Tag Archives: aspiring screenwriter

Writer who can’t wait to sell a script forced to do just that

His hope to erode slowly and painfully over time

For more than eight years, aspiring screenwriter Ben Simons has been looking forward to the day he sells his first feature script. That day will never come, according to most industry experts.

“Oh, I read one of Ben’s scripts last year,” said ICM agent Paula Barker. “Well I guess I read like five pages of it, to be more accurate. I think it was about killer hamsters or something…pretty awful.”

That script, Hamsterphobia, did not ultimately sell or garner interest from any reps in Hollywood, much to Simons’ confusion.

“I really thought I had something with Hamsterphobia,” he said. “No worries, though. My structure has improved so much since then. I’m sure this new script is the one that will kick off my career. It’s super-high concept and totally commercial.”

Benderspink’s Todd Larouche disagrees.

“A script about a guy who loses his virginity to a nun?” said Larouche. “That’s neither high concept nor commercial. This guy should just give up.”

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The Top 50 Reasons You Won’t Make It As A Screenwriter

50. The only manager willing to rep you is based in a suburb of Phoenix.

49. Even Uwe Boll thinks your material is uninspired.

48. It’s not you. It’s the 99% of people on Earth that write better than you.

47. When you receive polite passes from managers, the encouraging part of the email is a different font size, indicating they’ve simply pasted boilerplate niceties after the personalized intro.

46. People mistake your dramas for comedies.

45. People mistake your comedies for dramas.

44. You’ve ever compared one of your scripts to a movie that won an Academy Award.

43. Hollywood discriminates against female writers, even though your name is Jerry and most people assume you’re a guy when they delete your queries.

42. You use vacation time to fly to LA for meetings, but don’t have any meetings set up ahead of time.

41. You agonize over whether to use card stock for the title page.

40. A rep has never claimed to become erect after something you’ve written or said.

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Screenwriter’s message board handle much more successful than him

Alter ego wise beyond actual writer’s years

Aspiring screenwriter John Brenner last visited Hollywood seven years ago, during which time he had coffee with a guy who was one of 14 associate producers on Home Alone 3. Brenner’s online alter ego ‘AListerGuy’, however, is much more accomplished.

“I’ve been in countless meetings with top producers,” AListerGuy recently posted on Done Deal Pro. “Gather round, children, for I am about to dispense precious wisdom gleaned from years of developing material with producers, studios, actors and reps.”

Never shy about offering advice to newbies, AListerGuy has also driven four actual, working screenwriters away from the boards.

“No offense, but your movies are crap,” AListerGuy posted in January of 2007 in a thread about production costs. “They shouldn’t spend another dime on one of your scripts. I mean, I respect your work ethic, but the only reason you’re successful is because of your connections. Well guess what? I have connections too, and they all say you’re a shitty writer. These are TOP studio executives, my friend. So maybe it’s time you get off your high horse.”

Brenner is currently seeking representation with his spec script ‘Blazing Paddles.’

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13 industry readers bored to death by same script

Unfunny romantic comedy wreaks havoc on Hollywood

More than a dozen assistants and script analysts were senselessly killed this week by “Sports Bar & Girl,” a painfully stale romantic comedy penned by aspiring screenwriter Frank Drennan of Skokie, Illinois.

“It’s just so horrible,” said an ICM executive, referring to both the script and its path of destruction. “I nearly lost my life after reading just a paragraph of the coverage. This writer has no respect for human life…or dialogue.”

According to UCLA physician Allan Chu, death by boredom is more common than ever, thanks to websites like Triggerstreet.com, which encourage talentless hacks to deluge innocent Hollywood assistants with queries and, sadly, the brutal scripts that follow.

“Historically, death by boredom was caused by activities like attending church or watching softball on television,” said Chu. “Nowadays, bad screenplays account for 74% of all boredom-related deaths. One minute you’re suffering through convoluted action descriptions, and the next minute your life is over.”

Sports Bar & Girl marks Drennan’s fifth completed screenplay, but the first to actually cause death. Previous scripts have merely discouraged, enraged or maimed readers.

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