Ashley: Welcome to Episode #243 of the Selling Your Screenplay Podcast. I’m Ashley Scott Meyers, screenwriter and blogger of the www.sellingyourscreenplay.com. Today I’m interviewing writer Luke Del Tredici. He has an extensive background in television writing, so we talk through that part of his career and how he got a start in TV writing. He also just did a feature film called Arizona, so we dig into that film as well the writing and how it was ultimately produced. Stay tuned for that interview. Just a quick bit of follow up from a couple of weeks ago. Short Scripts ran a logline contest for SYS listeners and a winner has been chosen. The winner is Tim Brothers from Sidney, Australia. A big congratulations to Tim and thank you to everyone who submitted and good luck to Tim and anyone else who submitted to the Short Script screenwriting contest.
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It’s completely free, you just put in your email address and I’ll send you a new lesson once per week for five weeks along with a bunch of bonus lessons. I teach the whole process of how to sell your screenplay in that guide. I’ll teach you how to write a professional log line and query letter and how to find agents, managers and producers who are looking for material. Really it’s everything you need to know to sell your screenplay. Just go to www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/guide.
So now just a couple of quick words about what I’m working on. As mentioned over the last couple of weeks I’m in the final stages with my crime, thriller feature film, The Pinch. A couple of updates, I’m still working to get the deliverables over to the aggregator. It’s always something…and just to give you kind of an idea of what I’m dealing with, fairly minor technical issues but the trailer that we cut is actually on my computer and I’m on a Windows machine. I’m literally recording this podcast now on that same Windows machine and for whatever reason in Adobe Premiere they don’t have the Apple Codec. It’s the Apple ProRes 422 Codec to output. When you’re using a Windows machine if you’re on Premiere on an Apple machine you have that Codec.
For whatever reason the aggregator specifically wanted that Codec so I couldn’t do the trailer elsewhere. I had to go back and forth with them a little bit and they’re now telling me that I can use a Free Avid Codec that I have to just download. So again, just kind of minor technical issues like that, just logistical stuff, just getting things to them and then hopefully I’ll have that all worked out this week and I can actually set a date for when the film will be released. And then the other thing I’ve been doing, I’ve mentioned this as well, is trying to set up a theatrical screening through a service called TAG. TAG basically, they have these relationships with theaters around the country and you can go to their service and I think it’s literally just www.tag.com.
You can enter your film in, get your thing up there and then you can basically rent a theater through them. But they have certain thresholds and minimums and so that’s kind of where the stumbling block was. They have this sort of minimum threshold and the main issue there really is you have to promote the tickets and that’s a big but. They set the screens up, they have these relationships. It’s very easy and all I had to do was mail them. It’s called the DCP of the film. It’s just a specific way format to show the film that movie theaters across the US can basically take this DCP and run it through their system. So you have to output the DCP…I did that. I sent that to the guy in the system. That was a pretty simple process in terms of those deliverables, and then I set up the first screening and what it came to…
I know that they told me that this isn’t for every screening but different areas of the country obviously have different minimum thresholds. So in LA at least their minimum threshold was 95 tickets and they were selling them at $12 each. So that’s basically $1200 worth of tickets that I have to sell. Now, you know I have a podcast, I know a lot of people and hopefully I could sell that many tickets. But I don’t know, that seems like a lot of tickets to sell. The thing is you as the filmmaker you don’t start making money until that $1200 threshold has been hit. So maybe I can sell that many tickets, maybe I can’t. But in any event I don’t think I can sell a lot more than 95 tickets and then I’m basically doing this whole thing there’s no money in it, so I start to wonder what I’m doing it for.
But the bigger issue to me was when I was looking around and thinking about doing a cast and crew screening around the Los Angeles area. I was actually going to theatres directly. I didn’t go to this specific theater so I don’t know exactly but most of the theaters around LA, you know in that $500 let’s say to $800 range you could rent a theater. And at this screening that I was gonna do through TAG it was like eight o’clock on a Thursday night. So it wasn’t the weekend but it was a decent time slot on a Thursday night. And again I was finding theaters around LA that would do this for me in that $600, $700 range. I think I might have even had one that was like $550.
