Why we’re pausing all pitching until 2023 WGA strike disputes are resolved.
WriteMovies would like to welcome our new Analyst Matt Rose, who shares our response to the 2023 WGA strike below:
Our team here at WriteMovies stands behind the Writers Guild of America during their current strike as they put the scripted film and television industries on hold in advocating for fair wages, protections from being overworked and understaffed, and safeguards against AI screenwriting.
As script consultants and contest runners, we’ve worked with countless writers, both aspiring and experienced, and we understand the painstaking labor that goes into perfecting a screenplay for production. From blockbusters to indie hits, we know that every great film or series begins with an excellent script. In all respects, we pride ourselves on doing everything we can to hone and bolster the voices of screenwriters. In solidarity with the writers who keep the entertainment industry afloat as proven by the numerous production delays and shutdowns effected by their strike WriteMovies will not be pitching to any studios that are WGA signatories until the strike comes to an end.
The demands of the WGA, outlined by AP News, include calls for much-needed updates to outdated wage and labor standards, which have effectively been used to underpay and overwork screenwriters in recent years. As audiences continue to move away en masse from live television towards streaming platforms, writers’ residuals from syndication have all but vanished while long-term streaming deals leave writers’ compensation disproportionate to their value. The WGA calls for increased upfront pay to correct for residuals lost to the streaming era.
Also based on norms of the past, overly-long exclusivity deals leftover from the age of 22-episode TV seasons block writers from accepting available work despite 8-10 episode seasons now being commonplace. The WGA demands shorter exclusivity terms to mirror the shrinking of TV seasons. The guild also wants to end the exploitation of “mini rooms” which overwork a handful of writers during development, and they demand contractual safeguards against studios’ and producers’ use of artificial intelligence to write scripts.
Any pitching to studios and producers is considered a crossing of the picket line even for aspiring guild writers, who may be permanently barred from WGA membership for scab behavior though writers may continue seeking agents or managers, according to screenwriter and WGA secretary-treasurer Christopher Kyle. WriteMovies will continue to offer our screenplay contests and development services, and our studio pitching for winning scripts will resume as soon as the WGA strike comes to a close. In the meantime, we are working as hard as ever to aid our winning writers in polishing their scripts and prepping our pitch materials!
Find out more about WriteMovies’ contests and submission opportunities HERE.
WriteMovies is back and ready to launch our long-proven contests again in the weeks ahead.
It’s an exciting year for us and it’s hard to believe it’s already halfway done. We’ve been working hard behind the scenes on preparing our winners for pitching, as well as Dr. Alex Ross’s books and launches, and we’re getting ready for a dynamic few months ahead. Now we’re ready to relaunch our contests and services with an expanded and refreshed team – and we’re looking forward to finding out what you’ve been working on too!
We’re looking forward to having a big pitching presence in the months ahead – writers’ strike permitting! We’re also publishing our response to the WGA strike today here – we want writers to thrive in the new era, we’ve got some great winning scripts to promote, and we’ll share those adventures with you once the situation is right again.
Meanwhile, don’t forget that our founder Dr Alex Ross’s new book BLOCKBUSTED is now available in hardback and eBook and ALL of our newsletter subscribers can get a full 30% off! Click here to find out more – we look forward to sharing lots more about it in the months ahead. The film is full of exclusive insights into the evolution of Hollywood’s calculated blockbuster, including lots of your favorite movies from the 1970s to today. We’re also itching to tell you about his next book, which goes even deeper into one of the most iconic and talked-about films of the last half-century!
We’ve also got lots of strong new media and online course content shaping up to share with you as well – so there’s lots to look forward to!
30% off for all WriteMovies newsletter subscribers!
This ground-breaking new book shows how Hollywood developed its ‘calculated blockbuster’ and created a replicable model for success which all industry professionals can use to their advantage. Packed with insights and unheard stories from the massive films of the past and today through an industry insider’s perspective, it’s a must-read for screenwriters, producers and anyone with a passion for the movies over recent decades.
