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Ashley: Welcome to episode #129 of the “Selling Your Screenplay Podcast” I’m Ashley Scott Meyers Screenwriter and Blogger, over at www.sellingyourscreenplay.com. Today I’m interviewing Paul Loga, who wrote and starred in a new action/horror film called, “The Hoard.” Paul is an actor who’s done mostly action movies. But on this most recent film. He wrote it and he went out and helped put the project together as well, so stay tuned for that.
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A quick few words about what I am working on this week. Once again, the main thing I am working on is? The pre-production for my crime/action/thriller film, “The Pinch.” I’ve gotten a few Emails over the last couple of weeks, Emails and comments from people. People saying that they are enjoying these updates. So, I’m just going to keep them going. You know it’s getting sort of “Nitty-gritty” I’m not sure how to explain sexy or exciting these updates really are? But, just going to throw them out there. And as I said, people are enjoying just sort of the progression of this project. So, I’ll just keep throwing stuff out there every week. Basically what I’m doing, as I said, just more sort of “Nitty-gritty” nuts and bolts type of stuff that I’m getting done. I mean, as an example, I’m still putting ads up on Craigslist trying to fill the last few crew positions. It’s amazing what you can find on Craigslist? There just, you know, lots and lots of people on Craigslist. Especially the Los Angeles section looking for crew gigs. I’ve started getting some of the contracts signed by actors. So that’s a good sign, so I don’t have to. I am getting some of these actors officially signed on. I went and I looked at a couple of houses last week to see if they would work for our main location. So, I’m trying to get that straighten out. I’ve mentioned this before I have three of my four locations. The last location is almost half the shoot, about 15 days of our shoot will be spent at this one house. And I’ve got to get that locked. It really needs to work and I’m trying to find someone, someplace that is as perfect as possible. So, that’s an on-going search. Both of these houses could work that I looked at last week. But they also had a couple of down sides to them. So, I’ve just got to mual those over? Doing some more casting this week, tomorrow.
I’m going to be doing a casting session for two of the roles. Casting is pretty labor intensive, even on a pretty low-budget, micro-budget like this. You get a ton of actors submitting. And then you have to go through their video reels, one-by-one. Watch them, figure out which actors might be right for this role. And then you schedule them and audition them, bring them in. There’s lots of rescheduling, there’s lots of people that can’t make it at that time. And so you kind of have to bounce Emails back and forth. I’ve also been talking with my First AD about getting the schedule locked up. We’re real close on that, he did sort of a first pass at the schedule. Maybe a month ago. And then we’ve just been going through that, tweaking it and he’s got sort of a final tweaks. I think that should be locked up in the next couple of days. And again, just an example of that is? We have a stunt guy that we’re going to have on set for three maybe four days, hopefully three days. You know, that’s just more money to have that stunt guy on set. So, we want to maximize the use of him and try and get him for as few? Keep him on set as few days as possible. So basically what that means is, juggling the schedule around so the days where we need the stunt coordinator consolidated as much as possible. So that’s, you know, a good example. That’s the kind of good example of sort of the schedule tweaks that my First AD is working on. Anyway, that’s kinda what I’m doing, putting this together. I’ve mentioned this before, July 9th we’re starting, it’s a Saturday, so now well less than a month from now. In just a few weeks, we’ll be starting up production. And we’ll be running for three weeks. July 29th, that’s five days a week we’ll be filming. We’ll be taking off Mondays and Tuesdays, so we’ll start Saturday, Sunday, take off Monday and Tuesday and then go Wednesday through Sunday for three weeks. And that will be 15 days. So, that’s what I’m working on.
So, now let’s get into the main segment. So, today I’m interviewing writer/actor, Paul Loga, here is the interview.
Ashley: Welcome Paul, to the “Selling Your Screenplay Podcast.” I really appreciate you coming on the show with me today.
Paul: Thanks for having me on.
Ashely: So, to start out, maybe we could just get a little bit of background on your career in the entertainment industry? Kinda how you got into this, and eventually, got to the point where you wrote and sold this screenplay? “The Hoard.”
