no print falls into unauthorized hands. The way film reels are shipped for junking also makes it nearly impossible for anyone to reconstruct a complete print.
"The prints are intentionally mixed in the box, so that if I were to open up one box, I would not find all six reels for a specific title," says Beckhardt. "If I wanted to search the whole trailer, I probably could put a whole movie together, but it would take a lot of time to unroll part of each reel, determine what the movie was, figure out the reel number, and then search through 40,000 pounds of material to try and find all six reels to that movie."
Documentation that accompanies new prints on their arrival from labs follows them to their destruction. "As we get the prints we are in contact with the studio," says Borodinsky. "Communication is very, very tight. We issue a certificate of destruction based on the print numbers supplied with the film and the number of reels. We've very, very security conscious."
Even with these stringent controls, the occasional print does manage to slip into the hands of collectors and buffs, usually at the distributor or film booker level. One former independent distributor, speaking on condition of anonymity, describes how he once returned reels of what was essentially scraps to the depot but kept the actual film print. Despite the tight security, he confirms, "You can get a print of whatever was out last summer."
If you're still analyzing and debating, and looking at weaknesses in your script, you're not done with it yet. That's why it's bothering you so much.
You probably know you shouldn't have sent it out, but you rushed to make the deadline.
I know - a fat lot of good that does you, since you've already sent it in.
Occupy yourself by rewriting it, or moving on to another script.
Man, you ask a lot of questions.
Actually, several people myself included, did cover that point in several posts.
Most of us are well aware that America supplied many of the baddies in this world with their own little regimes, most often in the fight (real or perceived) against communism.
That's precisely why I thought we should go in and take care of the problem in Iraq...we caused it in the first place.
"We sell the dream of being in the lottery."
Frank Colin VP of Product Development Final Draft
It says much more than you thought nine words could.
If you're just starting out, The Screenwriter's Bible is a must.
I've read the (...in 21 Days), but didn't care for it as much as some do.
Rob Tobin wrote How to Write High Structure, High Concept Movies. A worthwhile read.
And remember all those steadfast things about writing, whether it's journalism, novels, novellas - many of them don't apply to screenwriting. It's a whole different ballgame.
For starters, in novels you can be as wordy as you like and explore all the internal thoughts, machinations, emotions, and abstracts and wax quixotic all you like...
Screenwriting is a soulful economy of words.
And remember...show me!
Are you trying to kill screenwriting? Are you the guy that came up with the reality show concept?
Stop providing Hollywood with ideas for doing away with screenwriters...We've got enough troubles as it is.
First there's the thought processes - what's the story about, who are the main characters, research, etc. That can take a couple hours to several months.
I spend time up front so I'm reasonably confident it's a story worth telling, the characters are interesting, and the story holds together for the duration of the script.
Then, from the time I sit down to write to the end of the finished first draft is roughly 8 weeks.
Then there's fleshing it out, editing, re-writing and polishing. And that varies from script to script.
I used to shoot for 120 pages from the start, but I've since narrowed that to 98 to 110 pages.
How I decide what to write about is another thing entirely...
I wouldn't be able to attend, but is it going to be a straight workshop or geared more toward high structure and high concept?
You may want to provide your treatments to a producer like Bob Kosberg.
The original Die Hard was essentially one location...the 29th through the 35th floors of Fox Plaza in LA, but it still cost $28 Million.
Of course, it was also based on the novel "Nothing Lasts Forever" by Roderick Thorp, so how original was it really?
Tough New York City detective Joe Leland is a master at solving incredible crimes. And when he heads to L.A. for Christmas, he steps into a case involving ruthless terrorists bent on destruction.
In 1912, an Italian by the name of Giovanni Pastrone got the patent on a mobile motion-picture device on wheels.
However, up until about 1932, American studios still used large cranes for some camera work. Apparently, and this is where the history gets a little sketchy...Americans developed a device similar to Pastrone's and it quickly became a ubiquitous piece of equipment in filmmaking.
...and Jules Cheret invented the movie poster in 1890 for a short film program called Projections Artistiques.
Can I get an AMEN!?!
You folks really need to learn how to do research on the web.
Just about anything you may want or need to know is sitting on the web or in your local library. Hell, in most cases you can now search your local library or any library on the web.
Who invented the Dolly? Already answered that.
Like, where did the cent sign go?
All ya' have to do is look it up.
