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Author Topic: Mentor me- anyone?  (Read 6431 times)
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uncle_al
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« Reply #20 on: January 21, 2009, 08:54:14 PM »

The saying goes, "Those who can, do... those who can't, teach... those who can't teach, get jobs as critics."

Cheers!
Al B.
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« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2009, 06:42:53 AM »

That's the funny bit about critics. They can't write but talk make real nasty comments whenever they get an  opportunity . I once saw a critic dismisss a certain movie script as "rubbish". Hell, I won't give a damn about any of them anymore. Thanks for the tip.
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uncle_al
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« Reply #18 on: January 19, 2009, 08:12:58 PM »

Ever so right, Don...

The only "critic" (I'd label him a reviewer, but that's my personal opinion) who wrote a script that I'd heard of is Roger Ebert. 
Sure, it was for a Russ Meyer movie (Beyond the Valley of the Dolls?  I misremember...), but it was produced.

Such is the way of things.

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Al B.
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« Reply #17 on: January 19, 2009, 07:59:54 PM »

Quote
I am new in the industry and could be wrong all the way but as I read some abridged scripts some time last night I realized that no script is ever perfect any time a critic takes a look at it. Loop holes? They murder screenwriters. Could be, there might be some visible seams in your work though the idea is- high concept? Like I said I could be wrong.

The problem with most critics is that very few (if any) have ever written a screenplay and remarkably few read them. Critics don't matter as they don't buy tickets.
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Don BledsoeWant to write screenplays? READ SCREENPLAYS!
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uncle_al
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« Reply #16 on: January 18, 2009, 09:46:16 PM »

It seems to me there are a few things in your brain that need addressing...
I know I have been here just a short while but I know two things. In showbiz you have to know somebody and it doesn't matter who it is you know.
It doesn't necessarily matter who you know, but it helps if the person you know is in a position to get your script read by someone who can buy it.
Yeah, am just starting out and I have dreams, real dreams but I need a helping hand, someone to help me get past the doorways that shut out new screenwriters but first of course there's the question of learning the craft its why I am here because all these fancy screenwriting courses, I guess they can only add to what you already are know and when I found a course written by a non-screenwriter I kind of lost faith with any of the them courses.That's it.
One thing, you have a slight problem here with run-on sentences.  You should only write a sentence that's able to be said - comfortably - in one breath.
Also, your grasp of verb tenses here is a touch shaky.
I tell you this here and now because the people with the money won't - they'll just reject your script with a piece of amphigory like "Doesn't meet our needs at this time".
Okay I won't tell you how old I am but rest assured I can learn new tricks but to be certain you'll be doing something worth your time I'll work on a couple of scenes from a script I plan to work on and post them in the showcase section tomorrow. Depending on how you feel it and are capable of helping out...
Um, I don't recall asking...
You know, the defensiveness I read from this post (and if I'm wrong, I will abjectly apologize) is a bit off-putting, but if you post it, I'll read it, and I'll give you my honest opinion.

That's gotten me in trouble quite often...

Cheers!
Al B.
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« Reply #15 on: January 17, 2009, 01:25:25 AM »

I am new in the industry and could be wrong all the way but as I read some abridged scripts some time last night I realized that no script is ever perfect any time a critic takes a look at it. Loop holes? They murder screenwriters. Could be, there might be some visible seams in your work though the idea is- high concept? Like I said I could be wrong.
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« Reply #14 on: January 16, 2009, 05:33:27 AM »

I agree ... it's high concept. I somehow missed that sentence earlier.
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Don BledsoeWant to write screenplays? READ SCREENPLAYS!
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Chuck58
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« Reply #13 on: January 12, 2009, 09:23:10 PM »

As far as I was concerned, concerning my script, it was high concept, and it can be described in a single sentence. The producer I mentioned asked for the script. Basically,

The spirit of a serial killer returns from the grave to kill again.

In any case, we'll see what happens with it as far as the other people we sent it to. I'm considering shipping it to SciFi Channel. It's as good as, better than in fact, anything I've seen made by them, except it isn't a kiddie flick. The characters are adult from mid 20's to about 50 yrs old.

I know the idea has been done and re-done to death, but this script *bragging on self here* has a pretty good climax . Even my wife, who criticizes the hell out of my writing, said when she got to the end she couldn't put it down. The climax is action with very little dialogue which might be what she liked. She hates reading screenplays.

