Franklin Leonard

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    Southern_land
    Member

  • Southern_land
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by lostfootage View Post
    Good points.

    So, the question is, if there are fifty slots per year for new writers, ten ways of getting there and 20,000 people trying, which of the ten ways do you want to personally try?

    You can...

    - Grow up in the industry (thinking of the Max Landis types)
    - Go to college with those who grew up in the industry (attend USC)
    - Get entry level jobs in the entertainment industry (intern, PA)
    - Query reps and producers with finished work (assuming it's great)
    - Network (go to WGA events in LA, take classes and meet people)
    - Submit to established contests like Austin, Nicholl (not for profit)
    - Apply for labs like Imagine Impact, Sundance and Film Independent (not for profit)
    - Pay for Black List service, which is like FL's concierge contest and other "for profit" contests like Tracking Board, ScreenCraft, etc.
    - Do the other pay-to-play service (like paying to pitch, for profit)
    - Trying sleeping your way in?

    Are there any other routes? It seems those are the options.
    .
    write, fund, direct it yourself? Jackson, Rodrigues, Smith...

    Leave a comment:

  • UpandComing
    Member

  • UpandComing
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by lostfootage View Post
    So, the question is, if there are fifty slots per year for new writers, ten ways of getting there and 20,000 people trying, which of the ten ways do you want to personally try?

    You can...

    - Trying sleeping your way in?
    I don't think most screenwriters are attractive enough for this to be a viable alternative. That's for actors.

    Originally posted by lostfootage View Post
    I don't know why so many people want to be writers for TV and film when it's clear that few people are able to make a meaningful living doing it.
    Because at the end of the day, it's a more fun career to wake up to than the vast majority of jobs.

    Leave a comment:

  • lostfootage
    Member

  • lostfootage
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by JeffLowell View Post
    Docgonzo makes a good point, but every source of amateur screenplays yields a pass more often than an offer of representation. There's no system that's going to find more than handful of great undiscovered writers. How many people broke in through Amazon Studios of the thousands of people that submitted and the millions they spent looking? Nicholl gets real heat for five scripts a year, out of 7000 entries. If the BL gets ten people reps or jobs a year, they're probably the most successful "contest" way to break in.

    There just aren't many slots for new writers. Half of the WGA is trying to get work, and they've already broken in. 99% of the people who pay for the BL will be disappointed in the results, just like every other path.
    Good points.

    So, the question is, if there are fifty slots per year for new writers, ten ways of getting there and 20,000 people trying, which of the ten ways do you want to personally try?

    You can...

    - Grow up in the industry (thinking of the Max Landis types)
    - Go to college with those who grew up in the industry (attend USC)
    - Get entry level jobs in the entertainment industry (intern, PA)
    - Query reps and producers with finished work (assuming it's great)
    - Network (go to WGA events in LA, take classes and meet people)
    - Submit to established contests like Austin, Nicholl (not for profit)
    - Apply for labs like Imagine Impact, Sundance and Film Independent (not for profit)
    - Pay for Black List service, which is like FL's concierge contest and other "for profit" contests like Tracking Board, ScreenCraft, etc.
    - Do the other pay-to-play service (like paying to pitch, for profit)
    - Trying sleeping your way in?

    Are there any other routes? It seems those are the options.

    I've been in and out of the screenwriting space for ten years and have watched a lot of people (attempt to) get in. The ones that have had the highest rate of getting in actually moved to LA and did the entry-level job route. (Barring the two trust funders who went to college with the offspring of celebrities and stepped into writing work right after graduating.)

    If you're past college age and don't have any personal connections, then you have to ask yourself what routes are you willing to try.

    The Black List is a route. It's a very long-shot route. Same with contests.

    I think what it comes down to is that most writers' projects are DOA by page two or three. They either don't have a concept worthy of a feature film/TV show, or if they do, they can't execute the concept on the page.

    At the end of the day, querying probably gets you the same result/feedback on a script as contests without the costs.