Hence the following from a guy named Charlie Anderson. It's copyrighted, but you can use this URL...
As writers, you should already know how to do research. Why? Because.
If a writer can only write about what a writer knows, then logic follows that a writer needs to know a lot if a writer expects to have a writing career.
The fact of the matter is, if you press it hard enough, just about any movie will fall apart.
There will be plot holes sometimes large enough to drive John Deere's most impressive farm equipment through, leaps of faith, suspensions of disbelief, flat-out errors, mistakes both with facts and continuity, and a slew of other problems.
Some of the freed slaves in Spartacus wore wristwatches and if you look close enough you can see them.
Does that make it a bad movie? No.
Movies are usually bad for a host of other reasons that include everything from the original concept to special effects to the writer is an idiot.
I liked The Sixth Sense. I didn't like M Night's other films though, and I probably won't bother going to see The Woods, when it comes out in 2004.
Is it worth picking a fight over? Probably not.
But that's just me...
Your statement - "Anyone who gets produced is a good writer..." - couldn't possibly be further from the truth.
You've obviously never seen a truely horrendous movie.
Yeah, Dalton Trumbo wrote Spartacus and won a few Oscars for other films, and Stanley Kubrick directed it, but I think they both learned their lesson.
As far as The Sixth Sense goes - You don't agree with how M Night wrote it. That's fine. You're well within your rights to have your opinion.
I happen to agree with you on one point and that is - I don't think M Night is one of the truly great writers either. But, one hit wonders abound in creative fields, whether it's art, music, writing, films, whathaveyou.
The annals of film history abound with truly great films. That's not what I'm interested in.
I want to know which truly crap movies you like or even own, although you know you shouldn't.
At the very least...a voyeur femelle.
It's not about winning or losing, David. Most of the posts here lead to discussions or debates or even battles. Through these, we learn things about writing, films, contests and each other upon occassion too.
M. Night made a name for himself by effectively using plot twists and devices in The Sixth Sense. He has parlayed that success into a lucrative film deal as I imagine any of us would. Have his other films been as good as Sixth Sense - for my $8.50 - no. But, that's just me.
Sixth Sense was like a well-crafted magic trick. M Night did a terrific job of misdirecting the audience's attention by concentrating it on Cole and his dilemma rather than on Malcolm.
We're writers here but by virtue of our common interest we're critics too. There is no escaping it.
OUR TRICK is to use our critic's eye on our own work so our dialogue snaps, our characters stand in focus in the reader's mind, our stories soar and swoop, and our work spans the breadth and width of the theater screen.
It's about writing.
It won't specifically address your question about Salton Sea, but it may provide some insight...
Send me an e-mail. I've got the treatments for:
Aliens My Own Private Idaho and Terminator
Also have step sheet for:
And a "how-to" for treatments.
I just want to say, I have always loved your rendition of God Bless America.
Oh, no. Wait. That's Kate Smith.
As you were, but God Bless America anyway.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition. 2000.
NOUN: Often Offensive Slang A Canadian, especially a French Canadian.
ETYMOLOGY: Probably alteration of Canadian.
Can't you sell a franchise of Moviebytes to someone in Marmora, Ontario (Upper Canada's first mining town) so we can get all these crazy Canucks out of our hair?
Before you send e-mails, all you Canadians of English or French or Native descent - It's a JOKE. Don't get your Hudson Bay Blanket in a bunch.
On a more somber note -
Totie and Kate are both dead.
Oh, the injustice...
Kate in 1986 and Totie in 1978. We're all diminished by their passing...
But at least they were Americans. :)
Still up and running.
Message Board http://pub130.ezboard.com/bdonedeal
Main Site http://www.scriptsales.com/
Enjoy the fireworks this weekend, folks.
Have a fun, safe 4th of July!
So is this the Robert Reeve the barnstormer, airmail pilot, and bush pilot. or the Robert Reeve who died in 1887 and was a Royal Marine and agricultural labourer?
Or is the 20 something Robert Reeve in Duluth, MN who sold autographs on the internet for a time?
Fact is, the wild west wasn't called wild because it was a boring place to be. But the market is sporatic and mostly flat for westerns.
Good luck to you.
I beg to differ, Terri~
Last time I checked, not including the current research I'm doing on the subject, Comedies were drawing 26% of new script sales, Drama was at 22%, Thrillers were third at 20%. After third place, there's a sharp decline in numbers. Westerns still only draw single digit percentages of total spec sales.