So to me that kind of brings up the whole thing, like what exactly is TAG doing? I mean I could just rent a theater myself, set up my own “Buy Now” button and then if I sold $1200 worth of tickets at least I will make $600 as opposed to having to hit that threshold and still not making any money. That’s kind of where I am with that. Nothing is set on stone but I’m probably not gonna do that theatrical screening. It just seems like a lot of work and I question how much real return on investment I’m gonna get out of that. That’s where I am with The Pinch. My teen comedy feature film wrapped shooting last week. I mentioned this probably a month ago or two months ago. They started shooting and they shot some of it in Norway, they shot some of it in Pennsylvania.
It’s an English language American script so it takes place a lot at a school. They did a lot of the interiors and stuff over in Norway. A lot of the filmmakers were from there so they had a lot of assets that they could do but then they shot a lot of the exteriors and stuff in the United States and Pennsylvania specifically. I think that it’s in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania that they shot that stuff. And so it will be an American film, an English language film but they actually shot half of it over in Norway. That’s all cool. It’s called Josh Taylor’s Prom Date. You can see the cast and crew listing on IMDb. So if you’re curious to learn a little bit more about that do just go to my IMDb page. I’ve seen a couple of behind the scenes type of shots but I haven’t seen any of the actual footage.
Certainly no rough cut or even any rough cuts of scenes or anything like that, so looking forward to that should be fun. Anyway, that’s what I’m working on. So now let’s get into the main segment. Today I’m interviewing writer Luke Del Tredici. Here is the interview.
Ashley: Welcome to the Selling Your Screenplay Podcast. I really appreciate you coming on the show with me today.
Luke: No problem. Thank you so much for having me.
Ashley: So to start out, maybe you can tell us a little bit about your background. Where did you grow up and how did you get interested in the entertainment business?
Luke: I grew up in Boston…I don’t know, I just loved movies. I loved movies from like an early age and that was all I ever wanted to do. It was like somehow I tried to direct movies I thought. I went to Wesleyan and Connecticut Undergraduate but it has a great film program there and I studied film, I majored in it. And then I moved out to Los Angeles pretty much right after college just to pursue a career in writing [inaudible 00:07:50] I had a writing partner at the time and we went into TV and I don’t really know why I did that, but I think movies were really like super important to me. Also I really liked judging other people’s movies and saying what they had done badly. I think I was a little scared that I would try to write movies and be terrible at it.
I didn’t have so much emotional investment in television so I went into TV and then I worked…it was a little bit relatively slow. I worked at some terrible jobs and shows. I worked in a couple network TV shows that got cancelled before they even aired or aired six episodes and went away, and then slowly I started working on some better shows. I worked on a couple of shows for HPO and then I [inaudible 00:08:43] to writing on 30 Rock and then when that ended I moved back out to LA. I’d been in New York for a little while. I moved back out to LA and I spent the last six years sort of writing and executive producing Brooklyn 99 on FOX and now NBC. So largely I’m a TV writer.
I write comedy but then some time like 10 years ago I had a little break between two shows and I had this idea for a movie that I’d always wanted to write and I was sort of looking to write something a little bit darker and a little bit more serious than the straight comedy that I was writing in TV. I wrote the script Arizona in 2008 and then here we are through 2009 and then nine years later it’s on screen of some kind.
Ashley: Perfect. Let me just go back on what you just said a little bit. You mentioned breaking into TV, having a writing partner and breaking in. Maybe you can talk about those early steps. Were you doing the typical stuff like getting in as an assistant and working in the writer’s room as an assistant? Maybe just talk about some of those really early steps of kind of getting that foothold in the TV world.
Luke: Probably because I had a writing partner and it’s hard to both get…the path of becoming a writer’s assistant and getting in the room or a writer’s PA and then getting a job is that you get hired on the show you’ve been working on and when there are two of us as partners it’s hard to find sort of two assistant jobs. It didn’t seem like a great path. We took the path of saying like…I think one thing that happens to a lot of people who end up as writers’ assistants or as Pas is the jobs are great and you’re exposed to writers and you make great contacts and you learn a lot about professional writing, but also the hours can be really, really long and exhausting.
