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SYS Podcast Episode 152: Screenwriter / Director David Bruckner Talks About Launching His Career With Short Films (transcript)

This is a transcript of SYS Podcast Episode 152: Screenwriter / Director David Bruckner Talks About Launching His Career With Short Films.


Ashley:  Welcome to episode #152 of the “Selling Your Screenplay Podcast.” I’m Ashley Scott Meyers Screenwriter and blogger over at – www.sellingyourscreenplay.com. Today, I’m interviewing, Screenwriter and Director David  Bruckner. He’s written and directed number of horror films including a segment of V/H/S, and a segment of the Independent Feature “Signal.” And his career all started out by doing short films in Atlanta with his friends. And so, stay tuned for that.

If you find this episode valuable please help me out by giving me a review in ITunes. Or leaving a comment on YouTube, or retweeting the Podcast on Twitter. Or liking us on Facebook. These social media shares really do help spread word about the Podcast and are very much appreciated.

And websites or links that I mention in the Podcast can be found on my blog in the show notes. I also publish a transcript with each episode. In case you would rather read the show or look up something else up later-on. You can find all the show notes by going to – www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/podcast, and then just look for episode #152.

If you would like my free guide, “How to Sell Your Screenplay in 5 Weeks?” You can pick that up by going to – www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/guide. It’s completely free, you just put in your Email address and I’ll send you a new lesson, once a week for 5 weeks. Along with a bunch of free bonus lessons. I teach the whole process of how to sell your screenplay in that guide. How to write a professional log-line and quarry letter. How to find agents, managers and producers who are looking for new material. It really is everything you need to know to sell your screenplay. Just go to – www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/guide.

A quick few words about what I am working this week? A few weeks ago, I went on “The One Star Cinema Podcast.” It’s kinda like mystery science theater 3000. Three guys watch a one star movie on Netflix, and then they have a running commentary on the films. The idea is that you can watch the film at home and hear them with their running commentary. They have a couple of spots in the beginning of the film. So you can synch up your viewing of the film on Netflix with their viewing and then the comments and jokes will make more sense as you’re watching it. And then you just sit back and watch the film as they tell the jokes. They’re really funny guys. So, it’s very enjoyable to watch these terrible movies with them. I heard about them from my friend, Dan Benamore, who’s been on this Podcast a couple of times. He had worked on few movies that they reviewed. So, he thought the whole thing was very funny. And one day he was telling me about it. And then literally, the very next day, “Ninja Apocalypse.” Which is film that I had done. Came up as a film that they had done a review and told jokes about while watching it. Now normally you wouldn’t think that a writer of a movie would think that his movie got one star from Netflex and then a bunch of guys think it’s funny to tell jokes while watching it. But it’s not at all, it wasn’t meant be be mean spirited. I know “Ninja Apocalypse” is a terrible movie. I mean, it’s literally called, “Ninja Apocalypse. Anyway, I think I’ll link to the show that I was a guest on. We watched a zombie horror movie. And you know, that was the one that I was on with them. But then, the “Ninja Apocalypse” one was an earlier episode. I’ll link to both of those episodes in the show notes. Again, it’s just a great way to watch one star movies. And kind of just get that, you know, “B-movie” experience with some of your buddies.

And I think after a couple of episodes of watching with these guys. You’ll kind of get to know them, and hopefully your sense of humor will jive with there’s.

So, once again, the main thing I’m trying to push through is? Post production on my crime, action, thriller, “The Pinch.” I’ve been spending a lot of time with the editor. We’re going through the first rough cut, and trying to polish it up. It’s very close. We’re just got a few minutes to polish up, so we should have a second rough cut here in the next few days. So, that’s what I’m working on.

Now, let’s get into the main segment of the Podcast. Today, I’m interviewing screenwriter and director David Buckner. Here is the interview.

 

Ashley:  Welcome David to the, “Selling Your Screenplay Podcast.” I really appreciate you coming on the show with me today.

 

David:  My pleasure, my pleasure, Ashley, thank you.

 

Ashley:  So, to start out, maybe you can give us a little bit about your background. Where did you grow-up? And how did you get interested in the entertainment business.

