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Old 06-19-2013, 03:59 PM   #1
UglyShirts
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Default What a rollercoaster...

It's been a very tumultuous couple of months since I made the move from Minneapolis to Los Angeles. Honestly, I'm fairly certain that this is the first time I'm posting here since getting into town. But, a lot has been going on.

I landed a day job, and showed up here in February. I then welcomed my beautiful wife of 17 years, whom I love beyond all reason, in late March. We stayed with friends for a few months, but eventually signed a lease on a little rental house a few weeks ago. Move-in date: July 1st. Things seemed to be going really well. Starting to work on living the dream.

Then, two weeks ago, I left for work. She was cold. I tucked her in with my blanket, kissed her good-bye, and said I'd see her after work. She smiled, and told me she loved me right back. And then, she promptly got up, packed her bags, cleaned out the bank account and flew back to Minneapolis...only telling me once she'd landed that she'd decided to leave me for a secret boyfriend she'd had for years. And not just any boyfriend...An old roommate. A guy I'd suggested move in with us. A guy I had even gotten a job for at one point. Apparently, it had been going on under my nose the entire time, and I was none the wiser.

"Blindsided" is not the word. I am leveled. Devastated. Out of my mind. For 17 years, we had what I thought was the perfect relationship. We never went to bed angry. Held hands constantly. Complete strangers could see that we had something special, and would ask us our secret in public. She is still the love of my life, but it's like she's been brainwashed. Joined a cult. Even her own family is writing me e-mails, saying that she is not the same person, that she is "toxic," and "poison." And now I'm chewing on the fact that even though the last time I saw her, she looked me dead in the face with her beautiful ice-blue eyes and told me she loved me...The next time I see her, it will be over a mediator's table in a divorce courtroom.

But, all that's just context. There's actually a reason I put this in the "Producers/ProdCos" forum.

Since I'm living just for me now, I am trying to bury myself in the reason I came to Los Angeles to begin with: Screenwriting. And so in the midst of my complete and utter devastation, I reached out someone in my contacts, a good friend in my support network. Told 'em about what happened. Asked if they knew of any doors they could help me get a foot into; any rooms that I could get a hand landing in...Because I really have a burn like nothing else to not just both be successful for myself, but to show her what she walked away from.

And my goodness, did my reinforcements ever respond with flying colors. I was gone to bat for in such a huge way that it could mean actually having a career.

Thanks to my friend...As we speak, my writing partner and I are currently in the process of scheduling a meeting with one of the most prominent, accomplished, and culturally-significant producers in our genre...Which is unbelievable to even contemplate. This ain't a silver lining...It's potentially a gold mine. If we play our cards right, we may be in a VERY good position to be on-screen faster than we ever could have imagined otherwise.

Needless to say, we want to play our cards right.

And because we do, I'm once again reaching out for support.

So. Imagine you had a meeting with a household-name filmmaker. Someone you've admired for years. Hey, some of you don't even have to imagine, so you can draw from experience. How does one prepare? What would you bring, wear, say? Dos, don'ts?

No detail too big, no detail too small. We may only get one shot at this, so we want to make absolutely sure we don't eff it up. Not to mention that it is incumbent upon us to honor the person who vouched for us when I really needed the help.

Fire away. And, though it goes without saying, Thanks in advance.

Last edited by Done Deal Pro : 06-19-2013 at 04:12 PM. Reason: Since the post is so long and the question so short, I put the Q in bold for people to A.
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Old 06-19-2013, 04:26 PM   #2
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Default Re: What a rollercoaster...

I hope you meet some serious success after all of that. Man. Kudos for buckling down and going to work instead of going to a bar.

Re: your meeting, Creativity Post just published this yesterday and I read it and then bookmarked it to read over and over again in the event I ever land any meetings:

http://www.creativitypost.com/psycho..._strategy_used
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Old 06-19-2013, 04:29 PM   #3
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Default Re: What a rollercoaster...

I prepare by doing everything I can do go into the meeting feeling confident. I listen to really upbeat, fun music on the way to the location, I put on my favorite shoes and sunglasses. I rock the leather jacket if it's cold. So by the time I walk in there, I'm pretty convinced I'm the awesomest. It minimizes the nervousness.
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Old 06-19-2013, 04:49 PM   #4
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Default Re: What a rollercoaster...

Use your predicament as a blessing in disguise. There's hardly anything worse that could happen to you than what you've just described.

What should you bring, wear, do? Just be you, man. Bring yourself, your confidence, your knowledge and experience, your passion and your well of talent. Bring everything with you that you know makes you the man for this job.

And hold onto the pain. Grip it tight, let it burn and fester like a kernel of coal. Everytime you need to summon courage or confidence or passion, toss in some fresh kindling and let that coal ignite a fire inside you.

Use it. We accomplish success only through failure. And happiness only through experiencing sadness. It's the yin and yang of the universe.

You're down now. Only direction for you is up. Start climbing.
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Old 06-19-2013, 05:22 PM   #5
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Default Re: What a rollercoaster...

Sorry to hear about your difficulty.

I'm assuming this producer hasn't read anything of yours?

Probably the most important thing you can do is manage your expectations. Don't get too crazy about this meeting, nothing is at stake here (it sounds like a general), so it's an opportunity to have a fun conversation with someone who does things that you really, really enjoy. Be ready to talk to the producer about what you are working on that you are excited about, and practice pitching that. Mention one of their lesser known credits that you really loved (if it's true), ask them what they are working on, and what they are wanting to do.

But, again, just enjoy it. That's the most important thing you can do, have fun, feel fortunate that you get to chat with someone whose work you really enjoy.