TV shows are…writing hours are typically pretty tough and then often the writer’s assistants have to stay late after putting out scripts, putting in notes, putting stuff up. We decided to take sort of the opposite direction my partner and I worked in…did non industry jobs that were not tasking, that didn’t take any emotional or intellectual energy on our part and gave us room to write because we just felt like what we wanted to do was just churn out writing. That worked out well for us. It should be said that I know plenty of people who have been assistants who also now have thriving writing careers and it worked out great for them as well, career writing and so obviously.
Ashley: Yeah. So you were just basically writing spec scripts in your free time. Did you then enter them into the fellowships, how did you actually get those scripts into the hands of people that could hire you? Did you get an agent and manager first?
Luke: We had an agent like pretty much right away. We met a guy that had like a party, a barbeque of a friend of ours in Boston. My writing partner met a lawyer, an entertainment lawyer who was a friend of a relative, an uncle or something. He said that if we ever moved to LA we could just send him stuff and he would send it to an agent if he liked it and we did that. My writing partner at the time was great at that sort of like stuff. I’m terrified at it but he was great at sort of like following up and cold calling and when people said that they were willing to help us, taking them up on that. And so we told the guy, we sent the scripts and he sent it to an agent and the agent signed us. I think that he was not a very good agent.
He never got a job and it was sort of a crappy agency but at least he would get us meetings and that was enough at the time to feel like as we were not working in the industry but at least having an agent and the meetings kept us sort of feeling like it wasn’t all a stupid pipe train. Currently we went through another friend of a friend from…my roommate in college grew up with this woman who was a manager- Christie Smith, who is currently still my manager 20 years later. She was then at the time working at this company, Avalon which is the American outpost of this British management company. She sort of started working with us a little bit just being friendly, just helping us out and then took my writing partner and I on as clients and then she helped us move to a slightly better agency and then we started getting jobs. They were crappy jobs but obviously it worked.
Ashley: So in 2008 when you wrote Arizona, had you written a bunch of feature films or was that your first feature? Obviously at that point you were done with the TV writing.
Luke: No, it’s the first and the only feature I’ve written. It’s exactly one. Yeah, it’s the only one. No, I mean, and I had always wanted to but I just didn’t. You’re sort of stuck down the path of working in TV and it was always when I had time to write it always made more sense to write another TV spec, to try to write things to sell in TV to have another sample of the outputs, get a different kind of job, and so I think in 2008 when I wrote it…my writing partner and I broke up and then it was relatively undramatic as those things go. It was pretty amicable but one thing I think at the moment, you’re on a writing partnership, you make sort of like…you sort of try to find a unified voice as a team.
I think both of us at the time after having written together in college and for a decade out of college we both decided to sort of find our own voices a little bit. One thing that I was really interested in doing outside of that partnership where we got along really well writing comedy was writing something maybe a little bit darker and a little bit more genre was the thing I was interested in doing. So for the first time I had a little break after being a solo writer I just wrote this movie idea that I had been taking around for six months.
Ashley: Sure. So maybe you can tell us, what is sort of the logline or pitch for Arizona just so people can kind of get an idea about what it’s all about?
Luke: I’d say it’s a darkly comic thriller in the wake of the 2007/2008 housing crises. I’d say it’s a cat and mouse…I don’t know, like thriller between a deranged home owner who has lost everything and Danny McBride and Rosemary Dewitt who’s sort of the hero and audience who’s also lost everything but is also a realtor who sold people homes and they have a sort of dangerous 24 hours spent in what is a largely deserted brand new built community deep in the deserts outside Phoenix…it’s a real thing. They’ve built all these new projects in the exurbs of Phoenix out in the desert and just in rows of beautifully made mansions and then right as they completed them the housing crises hit in the bottom, collapsed and the prices sank and no one moved in and the few people who had moved in were left largely just living in ghost towns.
Ashley: So where did thins idea come from? What was sort of the genesis of it? Do you have a family out there, were you spending time in Arizona? What is sort of the seed that sparked this idea?