 

David:  I am from Atlanta Georgia. And I just started making movies. I made my first movie on VHS cam-quarter in the 9th grade, high school. And I just really, never grew out of it. I kept trying, and it took a long road. Still at it, still get to do it from time to time. But yeah, I, my approach, I didn’t go to film school. My grassroots, very, very hands off, very

DIY, “Do it Your Self.” And I got heavily involved in the Atlanta Theatre scene, and of course college. And spent a lot of time there. Doing various works in the theater. And then shooting genre stuff at night. And the shootings began to feed into each other in many ways. And then slowly but surely, I got into shooting feature films.

 

Ashley:  Okay, it also looks like, “The Signal” was kind of like your first feature film? Is that correct?

 

David:  Yeah, a-huh, correct.

 

Ashley:  So, let’s talk about that a little bit? Maybe you can come up with and give us some background on that. And kinda how that came about?

 

David:  The story on “The Signal” was I, was working with a little theater in Atlanta. And they had a, it was a workshop based theater. And you know, I like to tell the story I think it’s neat film making these days. I’m going to have to find a way to create your own content, as little friction as possible. And the people that I had seen do this? That the story of the ones who could produce content. And didn’t have to spend years and years raising money and what not. We were fortunate enough to, you know, by we, I mean, myself and a small group of film making

co-horts to work alongside this theater that had been. It’s a workshop in county. Where in, they are in primary objective was not push button necessarily. Their funding was based on artist development, see.

You just come in and try something, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, it’s a little more profit oriented. So, we formed a film making branch of that, called, “Baily’s Project” where you would just throw prompts out to the community. Like, everybody go do a short film, with like this fictional character in it. Where everybody goes and does a short film in the park, 3 actors, or whatever it may be? And we would screen that at local venues. And it’s great in all the results in together. And no matter what we got? We would screen everything. You know, after the course of about years. We probably produced 100-150 different types of short films, in Atlanta, this way. And that really was my short film school. And so that, “Signal” was a feature film project that grew out of one of the “Baily’s Projects.” We had started one, and it had got so far along, in that kind of arena. That somebody came in on a little bit of money, a small amount of money $1000.00 and said, “What if you guys made a feature out of it. What would it look like? And he did. And it was a sort of a policy feature in a sense that there were three directors, and other directors involved. But it was one story, it had Trevor Rashimide and quality to it. So, at the center of it was a love triangle. And each member of the triangle had a different perspective on it. A kind of an apocalyptic event to it, involving radio frequency. It was actuall television and radio frequency that in made mysterious reason across the airwaves. And so, it was driving people in the community to violence. So, we all tackled a part of it with a $1000.00, we were very fortunate. For to get into SunDance Film Festival. And that really for me began what has been somewhat of a professional film making career.

 

Ashley:  Okay, perfect, perfect. Let’s just talk about that briefly for a minute, going to SunDance. Was it just a cold Submission? Did you guys do some prep work? You hear a sort of a cliché thing, you got to have a good sales producers rep. and all that kind of stuff. Was yours just a cold submission to SunDance?

 

David:  It was a cold submission to SunDance.

 

Ashley:  Okay, perfect, perfect. And would you have any advice.

 

David:  But we turned it off, but from an offering from God.

 

Ashley:  (Chuckling)  And it worked out, nice.

 

David:  Do you have any advice?

 

Ashley:  Would you have any advice for people that are submitting to SunDance?

 

David:  For getting into festivals?

 

Ashley:  Yeah. Festivals in general and maybe SunDance specifically?

 

David:  Submitting to SunDance, not really specifically. Because I think it’s, you know, I’ve gotten lucky. I’ve been in there twice. I’ve gotten lucky, I think, a few times. Because I was involved with projects I was apart of. You know, it is an industry built on relationships. But, I’ve also seen a lot of people who do great things, and have had those relationships. Don’t mind me, I have a very unique journey into all of this. But, I would say that from what I had seen.

That you can spend a lot of time thinking about who to talk to, who to network with? How to manage those relationships. And it can become very results oriented. And that you’re probably better off, just to figure out how to get your craft right? Chances are, if you make a really, incredible, independent film, it’s going to find a home. Somebody going to see it.

 

Ashley:  Yeah, yeah. Let’s

 

David:  And I just think, for me, it’s just about clearing the air waves in my own mind. Just stroke a thing on the craft, upon being here.

 

Ashley:  Yeah.

