Thursday, September 10, 2009

"I will not read your f***ing script."

A History of Violence screenwriter Josh Olson blogs for the Village Voice in a piece called "I Will Not Read Your Fucking Script":
I will not read your fucking script.

That's simple enough, isn't it? "I will not read your fucking script." What's not clear about that? There's nothing personal about it, nothing loaded, nothing complicated. I simply have no interest in reading your fucking screenplay. None whatsoever.

If that seems unfair, I'll make you a deal. In return for you not asking me to read your fucking script, I will not ask you to wash my fucking car, or take my fucking picture, or represent me in fucking court, or take out my fucking gall bladder, or whatever the fuck it is that you do for a living.
Simple enough, indeed. A bit later:
Which brings us to an ugly truth about many aspiring screenwriters: They think that screenwriting doesn't actually require the ability to write, just the ability to come up with a cool story that would make a cool movie. Screenwriting is widely regarded as the easiest way to break into the movie business, because it doesn't require any kind of training, skill or equipment. Everybody can write, right? And because they believe that, they don't regard working screenwriters with any kind of real respect. They will hand you a piece of inept writing without a second thought, because you do not have to be a writer to be a screenwriter.
A very harsh truth in a lot of cases, I'm sure - but I have had experiences in the past where professional, working screenwriters were more than willing to offer feedback and advice to a fledgling writer. I know other Leaguers have, too.

You can read the full article here, and feel free to let me know what you think.

It's Sale Season!

Labor Day has come and gone, marking the unofficial end of summer. Offices are operating at full steam again, as the long weekend getaways have come to an end. So you know what that means...
Get those scripts ready, because studios are getting ready to start buying again. My producer tells me that for the next month or so (in particular once September ends), the spec market is like a shark feeding frenzy. It's highly competitive, and companies are biting.

In light of that - or perhaps as a testament to it - today's DoneDealPro tracking was the busiest I've seen it in weeks. Granted, six of the sales were to the Swedish company Yellow Bird that I haven't heard of before, which bought up what looks to be an eight-part novel series about crime reporter Annika Bengtzon.

Still, I think that the post-summer market deserves it's own Logline Central, so let's represent the times with:

Title: Supermax
Logline: Set in a maximum security prison for the supernatural, a guard must join forces with a lethal inmate after a riot ensues in order to fight his way through various monsters and mad-men in order to survive.
Writer: Christopher Allen Nelson, Mitch Rouse
More: Spec. Broken Road's Sean Robins & Todd Garner will produce. Sony's Doug Belgrad & DeVon Franklin will oversee.

I chose SUPERMAX for a few reasons. One - it's a spec. There aren't nearly as many specs selling (compared to adaptations or sequels) as any writer would like, so it's great to see one go. Two - the writers are intriguing. Christopher Allen Nelson might be most recognizable (or was to me) as Uma Thurman's groom in KILL BILL and has done a ton of work as a special effects makeup artist; he doesn't have any other writing credits on imdb. Mitch Rouse has more writing credits to his name with STRANGERS WITH CANDY, WITHOUT A PADDLE, and EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH (among others).

The last reason that I chose SUPERMAX this week is that it is disappointingly similar to an idea I had. That happens, unfortunately. Doesn't mean I won't immediately drop that idea, but it's part of my training to become a working writer. I hope any of our readers who, like us, are trying to get into this crazy field develop enough of the c'est la vie attitude to let things like that roll off their back when it happens.

Anyway, go take that script market by storm!