Luke: No, I just started reading. I think I was sort of reading about one of these new built ghost towns on the desert and it just immediately became clear to me that they had to have a horror movie set out there. Yeah, I think it’s less of a personal story for me and more I was very aware at the time and I think I’m only more conscious of it now of…It felt like an inflection point in American history where there’s sort of death of I don’t know if it’s like the American dream but this idea that like everything is always gonna be okay and the people can always just like America is like a land of second chances and it felt to me at the time and it suddenly feels now like maybe everyone doesn’t always get the second chances that they think they’re entitled to and that seemed like a very ripe area to write about and the settings seemed so good.
Ashley: The way you guys have this film positioned…I’m just throwing this out there just kind of to get your thoughts. It’s called Arizona, your poster has that sort of post card look to it, it’s kind of a caper comedy. The first thing that came into my mind was raising Arizona. How do you position your film? With a film like this, how do you position it to be the same but yet a little bit different from some of these other films?
Luke: That is a question for marketing, you know? I mean, I’m always like…you know, the title is like I’m terrible at that stuff. You just could tell from the fact that you asked for a logline and I spoke for like three minutes. I’m really bad at the sales aspect of my ideas. This never had a title…I hate coming up with titles. I sold it as the untitled Arizona project, it was shot as the untitled Arizona project. At some point we all just decided we were gonna call it Arizona. I don’t know, I think they’ve done a great job, I really love that poster, I think the trailer is really fun. It’s really tough. I had zero insight into how to quickly get people on board with the idea. To me I wrote a screenplay that was indicative of the kind of movie that I wanted to write and that I would like to see if it came out and that’s always been my sort of guiding principle. I know that I would wanna see this movie and so wrote it. It worked out in this case, it could easily not have.
Ashley: Yeah, so let’s talk about just the process of this. You’re an established TV writer. You’ve got a little [inaudible 00:19:23] you write this spec script Arizona. Who did you start to send it out to, did you send it to your agent and then he got it out there? Do you have a manager? Maybe talk about that process, just going from…
Luke: Yeah. I mean look, I had TV…I think when I wrote it I knew I was going to New York like for a TV show so I had to write a real comfortable [inaudible 00:19:48] where I think I’ve been on this one- The Life and Times of Tim which had ended and I believe I knew I was going to move into New York for this other show Bored To Death which was starting up and I had a few months. So it was like a real nice [inaudible 00:20:04] where not only did I have time off but I knew that I had a job waiting for me so I would either just write something without fear that it was like…I would write anything I wanted to write without fear of whether it’s the right next step for my career and so I took a chance and I wrote something that’s very different than what I’d been writing which was a pretty cool comedy.
I was very happy with the script and I sent it to my agent. I didn’t even have a feature lead agent at my agency because I don’t have [inaudible 00:20:33] TV. I think they immediately passed on the feature with people and I think that a lot of the feature people who got it handled largely comedy scripts or were at least expecting it to be a broad comedy from me because that was the world I was coming from and I think it was met with a little bit of consternation in my agency where people were like didn’t totally….I don’t think everyone knew what to make of it. But one of the agents over there really responded to it and really loved it and he did a great job of championing the script and sending it out and really like I think he immediately saw what was interesting about it and what was good and he really helped sell it.
I wrote the movie for Danny McBride though I didn’t know him and at the time I wouldn’t have said I did because he didn’t wanna not get him and piss off some other actor who you might wanna play it [inaudible 00:21:37] season three had just finished I think when I wrote it or around that and I love that show. It’s another show that is both very funny and incredibly sad and a great American tragedy and also the funniest TV show ever made in some ways and I loved it so much. As I was writing the character it just became clearer and clearer to me that I was writing a Danny McBride character. The script got over the rough house which is Danny McBride and Jody Hill and David Gordon Green’s company and they have done so much in TV and some that I really love.
That was always my number one place that I wanted to set it up, I just didn’t. I had to work so much, I loved Observe and Report, Jody Hill’s movie that is just similarly so funny even then so dark and so unexpected. I got over there and I had another friend who knew their development executive at the time who helped them to…he had a stack of scripts on his desk and my friend sort of was like surfing buddies with him and told him, “Hey, I think you should check out that script that’s sitting on your desk, I think you might like it,” and they did. They liked it and Danny read it and responded well to it and I set it up through them with the idea that Danny McBride was gonna direct it initially.