    I don't know why so many people want to be writers for TV and film when it's clear that few people are able to make a meaningful living doing it.

    Leave a comment:

  • finalact4
    Member

  • finalact4
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by figment View Post
    Once again, I'm quoting this, below, because it is truly the most important post in this thread. If agencies do not take the BL seriously, WHY should you, the writer?





    This is incorrect. IF you host your script AND get an 8, 9, or 10, your info gets sent in an email blast. The other hundreds/thousands of scripts do not. By the way, your hosting will run out a week after you get your scores, [I]so you'll be forced to buy another month of hosting just in case some anonymous person wants to look at your script.
    hosting gets you nothing more than a place card on the site. you can enter one of their fellowships, but TBL determines, based on their own preferences and their paid evaluations, WHO gets on the short list for consideration. they do not divulge what their criteria are.

    and figment is correct, it could take 3 weeks for your eval to come in and then you basically have one week left of hosting, so of course, you buy another month.

    and it's important to specify that IF you receive a rating 8 or above, you get sent out in the email blast exactly ONE TIME. consider how many weekly emails are you actually able to read consistently each and every week? i miss stuff all the time. haha.

    the biggest "pro" to the black list that contests don't provide is year round access, and that does count for something. contests are, for the most part, an annual submission.

    on the black list you could receive year round attention. you can also revise your screenplay, and upload it again any number of times.

    Leave a comment:

  • finalact4
    Member

  • finalact4
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by JeffLowell View Post
    Docgonzo makes a good point, but every source of amateur screenplays yields a pass more often than an offer of representation. There's no system that's going to find more than handful of great undiscovered writers. How many people broke in through Amazon Studios of the thousands of people that submitted and the millions they spent looking? Nicholl gets real heat for five scripts a year, out of 7000 entries. If the BL gets ten people reps or jobs a year, they're probably the most successful "contest" way to break in.

    There just aren't many slots for new writers. Half of the WGA is trying to get work, and they've already broken in. 99% of the people who pay for the BL will be disappointed in the results, just like every other path.
    this is very true.

    expectations have to be managed at every level. one would expect that repped writers are writing at the professional level and the fact that these writers are utilizing tools that include both repped writers and amateurs is demonstrative of the challenges that professional writers face as well.

    there are over 100 writers with reps on The Black List. many of the writers that secure a position in Ron Howard's and Brian Glazer's Imagine Impact are working writers, and TrackingB allows any level of writer to enter their contest.

    so i think the big take away for amateur writers is that you have to write with the strategy that YOUR COMPETITION is professional writers, because, imo, they are. i don't want to be the best amateur writer, i want to be the best writer. that's my goal.

    Leave a comment:

  • JeffLowell
    Member

  • JeffLowell
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Docgonzo makes a good point, but every source of amateur screenplays yields a pass more often than an offer of representation. There's no system that's going to find more than handful of great undiscovered writers. How many people broke in through Amazon Studios of the thousands of people that submitted and the millions they spent looking? Nicholl gets real heat for five scripts a year, out of 7000 entries. If the BL gets ten people reps or jobs a year, they're probably the most successful "contest" way to break in.

    There just aren't many slots for new writers. Half of the WGA is trying to get work, and they've already broken in. 99% of the people who pay for the BL will be disappointed in the results, just like every other path.

    Leave a comment:


  • figment
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Once again, I'm quoting this, below, because it is truly the most important post in this thread. If agencies do not take the BL seriously, WHY should you, the writer?

    Originally posted by docgonzo View Post
    Someone posted the Verve Coverage Guide on r/screenwriting the other day and it mentions the BL specifically in regard to how the go about covering scripts.

    The Blacklist is a company that monitors unrepresented writers with unsolicited materials. Generally, the material is not strong enough to be considered for representation but, sometimes, there is an excellent screenplay or writer waiting to be discovered. More often than not, these submissions are a pass. If so, you will probably know within the first 30 or 40 pages.

