is a specialist story analysis & training organization, backed by
major companies, delivering a range of consultancy and support services
to writers, authors and filmmakers, globally.
the sun finally setting on the Summer blockbuster season, it is time to
look back on who won (Universal), who didn't (Sony) and who will be
riding the sunset into the Autumn (China). Time for the August
**OVERDRIVE opens - Application Only Script Development
soft-launched to selected clients, our new OVERDRIVE
community already has over 50
vetted members and is now open to wider applications.
In brief, we've listened to the producers, writers and
directors who work with us.
about every online community these days seems to have an open-door
policy, where anyone can join, and there's no real tangible benefit to
result of this is clear - sub-standard networking, unprofessional
behaviour, and no genuine value delivered.
you can make a great connection, but no-one would deny it's very hit
With OVERDRIVE, we're
dancing to a different tune:
Strictly capped membership.
▪ Vetting process which includes submission of CV and career goals
▪ Strict policing of member forums to ensure interaction and networking
remains of a very high order.
▪ A giant list of 40+ unique member benefits.
▪ Price points affordable enough (from £5/$8 PCM) for all, but high
enough to deter those merely playing around with script development and
not treating it with the seriousness it deserves.
▪ Screenwriters looking to forcefully progress their projects through
an established and supportive system
▪ Producers looking to talent track and scout the next Hoss Amini
or Gregory Burke, as well as bring their coverage and development in
well under budget
▪ Directors on the hunt for their long-term writer or brilliant
spec, the one they're going to build their future around
▪ Agents/Funds/Execs and Trackers looking to lock in the next wave of talent, before
somebody else does, and before the commissions start flowing the the
dreaded "he's unavailable" response starts coming back...
Our vision is of an elite script development hothouse,
comprised only of producers, writers and directors with serious
all the above reasons, we only want the best people in OVERDRIVE. Indeed,
for our vision to succeed, we have
to recruit the best people.
Think you've shown enough to join?
your CV and application statement ready and Apply Now.
Remember: membership is capped and once all the places
are gone, we'll be like Studio54: operating on a one-in, one-out
The Insider Interviews LIVE - September
June we launched The Insider Interviews LIVE
- an in-the-flesh spin-off of our popular online series, that has in
the past featured the likes of Tom
Hiddleston, director Ben Wheatley, producer Gareth Unwin
and writer-director Stuart
new monthly Q & A/networking evening kicked off in London in June
with Aaron Anderson, ex
UK Film Council Premiere Fund and Scott Free executive, and in July
on-the-rise producer Andy Brunskill
took to the stage to share his advice and experience.
conversations regarding equal opportunities rage amongst different
sectors of the film industry, the Directors Guild of America have
released a list of the TV shows that hire the most and least female and
best list, however, was populated with shows like HOMELAND (67%) and
JANE THE VIRGIN
(71%). Frustratingly, the top ten on the best list are the ones with
significantly less reach and, from here, it could be argued that the
programs making the most effort are the ones that are least likely to
be seen (like BEING MARY JANE
and SINGLE LADIES).
Chinese film market continues to boom, Warner Bros. have begun talks
with the state-backed China Media Capital with a view to produce
Chinese-language features for local audiences. These talks may lead to
a joint venture company designed to invest in and produce films for
that specific viewership that has come out in droves for recent China
behemoth MONSTER HUNT and
talks are successful, the move would be Warner’s second venture into
the Chinese film production sector. It was previously involved in
production and distribution in a joint venture with China Film Group.
end of Chinese cinema’s “blackout period” was made official with a
strong opening for TERMINATOR GENISYS,
the first major U.S. title to be released in China for two months.
Assisted by several appearances by Scwarzenegger himself, the fifth
movie in the franchise managed a healthy $27 million from 69,000
in Japan, JURASSIC WORLD is
continuing its monstrous multiplex run with a third week at the top for
a combined total of close to $50 million, making it Japan’s biggest hit
for 2015 so far.
Fresh Content from Industrial Scripts
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out how to get a bona fide literary management company to represent you
is complicated, especially if you’re new(ish) to the entertainment
industry. Unlike most things, Googling “literary managers” won’t
instantly answer your questions. It’s a confusing marketplace, due, in
part, to the semi-collapse of the full-time script development job
market in LA in recent times... " [read the full article.]
rewritten, redrafted, typed ‘Fade Out’ more times than you can count.
