Franklin Leonard

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  • Re: Franklin Leonard

    I can't even get my friends to agree on how we feel about Toy Story 4.

    Why would you expect different readers not to react differently to scripts? It's all opinion. It's all timing. It's about getting the right spec in front of the right person at the right random time when they didn't just have a huge fight with their ex on the phone or getting yelled at by their boss or just got the flu.

    If this was the movie Yesterday where people forget about The Beatles music except one person and no one had every heard for great 80s movies except you and you could "write" Beverly Hills Cop and Die Hard for the first time -- they probably wouldn't sell in your hands. Times have changed for one. But even if you wrote the hottest spec that just sold last month and went out with it to same buyers, it still may not sell with same set of readers and buyers. It's talent meets random luck!

    That's why in some thread I suggested maybe other forms of writing like novel writing would be slightly more fulfilling in that you have a finished product to sell. I'm sure it's just as hard in same and different ways but it seems slightly better on the sales side. Maybe just because I see 100 specs sell a year and some stats say there are over a million books put out a year -- let's half that for self published people and you still have 500,000 books sold to 100 specs sold and now I dont' know why any of us try at all.

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    • Re: Franklin Leonard

      Originally posted by Bono View Post
      Why would you expect different readers not to react differently to scripts? It's all opinion.
      I think the confusion is not about how the readers react to the script but how they rate them. I don't like romantic comedies but I can tell the difference between a romantic comedy with a solid structure and clear character motivations and one that is a total mess.

      Yesterday I saw a reddit post by a user who got an 8 and a 3 on the same script. One reader thought the script was on a professional level and another thought it was the bottom of the barrel.

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      • Re: Franklin Leonard

        Why not just trust what the experts at Virtual Pitchfest say!

        9 of 10 of the responses I've ever received were "Nothing personal, it just didn't grab us".

        To determine this, I went through the first of five screens of 'responses' on my VPF profile: 251 total pitches since I joined up, in 2010. Needless to say, I've only sent about $75 (for maybe 10 pitches) in the last four years, after finding more reasonable (ie. free) alternatives.

        And as it turns out, I think VPF changed this stock rejection blurb: It obviously didn't sound like very good value for a $10 pitch! However, I'm not sure the newer version is any better: "Strong project, just currently not the right fit."

        On the other hand, I've also received these on VPF:

        - We already have a similar project.
        - We're not interested in the subject matter at this time.
        - The budget for this film would be too low for us. (I presume there'd be one for 'too high for us' !)

        They must employ some sort of a checkbox response function, to make it easier on those poor 'pros' to respond quickly and easily.

        Among these 50 I reviewed, a few did add 'comments'. One guy said 'It seems an original premise, but you haven't really included enough in the pitch for me, story wise, to really make a solid judgment.' Now THAT was a waste of $10!

        The funniest one was a bit of prose from a producer who passed on my kids' time travel story that also had an environmental message: "Don't think this one is for us (we have to stray from the "environmental" messages after xxxxxx by order of our financiers)"

        I didn't want to identify the company or its film, hence the "xxxxxx". But isn't it odd that "financiers" are directing them to avoid enviro-themed films! (The film in question scored a mere $5M above its middling budget, according to IMDB, but I think that's domestic. Wiki has it doubling its budget, overall.)

        But you see the politics in these things?

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        • Re: Franklin Leonard

          For those who've used the Blacklist....how does it work? Do you get the evaluations first, then decide after the eval comes in, whether to make it public? If you don't like the eval (i.e. it doesn't get an 8 or above), does it just remain unviewable for the public. Also, I am a little concerned about the fact you don't know who's downloading that script.

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          • Re: Franklin Leonard

            Originally posted by Friday View Post
            For those who've used the Blacklist....how does it work? Do you get the evaluations first, then decide after the eval comes in, whether to make it public? If you don't like the eval (i.e. it doesn't get an 8 or above), does it just remain unviewable for the public. Also, I am a little concerned about the fact you don't know who's downloading that script.
            I would be concerned too. Who's the reader doing the eval? KNOW ONE KNOWS!

            I tried The Blacklist (website) as another 'test the waters' venture. A script I'd already sold. Low marks, to me, 7s. Didn't Jeff do the same test, same results-is as me? I immediately deleted my account. Beyond that, no idea how it works. They gave me high marks for character (maybe 8-9, hard to remember) but low marks for concept originality, 7. Seriously? There ain't never been a show about this on TV, so? And it already sold, so? And had big showrunners, so? And a name producer, so? Oh and a studio, so?

            Meh... fukk all this sh!t. Try to do **** yourself as the main GRIND. See my post today about intros. IOW -- Have your rep hustle, but also have your own hustle.
            Bruh, fukkin *smooches*! Feel me? Ha!

