Thursday, August 31, 2006

Making the Band

DanBuck said...

Old friend. Help me out. I've got a great idea for a show and want to begin writing it as a collaboration with a friend. He's enthusiastic but wants some assurances it might get considered by someone who could actually do something with it.

Neither of us is in L.A.

Am I living in a fantasy world? I don't mind being a long shot, but a little wisdom in this matter goes a long way.

Should we need to pitch first or write first?


Dear Dan,

You are living in a fantasy world.

But then again, living in a fantasy world is a requirement for writers, so that may not be a bad thing.

First off, if you want to make it in Hollywood, you should be in Hollywood. If you can’t get yourself motivated to move the wife and kidlets on a whim, then take the first step of applying to Act One: Writing for Hollywood, and plan on being here for just one month.

(Act One may well be the BEST writing program for film and television short of a full Master’s program; and it is designed specifically for Christians.)

As to needing assurance that your flick will be considered by someone who can do something, that is easy. There are two ways to do this:

One: Be commissioned to write it, with a paycheck in hand before you start writing. All that takes in Hollywood is being on the top of the food chain, which only takes twenty or so years of work and an incredible amount of talent and luck – on average. Right now, all ten of those spots are filled, but they don’t last, so one should be opening up soon. Good luck with that.

Oh, and being commissioned in no way guarantees your work will be produced. We know that from the playwriting world. I had an upfront check to write a Broadway sized musical, and even got it workshopped. Now it sits in a box next to my desk. Hey, if anyone out there wants a musical of H.G. Wells’ The Invisible Man, give me a holler.

Two: Be related to a person who has the power to make projects happen, and be on their good side so much they can’t say no to you. It’s probably too late for you to be born in that situation. If your wife is really understanding, you can divorce her and take a shot at marrying a Bryce or a Sophia. (On the Christian understanding that you will re-marry your spouse after your movie gets made.)

Okay, now that I have tricked you into believing that breaking in is easy, I will follow up later today (or tomorrow) with my ten tips for how to get your script read.

Just my thoughts,



DanBuck said...

Truly discouraging. Thank you. :)

I have no desire to "make it" in Hollywood. I'm pretty content in the academic and playwriting field. But I got an idea.

I know. Everybody's got an idea.

I guess I'll have to keep writing with no delusions of production and let God make miracles where he may.

I was just hoping to poke, poke at the miracle bag.

Gaffney said...


Never rule out "miracle." That tends to be more powerful than Hollywood anyway.

I think anyone with passion for a story should tell that story; alas you asked for guarantees of it being told on someone else's dime, not whether the story should be told.

Does AW know about your idea?

Keep up the faith.


DanBuck said...

True enough. (About what I asked)

AW - sort of knows. It's the story of Welcome to Justice - done as serial TV.

Chris Hansen is considering collaborating. And sounding less and less like he needs it to be a bread winner.