Producer Iain Smith, Producer Ned Dowd, Executive Producer Luke Ryan and Agent Brandy Rivers came together on this panel to give some insight into the Hollywood dream, and it’s realities. Answering questions and putting forth their own take on the best way to approach entry to the system in LA, there session was both fun and informative.
Here are a few of my favourite snippets.
- The most fertile relationship is by far the one between a writer and producer
- Time and money are the studio questions about scripts above artistic merit or other factors. Just okay movies can still make money. The investment risk is a real factor and it’s concept and spectacle therefore that are being pushed forward.
- Think beyond single scripts. It’s how you write that matters. You can get more from the work you get off the back of the quality of your script than you do from selling the script itself.
- Don’t be resistant to development. If the fixes they offer don’t seem right to you, work on fixes that give a studio what they want out of the project.
- Think of who your audience is, always.
- Make sure when submitting that YOU are the one who’s written your synopsis.
- Scripted TV in Hollywood is higher than ever. One hundred and ninety shows are on TV right now and lately two mainly reality based networks have started including drama. Cable content platforms such as Netflix are happening too.
- The good news is that Hollywood, though full of writers, has a fairly thin talent pool to feed demand and the fresh voice is more necessary right now.
- Movie companies are just a small part of large corporate entities. Companies coming up who can market without huge P&A budgets will bring back mid level film, which is currently being ignored as too risky for the level of investment.
So there you go! Positive news in a crowded market. The message seemed to be that if you can know your craft and rise above the flotsam and jetsame ever floating around the Street of Dreams then there’s work to be had and careers to be made. So if Hollywood is what you want, what’s stopping you eh? Go play with the players.
Leilani Holmes at the London Screenwriters’ Festival
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