            Comment


            • Re: Franklin Leonard

              Originally posted by Friday View Post
              For those who've used the Blacklist....how does it work? Do you get the evaluations first, then decide after the eval comes in, whether to make it public? If you don't like the eval (i.e. it doesn't get an 8 or above), does it just remain unviewable for the public. Also, I am a little concerned about the fact you don't know who's downloading that script.
              yes, you wait for the evals and determine if you want to make it public. i usually do one first then a second after because you have to have two that score above the community ace to get on the list.

              if you get two right away your score could be high enough even without getting 8s which will keep you one the lists and viewable. The score still count to your average but you can choose not to make it public.

              Yeah the not knowing who downloads your spec is a problem, but you can't do anything about it. If you get high scores they'll offer you free or discounted reviews which are always good to take so you can get on the annual top list which takes a min of 4 reviews above ave.
              "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist,- Pablo Picasso

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              • Re: Franklin Leonard

                Originally posted by GucciGhostXXX View Post
                I would be concerned too. Who's the reader doing the eval? KNOW ONE KNOWS!

                I tried The Blacklist (website) as another 'test the waters' venture. A script I'd already sold. Low marks, to me, 7s. Didn't Jeff do the same test, same results-is as me? I immediately deleted my account. Beyond that, no idea how it works. They gave me high marks for character (maybe 8-9, hard to remember) but low marks for concept originality, 7. Seriously? There ain't never been a show about this on TV, so? And it already sold, so? And had big showrunners, so? And a name producer, so? Oh and a studio, so?

                Meh... fukk all this sh!t. Try to do **** yourself as the main GRIND. See my post today about intros. IOW -- Have your rep hustle, but also have your own hustle.
                a 7 isn't a bad score. and it doesn't indicate the script can't get sold or into dev, it's just one person's POV. that happens at different prodcos, too. all the time.

                Many scripts receive high and lower scores. the name of the game is when you have a consensus of people that all agree on higher scores. it's similar to real world- one prodco rejects it and another doesn't.

                Jeff received one evaluation with all 9s and one with 6s. but the low score was specifically a personal taste thing. the script was about the porn industry i think in the 70s and the reader didn't like the way the female characters were depicted, if i remember correctly.
                "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist,- Pablo Picasso

                Comment


                • Re: Franklin Leonard

                  Originally posted by GucciGhostXXX View Post
                  I would be concerned too. Who's the reader doing the eval? KNOW ONE KNOWS!

                  I tried The Blacklist (website) as another 'test the waters' venture. A script I'd already sold. Low marks, to me, 7s. Didn't Jeff do the same test, same results-is as me? I immediately deleted my account. Beyond that, no idea how it works. They gave me high marks for character (maybe 8-9, hard to remember) but low marks for concept originality, 7. Seriously? There ain't never been a show about this on TV, so? And it already sold, so? And had big showrunners, so? And a name producer, so? Oh and a studio, so?

                  Meh... fukk all this sh!t. Try to do **** yourself as the main GRIND. See my post today about intros. IOW -- Have your rep hustle, but also have your own hustle.

                  Which section did you put it at?

                  Comment


                  • Re: Franklin Leonard

                    Originally posted by finalact4 View Post
                    yes, you wait for the evals and determine if you want to make it public. i usually do one first then a second after because you have to have two that score above the community ace to get on the list.

                    if you get two right away your score could be high enough even without getting 8s which will keep you one the lists and viewable. The score still count to your average but you can choose not to make it public.

                    Yeah the not knowing who downloads your spec is a problem, but you can't do anything about it. If you get high scores they'll offer you free or discounted reviews which are always good to take so you can get on the annual top list which takes a min of 4 reviews above ave.

                    Thanks. The Blacklist is intriguing. I just haven't pulled the trigger yet because I am not sure how the grading will go and plus I don't like that I don't know who's downloading my script. At least with the top contests, I have a fair degree of certainty how I"d place if I do enough drafts and get it vetted enough. I only want scripts that are considered very good to be floating out there. Otherwise, I'd just like to bury them in the deep blue sea as my trunk scripts.

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                    • Re: Franklin Leonard

                      Originally posted by finalact4 View Post
                      a 7 isn’t a bad score. and it doesn’t indicate the script can’t get sold or into dev, it’s just one person’s POV. that happens at different prodcos, too. all the time.

                      Many scripts receive high and lower scores. the name of the game is when you have a consensus of people that all agree on higher scores. it’s similar to real world— one prodco rejects it and another doesn’t.

                      Jeff received one evaluation with all 9s and one with 6s. but the low score was specifically a personal taste thing. the script was about the porn industry i think in the 70s and the reader didn’t like the way the female characters were depicted, if i remember correctly.
                      Gotcha.

                      I just felt like "I have no idea who's reading this and giving low-ish scores, so I'm out." At least with a prodco I know who's giving me the low score.

                      IDK... I suppose my point is, and has been before, that the lower I go on the totem pole, the less well I do.

