The Berlinale (Berlin Film Festival) and the associated European Film Market are collectively the most important European film business event after Cannes. I’ll be there this year, jointly pitching some horror and sci-fi projects with several producers from the UK, Canada and Italy, and also looking to make contacts for my own genre spec scripts. If you’re attending the EFM 2018 and want to meet up, send me a message via the contact page or LinkedIn.
The supernatural thriller feature I was hired to rewrite, FIRST AND ONLY, has started filming in Edinburgh. Psychics! Serial killers! MI5!
This means I am officially a screenwriter in production.
You can follow the progress of the production at https://www.facebook.com/firstonlymovie/?pnref=story
Very pleased to report that my contained supernatural horror THE DEVIL’S ANSWER has been optioned by Two Tribes, a production company based in Los Angeles.
The logline: In a remote, snowbound prison run by a totalitarian regime, a dedicated torturer starts to believe that his mysterious, single prisoner is the Devil himself.
The script was found on InkTip. Two Tribes are a new production company, and are now raising finance for a slate of three films including THE DEVIL’S ANSWER.
This is my second option this year for a low-budget horror screenplay.
To Hollywood and beyond!
THE DRAGON RIDER is now a finalist in the We Screenplay International Competition.
Clearly the judges like scripts where a dragon loaded with missiles flies in formation with the USAF and headbutts an alien mothership.
I know I do.
Here’s the list of finalists: Congrats to all. http://blog.wescreenplay.com/wisc-15-finalists-announced/?Finalists
The screenplay for my supernatural Western feature A SIX-GUN FOR THE DEVIL has been requested by Maximum Films and Management in New York.
I’m quite chuffed about that.
The request came after a Happy Writers pitch session on Stage 32.
Now it’s back to the fourth redraft of my ‘zombie movie without any zombies’….
I have two screenplays (horror and sci–fi) I want to take to market. Before I do so, however, I want to make sure they are the best they can be. Part of my plan is to use table reads – the perfect opportunity to discover some unspeakable dialogue or clunky exposition. I want to record the read on audio.
I’ve never done a table read. So, what I’m looking for are the protocols / best practice:
1) I can’t pay anyone, so what should I offer as basics (food, drink etc.)?
2) Other than the usual registering of the scripts, are there any legal issues? Should I ask everyone participating to sign a waiver saying they have no legal claim on the table read performance and recording, and/or a NDA? Any examples of relevant pro formas that do the job without being intimidating?
3) Scripts – distributed as hard copies or as electronic copies? Should I expect actors to print out their scripts or print them for them?
4) How should I cast for the roles? Invite people to contact me, send them a script sample, and listen to them over the phone? (For a table read it’s the voice that counts, not the physical appearance of the actor.) Or is there a better way? Skype? Something else? What would you prefer? Should I post a list of roles and ask actors to ‘pitch’ for one or the other?
5) I think I should start the read by asking everyone present to give their name, the name of the character they are playing, and a one-line description of the character, starting with the leads. Good idea?
6) Should scripts be marked up in any way? Or will actors do that themselves?
7) Should I ‘direct’ the read? Stop the proceedings and ask an actor to read in a certain way? Or let it flow?
8) Pre-read briefing for all actors around the table (for tone, style, etc.). Good idea?
9) Anything else I’ve missed?
And now it gets weird. Anyone ever done a VIRTUAL table-read, with everyone sitting at home?
The reason I ask is because I live in the middle of nowhere, in a country where few speak English.
I’m therefore wondering if the technology would allow me to do a virtual table read, with actors from around the world sitting in the comfort of their own homes. Anyone ever done anything like that?
Any thoughts you have will be greatly appreciated. firstname.lastname@example.org