You’re finally satisfied that your script, the one you’ve poured months
maybe even years into writing, is finished. Now what? For most writers,
the endgame is seeing their script up on the big screen or on
television, and getting paid. But, how do you get..." [read the full article.]
opportunities for screenwriters to keep their eyes on....
is the 1st – and only
– story analysis co. to sign up to independent, impartial reviews
websites in order to allow its clients to publicly reveal what they
think of the company’s services.
unique in that we rely on “verified” reviews
rather than (faux?) testimonials from friends and colleagues which, as
most people realise, are ultimately meaningless in a crowded,
consultants all have considerable experience working for and with the
very best companies, and are currently very active in development (we
don't believe in trading on past glories). We offer 20 different types
of script development service, some are listed below, but you can visit our website
to view them all...
you're developing scripts, in any capacity, you'd be hard-pressed to
find a more transparent service
than ours. Just sayin...
Talk is Cheap. We're all about the hard data. Click to
read verified customer reviews about us.
Service - £40
"Should I spend 6...12...18...months of my life developing this
project?" is a question that haunts many writers, who have more
ideas than time. Here writers submit 10 loglines, and we put them in
order of excellence, advising writers to channel their efforts into
promising ideas rather than wasting time and energy writing developing
Film Coverage Report
- £135 * eligible for TALENT CONNECTOR
This report on feature-length scripts consists of 4+ pages of notes and
feedback to help the writer move on to his or her next draft.
Film Forensic Notes
- £300.00 * eligible for TALENT CONNECTOR
Our Detailed Development Notes service delivers an extremely detailed
analysis of your feature script, together with lengthy suggestions on
how to move forward to the next draft. These reports run to 14+ pages,
and offer a truly forensic analysis of your script.
Script Doctoring -
Fees Vary * eligible for TALENT CONNECTOR
Through our resident Script Doctors we offer writers, producers and
directors the opportunity to have their project re-written, doctored,
polished, re-structured and significantly improved according to their
And on that note, the N.W.A movie has become the latest in Universal
Studio’s summer domination. This outing follows releases like JURASSIC WORLD, MINIONS and Judd
Apatow comedy TRAINWRECK to seal
their place at the top of the profit margins.
5) Hayley Atwell
With AGENT CARTER
starting up again shortly, Hayley Atwell has found herself all over the
internet with fans passionately arguing her case for the next DR. WHO.
1) Oleg Sentsov
The Ukranian film maker, best known for 2011’s GAMER, was
controversially sentenced to 20 years in prison after being found
guilty in a Russian court on charges of terrorism.
2) Mel Gibson
Not content with his already marred reputation, the one-time Oscar
winner for BRAVEHEART is in
the headlines again for accusations of physical and verbal abuse on a
News Corp. photographer.
3) Josh Trank/Fox
The FANTASTIC FOUR
reboot made for a bad August for everyone involved... except its
screenwriter Jeremy Slater who positively tweeted that he has “a good
feeling about this year’s Razzies.”
Fox may have had a bad movie but Sony had a whole slew of them. From
the outrage-inducing PIXELS to
downright trainwreck ALOHA, Sony had a
summer full of woe without a single hit.
5) Andrew Dettmann
The CHICAGO MED
show-runner is recently out of a job due to creative differences. The
spin-off from NBC’s CHICAGO FIRE has
already undergone creative retooling following Laurie Holden’s
departure – let’s hope it’s not a trend.
Tarantino’s latest interview with Vulture, the famed director was asked
to give a rundown of his favourite current TV shows where he namechecked
some unusual choices: “The last two shows that I watched all the way
through were JUSTIFIED and HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER”
he said, “I tried to watch the first episode of season one (of TRUE DETECTIVE),
and I didn’t get into it at all. I thought it was really boring. And
season two looks awful. Just the trailer — all these handsome actors
trying to not be handsome and walking around looking like the weight of
the world is on their shoulders. It’s so serious, and they’re so
tortured, trying to look miserable with their mustaches and grungy
the full interview with QT, head on over to Vulture.
Opinion: Compelling Versus Likeable
Your Hero fails to "save the cat"? Who cares!
note that every writer has received at least once is about the
likeability of their protagonist. “I didn’t like him/her” or “I just
didn’t care” are two common responses from readers who didn’t see
eye-to-eye with a story’s central figure. But, like all notes, it is
what the note means rather than how it is worded that is important. In
this case, what does this mean? Is my hero too much of a bad guy?
honest truth is that your hero can be as morally dubious or unlikeable
as you wish. Think about Willy from BAD SANTA. He’s an
alcoholic chain smoker who frequently wets himself and has loud sex in
the women’s big-and-tall changing rooms and, oh yeah...he’s also a
same could be said for murderous Beethoven fan Alex DeLarge (A CLOCKWORK ORANGE),
the sociopathic socialite Patrick Bateman in AMERICAN PSYCHO or
even Aaron Sorkin’s version of Mark Zuckerberg in THE SOCIAL NETWORK.