Paul: Yeah. I came out to L.A. in ’93 actually. Came out to the Chiropractic’s School. To get my Bachelor’s degree in Bio Chem. I came out here, was pretty much done with school. Had my clinic I was supposed be. Met a woman by the pool at my apartment complex, who was the manager. She asked me, if I was an actor? It was always something that was in the back of my head. And she’s like, well, I can get some pictures taken of you and send you out. I was like, sure, she did. A couple of weeks later I booked my first film. I was in this really bad one called, “Killers.” And I met my best friend in that. And my acting coach on that. And never looked back. So I’ve been doing that ever since. It changed my life for almost three years, friends, angels, Schmidt. I did a bunch of films for the Sy-Fy Channel. I haven’t had much luck since I was a kid. So I love doing action films. So, that’s kind of my wheel-house right now. Stuff like, Jason Stateman’s doing a “Rock” or producing a few “Jack” that’s kinda my wheel-house.
Ashley: Yeah. So, let’s talk specifically about “The Hoard” for a minute. Maybe to start out you can give us a quick pitch or a log-line for the film?
Paul: Well, the log-line for the film, “The Hoard” is? It’s an action/horror. And is a 50/50 hydrator. It’s kinda, “The Hills Have Eyes” meets “Rambo.” And the reason I wrote this script? I’ve actually written six scripts. And this is the last one I wrote. I wanted to do something that would showcase me, and acting wise, action wise. And as a producer and a screenwriter. And the reason why this one came about was? I watched tons of movies. I watched action films, I watched tons of horror films. And most horror films that have the same. A bunch of kids going into the woods with the killer or killers, hunting them down one at a time. You’ve seen it a million times. But you’ve seen that a million times, because that’s what the horror genre wants, expects and enjoys. So, I thought what would happen if the same scenario? A bunch of kids all on a nature photography trip with their teacher. A bunch of sadistic canabalistic hill-billy’s have eyes type of people hunting them down. When you had one person in the kids group you who was like Ex Special Forces, who wasn’t a Navy Seal. Who could fight back and turn the hunter into the hunted. So, all the boo scares and gore and the intensity of a horror film. But when the guy comes out with a machete, or the ax. It turns into this whole action sequence. And for audiences, it’s never been done before. You always have these hapless victims running around getting hacked to pieces. Usually one girl gets away, you’ve seen that formulas so many times. So, I wanted to take that and kinda put a new element into it. Because we’ve seen so many films like, what would happen if you had a guy like a “Rambo” character it that. Were like a special forces guy who would actually fight back. And you know, that’s a you know kind of a.
Ashley: Yeah, yeah. That sounds like a nice high concept, a nice twist on it. I’m sort of familiar with it, so that’s great. Maybe we could talk just a little bit about your writing process, just for a minute. You know, what does that look like? How much time do you spend outlining? Does it seems like from the way you describe it? The idea was fairly well formed. You know, you thought sort of about how to position this idea. And then talk about this, maybe how long you spend outlining? How long you spend actually opening “Final Draft” and actually writing?