I trusted those guys to…I think I optioned it to them for not no money but like a very modest amount of money just because I had the luxury of having a stable TV career until I sort of decided with the movie. I was like those were the guys I wanted to make the movie with. I wanted to be indebted to them. I would rather take that money, take more time, I just made a decision that they were the right creative partners for me and so I committed to letting them have it.
Ashley: Sure. So maybe you can talk a little bit about the writing process of Arizona. So you have this [inaudible 00:23:39], how long did you have? Maybe talk about how long did you spend outlining the script versus how long did you spend actually opening up final draft to writing scene descriptions and dialogue?
Luke: It’s so long ago, I think I had like a couple of months. I generally was proud to export TV pilots I’ve written and movie products. I have a long [inaudible 00:24:02] between getting the idea and actually writing it. I think this one was closer to…I had had the idea for like a year and half and been meaning to find time and then I finally had the idea. I had just finished a TV spec that I wrote that I had the idea like 17 years ago for. I finally got on to writing it. But I’m a pretty…I like to outline things, I’m big into sort of really knowing what I’m gonna do. I spend a lot of time planning out exactly what every scene is gonna be and knowing what it’s gonna be. I’m not someone who likes to just sit and writes and then like, Let’s define the characters and find the story and the pitch.”
I have sort of…that makes me very terrified. I like to sort of know where I’m going. So I think I outlined it and I think I had started [inaudible 00:24:57] and halfway outlined certain things and done a lot of the research that ended up in the movie and then I just finished an outline and then my outlines are so detailed that once I write it’s actually a pretty…that process can go pretty fast.
Ashley: What do those days look like? So you’ve got your outline and now you’re starting to crank out pages. Do you write four pages a day, or you more of just write 16 hours a day and just get it done quickly? What do those days look like?
Luke: You know, I’m trying to remember. I would write it at coffee shops. I never liked writing at home. So back then especially I don’t think I even had an office or anything. I like being surrounded by people although writing in coffee shops in Los Angeles is a huge bar marker, it’s just you and [inaudible 00:25:41] would like to option you if you like you’re so unspecial you feel like such a fraud because you look like just one of a million. But I think a benefit of being a TV writer is…and certainly I’ve worked much more especially in TV in the years since and the decades throughout that, but TV writing teaches you to be a little less precious about your process and your craft because you suddenly now being in a network you know everybody and then working in cable you come into it as a job.
You come into your office and you sit and write and there’s always deadlines and as you’re done with one script you’re on to the next one. There’s no sitting around and you don’t have time to be like have writers block or wait for inspiration to strike. It’s a job, and so I think that it’s great training to approach writing like a job I think. And for me writing is never easy. I hate it when people are like, “I just sit down and I write for exactly nine hours and then I stop writing.” There’s so much time wasting and me playing on my phone and…you have good days and you have bad days but I do think there’s the discipline of just saying when it’s time to write you just work at it and if you don’t feel inspired that day you just keep going and you push through and you try to find something. Sometimes you got a whole day and everything feels crappy and you go back the next day and change everything but you still worked.
Ashley: Yeah, for sure. So what does you development process look like for Arizona? You finished up this script, do you have a few trusted writer friends that you send your material to and then they gave you notes? What does that process look like for you?
Luke: Yeah, I think it’s just that. I sent it to people who I trusted. People who I thought that would respond to the material and I got notes. Another good thing about being a TV writer is you’re constantly collaborating and you’re constantly being rewritten and you’re rewriting yourself and things are changing. In TV especially then when I was just working for people you get pretty used to being rewritten and so like I’m not at all precious about changing stuff. You can’t be in TV, there’s no like “my precious words”. Everything is always in flex and so I was happy to get feedback. I’m always happy to change as much as I can.
My biggest fear is not that like I’ll lose my babies but that I’ll be like that I cleaned the stuff because I’d like you don’t make things better. I’m always on the side of changing stuff too much as opposed to keeping things the way they are.
Ashley: So just a couple of TV questions I’m curious about. Especially given the way you sort of described the writing of Arizona, what do you typically get when you’re writing a TV episode? What do you get from the writers room? So when you sit down to write by yourself do you have a pretty detailed outline, do you have sort of a broad strokes and does that differ as you gain experience, in other words if you’re the show runner I would imagine you get a little more liberty to just go write an episode whereas if you’re lower on the totem pole you probably spend more time. But maybe talk about that. What does a writer typically come out of the writer’s room with before they actually write their episode?
Luke: I mean, the reality is every show is very different. Shows sort of reflect the personality of the show runner but also a number of episodes offer the personality of the staff. But yeah, usually like on Brooklyn 99 where I’ve been since the beginning it’s like we sent people off with pretty thorough outlines but I would say like as the season goes longer and longer as you stretch into episode 15 or 17 or 20 you’re more and more up against it and the longer you go in its season the more you’re sending writers off with half thoughts throughout outlines. At the beginning you had a very thought creative, very detailed, they have jokes pitched in them, the room has broken and then the writer just has to kind of go out and execute that and there’s still a lot of work to do but it is like getting really half the document. Towards the end you’re like you’re really sending writers out and being like, “Just figure it out.”
And so it can really depend on that and you’re also depending on the writer, on who you’re gonna send off. We tend to just design scripts in a pretty…you don’t try to think like, “Oh, this writer will be good for this script.” You just largely assign scripts based on seniority. You just sort of start at the top and I’ll finish or I’ll write the premiere and then the next thing you guys will write the next couple of episodes and down the line and then by the middle of the season you’re letting the show runners or the writers [inaudible 00:30:46] and then it sort of starts over again. But we do try to…the younger writers who haven’t been on the show as long and don’t have as much experience you try to protect them by making sure that they have good drafts.
But that again doesn’t always work and then scripts come back and I’d seen in Brooklyn 99 and this is my experience in 30 Rock too, it’s like even when someone writes a great draft we rewrite it tremendously. If you can keep 10%, 20% of your writer’s draft intact you’ve done an amazing job. That’s a startling level of like if you keep seven jokes in a 35, 36 paged script you really killed it. We believe in the value of you rewrite as a group and the reality is that certainly in comedy that group writing is often…I think it’s better. Having seven people who are all smart and have different voices you often come up with much more rich and interesting stuff than one person alone.
Ashley: Sure. So if someone comes to you and they’re new to this business and they wanna break into TV writing, what specs would you recommend that they write, original shows, existing shows, what would you tell someone that was trying to break in about writing specs?
Ashley: All anyone writes now is originals. For the last three years that I’ve been doing hiring I haven’t read any spec…you know, it’s spec episodes of existing shows. That’s just not a thing anyone does anymore. Partly it’s a practical thing which is there are fewer obvious shows to write specs of. It used be that there were the same…everyone had the same sort of common shared like pop culture or language and you could write a [inaudible 00:32:43] spec and everyone knew what it was in comedy. Now there’re these sponsored [inaudible 00:32:49] shows and you can write a great episode of…I don’t know. You’d write a BoJack Horseman or something it would be great but there’re a lot of people out there reading scripts that don’t watch BoJack Horseman.
I think a lot of people write originals. There’s a down side to that which is to say that as I read it like an original pilot is much harder to write than a…To write good characters and good jokes and sort of tell a story in 30 pages with act breaks and hitting good TV [inaudible 00:33:27] you also have to come up with a concept for a show that’s good. If you’re a young writer that’s really hard. It’s really hard for anyone to have a great idea for a television show. Sometimes when I’m reading original pieces of material I have to remind myself the idea for this is a terrible idea for a television show and they’re starting off in a bad place. But if you can past, the writing is pretty good. Joke writing is pretty strong and the sense like the structure of the scene is good.