    So while they are getting subs from the BL, they're looking at them with a jaundiced eye. The implication is pretty clear: aside from a rare exception, they don't see BL scripts as being ready for primetime. If that's the prevailing attitude at a mid-tier agency that is more writer-friendly than most, it's not hard to imagine how CAA or WME might feel.
    Originally posted by JoeNYC View Post
    Yes, contests run $35 to $100 and hosting on TBL can get expensive. A writer doesn't have to host to market his screenplay. If I remember right, his logline would go out in an e-mail to TBL industry members.
    This is incorrect. IF you host your script AND get an 8, 9, or 10, your info gets sent in an email blast. The other hundreds/thousands of scripts do not. By the way, your hosting will run out a week after you get your scores, [I]so you'll be forced to buy another month of hosting just in case some anonymous person wants to look at your script.
    Last edited by figment; 09-15-2019, 08:30 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • JoeNYC
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by lostfootage View Post
    When I get notes, my first stop is my writing group, then friends and family. Once I burn them out, then my next stop is paid people. There are three that I use, two of them have listings here and are top notch. Their notes end up being cheaper than the BL if you factor in the hosting costs and the feedback is way better. So that's the route I'll continue to use.
    I like your feedback process, but...

    I keep hearing this a lot. Writers using the Black List for feedback. I do not suggest using TBL for feedback. I suggest once a writer believes his script is as strong as it can be, to use TBL as one of the avenues to market his screenplay -- if financially able.

    Of course, this means scoring a ranking of 8, 9, 10. Just like when a writer enters a contest, he's looking to score a semifinalist, finalist, or win in a big competition to gain vetting and credibility in marketing his screenplay.

    Yes, contests run $35 to $100 and hosting on TBL can get expensive. A writer doesn't have to host to market his screenplay. If I remember right, his logline would go out in an e-mail to TBL industry members.

    Also, just like a contest, whether or not a reader believes your script is a 8, 9, 10, is subjective.

    Leave a comment:

  • lostfootage
    Member

  • lostfootage
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by DaltWisney View Post
    I'm thinking the wannabe screenwriter game mimics the SF and Yukon gold rushes in the sense that the number of people getting rich selling services to the "miners" is higher than the number of people pulling nuggets out of the ground.

    Maybe I should become a "screenwriting guru" and write a how-to book called Save The Dolphin. Who gives a **** that I'm not a pro and have no credits? I won $2k in a contest once and wrote two episodes of student-produced local access variety shows. That's enough.

    On the topic of my low-value advice, these days I view the BL as a grimy, exploitative scheme selling the dream of access at inflated rates. They're Tartuffe with their hand in your pockets, masquerading as your friend. The irony to me is that the scripts that stand to benefit most from the BL don't really need the BL because if they're that exceptional then they can attract attention through any number of channels that don't involve exorbitant reading and hosting fees.

    It seems like Franklin Leonard is about as much of a "friend" to writers as a tapeworm would be.
    Yes, this is my take on it. I used the service a few times more out of curiosity than anything. The feedback was all over the place, the readers are obviously very young and rushed, and it's clear the main benefit is FL's pocket.

    But I will say that a couple reviews I received were really insightful. I'm a WGA caucus member, so I receive a discount on the BL service, which makes it cheaper. Still, I don't think I'll use the service again.

    When I get notes, my first stop is my writing group, then friends and family. Once I burn them out, then my next stop is paid people. There are three that I use, two of them have listings here and are top notch. Their notes end up being cheaper than the BL if you factor in the hosting costs and the feedback is way better. So that's the route I'll continue to use.

    Leave a comment:


  • JoeNYC
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by DaltWisney View Post
    The irony to me is that the scripts that stand to benefit most from the BL don't really need the BL because if they're that exceptional then they can attract attention through any number of channels that don't involve exorbitant reading and hosting fees.
    I believe TBL is a valid, available road for some niche screenplays. For a writer to get read requests through a query it would require, usually, a unique high concept. For a non-commercial script it would require some type of heat, such as, a finalist, or win in big contests, or maybe a 9 rating from TBL.

