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-   -   Query Production Companies - Good or Bad (http://messageboard.donedealpro.com/boards/showthread.php?t=46140)

landercello 04-07-2009 11:34 AM

Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
So I was reading a email newsletter that says querying production companies on your own can hurt your script more than help. And that basically you should only have your representation do it. I don't know if that's true. Any thoughts?

RGF 04-07-2009 12:10 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Search for a thread called 'Producers or Managers?' in the Business Questions threads. That says it all. I'd paste the link if I knew how to do that. Damn technology.

Madbandit 04-07-2009 12:21 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
I would ask the prodcos if they accept queries first, before sending them a pitch. Particularly if you're not repped. I've done it, and got banned, but at least I didn't send them one of my ideas.

Robot17 04-07-2009 12:34 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by landercello (Post 517326)
So I was reading a email newsletter that says querying production companies on your own can hurt your script more than help. And that basically you should only have your representation do it. I don't know if that's true. Any thoughts?

Have your rep do it.

If you don't have a rep, either get one or you do it.

If you do have a rep and want to do it, coordinate with your rep and see what he/she thinks. I know plenty of repped people who also query and use their rep as a cover for submissions.

How else are you going to get read? Studios will rarely look at anything over the transom. If you don't get read you won't sell anything. That's a fact. What else can you do?

Bot

Robot17 04-07-2009 12:52 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Yep. Boski added if you get a request have your rep submit it and he's right.

And also: Sh!tcan the newsletter if they didn't point that out. They don't know what they're talking about.

Bot

(Boski beat me to that one lol)

zenplato 04-07-2009 01:19 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Quote:

So I was reading a email newsletter that says querying production companies on your own can hurt your script more than help.
Landercello,

The only reason I would consider it bad is because your rep wants to control who has seen your script. No one wants to go out with a script that all the studios have passed on, or seen. That's why they ask you who has read it when they court you.

So, from that perspective it can be detrimental; however, you do what you have to do to sell your story.

If you plan on getting repped, then I would only query managers/agents, not prodco's initially. If that doesn't work, mix it up, but never give up.

Of course, I know repped people who query without their reps, so to each their own.

landercello 04-07-2009 03:54 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Thanks for the insight. You guys rock as always.

Rantanplan 04-07-2009 04:15 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
I've gotten a few reads off prod-cos so I don't think it hurts --at least industry people are reading your work in that case. A couple have sent the usual blahblahblah legal form letter saying no unsollicited and that the query was tossed into the incinerator without being read.

The ones that don't respond probably just delete the query (hopefully) and forget about it, so it's not the same as having your script read and rejected all over town... if you land a rep and he/she then submits it to same companies, no biggie. But obviously the rep wouldn't want to submit it to companies that have actually read the script and passed. I think we have to just be as pro-active as we possibly can, even if it means taking risks in one form or another.

umo 04-07-2009 04:39 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Rantanplan (Post 517533)
I've gotten a few reads off prod-cos so I don't think it hurts --at least industry people are reading your work in that case. A couple have sent the usual blahblahblah legal form letter saying no unsollicited and that the query was tossed into the incinerator without being read.

The ones that don't respond probably just delete the query (hopefully) and forget about it, so it's not the same as having your script read and rejected all over town... if you land a rep and he/she then submits it to same companies, no biggie. But obviously the rep wouldn't want to submit it to companies that have actually read the script and passed. I think we have to just be as pro-active as we possibly can, even if it means taking risks in one form or another.

I agree. You'll only burn a limited number of leads.

umo :)

zenplato 04-07-2009 05:28 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Rantanplan (Post 517533)
it's not the same as having your script read and rejected all over town...

Oh ladies, :)

That's exactly what they are trying to avoid and thus the reason for not sending stuff out. Your rep should be your script's gatekeeper.

Where's Farnsworth?

Well, that's their logic, not mine.

Again, you are in control and should do what's best for your career; however, if you have an amazing concept and the script is almost there, don't blow it by sending it out willy nilly. Refine it with your rep and let them do their job.

Again, this is just one aspect of it. There should be no absolutes.

Code7Films 04-07-2009 05:31 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
I hit up every single production company I can get my hands on both in Europe and the U.S. It's a numbers game. If they pass or don't respond I hit them up again in 4-6 months. With high turnover and changing needs I usually have no problem getting them to request the second time around. Sometimes I will do a third round of queries with a new script name and logline. Everyone on this site is my competition so I need to be going 24/7.

zenplato 04-07-2009 05:39 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Then there's that side of it as well.

Honestly, I see what they are saying, but I would think that would only work for just going out to market. I think once your stuff is out there, it's a numbers game indeed--granted you're getting positive coverage.

If the coverage is bad, repped or not repped, you're probably not going to get any traction.

