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Old 06-19-2013, 08:37 AM   #1
LauriD's Avatar
Join Date: May 2005
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Default How does a "packaging agent" work?

I assume a packaging agent is an agent who puts together packages (script, director, actors), and I assume that's something that not all agents do.

So how exactly does it work? Is it sort of a house of cards thing, where you get actor A because director B is "interested," and you get actor C because of actor A -- and then the whole thing falls apart if director B decides to do something else?

Would a packaging agent only use elements represented by his or her agency?

And then once the package is assembled (formally? informally) the agent takes it to studios? Are there bidding wars for packages like there are for hot specs? Or is the process different?

How common is it for a script to go out as part of a package versus stand-alone? Is it correct to assume that the odds of a sale are better if a script is part of an attractive package?

Is being part of a package sort of a "good housekeeping seal" for scripts? I.e., it "must" be good if A, B, and C are attached?
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:26 AM   #2
Join Date: Feb 2010
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Default Re: How does a "packaging agent" work?

I've been working with a packaging agent at a top-five agency on a project of mine recently. He, the producer, the casting director, and the director worked together to identify who the right actors to approach are, and it was the packaging agent's job to bring knowledge about their value to foreign presale to the discussion. (I was on the phone for most of these conversations, but it was mostly as a courtesy.) eg:

"If you get actors X, Y, and Z, we should be able to sell those foreign rights for enough to make the movie."

When we get all the pieces in place, he's the guy who spearheads the process f taking it to foreign distributors an making those sales happen.

This may not be all of what packaging agents do. It's what my experience of a packaging agent is, and this is the only time I've worked with one.
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Old 06-19-2013, 10:07 AM   #3
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 1,100
Default Re: How does a "packaging agent" work?

Packaging sucks. Two of my projects are trying to be packaged. It can take forever. I have one project with an actor, but no director. Etc. Projects these days are more attractive to buyers with a package. Specs sell without packageable elements, but it is very hard. The concept needs to be very clean, and high.

Most the time, the agency packaging the project will try to do it exclusively through their agency (they get paid more. Like say, WME would try to put major elements from their roster on a project) but there are times where agencies package from outside the agency. It's a way for agencies to get more money from the sale.
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