Don't wear a suit, of course. Other than that, just be casual.



Quote:
Originally Posted by UglyShirts View Post
It's been a very tumultuous couple of months since I made the move from Minneapolis to Los Angeles. Honestly, I'm fairly certain that this is the first time I'm posting here since getting into town. But, a lot has been going on.

I landed a day job, and showed up here in February. I then welcomed my beautiful wife of 17 years, whom I love beyond all reason, in late March. We stayed with friends for a few months, but eventually signed a lease on a little rental house a few weeks ago. Move-in date: July 1st. Things seemed to be going really well. Starting to work on living the dream.

Then, two weeks ago, I left for work. She was cold. I tucked her in with my blanket, kissed her good-bye, and said I'd see her after work. She smiled, and told me she loved me right back. And then, she promptly got up, packed her bags, cleaned out the bank account and flew back to Minneapolis...only telling me once she'd landed that she'd decided to leave me for a secret boyfriend she'd had for years. And not just any boyfriend...An old roommate. A guy I'd suggested move in with us. A guy I had even gotten a job for at one point. Apparently, it had been going on under my nose the entire time, and I was none the wiser.

"Blindsided" is not the word. I am leveled. Devastated. Out of my mind. For 17 years, we had what I thought was the perfect relationship. We never went to bed angry. Held hands constantly. Complete strangers could see that we had something special, and would ask us our secret in public. She is still the love of my life, but it's like she's been brainwashed. Joined a cult. Even her own family is writing me e-mails, saying that she is not the same person, that she is "toxic," and "poison." And now I'm chewing on the fact that even though the last time I saw her, she looked me dead in the face with her beautiful ice-blue eyes and told me she loved me...The next time I see her, it will be over a mediator's table in a divorce courtroom.

But, all that's just context. There's actually a reason I put this in the "Producers/ProdCos" forum.

Since I'm living just for me now, I am trying to bury myself in the reason I came to Los Angeles to begin with: Screenwriting. And so in the midst of my complete and utter devastation, I reached out someone in my contacts, a good friend in my support network. Told 'em about what happened. Asked if they knew of any doors they could help me get a foot into; any rooms that I could get a hand landing in...Because I really have a burn like nothing else to not just both be successful for myself, but to show her what she walked away from.

And my goodness, did my reinforcements ever respond with flying colors. I was gone to bat for in such a huge way that it could mean actually having a career.

Thanks to my friend...As we speak, my writing partner and I are currently in the process of scheduling a meeting with one of the most prominent, accomplished, and culturally-significant producers in our genre...Which is unbelievable to even contemplate. This ain't a silver lining...It's potentially a gold mine. If we play our cards right, we may be in a VERY good position to be on-screen faster than we ever could have imagined otherwise.

Needless to say, we want to play our cards right.

And because we do, I'm once again reaching out for support.

So. Imagine you had a meeting with a household-name filmmaker. Someone you've admired for years. Hey, some of you don't even have to imagine, so you can draw from experience. How does one prepare? What would you bring, wear, say? Dos, don'ts?

No detail too big, no detail too small. We may only get one shot at this, so we want to make absolutely sure we don't eff it up. Not to mention that it is incumbent upon us to honor the person who vouched for us when I really needed the help.

Fire away. And, though it goes without saying, Thanks in advance.
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:02 PM   #6
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Default Re: What a rollercoaster...

Bring your energy and passion and let them feel it. When I first took meetings I wanted to be "cool" and act like I knew it all and had seen it all and had been there a million times. Only when I let my guard down and allowed my excitement about the project to seep through did I start seeing positive results from my meetings.

If you can find the podcast where Max Landis pitches his take on Peter Pan, that's a great example. He's just so goddamn jazzed, even just hearing him pitch it you can feel this aura of excitement, so imagine being in the room. It makes you feel like if YOU'RE stupid if you're not excited about it, and it's authentic.

Being nervous or overanalyzing everything isn't going to help. Just be your charming, energetic, excited self. I'm assuming this is a general so there's nothing to lose but making a great contact. If you pitch him a written project you have and he can feel how much you love it and how much heart you put into it, he's going to be more likely to give it a read.

Also, I'm sorry for the rough road man, that sucks. Just imagine how pissed she's going to be when you're a million dollar screenwriter and use that as your fuel. Something similar, on a much much much smaller scale happened to me, but the next time I saw the girl I was meeting my agent, manager and a producer for lunch at a fancy restaurant, and she was our hostess. That felt good.
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Old 06-19-2013, 08:38 PM   #7
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Default Re: What a rollercoaster...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Levenger View Post
If you can find the podcast where Max Landis pitches his take on Peter Pan, that's a great example. He's just so goddamn jazzed, even just hearing him pitch it you can feel this aura of excitement, so imagine being in the room. It makes you feel like if YOU'RE stupid if you're not excited about it, and it's authentic.
It was on this Nerdist podcast.
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Old 06-20-2013, 10:33 AM   #8
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Default Re: What a rollercoaster...

Motivation comes in many forms. What ATB said is priceless.
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Old 06-20-2013, 04:42 PM   #9
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Default Re: What a rollercoaster...

Quote:
Originally Posted by iknownuffin View Post
Motivation comes in many forms. What ATB said is priceless.

Yes, BUT -- when ATB says "use it" I think he does not mean - tell the producer all your troubles. That would be... not a good idea. He's interested in your writing, not in you. Any hint of a play for sympathy would probably backfire. Just focus. And good luck!
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Old 06-20-2013, 04:49 PM   #10
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Default Re: What a rollercoaster...

Ditto on all that has just been said. And just remember, when one door closes, another opens- so don't walk through that door- jump into it.
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