I'm assuming you're getting considers and recommends? I think for an unrepped writer, that's prolly not going to be happening that often. But, I could be wrong.

umo 04-07-2009 05:50 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Code7Films (Post 517578)
I hit up every single production company I can get my hands on both in Europe and the U.S. It's a numbers game. If they pass or don't respond I hit them up again in 4-6 months. With high turnover and changing needs I usually have no problem getting them to request the second time around. Sometimes I will do a third round of queries with a new script name and logline. Everyone on this site is my competition so I need to be going 24/7.

I agree with Code, also. Sales is a numbers game. :)

landercello 04-08-2009 09:55 AM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by zenplato (Post 517584)

I'm assuming you're getting considers and recommends? I think for an unrepped writer, that's prolly not going to be happening that often. But, I could be wrong.

That's kind of the boat I'm in. I have one producer reading my script, who I'm still waiting to hear back from, but loved the concept, and another former producer who read it and loved it. I'm trying to work that contact but she's hard to pin down. I've had some success in the past with another producer who nearly optioned another script. But that's what I was trying to figure out, if I just need to let a manager do the job for me as suggested. Or an agent. But I'm still feeling that out as well. Hopefully both sides will come together at some point. For now though, I think I'll put my energy into representation.

zenplato 04-08-2009 11:35 AM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by landercello (Post 517899)
But that's what I was trying to figure out, if I just need to let a manager do the job for me as suggested. Or an agent.

Have you been querying reps or just prodco's and studios?

Code7Films 04-08-2009 12:36 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
My agent lets me query on my own as long as I let him know where it is going so he doesn't submit to the same people or get blindsided. The promblem sometimes is that he is very busy, a lot of clients, so my scripts don't always get the attention they should. Now, when I drum up A list interest, he jumps on it. I don't mind doing leg work. It keeps me in the game and sharp. Now, I'm not sure where my entertainment attorney is. Probably on the golf course... :)

25 O'Clock 04-08-2009 12:39 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Just DO NOT go directly into a studio/buyer. Studios have coverage wh can "haunt you" for life. The steps should be --

#1 Try to find a manager.
#2 Try to find an agent (but if you can't find a manager, most likely, an agent will be less likely as finding an agent nowadays is NEARLY impossible sans sale)
#3 Try to find a producer (many established producers have lost their deals w studios due to cut-backs and may be a bit more open to working w newbies)
#4 Try Production Companies BUT this is really the job for a manager/agent, but hey, if you're a good sales-person, try it.
#5 Marry a rich person

Code7Films 04-08-2009 12:46 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
If you have a great script you don't have to worry about studio coverage. I submit to them all the time and have never been given poor coverage on any of my scripts.

landercello 04-09-2009 09:42 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by zenplato (Post 517964)
Have you been querying reps or just prodco's and studios?

Both...although it was more producers then agents/managers. The producers that have read or plan to read the script where ones I met in person and queried later. Except for the one that was almost optioned. That was just a query.

landercello 04-09-2009 09:49 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by 25 O'Clock (Post 518004)
Just DO NOT go directly into a studio/buyer. Studios have coverage wh can "haunt you" for life. The steps should be --

#1 Try to find a manager.
#2 Try to find an agent (but if you can't find a manager, most likely, an agent will be less likely as finding an agent nowadays is NEARLY impossible sans sale)
#3 Try to find a producer (many established producers have lost their deals w studios due to cut-backs and may be a bit more open to working w newbies)
#4 Try Production Companies BUT this is really the job for a manager/agent, but hey, if you're a good sales-person, try it.
#5 Marry a rich person

Thanks for the info...#5...hmm. I've flirted with Jamie Foxx, Julian McMahon and Josh Lucas...but it was always the wrong time wrong place. And no, it wasn't a dream...or a music video...just a really cool job :cool: No, not escorting either. (In case you're guessing, I worked on an entertainment show) But since I had to quit that job to pursue my writing in LA, all's fair now. :D Sadly, all those people, never any good connections (business), well any that panned out. But I did make connections that would pay off after I make it to the top...which feels like an oxymoron.

wcmartell 04-11-2009 10:43 PM

Re: Query Production Companies - Good or Bad
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by landercello (Post 517326)
So I was reading a email newsletter that says querying production companies on your own can hurt your script more than help.

Only of your script sucks, and it will still suck if an agent sends it out. The difference will be - if you agent is with a big agency that has other talent the producer has some interest in, they will probably smile and pretend they like you until you leave the room.

The key is - don't have a script that sucks. Then, sometimes one producer will read your script... and some other producer will call and ask to read it. You'll get all kinds of meetings - just like if you had an agent.

Agents love to say that you can't sell a script without them... but that's just not true.

- Bill


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