1. Asaph Judea Wagner
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    Asaph Judea Wagner Member

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    How much time from script to film? And 2 more questions...

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Asaph Judea Wagner, Sep 8, 2013.

    If you sell your script, and it is approved for production, how long will it take for it to become a film/TV episode/TV pilot?

    What do you like about writing scripts in general and over writing short stories?

    Does it matter if you study English Literature or Film to be a screenwriter?
     
  2. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I have moved your thread to the General Writing area of the forum. The area wherein you had placed this thread if for the critiquing of actual script material.

    [​IMG]
     
  3. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'd imagine a damned long time, from acceptance they'd have to find funding, actors, locations and probably tons more stuff then have to tie it all in with schedules of the actors and producers and weather and probably another gazillion things.

    I have no experience of this but I'd imagine if everything went to plan - a couple of years...

    Oh and also before it is aired, they have to sell commercials and tie in with TV Channels... Don't plan on watching it for probably another year after it's been edited.
     
  4. Nightstar99
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    Nightstar99 Contributing Member

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    I interviewed a relatively successful screen writer earlier in the year. She said that your chances of writing a script and selling it anywhere are really pretty slight. In her career she has found the scripts she has written to be useful in generating other commissions for projects that are already approved.' i.e, we dont want to shoot your script but you are obviously good so we would like to hire you to write on this upcoming project'.

    It seems that in TV and film there really aren't many occasions where there are directors who will respond to random submissions. Usually funding for a project is arranged in advance and then they look for writers.

    As ever the more contacts you have in the industry the more likely the phone is to ring.
     
  5. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    If you sell your script, and it is approved for production, how long will it take for it to become a film/TV episode/TV pilot?

    ...there's no set time frame for any of those, though feature films will generally take much longer to shoot than tv scripts... the sad fact is that even if you sell a script and it's green-lighted, it may still not ever be released, for a variety of reasons, including the producer running out of money, budget overruns, casting problems, et al....

    What do you like about writing scripts in general and over writing short stories?

    ...i just love the medium, period... i tend to visualize scenes as i write fiction, so writing scripts comes naturally...

    Does it matter if you study English Literature or Film to be a screenwriter?

    ...literature, no... film, yes, though it's not mandatory... however, one must first be a good writer of prose, to be able to write good scripts... bad grammar/syntax/etc. will hold you back there just as it will with any writing medium...

    ...i mentor screenwriters, along with most other writer breeds, so if you need any help along the way, a mouse click'll get you to me in a jiff...

    love and hugs, maia
     
  6. thewordsmith
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    thewordsmith Contributing Member Contributor

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    First of all, there is a lot going on between selling a script for television and actually seeing it on the screen. You sell it to someone... a production company that likes the treatment. They now own rights to your work, or own it outright as the case may be. They must now find someone willing to pony up the funds to turn this script into a show/made-for-tv film.

    Is it for a series? If the series is ... duh, serialized, then it should fall into the storyline. Since scripts are generally written in-house and on a very short time frame, you probably won't sell to that type of a series since you are not likely to know what the staff writers have in store for three or four months down the road, which is about when you might expect an episode shot now to hit the screen.

    Are you selling to a production company that cranks out a closed-end series? Each episode is wrapped up at the end of that hour/half hour? More likely option for a sale. But a hard sell, nonetheless. But in this scenario, you might expect to see your work produced and aired within maybe six months or... if the series is cancelled, never.

    Last scenario. Is this a made-for-tv movie? It's going to take a while between actually selling the concept to a production company and even getting to the production part of it. Then there will be the issue of getting backing for the film. And, unless you are highly skilled with your scriptwriting, chances are the production company will want changes. These will either be done by you or, more likely, a professional scriptwriter for the company. All of this could take a year or more.

    Then there is casting and hiring a crew. Not an insignificant chore. This alone, could take a month or more. And, of course, we have to determine if this is to be shot on a set or on-site. Either way, you're looking at a lot of time, to build sets and/or find proper locales for shooting. Next, we finally get to start shooting! Then we get the dailies and rewrites and re-shooting scenes. Just to be generous, let's say six months to complete the shoot. We now have closing in on two years just in production aspects. Then we have editing and re-shoots and more editing.

    FINALLY! One year and eleven months after you sold your script, the movie is in the can. And it may well sit there for the next seven or ten years or longer until, looking for something to fill a two hour spot on a schedule, they pull your film off the shelf.

    Script writing, just like novel writing, is a crap shoot. Sometimes it's golden. Sometimes it's just ... sh-h-hit.
     

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