Good article and thanks for sharing, Haylar. It's funny but at the last Emerging Filmmakers Project, local filmmaker Kevin Campbell let us know about the upcoming ComicFest (I think that was the name of the event). He was going there to talk to people about possibly turning his story/script into a graphic novel.
That Hollywood is reducing the number of original stories they produce because they lack that 'built-in" audience is nothing new. Nor is the fact your original story idea/screenplay only becomes produceable (a sellable commodity) once 'bankable' talent is attached.
So yes, if you want to be a professional screenwriter you need to understand what the market is favoring and tailor your work to it. If you want to see your own original screenplay made into a movie, go make it yourself. I kind of think it's always been that way.
Precious is an oscar type film, the kind that makes up a very small percentage of films that actually get made.
It was a great film, but a huge gamble.
Studios seek high concept and marque value because it lessens the anxiety that goes along with funding something.
People talk alot about hollywood making worn out formulas and remakes, I have faith in the thinking that if it were our millions and millions of dimes, we might not be so quick to make art films either.
It's an odd tight rope, but I think those who succeed and find well rounded careers are those who understand the polar nature of the film beast and can ride the middle ground and roll with the trends.
Those who cannot find the balance end up doing one of two things.
1. Making tons of money against a body of work that is meaningless.
You know, the other thing to remember, is that writing something high-concept, high action
or adapting something that the public has expectations of is no small task.
I can only speak for myself, but the biggest challenges I have faced thus far as a writer, and the
things for which I am most proud have to do with these kinds of properties.
Writing big goofy popcorn stuff is arguably harder than writing traditional drama.
"Writing big goofy popcorn stuff is arguably harder than writing traditional drama."
This brings something to mind...one thinks of "Citizen Cane" as a sacred cow and the ultimate classic film drama... and yet!... it really is a frantic, popcorn chewing, edge of your seat kind of film. It is a drama, yes! But it isn't boring! *sigh*
Trends are good to follow, but I think the one enduring rule is DON"T BE BORING. Write whatever the F you want to, but don't be boring.
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