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How we’re pitching our winners…

How we’re pitching our winners…

How we’re pitching our screenwriting contest winners to the industry…

Since our relaunch in February 2016, we’ve gained a wonderful, varied slate of award-winning scripts and writers, many of which have now completed their year of free script development as we prepare them and their writers for the pitching process. As our campaign to pitch them gathers momentum, I thought now would be a great time to show you what we’ve been doing for our winners and the great responses we’ve been getting. We can’t reveal the confidential details of course, but there’s plenty we can show you as this gains pace.

STEP ONE – NAIL THE SCRIPT.

Even our winners’ fine scripts usually have a few important question marks in them, from a producer’s point of view. (If you would lose your job and your reputation for greenlighting a project that bombs, you’d feel the same.) So we use all our expertise and industry experience to feed back studio-quality reports and guidance for our winners, for a year, for free. It often takes that long – sometimes even longer – to get the script so sharp and convincing that producers can’t use easy excuses not to greenlight.

The process can even go beyond the one-year mark. One of our early winners has been very ill for much of the time since his prize; another – who is aiming high – decided to give the script a big review when I fed back to him my concerns that the things I felt producers would be wary about when I gave him the prize, still hadn’t noticeably progressed in his script. The writer’s approach to feedback, and their general responsiveness and promptness of redrafts, makes more difference than the guaranteed year-long timeframe: some scripts and writers are ready far sooner, others never convince us they’d reply promptly enough to a concrete offer from a serious producer.

Remember, WriteMovies have been pitching scripts to the industry for twenty years, and launched two Oscar-nominated writers into the industry. Things are ready when they’re ready. We don’t take any cut of option fees whatsoever – so we’re prepared to put in as long as it takes to give our winners the best chance of breaking through. When we succeed in doing that, everyone wins.

 

STEP TWO – THE ONE-PAGE PITCH

We’ll show you more about these and why you might want to make one, in another article soon. But these are meant to be a short, snappy, visual teaser of what this script would FEEL and LOOK like to the viewer. In an industry where the real decisionmakers are often hard to get on the phone, it’s important to present your script in the most professional way possible – that clearly shows how this movie could be SOLD to top talent and audiences. Getting our one-page pitches right is an important way to show that we, and our writers, mean business.

In the Terms & Conditions of entering our main contests, you’ll see a promise of ‘intensive pitch coaching’. This is it. We coach our winners to prepare their logline and one-page pitch, guiding them through multiple drafts as we get this right with them. At the end of it, the writers are far better placed to present and pitch their scripts in future.

And you know what else? More than a few have found that the process of presenting their script in a one-page pitch, has made them sharpen and focus and intensify their script more effectively. Everyone wins.

Meanwhile, we often give our Elite Mentors the chance to feed back on the scripts on our slate – and the writers love getting feedback from top industry pros like them. Sometimes the Elite Mentors even get involved and help push the script forward towards production themselves, which is the best of all worlds.

STEP THREE – RESEARCHING WHO TO TARGET

From quite an early point, we’ve already warmed up the industry to the projects on our slate, because of the promotion we give our winners in the weeks after their win, and consequently when their logline is promoted extensively to the industry through InkTip. We also sometimes use our dedicated Industry Newsletters (which go out to hundreds of producers and agents) to promote scripts more widely too. But these methods are only a small part of the real pitching process. The world is busy and full of competition, and everyone you want to reach out to needs treating as an individual.

Lots of writers take a scattergun approach, approaching as many producers, directors or actors as possible. Lots of writers think the world OWES them for creating their scripts, and should now bow down before them. Good luck with that. If you don’t understand the real life of producers and talent, you’ll need a totally world-changing script in order to break through with that attitude. And, if you’re so oblivious to the individuality and business needs of the people you’re approaching, you almost certainly won’t have achieved a script that good anyway.