Paul: Actually, my process is, it’s every script is the same with me. I, it starts off as an idea. I knock it out, anywhere as it happens. The idea, I’ll just see it through in the notes section of my own. And I’ll just, you know, I’ll have a bunch of them. And I just basically, and after that I’ll just start brainstorming. I do everything, most, 90% of it is hand written, I’m a horrible typist. So, I’ve written from most of my scripts by pool, or like out someplace. In a notebook hand written because I can think and write at about the same speed. And then later on, I’ll take it, you know, when I’m done being creative. I just begin the imputing process. I will just do the final draft part, because I am a horrible typist. So, that being said, I do the same thing. I’ll take that one idea, “Hills Have Eyes” meets “Rambo” And I’ll start, you know, brainstorming it. Just, really cool things that I would want to put in. And it’s bullet points, and get a whole laundry list of them. And then I outline it, I skeleton it out. I literally, First Act, Second Act, Third Act. And just get my feets in there. And then from there, I just go to town. I’ll just, the First Scene, I’ll just do this, and write out all the action, dialog, next, next, next. Imput it in, read it, you know, a few times, tweak if I need to. And I try to idiot proof read it as I’m going along. So, that’s not too many re-writes and changes of that. I tried to paint my characters, the heroes, Usually intuitive, the biggest pointer they can. And, you know, make every choice that they make. And every action that happens have a purpose. Not just to do something cool and action wise. Because you go to school, and then, you know, a great visual. I want it to have meaning, and not just you know, pointless action. I want every choice that the character makes, and everything he does, or they do, for just to be congruent to the story. Because that’s why I like watching. You can see, you know, a great fight scene, a great explosion, or a great, you know, chunk of dialog, you know. If it doesn’t move the story forward then it doesn’t have a good integral part of the story. It’s kinda like an island, and I kinda want everything to just blend together. It did, I try to really weave in as much of the horror as I could obviously and the action. And everything has meaning, and if the whole thing is glued together, this big love story. The premise behind this is guy, John Crenshaw, my character is, or was a Navy Seal, he was head of the Seals Team. And all these injuries and omissions and has given it up now. He’s fell in love and wants to marry this girl. He’s put that side of his life aside, and he’s done with that. And it’s a very pointed moment at the beginning of the script where he is practicing proposing to his girlfriend. And the normal day to day stuff, is alien to him now. Like going to Starbucks, and going to the grocery store. That I wanted to make the character awkward. Like he’s at a mirror trying to figure out how to propose to his girlfriend? He looks at his dog, trying to get feedback from the dog and stuff. I can tell ya, there’s ten ways to sink a battleship. But I can’t figure out how to ask one simple question? And that hits home, that like, when he’s in battle and blood is flying and bullets are going by, that’s his wheel-house. And everything else is awkward. And so he gets roped into this, you know, nature photography trip, with his girlfriend. She’s a local teacher at a community college. She teaches photography, they take this photography trip out into the woods, beautiful pictures of nature, deer, lake, and all that, etc… And she comes home and says this weekend, which he is going to propose. So, she says, “Look, you love the woods, so why don’t you come with us?” And so, he gets roped into it. I figure I can propose out there, and it’ll be great! And I’m packing my gear at the beginning, and I’m packing my gun. And she stops me and says, “Look it, you’re not that guy anymore.” That hits home with the character, that’s a very important line that I wrote. Because that’s the crux of his change. He’s like, look you know, we’re not taking on Isis, we’re going on a nature trip, you’re not that guy anymore. So, he leaves the gun behind. And that’s the irony of it. If he had, had his gun with him, this movie would have been over in 15 minutes. But, when shit hits the fan, and all hell breaks loose, and they attack us. I have a couple of them all leave me for dead. He has to become that guy again, to save everybody. And that’s the irony of this, he has to celebrate that unstoppable solider he was to save everybody. That’s where I wanted this character’s heart to be in it. Is that he’s given it up. But, you know, he could never stop really being that guy. And that’s good because that’s what inevitable saves everyone.
Ashley: Yeah, great. So, let’s talk a little bit about this idea, and sort of how it, how you got the script so. I’m curious, I mean, the idea, seems really well formed, it seems really well high concept. Was this an idea, and you mentioned like an idea bank you have, a whole bunch of ideas. Do you take these ideas and then you have some producers you’ve worked with, do you vet the ideas before you start writing? Or do you, you just thought this one was a really good idea so you wrote the script for it first?