 

David:  But yeah, on that. Other people would argue, you know, get in the industry down a little bit. So,

 

Ashley:  Yeah. So, let’s talk a little bit about the shorts you guys were doing? You said, over a hundred of these shorts in a span of a couple of years. What were you spending on those? Was it, literally, just like $50.00 bucks for, you know, a couple of burgers from McDonald’s type of thing? And then, how did you actually promote them, once you got done? What did you do with them? Once you finished them, other than these screenings.

 

David:  A, I said it was wide ranging. And I mean, this was promps towards an entire community. I would say 100-150 short films I would say. And I couldn’t even tell you how many film makers that contributed. I probably worked on 30 of them in some capacity. probably directed, 10 myself. But, a I would say, they varied. I mean, some of them were $50.00 shorts. Some of them were something somebody shot in their own kitchen. And sometimes, you know, it can be the most rewarding effort. I mean, if what’s going on, on screen is really, really, interesting. And then, some of the projects I think, things people did spend some money on and tried to papers on. You know, it helps to have, I think several of us have commercial production companies at the time. So, you were, you know, doing regional TV commercials. You know, we were doing corporate videos. We were doing anything we could get our hands on, and make a buck and sell. So, and then we had to have access to the gear. And we were able to finance purchase some of our own gear. Or forge relationships with people who owned gear. It becomes very much a barter system between film makers. Hey, I’ve got the editing suite, you’ve got the camera, let’s go do something. You know, that definitely helps. Or afford the ability in the mean time to create something. You know, these days, as I understand? And you may laugh, but all you need these days is a laptop and an IPhone. A but, you know, I think more than anything, I think, when we were doing it, there was, you know, before there was video. Something really blown-up before all the online festivals really taken. And this was 2003-2006. So, the venues we were screening at were local bars/clubs. Who wanted a weird thing to be doing on a Friday night? And when you were screen all the movies together. It would turn out a small audience and it really wasn’t just about promoting the work. Beyond just getting enough people off the streets to see it, to build a community around the projects themselves. Really become one audience testing grounds. If you can’t get people in to see your movies. If they want to check out any kinds of filming, home town. You can feel them in the room. You know when they get bored, or when they’re engaged. If you land a joke and the audience really laughs.

Or they get it, that’s a great feeling. You need the painful part of your movie don’t really work. Like you’re going to really shake that feeling. So, it’s just important to see it by audience. Even if you are inventing that audience, and finding a way to do it. But again, I haven’t been at that stage of this effort for a while. So, I’m sure now days it helps different just for the cousins of it, and everything else. You know, finding a way to you know, create content, it can give you some kind of feedback. And just enough energy to keep going. I would say that, that’s the most important thing.

 

Ashley:  Yeah, yeah.

 

David:  I can tell you, it took me, ten years before I ever made a dime, you know, on it. Anything that I had made. And, you know, going on another 2 years before I could really call it professional for it. It really created a bill.

 

Ashley:  So, let’s talk about the raising the $50,000.00 for “Sirens.” How did you guys go about doing that? Going about getting that $50,000.00? A yeah, for “The Signal.”

 

David:  Yeah, a that was a private investor. Who, one of the other film makers had made a movie a few years previously with some private money. And MATT, a foreign distribution company, a point-of-sales rep. actually. Who had agreed to represent the film. If we got it in under a certain budget, we would get certain coop. points. Because it was a little horror film. A, I think they wanted to scare you half, pretty basic. But that, at the time just their standard. To shop for an American, English speaking film. Around at the various global markets that they ran into. And it was just enough for our investors of securities to say, hey, we want in. But we were lucky to find that money. A yeah.

 

Ashley:  Okay. So, let’s dig into, “Siren” now. Maybe to start out you can kind of just give us a quick pitch, or a log-line for the film.

 

David:  “Siren” is, well, I’m sure the director is, Greg, has a little bit different spin on it? But, I would say, it’s kind of a redeeming night. And it’s about a frat party gone horribly, horribly wrong. And it’s a little joke about masculinity, and you know, in this day and age. It was based on a short that I created for an ecology film, VHS. And it was created for,

“The Chiller Network.” I was fortunate enough to help adapt the short. To collaborate with you know, two great young writers, Charles Petrowski, who took a short that I had made in Atlanta. And really helped to flush it out to a feature length contract. And I expanded it out to something like more comprehensive. And like, Greg Bishop came on-board to direct the project.