The book is published here in hardback ($110) and eBook ($45) formats:
An exclusive 30% discount is available to all WriteMovies subscribers. It’s easy to get the discount – just directly email firstname.lastname@example.org to request the promo code!
To subscribe check the menus at the bottom of the page.
About Alexander Ross and BLOCKBUSTED…
Dr. Alexander Ross launched his journey into filmmaking, as an undergraduate at the University of Cambridge, by watching a lot more films at the Arts Cinema than attending lectures. On graduating, he was hired by Ismail Merchant (Merchant/Ivory Productions) to work on a film as assistant director.
Ross later went to Los Angeles, working for MGM Studios as a story analyst. With a keen eye for spotting scripts with great winning potential, he was hired by a literary agency based in Beverly Hills. Sifting through the pile of rejections, he noticed a script by a then unknown Quentin Tarantino, as well as one by Andrew Niccol (The Truman Show). The discoveries gave his career a major boost.
Several years later, Ross created his own management company, helped to finance a number of films, produced a romcom (which he sold to Warner Bros.), founded www.writemovies.com, ran more than 5,000 pitch meetings at the studios, (mainly with the heads of production), became an expert consultant to the European Union: Education, Audio-visual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA), as well as to several hedge funds and family offices looking to invest in motion pictures. With his deep reservoir of knowledge about Hollywood’s inner sanctum, he decided to write about his experiences and so headed back to the UK to do a PhD. His first major publication came in the 2019 anthology on the film Grease: “Grease is the Word”.
Now, “The Evolution of Hollywood’s Calculated Blockbuster Films: Blockbusted” is his most extensive probe into Hollywood’s most dynamic era. It is the first contemporary book to delve deep into the studio process behind the making of some of the defining modern blockbusters of the 1970s and 1980s, by engaging directly with many of the leading executives who run Hollywood.
The book investigates William Goldman’s “Nobody knows anything” contention which suggests that every film the studios make is a colossal gamble. Over eight years of research, which included dozens of interviews with leading filmmakers and leading film academics, revealed that not only do the studios know exactly what they are doing, but by using replicable key markers of success, they have radically reduced the risk in film investment and significantly increased their multi-platform revenue streams.
This book is intended not just for scholars, undergraduates and post-graduates, but also for the fans of The Godfather, Jaws, Star Wars, E.T., Back to the Future etc. who want to find out what really made those films work. It also provides budding screenwriters, directors, producers, agents and studio executives with the keys to the kingdom.
The book shows specific, detailed instructions on how to make highly successful movies, repeatedly.
Chapter by Alex Ross in a book exploring a cultural phenomenon!
His upcoming book BLOCKBUSTED isn’t the first time our founder Alex Ross has published his in-depth research in a book about iconic movies and cultural milestones. Alex is already the proud author of a chapter in a book with insights into the smash hit musical which starred John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John in cinemas. The book was edited by Oliver Gruner & Peter Krämer and released by Anthem Press, who describes the book as “Bringing together a group of international scholars, ‘Grease Is the Word’ offers fresh insight into the impact and legacy of the cultural phenomenon that is Grease.”
Chapter by Alex Ross in a book exploring a cultural phenomenon!
Alex’s chapter explores the production of GREASE. You can buy the book from booksellers, or direct from the publisher here:
Just another taste of the fascinating insights Alex will be unveiling this year when BLOCKBUSTED is released! We can confirm that the release date will be in May! Watch this space…
Click here to read more about Alex Ross’s books
Founded alongside WriteMovies in 1999, TSIM is our industry-facing partner organisation, promoting our award-winning scripts and other projects on our slate to the international entertainment industry. With our latest rounds of industry pitching underway this Fall, here’s your chance to see the new-look TSIM website and many of the projects we are currently pitching to industry!