Paul: No, I could have written the script first. I’ve done that, I’ve written six scripts. This is the first one I’ve actually written and got financed, and taken it through and now it’s on everywhere, it’s on ODO, it’s one ITunes, everywhere. It’s doing really, really well, we’re on the top, we’re at #10 on ITunes noteworthy after five days. So, I’m very, very, thankful for that. So, this is the first one I’ve taken two for which. And but, in answer to your question? I don’t talk to somebody and get an idea and then write a script. I’ve had all these different ones, and this is what I knew I’d do and have a little bit of lower-budget. And it was, like you said, very, very, high concept. And so, to the point where the distributor was very strong, both of our distributors. Both our distributors are very strong in action in horror. And they can take a script in both categories, alright. We knew that would be a good selling point, was as well. And it hadn’t been done before, a hybred and a film like this? So, all these things, you know, were kind of appetizing to the people who ultimately fund. And what I did, eventually was, I put together a “Sizzle Wheel.” I took stuff from the film. Other’s horror films, and some stuff from the “Rambo” movies. You know, with Sly doing something himself. And then we shot some stuff. And me, we did it, edited it all together to show people what this more or less looked like. For, you know, it even came out of L.A. with, it’s odd. Even with the characters and visual. Because you could write a synapsis and tell people about it. But these, they see that. And they go, okay, I know what I am getting. And that’s what it was. So, I took it to “Three, One, Three Films” which was, this was their first film. And they were looking for a project. And I talked to them, and showed them the concept of, and showed them the sizzle reel, script, and they loved it. And so, they green lit it. And partnered up with my production company, “Razor’s Edge Productions” and together we made “The Hoard.”
Ashley: Okay. And so, let’s talk about your relationship with them. How did you meet these folks? You said that the company was called, “Three, One, Three, Films.” Okay, “Thee, One, Three Films.” How did you meet those folks at Three, One, Three, Films?
Paul: We had been friends for a couple of years. And they were always looking to starting a production company, and make a film. And I was on the other end of this. I had, you know, all these contacts, you know, on both sides of the camera, that I could bring to the table. You know, crew, and cast, and everything in between. I just didn’t have the financing head. And without financing, you didn’t have anything else. So, it was a perfect match. And it was great, because again, it was their first one, and it was my first one. And then putting everything together. I acted in tons of other people’s projects. But not my own. But it was nice about was, having the freedom and control to make sure everything was done the way that I wrote it. And literally, you know, the team we put together, kicked ass And we had 98% if what I wrote on that script, and that’s unheard of? I mean, I changed one thing, it was a chase scene at the end. There was a car here, a truck chasing behind it. And I wanted people coming up on motorcycles, jumping into the truck I was in. The road wasn’t actually wide enough to have a car, you know, motorcycles had to be on camera cars. So we had to jump again from the side. That’s the only thing we changed. And that was a huge, huge testament to the crew we put together and the cast and everybody. They literally came in and killed it. You know, it was great because I’d watched this movie, you know, when you write something, you watch the movie a thousand times in your head before it gets done. And it never turns out the same way.
Ashley: I wonder. Yeah, yeah. I wonder, if you could, we could just back track a little bit, like you said. You’ve known these people from the “Three, One, Three Film Productions” for a long time. Just talk about that relationship a little bit. How did you meet people? That’s kind of the Holy Grail, is meeting people that have financing already in place. So, are they people you worked with on some of your other productions? Are they just people on the outside the entertainment industry that were friends that way?
Paul: Definitely the later, they were people who were friends. And they were, you know, they had access to the financing. And literally wanted to get into that and make a film. And so, like I say again, a perfect business marriage. Which.
Ashley: Did you then talk to some of the distributors, once you had financing in place. Did you talk to someone, some of the distributors? Because I get, you said, you have a unique hook here with high concept, blending of two genres. At that point, did you start to talk to distributors? And.
Paul: Not really, just cursory thinking, distributors that I knew. Just to kind of figure out if I was going down the right path? You know, because I had already written scripts, I wanted to know which ones to come out of the gate with strong? And they all said, this was a great idea. I had friends with distributors. And friends who were, you know, made movies of all different projects. And I can tell a story about “The Hills Have Eyes” meets your grandmother. And it’s like, “Yeah, that’s so cool!” And so everyone had that initial, like “Wow, I want to see this movie” thing. And so, talking to them pre, but no one’s going to buy like ten years from now, I’m not going to be able to sell something out of this concept. Or, a poster, or a trailer. Now a days, everyone wants to see a completed project. They’ll show interest and say, “Yeah, of course, show it to me when it’s done.” But no one’s going to buy anything any NG’s are literally a thing of the past. But, that being said, everyone showed a genuine interest. And then when we were done. We literally finished a week before AFM’s, literally went to market. Where I had my editor, he was great, literally threw together a bunch of some of the action and the horror stuff. And put it over a really cool song. Just to show people what we did, in the rawest of form. And everyone was like, “Wow!” When is this to be done? Send it to me right away! At AFM, we talked to, tried to, you know, 50 people, different companies. Every single one of them wanted to see it when it was done. So, that was just great. Again, great testament to you know, the kick-ass, you know, team we put together and made this film.