So, between us and the writer, we compile SHORT lists of producers or talent who we think could really go for this project (exploring all sides of my motto: Aim High, Use Allies, or DIY – Do It Yourself). We research them properly, their track record and preferences, and how best to reach them. We then make our approach on whatever platform, opportunity or situation is the one they’d be most likely to favour. With our track record and polished scripts and one-page pitches, we’ve got a good chance of getting in the door. If we’re then invited to send the whole script, awesome. From that point, it’s up to the writer and producer/talent: we keep the line open and follow up until there’s a result, for better or worse. And then seal the deal or get proper feedback that we can use to improve the script or our understanding of its prospects, and then move on to the next on our shortlist.

Wherever possible, of course, we pitch in person, or failing that on the phone. Most people prefer doing business with strangers by email, but building their trust and their image of us gets us in a lot of doors that writers alone couldn’t. Our in-person pitching in the last two years has got many of our scripts read by leading players and has earned us important new allies, some of whom put us in touch with other people who’ll read the script now it’s been recommended by someone they trust and rate.

Getting a ‘no thanks’ often isn’t a closed door, if we’ve handled the approach right. It’s just a no to this script at this point in time. But with the range of our slate – now and in the future – and all the other services we offer, we always look to keep the door open for mutual support in the future. We keep in regular touch with all producers or agents who are happy for us to, such as through our industry newsletters.

It’s often frustrating how little of all this activity we get to share with you publicly. For obvious reasons, producers and talent wouldn’t want us to share the detail of what we discuss with them. But believe me, if you become a winner in one of our main contests, we’ll be working furiously behind the scenes to take your script as far as it can go.

While many agents and writers would be annoyed to learn that the company we approach have already got something similar on their slate (maybe worried they’ve been plagiarized!), personally I welcome it. Why? Because it shows we really did get this to the people who’d be interested in it. And the praise we often get back from them is great momentum to take into our next approach.

Enter our latest contest now, or enter our next one early by purchasing a consultancy service, to get the benefit of our decades of industry experience into YOUR project.

© WriteMovies 2017. Exclusive to WriteMovies – To syndicate this content for your own publication, contact ian (at) writemovies dot-com.

First Look: BLADE RUNNER 2049 review

First Look: BLADE RUNNER 2049 review

Our Ian Kennedy on why it’s a fitting follow-up, why you should watch it in IMAX 3D, why it’s like the original in some unintended ways too, and why some audience reaction will suffer as a result…

I’ve got a long history with BLADE RUNNER. I saw it as a teenager in the 90s, again at University where I also attended lectures about it and wrote an essay about it, and I was also tasked with writing Example Development Notes for it during my time training up to join WriteMovies (which I’ll publish for you to read here – a good example of how our Development Notes look to take even the best scripts to the next level! Here’s another example about BLADE RUNNER from a more recent trainee). So you can imagine how excited I was to interview BLADE RUNNER 2049’s VFX Consultant Post Production, Habib Zargarpour, in the run-up to the sequel’s release. While we wait on official approval to publish that, I’ve now had the chance to catch the movie itself, and I wasn’t disappointed – though I think some people will be.

Habib recommended I catch the film in IMAX 3D, for reasons he explains in the interview. And boy was he right. That technology has been truly nailed now, and paired to a uniquely visualized movie like this, it really looked and felt like all the actors and scenes were happening right before my eyes. The 3D is subtle and natural, not artificial and showy, and became an important part of the experience. It’s hard to exaggerate what a naturally immersive experience the IMAX 3D made it. The visuals were stunning throughout – a great job from everyone involved, of which there were hundreds across the globe!

The original explores what it is to be human, and raises the unnerving prospect that replicants may actually be more human than us in some ways. BLADE RUNNER 2049 takes that further – almost the whole story is told from replicants’ points of view, and it takes their world to important new places and times, showing us why perhaps it’s their side we should have been on all along – something the original only hints at. The most interesting character in the new film, though, is actually Joi, the AI who acts as wife to Ryan Gosling’s low-key ‘Blade Runner’ cop – bewitchingly fascinating and uncanny throughout, and easy to fall in love with.