 

Ashley:  Yeah, yeah. So, let’s talk about V/H/S for a moment. So, maybe you can kind of tell us how all that came to fruition? That was sort of, you had, “The Signal” done. What did you do then after that to try and try and turn this into a professional career. And then every since you tried to get into writing and directing this set into V/H/S?

 

David:  Well, for me, “The Signal” really was for me. The same kind of collaborative project. Again, I had two film making co-horts, friends of mine. Like an adventure, so we all got like dropped into the Hollywood machine. Wait a minute, three kids from Atlanta.

We weren’t really too sure what we were doing? You know, got into various agencies and developed a contract. And I retreated into acting. I went to Wright Moore, I had a lot to learn about screenwriting. About how to structure a story. So, I kinda retreated and wrote 3 or 4 bad scripts. And in the process, of you know, getting one of those going? And then I got the call, Jacob Gentry had been in talks with the V/H/S guy. And he couldn’t do the projects, he was VGA, so he recommended me, and one of the preachers varmisvas. A fan of Mike’s from, “The Signal.” So, the minute I realized, Tyrets, and Jeff Swearenberg, and Wingard, and Clarence Clement Clay, who were all major talents all part of it. I realized I just wanted to participate, I wanted to be in the same corner with them, those guys. And I felt general conceit, and sound footage, and biology film. Which was a good night movie. I had been a secret lover, kinda hold this movie in a visceral cut on me. I thought that was something that I would love to try my hand at. And so, Nick talked to me, he’s my writing partner of several years. We started on the interim, and we came up with what we thought was a pretty crazy pitch for a short film. This movie, by them and they said, so we threw it together very quickly. And shot it in East of Maryville. And then I think the whole thing took 3 months from start to finish.

 

Ashley:  Okay, wow, wow. So, where did this film come from? And what was it called, what was the segment called in V/H/S?

 

David:  I favor, it was called, “Amateur Night” and it was about 3 guys, last night of spring break. Who, kind of you know, kind of this, girls gone wild sort of like locker room culture. And spring break atmosphere. You know, guys who were, kinda fancies themselves as players. A lot of them held vibrado, had bought a pair of video glasses. That they were going to try and go out and pick-up women. And video tape the entire event without telling them. And so, the story is told from a perspective of these video glasses. And the night goes horribly wrong. And so it takes a very, very uncomfortable position. And so, the short sort of forces the audience to participate. And one of the women that they meet, turns out to be something they didn’t quite expect.

 

Ashley:  And so, where did the idea come from? Because you guys were just kicking around ideas. Was there some sort of background? And so, what was sort of the genesis of this idea?

 

David:  I seen, just tossing around stuff, involving some footage and what had been done and what hadn’t been done? You know, I, we thought it was curious that you know, this is 2012 and you know, with all the footage around. We hadn’t seen one that really explored sexually? And when you think about the pervasiveness of pornography in this day and age. And how it plays a huge part, a role in sexual content amongst men and women. But, it’s mostly a private affair. People are talking about it a lot more. And so, both the phenomenon now. Even more than it was five years ago. And so, we decided that, that was, people were doing interesting place to sort of mind. Or personally or socially via. Which is what we are looking for in a horror film. It’s like, where’s the little slice of interest? Of the very life that makes you uneasy about. That we can get in there that’s a helpless pop-up, a horror in some way or another. So, the idea, it’s like take on wrong, or non-complicite to sort of make the audience complicite with the sex tape that was being secretly film. We talk about it’s, and I don’t know how we came up with it necessarily? But we thought that would be perfectly nasty little horror film.

 

Ashley:  Yeah, yeah. So, let’s talk about your writing process for a minute. How much time, when you’re writing a script, a feature script. How much time do you spend sort of in the outline, preparation outline stage. Versus opening up final draft and start writing stage.

 

David:  I think it varies every single project. You know, I was, I would say, for me it’s worth doing it right and outlining heavily. And getting the structure in place. I am a structure junkie. You know, what are we, you know, what are we promising the audience? What are the main action, how are we training them up? Often, how are we changing directions when you least expect it. I think that you can outline too much. You can spend too much time in conceptual stage. And I have been sure, that many people have experienced it. And then you sort of out grow, and suddenly a window of an idea. And then you can no longer see it any more. So, there’s definitely a point in time where than it’s more than official, just the time to start writing. I do find to some degree in what’s preparation, and what’s research. And what’s reading about. To find in anything that conceptual level. Is a, can see yourself looking at procrastination. And a certain point in time you got to, it’s just like page one of exterior and go for it. But, yeah, I think it’s important especially if you are doing the genre to have a sense of what you are working with from a structural point. But, everybody does it different.

