One of the most rewarding things about writing this blog is hearing from screenwriters who have started to implement some of the marketing strategies I outline in posts like How to Sell Your Screenplay (in a nutshell) and are actually having some real success using the methods.
I personally learn a lot from hearing real world examples so I thought I’d publish one from a writer who’s hustling to get his work out there. We can all learn a lot from this guy. He’s not just sitting around waiting for the phone to ring, he’s working to make things happen for himself.
His email went something like this:
“I have been watching comedy movies from the last two years or so and just watching basically the small supporting role characters to see if I think they are funny, then I read some reviews about them and then try to find their contact information. I recently got an email back from a great comedy actor who’s had some supporting roles in some big budget comedy films asking me to send one of my scripts.
I got in touch with him by going online and doing a lot of research. I googled his name after watching the movie She’s Out of My League, because I thought he really carried that movie, even though he had a supporting role. Then I IMDB’d him and noticed that he has been supporting in most of his movies. I checked for his email address a couple of times and kept coming back to the same website over and over again. I then emailed his website, which has all of his contact information on it, along with all of his agency information. I emailed him with the logline for one of my scripts and then just mentioned that he rocked the movie, because he did and that this would be a great vehicle for him to be the lead. After a couple of days, I got an email back from him asking to send the script. I have been trying this with a few comedy actors and this was the first one I got back with a “yes.” As simple as it sounds, it was really a lot of work. But in all honesty, I really thought that he would be great for the lead role!!! Of course that would be anyone who would say “yes,” but I just looked at his roles all being small, and thought that with his connections, i.e. being in a Judd Apatow film, he could possibly be looking for something that would be a great lead. Hopefully he will like my script or maybe one of the others I have been working on.”
What this screenwriter is doing is exactly the sort of thing we should all be doing. He doesn’t have any inside Hollywood contacts but he’s still getting his material out there to people who might be able to get it produced. In this day and age it’s usually pretty easy to track down people’s contact information. If your pitch is good it’s quite likely you’ll get a response especially from actors in supporting roles who aren’t inundated with these sorts of requests.
I’m publishing this email not so other screenwriters can copy his idea. You’re welcome to copy his idea, but I’m hoping that this will inspire other other outside-the-box ideas to try and get your material pushed forward. This is just one idea. There are an infinite number of other ideas out there, too.
I wrote this post a while ago: Should I find actors whom I think would be a good match for my movie and contact their agents? You might want to read it as I give some more insight into how to contact an actor with your project.