Monday, December 28, 2009

Would you write a screenplay on deffered payment?

I've come across this question a lot. The answer has to be : Never!

Most 'paid' assignments don't get made into films. I'm sure somewhere on the net you will find a statistic of 90-10 or 98-2 (more likely) ratio to prove it. Chance of a 'no-money-upfront' deal making it through is set in fairytale land. Sure it happens, though I don't know anyone it has happened to, but it is the same thing as buying a lottery. In fact it is worse because you've got to work for 3-6 months before you have a shot at the dream as opposed to just forking out a couple of bucks.

My simple logic is: if a producer can't raise money for a script he's probably just fishing anyway. Basically the producer's plan is to take a writers investment and try to build his fortune on it. Doesn't sound like a good business deal to me.

I get a counter logic from desperately needy writers: "What if it was a reputable, verifiable person asking, should I do it?"

Writers are an insecure lot and easily buy into false dreams. But they've got to stop to think about what these producer credentials are worth. I mean, if they can't raise money for the most important component of a film they couldn't be worth much. Remember without a script a producer would have nothing.

The other fact to consider: A writers job is done when he hands in the script. So basically the writer is the only one to have delivered on his commitment. Everyone else can just walk away from there as they have nothing invested in it anyway.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Election time again.

Once again the heart is filled with dread. Instead of looking forward with enthusiasm I, like so many others, am dreading the outcome. This election I am having a harder time concentrating on the emerging stories than normal. The two main parties have nothing new to offer, their sales pitch is tired and worn out. The only thing that separates them is their jostling for the higher moral ground which I'm afraid is mostly imagined as the people see them as two sides of the same coin. So the Third Front with all its prime ministers in waiting is probably the only interesting boat to follow. That it has a very real chance makes me want to pack my bags and immigrate to Pakistan or Sudan or some banana republic.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Face booked cooked!

As summer approaches I don't know what to do with myself. It's been some time since I've written anything interesting. The economy is slow, it's too hot, nobody is buying films any more; the list of excuses is endless. Endless waiting for Mastang Mama's post production to finish and to get into the next stage, release and all the pre-release madness, has had a strangely soporific effect on me. It's like the tap has been turned off. I am spending time on silly pursuits like finding friends on Facebook. Its great fun to find people you meet every other week in real life on the net. But it is strangely addictive. For a long time I resisted getting onto both Facebook and Linkedin for precisely the same reason. I'm hoping to break out of this addiction sooner than later.