 

Ashley:  And when you get into the flow, and you have your outline and you start writing. How many pages per day do you write? Or how do you even monitor your day? Or consider your day as a success?

 

David:  And once again, I’m not extremely ritualistic. So, it’s like, every single project. It’s been a little bit different. The most I’ve ever gotten on a feature screenplay, like in a day? I mean, I probably had a 15 or 20-page day. But, I wouldn’t call that good writing. I would say, it only gets good through kind of refining word. But, I would say a couple a day. If we have a sense of where we are going? Is between 5 and 10 pages a day.

 

Ashley:  Okay.

 

David:  But you really have to know where you’re going. And sometimes you think you know where you’re going? And you don’t, you just hit a rut going, thinking, okay, I have some loose nuts, to turn this scene I am, and I have no idea how to do it? You know, you can stock in these habits.

 

Ashley:  Yeah, and how do you know when the script is ready to just start showing to other people. Whether it be a trusted friend, an agent, a manager. And at what point do you feel comfortable doing that.

 

David:  Me? Never. I never think it’s ready. I would work on it forever. I have learned that in order for myself to function. That I really need that line. That if I am to function that I need that exterior influences that are demanding pages from me. Or that they are demanding that I heard from them on a fable, especially if I am the director, and part of that background. So see, so you know, I do better with an influences. So, for me, usually though I am handing over cavier options. Where we are finding it to write up until the day.

 

Ashley:  A-huh. So, what is that process look like? Who do you send it to? And how do you interpret those notes? Just get a sense of sort of what your development process looks like. Do you have a trusted friend? Is it an agent or a manager?

 

David:  A my agents and my managers, are great. And absolutely tend to provide insight. And I would say, every single project, they very widely from me. Small independent projects with a group of film makers that I trust to you know, writing for studio. And or developing with other writers for studio to text them off. Which I enjoy doing in the director capacity. Which is very much still writing. It’s just your not the writer, the story teller, but you are still telling a story. So, weather I am getting in the chair, or creating the notes, or contributing to the notes. Again every single project can vary. But, I will say, to your point. It all been extremely beneficial to me. To have a whole group of film makers that I love and trust. And people whom I have dialog with, that I create a dialog with. Usually it’s folks that make horror, usually, but not all of these are. that some are playwrights. That some of them make different kinds of Indies. I think you have to make relationships with like-minded people, who are interested in. Most people get together and talk about sports, you know. Or they talk college, it’s just like, most people I know, that I’ll go grab a beer with, we talk story. And that’s just the way we interpret. And, those are, I find two of the best relationships to hand a script to. The ones that you respect, the challenge ones. That aren’t afraid to tell you something doesn’t work. And that process, creating a read that are pretty sacred. So, when I have a close friend hand me a script and say it’s ready. It’s like I’m going to turn-off of them, and my mom really dig the manuscript that I can offer them. Because I count on them to be safe for me.

 

Ashley:  Yeah. so, let’s talk about some of genre requirements. Earlier in the interview you mentioned that there, the foreign sales agent. That was telling you, they’ve got to have this scary scene, whatever it was pages. Maybe you could talk about the genre requirements. Now that you’ve gone through this process numerous times. So, maybe you could give us some specifics, as to what you see, as the genre requirements for these films you’re writing. And then maybe hou you treat me? Those, do you find them annoying? Do you find them, they could be diplomatic. Or would you find them helpful in anyway, during the writing process.

 

David:  You know, I would say that, you know, in that particular case. You know, having a foreign sales agent, and you know, this was in 2007, or something, you know? Give us a bullet list of what our genre film and their sales market, what it needs. What a particular thicker-time for a market that is totally different now. I mean, we’re on a whole different planet than at right now. I think to be too prescriptive of about any of that. To be would really, really miss the point. And you know, to not, I don’t know, take note of how volatile the film market is right now. People don’t know it’s going to work. Or maybe, if you are in cult films, there are formulas you can apply? But, the world of low-budget horror genre. I mean, the movies that are succeeding in movies that are getting out there. Don’t subscribe to any genre. Investments in horror the last few years, you know, a lot of those you follow are, these types of things that a million forces could read no way. This is how it’s going to work, what is it? But, I’ve never seen stuff like this before? So, you know I think, again, you go back to you know, cultivating it, the relation. And you know, if you like it those kinds of genre films. And you like making them. It’s something to bring to the conversation. Something you can explore and format and play around with. And have an audience that you know, I would say, more than anything.