But they made some choices where it’s like this would never be on television. But I would say I don’t think you have a choice at this point. You have to write original stuff. I would say it’s good to sort of focus on…I know a lot of people are very fluid right now between movies and TV and drama and comedy and it’s great that there’s so much movement. It’s great for writers that there’s so much movement between mediums and between genre. But I definitely think if you’re starting out it’s best to take something and focus on it. Like if you wanna write comedy write two, three comedy scripts. If you wanna write drama write two, three dramas. That’s my experience.
That it’s like it…from my experience hiring people you’re more likely to say like, “I kind of like the writing but the tone wasn’t exactly right for the show, do they have another comedy script that we could read to see if we like it?” That sort of happens a lot and I feel like people only have a drama, you’re like it doesn’t help us much in giving them a job.
Ashley: Yeah, for sure. So how can people see Arizona? Do you know what the release schedule is gonna be like for it?
Luke: I am so in the dark about it. I’ve been doing a really bad job of educating myself. I think it will be at the theaters and it will be streaming on August 24th. I donno which cities it will be playing in. I know it’s gonna have a theatrical release. I think I would love [inaudible 00:35:25] on the theater. I think the reality is I got two young kids, I never watch movies in the theaters any more. I love being able to see movies from the comfort of my bed and so I am excited for to do something that other parents with young children will be able to watch.
Ashley: What’s the best way for people to keep up with you, are you on twitter, Facebook, anything you’re comfortable sharing I can grab and put in the show notes.
Luke: I’m on Twitter. I think it’s @Del Tredici, maybe it’s @Del Tredici. I do not tweet very much, I largely just tweet about new episodes of Brooklyn 99. I don’t have a huge Twitter presence, but people should watch Brooklyn 99 on NBC sometime this year probably in the winter because it’s a fun show.
Ashley: Perfect. Well Luke I really appreciate your coming on and talking with me today. Good luck with this film.
Luke: Thank you so much for having me.
Ashley: Will talk to you later, bye.
I just wanna talk quickly about SYS Select. It’s a service for screenwriters to help them sell their screenplays and get writing assignments. The first part of the service is the SYS Select screenplay database. Screenwriters upload their screenplays along with a log line, synopsis and other pertinent information like budget and genre and then producers search for and hopefully find screenplays that they wanna produce. Dozens of producers are in the system looking for screenplays right now. I launched this service at the beginning of this year and we’ve already started to see some success stories. You can check out SYS Podcast Episode #222 with Steve Deering. He was the first official success story to come out of the SYS Select database. You can learn about all of this by going to www.sellingyourscreenplayselect.com.
When you join SYS Select you get access to the screenplay database that I just mentioned along with all the other services that we’re providing to SYS Select members. Those services include the monthly newsletter that goes out to our list of 400 producers who are actively seeking writers and screenplays. Each SYS Select member can pitch one screenplay in this monthly newsletter. We also have partnered with one of the premier paid screenwriting leads sites so I can syndicate their leads to SYS Select members. There are lots of great paid leads coming in each week from our partner. Recently we’ve been getting five to ten high quality paid leads per week. These leads run the game, there’s producers looking for specific types of spec script to producers looking to hire a screenwriter to write up one of their ideas or properties.
They’re are looking for shots, they’re looking for features, TVs and web series pilots, all types of different projects. If you sign up for SYS Select you’ll get these leads emailed directly to you several times per week. Also you can get access to the SYS Select forum where we will help you with your log line and query letter and answer any screen writing related questions that you might have. Also in the forum are all the recorded screenwriting classes that I’ve done over the years, so you’ll have access to all of those as well. The classes cover every part of the writing process from concept to outlining to the first act, second act, third act as well as other topics like writing short films and pitching your projects in person. Once again, if this sounds like something you would like to learn more about please go to www.sellingyourscreenplayselect.com.
On the next episode of the podcast I’m gonna be interviewing writer- director Boaz Yakin. He’s had a long career as both a writer and director. He’s directed such films as Remember The Titans with Denzel Washington and Safe with Jason Statham along with a whole bunch of other films and he has written a lot of studio films too like Prince of Persia, he wrote Dirty Dancing too, Havana Nights, he wrote From Dusk Till Dawn too and he also was a co-writer on Now You See Me. So he’s got a lot of great information, so keep an eye out for that episode next week. That’s the show, thank you for listening.