PDA

View Full Version : Similar Plot


CrissCross
09-07-2013, 07:05 PM
I was just about to start writing a script when a friend e mailed a movie that had a very similar plot. I mean very similar. The movie wasn't successful and was released in 2003. I even e mailed the logline to a couple of producers I know and they said they would like to see the script when ready. Kind of stuck now. Do I change certain elements to my story but keep others ?

wcmartell
09-07-2013, 11:10 PM
First thing I'd suggest is make your story more personal to you - and that works no matter the genre. Find the element in the story that is *you* and highlight that in the script, so that this screenplay is different than the other.

If there is some way to make it different where it still works, consider that.

Also think about the "second idea" - in ARMAGEDDON there is a giant asteroid hurtling towards Earth and we send up deep core drillers to plant explosives and blow it up, in DEEP IMPACT there is a giant asteroid hurtling towards Earth so they have a lottery for placement in an underground bunker. So what is the second idea in your story, and how is it different than the one in the existing film? How can you focus your story a little more on that second idea?

One other thing to noodle on - why was the other movie a flop? Did it have anything to do with the story? Can you "fix" your version so that it has a better shot?

- Bill

cshel
09-08-2013, 09:36 AM
The good news is that you just started writing it. So much easier to switch gears than if you had completed it already.

I agree with Bill in that you should try to figure out why it was not successful. Have you actually watched the movie, or just read about it?

CrissCross
09-08-2013, 11:52 AM
I have not seen the movie. And obviously had never even had heard of it until yesterday. While the synopsis is very similar to mine the genre is off. Mine is a "R" rated comedy while this was an action/thriller. The weird part is that I know a couple producers in the business and I threw out my logline and both said to send away when script was done. I know they can't remember every movie made in the past 15 years but this one had a pretty big star in it but didn't fare well at the box office... $16 million I think

Dr. Gonzo
09-08-2013, 11:59 AM
Bill's got it.
Go with what Bill said.

cshel
09-08-2013, 12:24 PM
I have not seen the movie. And obviously had never even had heard of it until yesterday. While the synopsis is very similar to mine the genre is off. Mine is a "R" rated comedy while this was an action/thriller. The weird part is that I know a couple producers in the business and I threw out my logline and both said to send away when script was done. I know they can't remember every movie made in the past 15 years but this one had a pretty big star in it but didn't fare well at the box office... $16 million I think

This has really piqued my curiosity. Without knowing the specifics, it's hard to advise. I understand you might not want to say more at this point. The genres are certainly different enough. I say watch the movie, and read the reviews, and then proceed from there. The producers are going off a logline, and they've probably read a million similarities to something. That movie was a decade ago. It depends on the take. Look at Big, 13 Going On 30, 17 Again, Freaky Friday - all different takes on a similar theme in the same genre, and they all got made. Again, you haven't written the script yet - the story world is your oyster.

Ronaldinho
09-08-2013, 12:29 PM
Do not judge similarity without seeing the movie.

You may have to deal with it anyway from a marketing point of view, but given the comedy/action dichotomy here I suspect you're probably fine.

CrissCross
09-08-2013, 07:14 PM
I found an article that lists 11 movies that were eerily similar to another movie so I'm easing my fears. Here it is

http://www.totalfilm.com/features/22-movies-that-were-weirdly-similar

And not even included on the list is "Mac and Me" which ripped off E.T. in a big way. I'll change a few things around and, like I said, mine is an "R" rated comedy which this other one isn't. I also found it on Netflix so I'll give it a look.

holly
09-08-2013, 08:14 PM
if they're in different genres youre absolutely fine.

Silverlynx35
09-08-2013, 10:48 PM
Bill's got it.
Go with what Bill said.

I agree with this. It was just shorter to quote Gonzo rather than Bill.:bounce: