Write: Treatments To Sell: Create and Market Your Story Ideas to the Motion Picture and TV Industry

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Join Newsletter. Classes Login. Recommended Screenwriters. It is as simple as three steps and 15 online strategies that can sell a screenplay. STEP 1. Write a great script — Intriguing concept, cool characters, and well written. STEP 2. Use your writing skills to create a compelling pitch. STEP 3. And the right recommendation may be all you need to sell a screenplay. Start with your own network. Build relationships with producers on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn. Give InkTip a Try. Blog about your subject.

Build relationships with professional screenwriters who can recommend your script. Use one of the online blasting services. Take classes with connected teachers. Become part of a writing group where writers are selling scripts. Lists of producers looking for scripts. Teleconferences or Podcasts with producers.

Now, go forth, sell a screenplay, and prosper. Leave a Reply Cancel reply. Download Over Academy Contender Screenplays. Get a free subscription to Screenwriting Magazine and download over Academy Contender screenplays. Brought to you by ScreenwritingU and Screenwriting Magazine. Because most producers prefer to purchase options on life stories, try to find a producer who genuinely cares about the story you are pitching.

Set up meetings with various producers in the industry and make your best pitch to each one. During your discussion, look for signs of the producer's genuineness. For example: See what plans the producer has for your project. Ask about the sort of budget the producer thinks is feasible.

Ask for the producer's thoughts on casting. The more answers the producer has, the more serious they are about making the project a reality. Try to find out what other projects the producer has options on with a similar subject matter. If the producer already holds rights to a project similar to yours. Discuss how long you want your option to last.

How to sell your idea to Hollywood, according to a producer - Business Insider

When you find a producer interested in purchasing an option to your work, you need to decide how long the option will last. The option period should last long enough to allow the producer to do their due diligence on the project. However, you also want the option period to be short enough so you can keep shopping if you need to. In general, option periods are around one year. Most option contracts also include a provision allowing the producer to extend the option period for another year.

In some cases, your contract might include multiple extension periods.

Writing Treatments That Sell by Dr. Ken Atchity

Negotiate an option price. In exchange for the producer's exclusive right to develop and purchase your life story, the producer will pay you a sum of money called an "option payment". The amount of this payment will depend on whether there are competitive stories in the market place, whether you are represented by an agent, and the length of the option period. When you agree on an amount, it will be paid when the option contract is signed.

1. Don’t Pitch To Sellers:

This amount will either be folded into the purchase price if the producer exercises their option or will be separate. In general, the first option payment is often folded into the purchase price while subsequent extension payments are not. Agree on how the option will be exercised. If the producer develops the project and wants to purchase the rights to your life story, they will need to exercise the contract's option. An option can be exercised in various ways including paying a purchase price or starting production.

Your contract should lay out all the ways in which the producer can exercise the option. Your exercise provision might read: "Producer may exercise this Option at any time during the Option Period, as it may be extended, by giving written notice of such exercise to Owner and delivery to Owner of the Purchase Price. Settle on a purchase price. One of the most important provisions in your option contract is the purchase price of your work. If the producer exercises their option to purchase your work, they will have to pay this negotiated price to you.

In most option contracts, the purchase price is either a fixed price i. Make sure rights revert back to you. The last important piece of your contract will be your reversion rights. If the producer fails to exercise their option within the agreed upon time, you want to make sure all rights to the project revert back to you. Therefore, include something similar to the following in your contract: "If the Producer does not timely exercise the option during its original or extended term, the option shall terminate and all rights in the Property shall immediately revert to the Writer.

The Writer shall retain all sums paid. Execute the agreement.

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Once all the provisions of your contract have been negotiated, you both will sign the option agreement. At this point the producer will have the exclusive right to develop your project. You will not be able to sell or option the work to anyone else until the rights have reverted back to you. I have a very strange life story and don't want money to sell it. Who do you suggest I contact? Tom De Backer.


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Whoever you talk to will look at it from their point of view, whether you want money for it or not. If you really want this, keep talking to producers until you find one willing to go for it. Yes No. Not Helpful 0 Helpful 3. I have three strong stories for movies that can be sure-shot hits, but how do I pitch them to producers or movie makers? Not Helpful 0 Helpful 0. Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered.

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For FREE. Sign up. Toggle navigation. Kenneth Atchity and Chi-Li Wong , author. This manual is a step by step guide to writing the perfect treatment, and to using it to perfect your dramatic art and market your work to entertainment buyers and gatekeepers.


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  • As Hollywood insiders know, the first step in selling your story idea for film or television is preparing a treatment, the brief pitch that sells the concept to a busy producer or agent. Now including updates on the latest trends in the industry, writers-producers Kenneth Atchity and Chi-Li Wong tell readers everything they need to know to create an effective and saleable treatment, one that incorporates such key elements as conflict, likeable characters, plot twists, a climax, and visual drama. Library Journal.