But why do we like these guys? Why do we care what journey they are on?
answer, simply put, is that, while they may not be likeable, they are
incredibly compelling and the audience can’t get enough of them. In
characters like the ones mentioned above, writers can learn the simple
notion that audiences are there watching your movie in order to be
a story about a nice guy learning to give back to the community through
dressing up as Santa could give you a “likeable” protagonist, it could
also mean that your audience will be bored for the next hour and a
half. For writers, then, the idea is to write a compelling character
that an audience will want to spend the whole film with and, most of
the time, this is about forging someone unique and interesting.
thinking about compelling protagonists, there is no need to look
further than James Bond. He may have saved the world one or two (or
twenty-three) times, but he’s also a serial adulterer (who has caused
many women to become collateral damage) as well as being an alcoholic,
gambling murderer (in case you hadn’t noticed).
he’s so bad, why do record-breaking numbers of
people turn out for his adventures? The short answer
(without getting into industry specifics) is that he’s a compelling,
fascinating protagonist with bundles of charisma and the ability to
handle himself in any situation. That’s right – being capable will become
your “get out jail free” card if you ever need it...if you’re a movie
all of this in mind, what kind of protagonist are you writing?
Remember, it’s not good enough to write someone likeable or even
hateable, they need to have that extra something to help them connect
with an audience. But, once that element is in place, it doesn’t matter
what they get up to as long as the audience will keep watching...
Unheralded Scene o' the Month: LUCY
"Unheralded Scene of the Month" section, our consultants
nominate a classic film or TV scene, which in their view hasn't
received the admiration it deserves.
might be a scene from a classic movie, which has been crowded out by
other, more "showy" scenes and set-pieces. It might be a
deleted scene which is outstanding in its own right but wasn't quite
in-sync or critical to the final cut of the film. Warning: MAJOR plot spoilers
The film: LUCY,
writer-director Luc Besson's trippy actioner with Scarlett Johannson
tapping into her cerebral potential and ass-kicking skills.
The plot: After
being hand-cuffed to a mysterious briefcase and being handed over on a
platter to Korean gangsters, LUCY (Scarlett Johannson) is stuffed with
drugs and readied to traffic into the U.S. But when the drugs leak into
her stomach, Lucy is given the ability to expand her mind as she goes
from the standard 10% access of her brain to a full 100%. In typical
Besson style, the story ratchets up the action whilst remaining
faithful to the interesting, mind-bending concept. Cameos from Morgan
Freeman and Choi Min Sik add flavour and legitimacy to what could have
been a trashy pulp B-movie and elevated it to the status of Box Office
The scene: Lucy
has made her way into the hospital emergency room and, while the
surgeons remove the drugs from her intestine, Lucy makes a phone call
to her mother. You can watch the scene here.
Why it's unheralded: As a quieter moment in a sci-fi-action-thriller, it
could be easily missed by most audiences expecting heavy action or
Why it's great:
The fact it is a quieter moment makes it an anomaly in this frenetic
journey and, more than that, this scene creates the emotional anchor
that allows for an easy bond with the protagonist. In this scene, Lucy
is shown to reminisce with memories of her family at the climax of what
has been a very emotional situation (she’s been used a drug mule and
chased by gangsters). While feeling this way is a familiar notion to
most of us, the film manages to make this more intense through the
effects that the drug has. Lucy can feel what it was like in her
mother’s womb and taste her milk in her mouth and, because of this, an
emotional bond is formed and Lucy (who was mainly a cipher for
high-octane thrills) is finally developed into a fully-dimensional
Spec-Spotter - Development Intel
is power in the film & TV industries, so here is our vital burst of
screenwriting-related intel for your mainframes!
that's about all from us for another month, but just scroll down for
details of our script development services and upcoming training
courses, not to mention our exclusive Insider Interviews series.
recently, our online course dedicated to American television writing is
comprised of 6 core modules and 32 detailed lessons, including: Writing for Network &
Niche Audiences, How to Handle Multi-Protagonist Drama, The Many Faces
of Comedy, Planning from Pilot to Multiple Seasons and many
addition, the course also includes detailed case studies of both
successful – and unsuccessful – major recent U.S. shows: GAME OF
THRONES, THE WIRE, BREAKING BAD, THE BIG BANG THEORY, TERRA NOVA and
a full spec script while taking our much-loved online screenwriting
course. Lessons include: the
Stages of Screenwriting; Testing Ideas; Conflict; The Hero’s Journey;
Developing Theme; Character Development and many more (see
full breakdown below).
of 8 core modules and 31 extended lessons, this course delivers huge
value-for-money, and takes 100+ hours to complete. Lessons include: Tension Building; Varying the
Narrative; The Importance of a Title; Developing Great Characters;
Preparing to Submit your Novel; Self-Publishing and many
Industrial Scripts we run premium, high-quality training courses
which deliver serious value to participants. Our courses are tailored
to suit the requirements of the industry, and are led by professionals
with proven track records of success in their own individual area of
years we've been running training courses
in script reading, low-budget filmmaking and screenwriting. We
currently run 2 offline courses:
ULTIMATE SCREENWRITING is
our first screenwriting course and has been designed for creative
individuals who possess great ideas for films or TV shows, but don’t
know where to begin - and intermediates looking to hone their skills.