Besides, if there is a current glut on westerns, that means that market is now flat. The studios may be making them right now, but they are probably done buying them too, at least for now.
Have you tried putting the story into a different setting.
Outland was High Noon in outer space, which is exactly why it sold.
Perhaps your script could benefit from something like that.
If you've already got a line on a screenwriter, no sense in trying to entice us further.
That's one lucky screenwriter, I say. ;)
Sounds like you do have a winner on your hands. I've got Malpaso Productions contact information if you need it.
Best of luck with it.
I spoke with Andrew Stanton's Assistant and they strictly draw off there in-house writers and ideas.
Stanton's filmography reads like this...
Finding Nemo (2003) (screenplay) (story) (written by) Monsters, Inc. (2001) Toy Story 2 (1999) (story) Bug's Life, A (1998) (story) Toy Story (1995) (story)
He's got a great record so far, so if it isn't broke, don't fix it.
Artistic expression is at the root of it. Whether your expression is in the form of writing, composing, playing music, oil on canvas, stand-up comedy is irrelevant.
Creating is part of it as well. Creating, especially in writing, allows some people an amount of control they can't attain in real life, it allows them to exercise their sense of justice above all.
For some, myself included, it's creating something that didn't exist before.
Plenty of people find their creative media without some grand exhumation of their past. In most cases what makes a person who they are is NOT traceable to one particular instant in their life (unless you're the killer in a dead teen movie), but the piling on of little bits here and there, experiences and perspectives and happenstance unique to them.
Some people are perfectly happy going to reunions, high school or college, and comparing themselves to their peers. It's that big fish in a little pond syndrome. If that's what does it for them, no problem.
Reunions aren't for me.
You mean you're not looking forward to the new version of Peter Pan with a sexually charged relationship between Wendy and Peter?
Don't think I'm kidding.
That's why we have lives outside of writing.
A writer can't write about life if he doesn't have one himself. Afterall, he can only write about what he knows and it is all too evident when a writer ventures beyond his knowledge.
Disclaimer: No gender bias is expressed or intended nor should it be interpreted as such by the writer's use of the masculine pronoun.
'Tis a litigious world in which we live.
Bob Hope died late last night. He'll be sorely missed...For all he did he did for our troops, for comedy, for film, and for the everyman.
Because unestablished writers typically don't have the financial resources to tackle the expense.
Besides, whose screenplay gets made first?
Hollywood is based on patterns, like all the rest of us, so you can't fault them too much. And like most of us, Hollywood is not altruistic.
The pattern of behavior Hollywood has adopted is replication. If it worked once, it'll work again and that translates directly into money. Is there logic at work there? Sure there is, but it is flawed.
Hence the sequel, summer block busters, remakes, movies becoming TV shows, TV shows becoming movies, combining elements that worked or not on their own (like Freddy vs. Jason), live action comic book characters (Superman, Batman, Green Hornet coming soon to a theater near you).
Oscar winners - movies with some depth, heart, and soul, are great for awards, but they don't necessarily translate to boxoffice - Hollywood's bottom line.
Hollywood won't change drastically until it gets hit hard in the bottom line. The question is, exactly how hard is that?
Is Hulk, Daredevil, Superman 3, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles enough to stun them long enough to get decent scripts in front of them?
No, because they have Spiderman, Men in Black, Batman, X-Men, etc., and their sequels - AND - all of the major studios are diversified conglomerates. Movies aren't their only business.
Finding Nemo sets records but Sinbad dies on a hook (turn of phrase, not a spoiler).
It's just like playing a truly crappy game of golf. Somewhere between the 1st and the 18th, you'll hit a nice shot that just sails down the fairway. Of course, for most of the morning you've been pinballing down the fairways out of the giggle weed with your irons, but you remember and you'll talk about that one shot and you'll try to do it again.
The flaw is that consistency is not the same as quality and easily becomes cutting cookies. My most consistent day on a golf course, I shot a six on every hole - 3, 4 or 5 par didn't matter - consistent? You bet. But not good.
That's the reason I admire the folks at Pixar. All of their films are animated, sure. They do it well, so why not. But all of their films to date have been different, fairly original (not including pre-existing source material, and Toy Story 2), quality films. I hope they maintain that originality and that freshness.
But I also wish that originality would become the norm in Hollywood rather than the anomaly.