I noticed an interesting parallel to the original – just like for BLADE RUNNER, the trailers sold it as more of an action movie, where the movie actually gave us much more of a slow-burn mood movie (more subtle thoughtful than action-packed, like director Denis Villeneuve also gave us in ARRIVAL – read my Insights into that film here) – and that gap in expectations may result in exactly the kind of mixed audience reactions the original got at first! So far the critics’ reactions I’ve seen are good, and I think it’ll definitely find its place, but in the main, this is definitely NOT an action movie, and long passages focus much more on the vacant emotional life of Ryan Gosling’s inexpressive cop than on plot development – in fact the eerie sound design is often used to make up for the lack of plot development. Some audiences – probably ones who hadn’t seen the original – may even find the storytelling slow and unengaging, especially in the first half. In other hands this story would have made a much sharper two-hour movie, not the 2hrs43mins we’ve been given here, but for me it’s great to see genuinely thought-provoking and subtle films getting their chance at last – I wrote a series of Insights articles about that earlier this year comparing ARRIVAL, MOONLIGHT and MANCHESTER BY THE SEA.

So, this is a great movie, but maybe not in all the ways you’d expect. But with its haunting themes and stunning visuals, you might enjoy it even more second time around. Can’t wait to tell you the inside story from Habib!

© WriteMovies 2017. Exclusive to WriteMovies – To syndicate this content for your own publication, contact ian (at) writemovies dot-com.

Bilingual in English-French or English-German? Love movies and writing? Get in touch!

Bilingual in English-French or English-German? Love movies and writing? Get in touch!

For staffing reasons, we’ve had to close our longstanding competitions access for French- and German-language writers – but if you’re bilingual and would like to relaunch and run those services for us, get in touch! Email ian@writemovies.com to express your interest.

Our competitions have provided a unique point of entry to the international market for writers in French and German for many years, but at the moment we only have staffing within those languages to continue to provide script consultancies in French. But we’d be delighted to hear from you if you think you could be able to deliver these services reliably and promptly on a part-time basis. We need someone who would:

  • Be fully bilingual in English and either French or German, with a high standard of written communication in your chosen language.
  • Be prepared to complete a WriteMovies internship (in English) for full training in how to appraise and develop scripts and writers to our standards. (More about our internships here: https://writemovies.com/about/current-vacancies/ )
  • Rewrite and relaunch our offerings in their language specialty. Provide language-specific text we can turn into promotional graphics.
  • Produce regular newsletters in that language adapting the best of WriteMovies’ content and offerings into their language.
  • Handle enquiries and submissions in the language chosen, recommending promising scripts that we could develop and pitch to the international film industry.
  • Provide consultancy reports to develop any writer and script that win a high enough placing in our contests based on their recommendation, and adapt or even translate it for pitching to the international industry.
  • And, of course, have a keen interest and passion in movies and writing…

In return we can offer:

  • Payment of 50% of submissions value in your chosen language.
  • Access to around 1000 writers and industry professional contacts in your chosen language (to be handled and used appropriately within EU information security guidelines).

If this is of interest, contact our Director of World Wide Development Ian Kennedy, ian@writemovies.com.

Merci – nos dernières occasions d’entrée pour les écrivains français sont maintenant fermées.

Merci – nos dernières occasions d’entrée pour les écrivains français sont maintenant fermées.

Pendant de nombreuses années, nous avons été un point de contact unique entre les auteurs francophones et allemands et l’industrie cinématographique mondiale. Malheureusement, nous ne pouvons pas continuer à autoriser les entrées en français et en allemand à nos compétitions en ce moment. Nous continuons d’offrir des services de conseil aux écrivains français: visitez https://writemovies.com/writemovies-consultation-de-script/ et https://writemovies.com/writemovies-correction-et-developpement/!

Merci à tous les écrivains qui se sont soumis à nos concours et ont avancé votre carrière avec notre assistance. Si vous désirez relancer les aspects français ou allemand de notre entreprise pour nous, contactez ian@writemovies.com.