Ashley: The a, I always like to get a sense of just the scope? Like you say, you’ve written six scripts. And you know, obviously you’ve found a good match with this production company. But I always sort of get a sense of the scope of what else you’re doing? And what I found with my own experiences, is that you know, there’s a whole lot of projects that don’t go anywhere? And nobody ever talks about those, but that’s a big part of the process is having those ten failures. So that one success comes through and I find a lot of people who come to my blog. They’ve written one script and they send it to a couple of people. And I know you, and wish you luck and hope that works out. But, most of the people I talk to that are successful in this. Is, they got ten projects going and as I said, you never hear about the nine that don’t work out. You only hear about the one. And they only talk about the one. So, were you doing something with these other I guess five scripts? We do, where did you send this script, and the sizzle reel to other companies that said, “No, thanks.”
Paul: Well, again, I had written scripts. And as I would you know, they would just stuff to have. Because I knew that eventually I would have control. And people would want to do projects with me. Whether it was now, or a couple of years from now. And like I said, I got tired of waiting for projects to come in to me. I just thought to, write some myself. And so, I wrote them and it was interesting. Some, you know, everyone was, you know, grab a story in Hollywood, you know. I got some, was five, I guess this and that. Not everyone would give me. So, check signed. So, wish some of these accounts were issued to me. You know, but, it was, a lot of that. The reason I wrote “The Hoard.” Was because I wanted to do something. Because look at the other ones were a, we needed a living on a bigger budget. A lot more CG and special effects. And just, you know, gun play, all action, or action and horror still. I know those words a little bit bigger and stronger in scope. So another reason I wrote, “The Hoard” was because we could shoot at a lower budget. I purposely wrote it, it didn’t have the guns. And you know, and everything was in the woods. And very, very controlled. So that we could do it on a smaller budget. And but the thing is, I did it on a smaller budget, but it looks like a micro-made from. It looks really, really big budget. Which is great, our team. And so this one I knew it would have more of a chance to get done. First, show people what I could do at a smaller budget. Then maybe, you know, and you know, work up the food chain. And the other projects afterwards, and the next one I’m doing. And is another one that I wrote. Which is a script called, “The Future Madness.” Which is kind of like, “Die Hard” and Insane Asylum.” So, that’s kinda for the next one on the shelf.
Ashley: Okay, okay. I would be curious to get your take, and you’re in a little bit of a different position. Because you’ve been a working actor for so long, so many years. But I do get a lot of people coming to me that they’ve written a script and they want it directed. Or they are an actor and they want to act in it. And I mean, most of the people that come through my site, they don’t have any credit. So, I’m always very hesitant to say, attach yourself as an actor or a director. Because I think that will hurt your chances. Did you find any push back? Obviously you’re kind of a known commodity in this genre. So, you have something you can show people that you know, that you’re legitimate. But did you get any push back, you know, saying I wrote this script, and yes, I want to be an actor. What would your advice be for someone who’s starting out as an actor, and they’ve written a script?