The things that you have to rely upon that are a little bit more fool proof. Are basic tenants of the genre. Like I’m basically headed into drama. You know, how to create structure something, that holds an attention deficit. That audience glued to the screen for a matter of time. The format wouldn’t bring to it, how engaged we are, and how it elevates who we are. And I think that’s opened territory, really, really hard to say. I just over, and over, and over, and over, again. I keep noticing that stuff that’s working, that people are responding to, It’s just weird, and it’s very risky. And, you know, we’re half the day of standard remakes. Or you know, beat by beat, paint-by-numbers kinda thing horror stuff, it just doesn’t work any more so. Not that I question, I luckily I haven’t got it. I don’t even know at this point.

 

Ashley:  Yeah, I think that’s an excellent answer. You just mentioned three films? It follows the which was the third film you mentioned?

 

David:  I think I said, it follows “Duke, and the Witch.”

 

Ashley:  Yeah, okay, yeah. Perfect, perfect. So, I’ll put those in the show notes too.

 

David:  I forgot “Don’t breathe”, But, I just thought “Don’t Breathe” was incredible. And you know, that’s an original horror film. Who knew, it was a really, really, great idea. And it’s structured in a particular peculiar way. The movie constantly up in the air and constantly changing shape for the audience above all. Pretty fascinating so, yeah, I feel like there isn’t anything of grey right now. And that’s what’s really exciting about horror. There are just so many interesting horror movies I want to see during the years. But I can’t, I have a hard time defining movement in horror. Finding a certain trend, it’s hard to pin down necessarily what’s working. And that’s definitely a good thing, because things are working. So, in a sense you can do anything. In a sense, people are looking for really, really innovative ideas that they have never seen before.

 

Ashley:  So, how can people see, “Siren” do you know what the release schedule is?

 

David:  Sure don’t at the moment, and I’ve got a project in London. And I haven’t caught back up with the most recent news. But, yeah, I think they’ll have a project at/

 

Ashley:  Okay, no problem, that’s all good, I’ll figure that out and round all that up and put that in the show notes. And then the last thing, I just like to end the interviews by asking the guest if their comfortable sharing their Twitter handle, Facebook page, anything so people can kind of just get to know you better and maybe follow along and keep up with what you’re doing.

 

David:  Yeah, sure, I really appreciate that. Yeah, I’m on Twitter, I’m pretty-bad at it. But, I am on Twitter. @David_Bruckner, because I was late to the game on my own name. And yeah thank you, I appreciate it.

 

Ashley:  Yeah, no problem at all. Yeah, David, this was a great interview, fascinating hearing your story. I know a lot of people will get a lot out of it. So, thank you very much for coming on and talking with me.

David:  Cool, thanks for supporting me. And get to know and get to talk about it. But, it’s a really tight film, and Glenn Bishop did a really wonderful job on it. And if anybody has seen the short on it? It’s a short and a wonderful addition, and a revelation to that idea. So, I hope you guys enjoy it.

 

Ashley:  Perfect, perfect. Thanks very much David, good luck on your Con Film. And we’ll talk to ya later.

 

David:  Cheers.

 

Ashley:  Later, bye.

 

Ashley:  I just want to mention two things I am doing at “Selling Your Screenplay” to help screenwriters find producers that are looking for new material.

First, I’ve created a monthly newsletter that will be sent directly to producers. Every member of SYS Select can submit one log-line per newsletter, per month. I went and Emailed my large database of Industry contacts and asked them if they would like to receive this newsletter of monthly pitches. So far I have well over 350 producers who have signed-up to receive it. These producers are hungry for new material and are happy to read scripts from new writers. So, if you would like to participate in this pitch newsletter and get your script into the hands of lots of producers. Sign-up at – www.sellingyourscreenplayselect.com, that’s – www.sellingyourscreenplayselect.com.

