Tag Archives: script consultant

THR Classic: Failed screenwriter becomes successful script consultant

Now charging $250 for advice she herself never followed

Pasadena native Sally Trenton recently transformed herself into “one of Hollywood’s top script consultants,” despite having been one of Hollywood’s worst screenwriters for the past six years.

“I’ve found that it’s much easier to critique other people’s work than actually create quality material of my own,” said Trenton. “Plus I’ve written so many bad scripts, I know how to spot what’s wrong with them.”

Despite never having secured representation or any discernible level of interest from Hollywood producers, Trenton, who has written 14 screenplays, claims she has the insight to help aspiring screenwriters get their scripts ready for the market.

“The last thing you want to do is send someone a script that isn’t ready,” she said. “Unless that someone is me, because how else would I make a living! But seriously, send me $250 and a PDF of your script, and I’ll send you back some extremely subjective notes that may improve your script up to 5%. I’ve read all the best screenwriting books so you don’t have to.”

In the two months since Trenton began marketing her services, she has already helped dozens of amateur writers take their scripts to the next level.

“Two of them made the first cut at Scriptapalooza,” she said. “It’s pretty exciting helping make dreams come true!”

** This THR Classic was first posted in October 2008 **

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Script consultant overcharging customers by approximately 9900%

Feedback actually worth $1.78

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Wannabe’s mom thinks latest script could be the one

Other relatives, paid consultant agree

Kevin Tomlinson’s mom has always been his biggest fan, from his days in Little League to his current dream of making it in Hollywood. Still, 62-year-old Thelma Tomlinson claimed she was being completely unbiased last week when she categorized son Kevin’s script as “a masterpiece that would make dad proud.”

“I could totally see this on the big screen, sweetie,” she told Kevin after reading his sci-fi script ‘Moon Star Nine.’ “I think you should call Steven Spielberg about it.”

And Thelma isn’t the only one excited about the script. After she told Kevin’s uncle and cousins about it, they emailed Kevin for details.

“Hey Kev, I heard from your mom that you finished a new movie script,” wrote Uncle Jack. “I can’t believe we have a budding Hollywood star in the family! Just don’t forget us when you become rich and famous!”

Despite the hubbub in the Tomlinson household, the only non-relative who has read Kevin’s script is screenwriting consultant Alan Bendrell. But even he was impressed.

“I could totally see this on the big screen,” said Bendrell, who charges $200 per screenplay. “This is a real improvement over the last seven scripts you paid me to cover. Keep ‘em coming, buddy!”

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Script consultant gives 46 different comedies exact same feedback

Simply swaps in new character names and titles

Ted Silver of AwesomeScreenplayCoverage.com recently sent the same feedback to his 46th straight comedy-writing client, eclipsing his previous mark for identical coverage set back in 2004 when he told three dozen screenwriters their horror scripts “had plenty of scares, but needed some character depth to be more attractive to producers.”

“I provide my clients a wonderful, consistent service regardless of the merits of their particular script,” said Silver, who claims to have read for some of the top companies in Hollywood, and also once reached the quarterfinals in Scriptapalooza. “By telling every writer the same thing, I put them on a level playing field and save myself a ton of time in the process.”

Silver denies using formatted coverage reports is a scam.

“It’s standard industry practice,” he said. “Half the time we don’t know what we’re talking about anyway. But it’s pretty hard to argue with vague feedback like ‘this comedy doesn’t have enough heart’ or ‘you’re definitely on to something with this idea.’”

According to one industry watchdog, nearly 90% of all script consultants have never even visited Hollywood, and only 2% have ever worked in the film industry. Of that 2%, most were summer interns.

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Failed screenwriter becomes successful script consultant

Now charging $250 for advice she herself never followed

Pasadena native Sally Trenton recently transformed herself into “one of Hollywood’s top script consultants,” despite having been one of Hollywood’s worst screenwriters for the past six years.

“I’ve found that it’s much easier to critique other people’s work than actually create quality material of my own,” said Trenton. “Plus I’ve written so many bad scripts, I know how to spot what’s wrong with them.”

Despite never having secured representation or any discernible level of interest from Hollywood producers, Trenton, who has written 14 screenplays, claims she has the insight to help aspiring screenwriters get their scripts ready for the market.

“The last thing you want to do is send someone a script that isn’t ready,” she said. “Unless that someone is me, because how else would I make a living! But seriously, send me $250 and a PDF of your script, and I’ll send you back some extremely subjective notes that may improve your script up to 5%. I’ve read all the best screenwriting books so you don’t have to.”

In the two months since Trenton began marketing her services, she has already helped dozens of amateur writers take their scripts to the next level.

“Two of them made the first cut at Scriptapalooza,” she said. “It’s pretty exciting helping make dreams come true!”

Comments Off on Failed screenwriter becomes successful script consultant

Filed under Industry News, Writers