Self Expression Magazine

Pitching on Internet

By Myfilmproject09

Pitching on internet
I've always been asked how to pitch a script and I've always said that the best way is to pitch a script to someone you know, another writer or anyone who will read your story. No matter what. Basically, it's a lesson right there, they like it, they don't like it. Simple.
The best way is, of course, to show your script to anyone. If you're a first-timer, and you don't know anyone in LA, make friends. Actors, directors, film crew people and more. Naturally it's best to have a friend who knows a real movie person who would read it or even a person who knows someone who wants to read it.

If you're not in L.A., it's almost impossible.

There always are the internet people who might take your script for a fee, anywhere from $15 up to even higher rates. You send them a script and they will read it and give you some comments but usually you're in a race with other people looking for someone to read your script.

Most of them aren't that big of a help and mostly all you will get is nothing.

But now, there's a whole new way to show your script. It's called VirtuePitchFest. 

Here's what they do.

For $15 you can "pitch" them and they will send you to one of the 200 or so real companies and "some not so real" companies. But you can remedy that because you can see the company right there online. The Virtue people are actually okay with offering you to look at their list and you choose.

Sort of.

I tried it last year and put one of my scripts that might get into a company. I have 8 screenplays that I use. You ask why I don't get picked. Nobody liked the screenplays.

But with my first shot, I got a fish.

So when this happens, they ask you for your script. I sent it.

I thought that was great.

But I never heard from them again.

I went on and off for a year and got bites but nothing else. This is a writer who has 18 produced screenplays. That's where the weakness lies. The way it works then is this;

You spend $15 and if, and I mean a big "if" wants you they will ask for it.
I got 20 bites wherein they read my scripts. No return again.
Remember PitchFest isn't doing anything except taking your $15 which is now gone. What's missing?
What's missing is this. Going back to my comments you realize that you never really saw a human being in this program. You paid them and you probably won't get a response from a company you selected.
I go back to LA again. What's different is when you have an agent you then have someone to pitch to a live person in a live agency, bigger if possible but even small agencies can help. Or go back to show your scripts to anyone who would read it. The thing is, that if even I can't get a screenplay looked, it's cold.

As you know, I have 3 films with producers now. They were all taken from friends and people I know.

But again, if you don't have an agent or a manager it's hard as hell. But then, look up these agencies, like I said above, keep trying to get there.

When I came to LA in 1990 I already had an agent "who never spoke to me again" for 2 years and didn't get me a job. But having an agent, any agent, gives you a one up. In other words, it's better to get a new agent when you decide to drop the other one.

This is touchy, but remember this; any agent will drop you in a minute if they decide. So don't feel bad about it if you change agents. My first agent wasn't very good at all but like I said, it's better to have dropped one for another.

Screenplay festivals can be an okay thing, I feel it's just basically getting money from people who don't have much to maybe get some attention on your script and some money after you've driven to Colorado or wherever to attend the festival with money you added to.

The real way goes like this:

An example. I wrote a screenplay called Emperor of Mars in 1990 and as you might know it's been passed around since then. My third agent wasn't the best but he was  a talker and so he passed the screenplay to a major company that made Forrest Gump. A reader read it and they called me and I went to their studio. I met the boss and we talked about Emperor of Mars. He liked it but not enough. 

But he asked if I had anything else.

That hit me right there. I had a script but not good. We talked more and it ended for the time. A few years later he had a deal with Paramount TV and guess who got a job.


That's how it really works. No $15 fees or contests. 

So can you do it. If you think my way is okay. The point is the same as I said at the beginning. You have to send your script to anyone who wants to read it.

And don't worry that someone will steal it. I always think that when I get a great script in my mind I also think that another writer has the idea, another is considering the same idea, another is writing the same idea and one is already shooting. 

Just remember; there's no originals. Unless you count those cavemen or women way back with mud
Pitching on internet

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