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InkTip’s Jerrol LeBaron: Things I’ve Learned as a Moviemaker

InkTip’s Jerrol LeBaron: Things I’ve Learned as a Moviemaker

Articles - Screenwriting

Ink Tip

Write every day.??

Some writers only work when they “have time.”? It’s
very important to make time in one’s schedule-even if it’s
only for 15 minutes a day.

A bird in the hand is worth two in
the bush.?

For example, I had a writer not too long ago who could have had
his first film where the total budget was $4-5 million dollars.
This was confirmed. Then another producer said he could do it for
$13 million dollars. This was unconfirmed. The writer blew off
the first producer and then the second producer blew off the writer.
The point is, if you can get something made, do it.

Never say never.?

Hollywood is full of catch 22s and false information.
The best thing you can do is ignore them all. For example: Writers tell
us that they are told they shouldn’t begin marketing a script until
they have three completed. While it’s true that the more you write
the more skilled you become, it is still possible for the first
script to be good and get sold! In our experience at least a dozen
writers who use our services have sold/optioned their one and
only script
!

There is no such thing as ‘overshopped’.

Obviously, a producer or rep doesn’t want anyone
to have seen the script that they’re interested in. But, practically speaking,
how can you possibly sell your script if no one has ever seen it?
The script being “overshopped” is the producer or representative’s
problem to solve. The writer’s job is to market it every way they
can.

Here’s an example: A manager finds a script
he/she really likes and has it developed and now it is perfect.
They generally blitz
Hollywood and send the script out to 30-60 companies at the same
time in order to sell it. Now, it is overshopped. There
is no way a writer could possibly do that by himself, however-actually
get that many studios and studio producers to agree to read it. So,
writers themselves should stop worrying about overshopping their
script.

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.?

Writing is subjective. I won’t mention names, but there was a
writer of a famous script that had been told by a big-time producer
that the script was the worst thing he had ever seen. The writer
continued to promote it, however, and eventually sold the script.
The resulting movie had several name stars in it and it went on
do excellent business at the boxoffice. So believe in your script
and be persistent because it can and often does pay off!

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