Merci encore! Maintenant, nous annonçons les gagnants de notre concours final, y compris les soumissions françaises et allemandes …

Quarter-Finalists: Semi-Finalists: OVERALL WINNER
Katja Anker, DAS PIKANTE GEHEIMNIS

Katja Anker, DAS PIKANTE GEHEIMNIS

Ruben Bush III, BLACKOUT.COM
Natacha Astuto, ISSUE DE SECOURS Natacha Astuto, ISSUE DE SECOURS SECOND PLACED WINNER
Michael Avishai, THE LAND OF CHICKENS Michael Avishai, THE LAND OF CHICKENS Belinda Whitney, THE ARENA
Carla Bester, JEFFERY’S NATION Carla Bester, JEFFERY’S NATION THIRD PLACED WINNER
James Bingham, THE DAWN OF EVE Jerome Bon & Stephane Couston, PARAD’EYES Elliott Riebman & Michael Gozzard, IN THE SHADOW OF FREEDOM
Jerome Bon & Stephane Couston, PARAD’EYES Simon Bowler, INSURRECTION – EPISODE 1
Simon Bowler, INSURRECTION – EPISODE 1 Ruben Bush III, BLACKOUT.COM HONORABLE MENTIONS
Harold L. Brown, DESTINY OF TAR AND FEATHERS L. Butler, THE MAGIC OF YOUR TOUCH Carla Bester, JEFFERY’S NATION
Ruben Bush III, BLACKOUT.COM John Day, FINDING HENRY CHURCH Jerome Bon & Stephane Couston, PARAD’EYES
L. Butler, THE MAGIC OF YOUR TOUCH Edith Devillet, LES NIOCKS Simon Bowler, INSURRECTION – EPISODE 1
Miles Colella, ROAD KILL Ian Fletcher, COLONIALS Edith Devillet, LES NIOCKS
Lisa Cristoforo, MARIGOLD Richard Guimond, METACOMET Richard Guimond, METACOMET
John Day, FINDING HENRY CHURCH Olga Holtz, A LABOUR OF LOVE Christophe Lourenço, MYSPACE LOVE
Edith Devillet, LES NIOCKS Astrid Korten, ZEILENGÖTTER Ian Ryan & Joseph Loizzi, CLEMENTE
McCrae Dunlap, MOMENTS Pascal Kulcsar, LE SAX Anthony Salamnon & Ronnie S. Riskalla, FIRE MOUNTAIN
Ronald L. Ecker, THE BROWSER Christophe Lourenço, MYSPACE LOVE
R. E. Ehrenreich, INTENTIONAL INFLICTION OF EMOTIONAL DISTRESS Travis Opgenorth, THE POACHER
Anthony Etherington, STRAIGHT LIFE – EPISODE 1 Chelsea Perrotty, IVY’S SEASONS
Ian Fletcher, COLONIALS Dane Pizzuti Krogman, RIGGERS
Jeffrey Kent Gilchrist, EVERYTHING FOLLOWS FROM THIS Elliott Riebman & Michael Gozzard, IN THE SHADOW OF FREEDOM
Richard Guimond, METACOMET Ian Ryan & Joseph Loizzi, CLEMENTE
Andrew Hindle and Andy Conway, LITTLE ENGLAND or VILLAGE OF THE SCAMMED Anthony Salamnon & Ronnie S. Riskalla, FIRE MOUNTAIN
Olga Holtz, A LABOUR OF LOVE Math Saliva, THE SANDBOX
Bill Johnston, FAMILY REMAINS Michael B. Snow, WE COME IN PEACE
Bruce E. Kalish, PARENTAL ADVISORY Belinda Whitney, THE ARENA
Kevin Karp, ISOKON – PILOT Aaron Yarber, AMERICAN MYTHS OF BLACK & WHITE
Winnie Khaw, DREAM REHEARSAL
Astrid Korten, ZEILENGÖTTER
Narcisa Kovacevic, PLUTO IN THE 7TH
Pascal Kulcsar, LE SAX
Charles William Lane, A WOMAN, UNTITLED
Jonathan LaPoma, HARM FOR THE HOLIDAYS
Travis Lemke, GAMERS
Christophe Lourenço, MYSPACE LOVE
Herschel Medlin and Dale Baker, TURN THE TABLES
Len Nannarone, LUDDITES – PILOT
Michael Neyland, LAST RIDE OF METRO 313
Travis Opgenorth, THE POACHER
Frank Julius Palumbo, THE ENOCHIAN WARS: ARMAGEDDON UNLEASHED
Chelsea Perrotty, IVY’S SEASONS
Dane Pizzuti Krogman, RIGGERS
Mahyar Rasi, FRACTION
Elliott Riebman & Michael Gozzard, IN THE SHADOW OF FREEDOM
James Ross, SON OF A SERIAL KILLER
Ian Ryan & Joseph Loizzi, CLEMENTE
Anthony Salamnon & Ronnie S. Riskalla, FIRE MOUNTAIN
Math Saliva, THE SANDBOX
Kevin Scott, LAST REQUEST
John Smith, IRON MAIDENS
Michael B. Snow, WE COME IN PEACE
Belinda Whitney, THE ARENA
Malcolm Wong, THE TRANSMUTANT
Aaron Yarber, AMERICAN MYTHS OF BLACK & WHITE
Dianna Zimmerman, DRONE WORLD
Die Annahme von Deutschen Schriftsteller Beiträgen ist nun beendet. Vielen Dank für eure Unterstützung…