    Sometimes producers look at TBL to find that genre gem, where maybe there's a thriller that's low budget, but it's commercial potential would appeal to a studio.

    If the writer has the funds, then I suggest for him to use every road available to him to find his way to Hollywood. If a writer is low on funds, then I suggest to research to decide which roads would be the best to travel for his type of vehicle.
    Last edited by JoeNYC; 09-15-2019, 03:18 AM.

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  • Mark Somers
    Member

  • Mark Somers
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by DaltWisney View Post
    I'm thinking the wannabe screenwriter game mimics the SF and Yukon gold rushes in the sense that the number of people getting rich selling services to the "miners" is higher than the number of people pulling nuggets out of the ground.

    Maybe I should become a "screenwriting guru" and write a how-to book called Save The Dolphin. Who gives a **** that I'm not a pro and have no credits? I won $2k in a contest once and wrote two episodes of student-produced local access variety shows. That's enough.

    On the topic of my low-value advice, these days I view the BL as a grimy, exploitative scheme selling the dream of access at inflated rates. They're Tartuffe with their hand in your pockets, masquerading as your friend. The irony to me is that the scripts that stand to benefit most from the BL don't really need the BL because if they're that exceptional then they can attract attention through any number of channels that don't involve exorbitant reading and hosting fees.

    It seems like Franklin Leonard is about as much of a "friend" to writers as a tapeworm would be.
    I'm going to write two books and start a blog people have to pay to read because I have even less success.

    Aaaaaaaaaaand I'm going to partner with the black list. That's the ticket.

    Page forty.

    Leave a comment:


  • DDoc
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by DaltWisney View Post
    I'm thinking the wannabe screenwriter game mimics the SF and Yukon gold rushes in the sense that the number of people getting rich selling services to the "miners" is higher than the number of people pulling nuggets out of the ground.

    Maybe I should become a "screenwriting guru" and write a how-to book called Save The Dolphin. Who gives a **** that I'm not a pro and have no credits? I won $2k in a contest once and wrote two episodes of student-produced local access variety shows. That's enough.

    On the topic of my low-value advice, these days I view the BL as a grimy, exploitative scheme selling the dream of access at inflated rates. They're Tartuffe with their hand in your pockets, masquerading as your friend. The irony to me is that the scripts that stand to benefit most from the BL don't really need the BL because if they're that exceptional then they can attract attention through any number of channels that don't involve exorbitant reading and hosting fees.

    It seems like Franklin Leonard is about as much of a "friend" to writers as a tapeworm would be.
    Lol. I like this post.

    Leave a comment:

  • finalact4
    Member

  • finalact4
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by sc111 View Post
    Oy-Freaking-Vey squared.
    +1 X10 to the power of 10.

    Leave a comment:


  • Bono
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    Originally posted by DDoc View Post
    Lick my ass you dipshit.
    Doc gets me.

    Leave a comment:

  • DaltWisney
    Member

  • DaltWisney
    replied
    Re: Franklin Leonard

    I'm thinking the wannabe screenwriter game mimics the SF and Yukon gold rushes in the sense that the number of people getting rich selling services to the "miners" is higher than the number of people pulling nuggets out of the ground.

    Maybe I should become a "screenwriting guru" and write a how-to book called Save The Dolphin. Who gives a **** that I'm not a pro and have no credits? I won $2k in a contest once and wrote two episodes of student-produced local access variety shows. That's enough.

    On the topic of my low-value advice, these days I view the BL as a grimy, exploitative scheme selling the dream of access at inflated rates. They're Tartuffe with their hand in your pockets, masquerading as your friend. The irony to me is that the scripts that stand to benefit most from the BL don't really need the BL because if they're that exceptional then they can attract attention through any number of channels that don't involve exorbitant reading and hosting fees.

    It seems like Franklin Leonard is about as much of a "friend" to writers as a tapeworm would be.

    Leave a comment:

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