Hollywood goes through phases: Musicals, Westerns, Animated, Raunchy Comedy, Romantic Comedy, Unfunny Comedy, Daunting Dramas, the works.
Everyone suffers when a rash of bad movies appear - the movie goers, unsold writers with great scripts (cause Hollywood doesn't want to take a chance while they're in a slump). That's where the art fails and the business takes over.
But another problem comes into play...this is not the first bad year for movies. This has been going on for several years now.
If you honestly look at the numbers - the ratio of bad movies to good movies is staggering. There are simply so many movies out their, most people don't notice and neither does Hollywood.
Based on your description of the screenplay about Babe, I wouldn't harbor anymosity for anyone who passed on it.
I had an agent. Wasn't happy with her.
So, I've opted for an entertainment attorney. Works well for me. Definitely not complaining.
I would say it's probably an effort to establish legitimacy if for no other reason than folks requesting scripts on this board often come under fire.
Not good or bad - simply is.
Just one interpretation.
I just did some checking and the official rules, Item 4 states the following..."One winner will be selected at random from all of the eligible entries."
It's also worth noting that they refer to it as a sweepstakes (aka lottery).
I run my scripts by two friends of mine. One is a producer, the other a director. They've been generous with their notes and very helpful.
The results are in...
Haven't read any of the ones entered by folks here, but I can't say I was really impressed with the ones they picked.
"...now that we have learned from VINGT ANS DE MA VIE LITTERAIRE that these characters were taken directly from life. To us they seem to have suddenly lost all their vitality, all the few qualities they ever possessed. The only real people are the people who never existed, and if a novelist is base enough to go to life for his personages he should at least pretend that they are creations, and not boast of them as copies. The justification of a character in a novel is not that other persons are what they are, but that the author is what he is."
Intentions --Oscar Wilde
How much? Merely curious.
Send it on. I'll take a look as well.
You may find this article of interest...
Blade Runner is my favorite of the the Philip K. Dick films, but I want to see The Man in the High Castle put to film.
Choosing your shots - play to win
A guy hooked on Christmas was done well by Tim Burton and Danny Elfman.
The center of this movie is addressed early on in the Garden of Gethsemane, when Satan asks...
"Do you really believe that one man can bear the full burden of sin?"
Was the movie violent? Yes, because it responds directly to that one simple question. That is, in name, and in intent, what Mel Gibson wanted to portray. The film is "THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST."
You're not going to leave the theater whistling any of the tunes from this one.
If you believe, then you have a better, more tangible idea of what Christ endured.
If you don't believe, it may as well have been the Serpent and the Rainbow up on the screen.
If you didn't see it, then why are you speaking about it?
and the last thing...
If you can't back up your stand in social discourse with relevant information, don't muddy the water by name calling, introducing irrelevant, or dubious "facts," or employing vague generalities to inflame an already charged topic. Make your point and be done.
Writers would be warm, loyal, and otherwise terrific people--if only they'd stop writing. --Laura Miller from a salon.com review of the movie Finding Forrester
Anyone else just plain sick and tired of Michael Moore and his look-at-me-i'm-a-complete-ass antics?
Given the inaccuracies that run through most, if not all of his work, "documentary" hardly seems to fit.
Although I'm sure I can come up with quite a few colorful descriptions...
If we writers can conjure the same passion for everyday life that we do for our writing...then we're way ahead of the game.
I submitted to them and got a very nice response back inviting me to submit any other work that met their criteria, which they spelled out quite explicitly.
If I write anything along those lines, I'll definitely submit to them again.
Just a few details I left out...
I heard back from them in about three weeks to a month.
While they didn't pigeon hole it to a specific genre, they provided examples of the kind of work they're interested in (a list of other films), and spelled out the criteria they are looking to acquire.
They passed on mine - the door is still open.
NOTE: My mistake - it's not so much a list as it is ranges of film types, but you get the idea.
"we embrace both the great traditions of filmmaking history – from L’Atalante to Lantana, Pather Panchali to Pulp Fiction -- and the transformative powers of the latest film technologies – from 28 Days Later to Finding Nemo to Russian Ark."
NOTE: This is the more important part.
"tightly structured narratives, masterful visual storytelling and memorable dialogue"
"character-driven stories well told."
Dr. Format by David Trottier is worth the $100 bucks.
What are they about?
Anybody familiar with Silverware Productions ?
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