Die Annahme von Deutschen Schriftsteller Beiträgen ist nun beendet. Vielen Dank für eure Unterstützung…

Internationale Film Industrie  – Dienstleistungen für Deutschen Schriftsteller

Internationale Film Industrie – Dienstleistungen für Schriftsteller in Deutsch

Die Annahme von Französischen und Deutschen Beiträgen ist nun beendet. Vielen Dank für eure Unterstützung…

Write Movies hat über mehrere Jahre hinweg Französischen und Deutschen Schriftstellern einen Anlaufspunkt angeboten für den Einstieg in die internationale Film- und Fernsehindustrie. Leider sind wir auf Grunde der Entwicklungen in diesem Gewerbe nicht in der Lage diesen Dienst fortzusetzen und Deutsche und Französische Beitrage werden vorläufig nicht mehr angenommen.

Bei dieser Gelegenheit möchten wir uns für die Wettbewerbs Beiträge die wir bisher empfangen haben herzlich bedamken. Wir sind froh dass wir bei eurer Entwicklung behilflich sein konnten.

Beste Wünsche für die weitere Karriere, wir hoffen, euch in der Zukunft wieder unterstützen zu können.

Falls ihr Interesse habt in Zusammenarbeit die Französisch oder deutsch sprachigen Wettbewerbe wider zu eröffnen, bitte tretet in Kontakt: ian @writemovies .com.

Nochmals Dankeschön! Und hier nun die Gewinner des letzten Wettbewerbes mit Französischen und Deutschen Beiträgen… https://writemovies.com/winter-2016-screenwriting-competition/

Warum WriteMovies.com?

  • Wir sind der einzige Hollywood-Wettbewerb, der Arbeiten in deutscher Sprache annimmt. Unsere Mitarbeiter beherrschen mehrere Sprachen und wurden von den Studios ausgebildet.
  • Der Leiter von WriteMovies.com hat den Autor von THE TRUMAN SHOW und den Regisseur von GATTACA entdeckt.
  • Wir haben die Erfahrung und den Spürsinn, begabte Schriftsteller zu erkennen.
  • Wir richten uns direkt an die Zuständigen der Produktionsfirmen.
  • Unser Erfolg hängt von Ihrem Erfolg ab.
  • Sie behalten alle Rechte an Ihren Texten.