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« Reply #12 on: January 12, 2009, 09:13:51 PM »

I think most will tell you that either it is high concept or it's not. You could try distilling the story down to its very basic elements and see if that will work. Yours might start out ...

A European drug lord is blown and he's on the run, wanting to turn his life around, only Interpol won't let him.

WHO:  drug lord
WHAT:  blown
WHERE: Europe
WHY: wants to turn his life around (WHY?) ... maybe so his mother won't die of cancer thinking he's a criminal
WHEN: present day (implied)
OBSTACLE IN HIS WAY:  Interpol

Obviously, I am clueless about the genre and the details of your story, but maybe there's enough here to guide you a little.
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Don BledsoeWant to write screenplays? READ SCREENPLAYS!
Screenwriter & ProducerWant control? GO TO FILM SCHOOL!
Representation: Eileen OFarrell, OFarrell Management (818) 985-3136
Attorney: Paul S. Levine (310) 450-6711
Websites: Script Nurse, Go With The Flo Productions Inc., Queen Dad
anonymous
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« Reply #11 on: January 11, 2009, 06:30:37 AM »

I get the point. If you can't tell the entire story in a single statement the idea it should shift genres and be made into a novel Wink but in all if you don't want to go that way how can you change the story to take an appearance of high-concept material  even if it isn't? Would tight writing and some suspense give the script a turn-about?
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« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2009, 09:30:37 PM »

High concept ... Speed ... Die Hard on a bus.

These are high concept examples:

When a workaholic's wife abandons him and their young son, he must learn to be a single dad. Kramer vs. Kramer (18 words)
A struggling actor disguises himself as a woman and becomes a soap-opera star, only to fall in love with the leading lady. Tootsie (22 words)
Just before elections, a spin-doctor and a Hollywood producer fabricate a war to cover up a presidential sex scandal. Wag the Dog (19 words)

Other examples:

A lonely boy is befriended by an alien.
A small town is terrorized by a shark.
A small boy sees dead people.
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Don BledsoeWant to write screenplays? READ SCREENPLAYS!
Screenwriter & ProducerWant control? GO TO FILM SCHOOL!
Representation: Eileen OFarrell, OFarrell Management (818) 985-3136
Attorney: Paul S. Levine (310) 450-6711
Websites: Script Nurse, Go With The Flo Productions Inc., Queen Dad
uncle_al
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« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2009, 06:09:41 PM »

As I understand it, and please keep in mind I could not only be wrong, but totally insane...
The original "high concept" concept was a movie you could describe in 25 words or less, that provided an immediate image that you could lock in on, and would draw you to see the resulting movie.
The logline is a description of your movie in "high concept".
The term fell out of favor.
The practice of a short, pithy description that hooks the person reading it and makes tham want to see the movie isn't.
Cheers!
Al B.
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anonymous
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« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2009, 06:12:13 AM »

Jus can't help but wonder. How exactly do you know a certain idea is well, a high concept idea? Don't get me wrong, I mean I have watched movies which have been atrocious and to be made into pictures I am certain they passed this high-concept, uh, initial test? Okay I don't know thecriteria they use to reach a decision  but what really entails high-concept material?
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Chuck58
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« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2009, 02:19:16 PM »

I think the main thing to remember is, even if you have somebody who can open doors for you, after that it's up to your work. My wife and I have several contacts, producers in Albuquerque and who live in the SW. I've submitted a script and had it turned down. I spoke with the particular producer via phone and in email. He asked to see the script, read it and turned it down. This was a mystery with a supernatural twist. He even took the time to critique it, but ultimately said he was looking for something called 'high concept' scripts.

I've made the recommended changes and it's been sent to the others we know. No word yet, but it's only been a couple of weeks. The suggested changes resulted in my having to change the entire last third of the script. In retrospect, I think the changes were for the better. Open doors are great, but as I mentioned, the script is going to be the ultimate decider. Make it the very best it can be with proper format, good spelling and grammar, and all the rest that you'll read about here.
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« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2009, 06:03:49 AM »

Sounds kind of hard but I'll give it push: ask those what if questions and give all the practical and impractical answers. I guess so.  I'll give it a go, see where it leads me.
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