And secondly I’ve contacted one of the premier paid screenwriting leads sites. So, I can syndicate their leads onto SYS Select members. There are lots of great paid leads coming in each week from our partner. Recently I’ve been getting about ten to twelve high quality paid screenwriting leads per week. These are producers and production companies who are actively looking to buy material. Or are looking to hire a screenwriter for a specific project. If you

sign-up for SYS Select you’ll get these leads Emailed to you directly several times per week. These leads run the gambit from production companies looking for a specific type of spec. script. To producers looking to hire a screenwriter to write up one of their ideas. Producers are looking for shorts, features, TV and web series pilots, it’s a huge aray of different types of projects that these producers are looking for. And these leads are exclusive to our partner and

SYS Select members. To sign-up again, go to – www.sellingyourscreenplayselect.com, again that’s – www.sellingyourscreenplayselect.com

On the next episode of the Podcast, I’m going to be interviewing Screenwriter and Director, Dito Montiel. He just did a film called, “Man Down” starring Shea LaBeouf, and Gary Odlman. But he’s done a bunch of real interesting films of for about the last 10 years. He’s a real artist and he’s very forth coming about how his career got started. So stay tuned for that episode next week.

To wrap things up, I just want to touch on a few things from today’s interview with David. I really like his background, doing all the short films. It really did prepare him well for the career he has now. I say it now, and I’ll say it again, the key is just getting out there and doing stuff, no matter what level, if where it’s at. Even if that means shooting something on your IPhone and editing it at night on your work computer. Just do something and push it out into the world.   Really listen to what David said about his short film collect. They wanted to make films where there was little friction as possible. And I think this is so important to you. You want to create content, but you also want to do it in a way that you can do it over, and over, again. Meaning, you don’t want to mortgage the house to make it happen. Because it probably isn’t going to be that great. And the launching of a career that’s not what you hope for. It’s going to take again, some consistency doing the short films or the feature films over, and over again. When I started this Podcast, I really wasn’t sure how hard it was going to be? So, when I started I was just going to try to do one episode per month. That was my only expectation. I really wasn’t concerned with the technical quality. I just wanted to push something out and try and market, “Selling Your Screenplay.” And pretty-quickly I realized I would be able to do one episode per week. Given my current other obligations. So, that’s kinda where the Podcast is now. And this is really-important, the Podcast has really helped, “Selling Your Screenplay” grow nicely. It’s not because I did one or two super great episodes. It’s because I’ve done 152 pretty-good episodes. It’s more important to me to push something out each week. Than it is to make sure that each episode is perfect. It’s the consistency that’s been effective. Again, going back to what David said, they were doing a ton of shorts. I mean, you heard him over the course of this couple of years. There was 100’s of shorts over 100 shorts. And he worked on in one capacity or another, in 30 short films. That’s just a great background. Same thing with my feature film, “The Pinch.” When I raised the money for, “The Pinch” I tried to do it in a way that I could go back and do it again, and again, and again, down the road. I did a Kick-Starter Campaign, which I ran mostly through the Podcast, here at SYS. And if I can deliver a half-way decent film. My hope is many of the same people who supported, “The Pinch” Would probably support me, with another film. And the money that I personally invest in the film was small. Was a small enough sum of money, I can’t afford to lose it. And I can probably afford to lose the same amount on another film in the future as well. Again, I didn’t mortgage my house and risk everything on it. Which mostly means, that I’ll be able to do another film using the same basic template. I had a producer ask me why I wasn’t investing more of my own money in the film? And that was always my feeling. I wanted to do the film in such a way that I could do it over and over, and over, and over, again. The film business is so difficult. A chance I’m going to lose all my money is pretty great. Obviously I’m going to try and make my money back. But at the same time, I understand there is a quite a bit of risk in feature film. So, I wasn’t going to invest more than I would be comfortably be able to lose. So, I would emphasize the same thing, if you are thinking about producing a feature or even a short film. Do it in such a way that you can quickly repeat the same process of ramping that production up. Whether it be raising the money, or just the infrastructure, all the things you are going to need to make films. I think a film collectively, David talking about is, a great idea. You get involved with other film makers. You can help on other people’s short films. They can help on your short films. It’s a great way to start doing a lot of material. And it’s a great education to start work on other people’s short films. See what they’re doing, see what they’re having trouble with. See how their script is translating to the actors and how they are performed. It’s all just an excellent experience, as a producer and mostly as a screenwriter. If you keep doing films, over and over again. You’ll get better, and people will notice. And again, David is living proof of that.

Anyway, that’s the show, thank you for listening.

 

 

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