                      For example: With one script I submitted to Nicholl, I didn't make it past the first round. Crickets. I also gave this script to a writer I'd met at a party because I liked what they had to say. I was sure they were gonna dig it. NOPE! I suspect they didn't read it themselves and had it covered by their producing partner (a woman, no offense to women but that script is VERY male centric. Which is why I don't believe the note was his.). The response "This is a DISASTER!" Fukkin WHAT? Seriously... a disaster? The same script was read by the producer of the Matrix on plane back from London. He emailed my rep the second he got off the plane this word "AWESOME!!!" He called me two weeks later from on set. Whispering. I could hear the director over his shoulder "Rolling!" (Side note: Good tip btw, always yell 'rolling' before everyone is 'set' to get people moving! Otherwise they'll just stand around.) He said "Great script. Fukking loved it, how would you like to get paid to write ____ for me?" I'm like "Oh wow, thanks so much, I'd love to--" Cuts me off "Great, I'm gonna call the studio and tell them to get me the film rights to ___." CLICK!

                      Same script.

                      (MORE)

                      I was meeting with another tastemaker on that script. He says to me "You know what your biggest strength is?" I'm like "Uhhhh... IDK... character?" He's like "Nope... structure." WTF? Structure??? That's my biggest flaw in my mind.

                      Overall point: You just never know who or why someone will or will not respond to your script. My responses on that one were literally all over the place. From disaster to awesome. From my biggest strength is character work to, nope it's structure.

                      This is SUPER subjective. Which is why I don't get why people talk about this as if it's logical objectiveness. It ain't.
                      Bruh, fukkin *smooches*! Feel me? Ha!

                      Comment


                      • Re: Franklin Leonard

                        Originally posted by Friday View Post
                        Thanks. The Blacklist is intriguing. I just haven't pulled the trigger yet because I am not sure how the grading will go and plus I don't like that I don't know who's downloading my script. At least with the top contests, I have a fair degree of certainty how I"d place if I do enough drafts and get it vetted enough. I only want scripts that are considered very good to be floating out there. Otherwise, I'd just like to bury them in the deep blue sea as my trunk scripts.
                        Yup... that's a flaw of the site. You want to read my script? Tell me who you are and *I* will decide if I give a fukk if you get to read it.

                        Challenge me on that, Franklin! I have a million (well... maybe 10) reasons why that's a bad model and you have zero reasons why it's a good model, and you know it!

                        Bottom line, it's a model designed to keep you paying for blind reads from "nobody-losers." Ask yourself WHY the readers don't have to disclose WHO they are.

                        C'mon man...
                        Bruh, fukkin *smooches*! Feel me? Ha!

                        Comment


                        • Re: Franklin Leonard

                          Originally posted by GucciGhostXXX View Post
                          Ask yourself WHY the readers don't have to disclose WHO they are.
                          the fairest way would be to give them a number or nom d plume. Being able to identify the reader, in some respect, gives the client ability to judge the reader against their other work. If they're constantly giving **** reads, you can pin them down, otherwise its all lost in the noise.

                          Tell you why it won't happen though. It might show the paupacity of the site in terms of active readers and/or readers who are busting through too many reads in too short a time. Anonymity is working just fine for the business model

                          EDIT: Still not going to stop me using the site though when the time is right
                          I heard the starting gun


                          sigpic

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                          • Re: Franklin Leonard

                            Originally posted by GucciGhostXXX View Post
                            Yup... that's a flaw of the site. You want to read my script? Tell me who you are and *I* will decide if I give a fukk if you get to read it.

                            Challenge me on that, Franklin! I have a million (well... maybe 10) reasons why that's a bad model and you have zero reasons why it's a good model, and you know it!

                            Bottom line, it's a model designed to keep you paying for blind reads from "nobody-losers." Ask yourself WHY the readers don't have to disclose WHO they are.

                            C'mon man...
                            The quality of the readers is absurdly hit or miss. Here's a link to the text of a review I received in 2016. Preposterous.

                            http://messageboard.donedealpro.com/...5&postcount=61

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                            • Re: Franklin Leonard

                              Originally posted by Friday View Post
                              Thanks. The Blacklist is intriguing. I just haven't pulled the trigger yet because I am not sure how the grading will go and plus I don't like that I don't know who's downloading my script. At least with the top contests, I have a fair degree of certainty how I"d place if I do enough drafts and get it vetted enough. I only want scripts that are considered very good to be floating out there. Otherwise, I'd just like to bury them in the deep blue sea as my trunk scripts.
                              there's a post i did regarding the black list and comparing it to contests and you actually have a higher (5%) chance on the black list then a semi or finalist in a contest . you don't have to score 8s to get on the top lists, just has to be higher than the average community score.
                              "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist,- Pablo Picasso

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                              • Re: Franklin Leonard

                                Originally posted by finalact4 View Post
                                there's a post i did regarding the black list and comparing it to contests and you actually have a higher (5%) chance on the black list then a semi or finalist in a contest . you don't have to score 8s to get on the top lists, just has to be higher than the average community score.

                                Thanks. So if you're a semi or finalist in one of the big 4 or 5 contests, are you likely to score in the 8 range? The contests can be subjective, but you still hit a certain range in the scoring. So, there's a certain amount of consistency. I am intrigued by the Blacklist, but know very little about how they are graded.

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