It delivers a huge amount of information, condensed into one intense
day, to participants new to screenwriting, new to writing, or both.
Focussing on both the writing process, and the industry writers find
work in, the course aims to heavily de-mystify the process by which
people become professional screenwriters, and help new writers navigate
the sometimes precarious early years of the screenwriter. Next course date:
Saturday 26th September 2015
Our EFFECTIVE SCRIPT READING 1-day
training seminar continues to go from strength to strength, winning
consistently stellar feedback from participants...:
course includes comprehensive contacts documents detailing all the paid
script reading outlets in film and TV in the UK, and also offers
attendees indefinite, ongoing email and phone support once the course
is over. We can't turn you into a great script analyst overnight, but
we can speed you up and save you a lot of time and effort in the process.
Click here to book. Next course date:
Saturday 19th September 2015
Scripts brings you The Insider Interviews
- exclusive FREE content from leading industry professionals that you
can't access, anywhere else. Click here to listen to these
Screenwriter & Director Hoss Amini (DRIVE, THE TWO
FACES OF JANUARY)
STORY Guru Robert Mckee
"Charlie Kaufman...what an as*...he's Mr. Theory! He's not an
anti-theorist!" Listen to the podcast...
Screenwriter Kevin Lehane (GRABBERS)
"I think the horror-comedy is a really tough genre...I wanted to
write a monster movie, like TREMORS, or GREMLINS". Listen to the podcast...
Head of Development Sophie Meyer (Ealing Studios)
"If I had to boil it down to one thing it would be "does it
make you care?" Listen to the podcast...
Writer-Director Ben Wheatley (KILL LIST, DOWN TERRACE)
"Short films are a waste of time...I thought if I was going to put
in that much effort, I may as well try and make something I can
sell..." Listen to the podcast...
Screenwriter Jack Thorne (THE FADES, THIS IS ENGLAND
'86, THIS IS ENGLAND '88, THE SCOUTING BOOK FOR BOYS)
"I wrote 12 plays before I had anything produced..." Listen to the podcast...
Producer Richard Holmes (RESISTANCE, EDEN LAKE, WAKING
NED, SHOOTING FISH)
“I thought to myself "this is filmmaking: doing something you
don't want to do and for which you will probably be punished by God!”” Read more...
Film Journalist Nev Pierce (Editor-at-Large, Empire
"Interviewing directors is my favourite thing...it can be
thrilling if you're meeting someone you admire...to sit down for 2
hours with David Fincher...I feel incredibly blessed to have that kind
of opportunity". Listen to the podcast...
Producer Gareth Unwin (THE KING'S SPEECH, EXAM)
"I'd done something a bit daft just through eagerness and I said
to someone within The Weinstein Co. - "I hear I'm not in Harvey's
good books anymore" and she said "Harvey doesn't have good
books, there's just people he hates less that week!" Listen to the podcast...
Actor Tom Hiddleston (THE AVENGERS, THOR, WAR HORSE,
"(when the THOR call) came in I was just about ready to sing and
dance...it was the longest audition process I've ever been
through...". Listen to the podcast...
Literary agent Rob Kraitt (Casarotto Ramsay)
'I once sold a book to Tom Cruise - it was before he and Michael Mann
made COLLATERAL. It was a big six-figure deal and doesn't happen very
[at the time of recording Rob Kraitt worked for AP Watt] Listen to the podcast...
Literary agent Nick Marston (Curtis Brown Group)
'There are these moments in agencies when one generation wants to leave
and the other generation has to somehow find the money to take over...
and in our case that came from the 'honey pot' of the Winnie the Pooh
estate.' Listen to the podcast...
Ex Studio Executive Alexei Boltho (Paramount Pictures)
'A typical working day for me? Smoking cigars, that's about it really!'
Screenwriter Stuart Hazeldine (EXAM, THE DAY THE EARTH
STOOD STILL, KNOWING)
'I had to keep the faith, and finally the phone rang and it was a big
agent from ICM in LA saying he had read my two scripts and wanted to
take me on...' Read more...
Screenwriter David Scinto (44 INCH CHEST, SEXY BEAST)
'GANGSTER NO.1 is one of the best scripts we ever wrote, sadly in other
hands it was ruined. Bastardised. Mutated. Amateur.' Read more...
Sponsors & Partners
is a London-based script development and training organisation, founded
by some of the UK's leading script analysts, delivering a wide range of
script development, information and support services to writers and
filmmakers from around the world.