Archive for March 23rd, 2009

Writing for film is an altogether different animal. I’m afraid there’s no substitute for the grind – meeting producers or trying to meet them, narrations (during which their phones will ring constantly), rejection etc.

After listening to you or pretending to, they’ll tell you that it’s all very well, but can you develop an idea that they have?’ You have no choice but to comply. And even after that they may reject your work. Else they may not even meet you again.

Also, no one will ever tell you NO straight off. In this industry, people are so insecure and no one knows when someone will make it big that they are mortally afraid of rubbing anyone off the wrong way. Instead, they will devise inventive ways to fob you off – I’ve been away on a shoot (never mind that the guy hasn’t made a film in years), I got caught up in other things etc.

What makes the scene more complicated is the fact that most film people – producers, directors and even actors, are notoriously disorganized. So you will never know if the guy (let’s face it, it’s a man’s world) is trying to avoid you or is genuinely busy.

There’s nothing for it, you’ll just have to rely on studying body language. And you’ll have to be good at it. Most film people are practiced phonies and lie with consummate ease.

And even when you get a producer interested in your script, the onus of putting the project together will be on you. So you’ll have to run around trying to get a director, actors’ assent and the entire cycle of narrations and actors trying to fob you off will begin again.

Getting a director isn’t easy. Most directors have their own ideas and scripts which they are trying to get produced that they aren’t interested in yours. Getting stars is even more difficult.

So, as you can see, getting your script turned into a production is an uphill task and it could be years (if ever) when that happens.

Instead, what most writers and directors do is get actors’ assent (meaning dates) first and then go to producers. If you have a commercially viable star cast, getting finances and even producers is a piece of cake.

Then again, there are so few stars and they are so busy, that even with the project all together and ready to roll in an instant, you may still have to wait years before beginning photography.


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