Paul: You have the luxury of writing in your own project. And to pretty much do what I did. Write for your strengths, and know your limitations. You know, again, I wrote the script, and when I write. I’m very, very, I’ve been told that from my first script to this one, I’m very, very descriptive, I’m very, very, visual about it. I write, actually my stunt coordinator is an old fight choreography on this. But the fight scenes I wrote, literally were, he’s like, Paul, If we could shoot this right now. I mean, that’s how descriptive I was. But I wrote everything in it in there, know that only I could do those things. I even write stuff in there, to bring it out now. I own this, I did it this all, the stunt work, fights. So, again, if you have a big time action film, write to your strengths. If you really, if you’re an actor and you got great comedic timing, and you’re great at comedy, write that in as your character. If like, you’re really, really good at drama. If you’re a character actor, don’t write yourself as the lead, know what you’re selling. You know, it’s, I was selling action hero Navy Seal and I play that all the time, so I know that’s in my wheel-house. You know, when you’re coming out of the gate with your first one. Don’t write something that’s a stretch for you. You’re like Tom Cruise in the “4th of July.” He didn’t start with that. You know, that was something that he wanted to get away from, you know. The “Top Gun” you know look. And he did that afterwards. But it was Tom Cruise. So, you know, give your script and yourself the best shot to get it made. Or, you know, do some shorts that you could shoot it yourself. Or shoot a couple of scenes of it, to show people what you can do. You know, if you are not an unknown actor that people don’t know? Going back to that short movies, saying, oh, okay, you can carry this film. Shoot a couple of scenes, or shorts, or do a smaller film. Where it’s not going to, you won’t waste your name, if that makes any sense. You know, just do it that way. And that’s where I think, begin. I think the main thing is to write to your strengths and exploit them to the fullest in the film. If you’re, again, comedy, action, whatever it is, whatever your forte is? Write the character for that.
Ashley: Yeah, yeah. Good advice for sure. So, I’m curious if you ever, you could just maybe as an actor who’s you know, who read dozens, if not hundreds, if not thousands of scripts over the years. I wonder if there are some things you’ve seen that, you know, from an actor perspective that’s problems. Or, things that screenwriters maybe could do better? And maybe even taking a step further, what could they do well that could attract talent. What is it that you look at in a script that you read and say, “Wow, I could, I gotta do this!”
Paul: I think one word to sum it up would be, “Layers.” I love characters that playing them that are either, not entirely what they seem right away. Or, that have layers, that have internal conflict, while its external conflict. And because that’s fun as an actor. And because you have to play and to portray. And when I’m writing that I try to write my good guys and my bad guys. And it’s not so cut and dry. You know, you have a bad guy who is like my character. Like the bad guy in “The Hoard.” Vincent, he, he’s evil, he’s like a triple homicide, you know, escaped prisoner. You know, he’s got this little bit of a charisma kinda like. You kinda get sucked into this guy’s world. And, you know, we got Costas Mandilo playing it. So, I liked it, it was great. And, the same thing with my character. With the, I wanted to give him that conflict where he’s, you know, awkward in day-to-day life. To whereas out and about out in the field, it’s (finger snap) “Boom!” It clicks and second nature. And so, it’s not so cut and dry, and you know, that’s something that I enjoy being, when I’m reading a script. I go like, oh, gee, that’s kinda cool. And it makes you turn a page, makes you want to see what’s going to happen again, that students’ character. And that’s what you want, you want your audience vested in these characters. And so, as a writer, try to make them it. So you peel back the layers. And you know, that surprised me. But also, don’t get away from, you know, give them what they expect. Maybe like, 60% and maybe 40% where they don’t. Because you don’t want to get too far away from it, where it’s too convoluted. Where you’re trying to be, you know, different. Then you’re like, what am I reading? Who is this person, really? Give them the core, you know, the guy is a hero, but he could be a flawed hero. He could be a wounded hero. He could be a scared hero. You know, but he’s still a hero. And just give him all these challenges to overcome in the film. And that’s interesting, still keep to the core of the character. But, give him these layers.
Ashley: Yeah, yeah, that stuff. That’s excellent advice. So, do you know the release schedule? You mentioned it was already on ITunes. As we were recording this, is it pretty much pushed up? Is it going to show up on NetFlix, Amazon?
Paul: We’re everywhere right now. June the 6th was our big release date. So, it’s: ITunes, DirectTV, Amazon, Google, Voodoo, Playstation, every DOD, paid DOD right now. So, if you go to www.thehoardmovie.com you can see the whole laundry list of all of the carriers, as I said, like 50-60 carriers carrying it right now. So, it’s great we’ve gotten amazing response. We’ve gotten great reviews on, as far as NetFlix, that’s our next faze. We go paid DOD first, and then after that I think it’s our 60 days later you have your NetFlix subscription reviewed. And then your physical DOD and then after that goes foreign, and then the same process. Foreign DOD’s that subscription. And then foreign TV as well. It’s going to be rolling out there, probably for the next eight months. So, we’ve got more in different markets.
Ashley: Okay, perfect, perfect. At the end, I just like to end the interviews by just asking the guest if they can share anything you do on like, Twitter, or Facebook, anything you’re comfortable sharing? Just so people can potentially follow your career and just see what you’re up to?
Paul: Oh, that’s okay, I’m, it’s funny. I was a big fan, a Facebook guy for I was always full on Facebook. I also have a fan book page. So, you just search – Paul Logan and verify a security check, check mark the little blue check mark. But, I’m new to the Twitter and Instagrams. And so I answer all my fan mail since minute one. Since back when I started this career myself. I don’t have someone handling my accounts. Because I think of a fan is, you know, why don’t you ask me a genuine question? I will answer them. And without the fans, I don’t have a job. And I’m always very, very, willing to, you know, talk to fans, interact with them. You know, either in person, or social media, or my website. My website is – www.paullogan.net. So, somebody Emails me – www.paullogan.net I answer my own fan mail. On my Twitter, I will invite for people to follow me is – @thewheelpaullogan, “The Hoards” Twitter, we see a bunch of cool stuff, Twitter is – @thehoardmovie, my Instagram is –
Paullogan88, and I have, should you post a lot stuff up there. Pictures of behind the scenes pictures. And just to keep, you know, the fans abreast of what’s going on? You know, either with me as aa producer, writer, or maybe as an actor. Because the producing and the writing, I love doing that. Because it gives me creative freedom. It’s all the end game, all to get myself vehicles. Because I love playing the hero, I’m not gonna lie. And still, collecting comics as a kid. And I’m a huge Batman freak. I have that huge hero thing and I’ve always wanted to do that. And now, especially with “The Hoard” coming out. And doing as well as it is. Hopefully we’ll all have a lot more opportunities to do things that, like, you know, Jason, Sly, and stuff like that. So, a that’s where I like to be.
Ashley: Yeah, yeah, perfect. Well Paul, I really appreciate you coming on and talking to me. Excellent interview I wish you luck with the movie.
Paul: And your viewers have any questions, please feel free to reach out. And check out “The Hoard” it’s a wild roller coaster ride! Bye.
Ashley: Perfect, perfect. Thank you Paul, we’ll talk to ya later.
Ashley: I just want to tell you about two things I’m doing at www.sellingyourscreenplay.com. To help screenwriters find producers who 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. I went and Emailed my large database of industry producers and asked them if the would like to receive this monthly newsletter of pitches. So far, I have well over 300 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 want to participate in this pitch newsletter each month? And get your script into the hands of lots of producers. Sign-up at – www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/select.
And secondly, I have partnered with one of the premier paid screenwriting lead sites, so that I can syndicate their leads with SYS Select members. There are lots of great leads coming in each week from our partner. Recently I’ve been getting probably ten to twelve high quality 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 will get these leads each week Emailed to you each week, several times per week. These leads run the gambit from producers and production companies who are looking for a specific type of spec. script. Two producers looking to hire screenwriters to write up a property they currently own. There are shorts, there are features, there are producers looking for TV, web series, pilots. So it’s a huge aray of different types of projects that people are looking for. And these leads are exclusive to our partner and SYS Select Members. Again, to sign-up, go to – www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/select.
On the next episode of the Podcast, I’m going to be interviewing another actor turned writer, Remy Obert Nobergerua. Who wrote and directed the feature film, “Blood Stripe.” Again, he wrote the script, he’s directed the script. He wrote with his wife and an actress, who’s the star of the project. And he put the project together, pretty much from the start. It was their idea, they wrote it up, they tried to find a writer. That didn’t work out. So, they ended up writing it themselves. And then they went around, as I said, and found funding for the film and went out and shot it. So, it’s an interesting story. So, a great template for those of us looking to write our own material. So, stay tuned for that episode next week.
To wrap things up, I want to touch on a few things from today’s interview with Paul. I think today’s interview is a great contrast to the episode last week, with Sean Nalaboff, and his movie, “Hard Sell.” Sean had a very different approach. He really wasn’t thinking about the marketability of his script, or his project. He was just trying to do a project he thought he had meaning to him. And Paul is clearly the sort of the opposite end of the spectrum on this one. He went after something that clearly had a market. Mixing two popular genres as he said in the interview. Mixing kind of horror with action. Since he’s been an actor for many years in many of the genre films. He really understands that part of the equation. Which is to say, understands sort of the film financing part. The whole book, the fact that you need a clear genre, or even a mixer of genres that has a clear market. Before you go out and start to market the script. The script has to be marketable. So, Sean really, I thought I said, “Paul” comes at it from a different angle than Sean. And I think that’s fantastic, to see these different people doing different things. Coming at it from a different perspective. And getting these movies made. One common thread that I hope people are seeing. And this is not just with this, today’s interview with Paul, or last week’s with Sean. Lots, and Lots, and lots, and lots of writers, directors, producers. People that come on my Podcast. They are people that are out making things happen for themselves. They are people that write a script. And they just go out and they raise the money. Or they
self-fund it, or they find the money, or they shoot at low-budget, whatever the case may be? But they are basically going out there and making the film themselves. They are not waiting for permission from someone else? When I say, waiting for permission? I mean, they are not sitting by their phone waiting for someone to buy their screenplay. They are just going out there and doing it. Also, I think it’s interesting to point out, listen to Paul, he says, what he looks for in the character. That he is potentially going to play. I had an interesting conversation this past week with an actor. Where he was thinking about coming on and doing a very small role in my movie, “The Pinch.” And the role is in the script, it’s literally called, “Uniform police Officers” something like that? So it’s clearly a small role. And one of the things that I can tell him. He’s just, this is just an actor who is doing it for the credit. I mean, there’s no money to speak of. And he just wants to get some credits. So, I can tell from talking with him that, you know, Uniform Police Officer” wasn’t that exciting. But one of the things I said to myself. I could give that character an actual name, you know, Officer Roy, or something like that. We could give this character a real name. So, then when it appeared in the IMDb credits, it’ll say something like, you know, Officer Jay Lawyer. It’ll have an actual name, Jake or something? And it won’t just be, “Uniformed Police Officer.” And then the reason for that will look like a much more substantial role. And then you are turning it around. And actually the actor has, you know, it’s a fairly low commitment. He doesn’t have to show up, he only has to be on set for two days to get this credit. And it looks like a much more significant credit than it actually is. He only doing it for the credit. This is something I could tell interested him a little bit more. And again, I’m not suggesting that we go through our screenplays and give every, you know, every bit player, everyone. Every line person who has a line, give them a specific name? You don’t want to do that you don’t want a call out effect. But if you’re writing the movie to produce yourself. Or you’ve already written a draft, sent it out to people and haven’t been in touch. And now you are going on to produce it. This is something you might want to do. And this is just as I said, and dubbing into what Paul said about sub-play some of these characters. You know, details matter. It’s those little small things that can make a difference. And really listen to what Paul is saying, about what interests him in the role. It’s just that layers and complexity and especially if you can get that in to either into any of these small bit parts. If you can get just a little bit of layers and complexity into that, It will excite actors. And that will get them on board with you. So, really think through all of these characters, even minor ones. I mean, because the best case scenario? If you do sell the scrip, some poor actor is going to have to come in and play that role. And they are going to want to know, something about that actor will want to know at that specific actor’s point of view. That’s what they’re doing, I mean, they are bringing their professionalism to it, even the smallest parts. Some person is going to play that role. And he’s really going to have to think about it. He’s going to have to do the best he can with what he can ferret out of the script. And if you can give him a little bit more, #1 it’ll make it easier to move better. And #2 It will make your actors more excited to play those small roles.
Anyway, that’s the show, thank you for listening.