SCRIPT PIMP JANUARY NEWSLETTER
(http://www.scriptpimp.com)

Contents:

(1) Script Pimp 2009 Screenwriting Competition – Now Accepting Entries
(2) Consultations with Senior Story Analyst – Discounted Winter Rate
(3) Script Pimp Recommended Competition: Cowrite Contest: In Association with BENDERSPINK
(4) Recent Script Sales – December / January
(5) Box Office Report – January
(6) 2009 Cinestory Screenwriting Awards – Script Pimp Offer
(7) Workshop & Writers Database Info
(8) Ask the Script Pimp Expert – Writing Action in a Screenplay
(9) Script Pimp Success Stories
(10) Recent Feedback - Writers Workshop / 2008 Competition
(11) Script Pimp in the News
(12) Technical Edits on Scripts and Novels
(13) Script Pimp Production: Rogues Gallery
(14) Miscellaneous - Top Websites for Screenwriters

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(1) Script Pimp 2009 Screenwriting Competition – Now Accepting Entries
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The 2009 Script Pimp Screenwriting Competition is now accepting entries.  Early deadline: Feb. 1st.  Regular deadline: May 1st.  ALL genres and lengths of feature film scripts accepted.  International, non-U.S. writers are welcome to enter as well.

The ‘08 contest has already netted option and representation agreements with many of the finalist writers.  Even more production companies, agents, and managers will be reading the 2009 winning scripts, along with $50,000 in prizes possible for anyone who enters, and $16,000 cash for the finalists.

For more info, visit: http://www.scriptpimp.com/writing_competition/home.cfm

*All new Writers Database members get one FREE entry into the competition!

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(2) Consultations with Senior Story Analyst – Discounted Winter Rate
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*One-On-One Phone Consultation with Senior Story Analyst:

http://www.scriptpimp.com/script_coverage/index_ww2.cfm

Direct advice and one-on-one interaction over the phone or in-person. Iron out the issues in your script in the most efficient way possible.  Script Pimp story analysts are available for one-on-one meetings to go through your script line by line.  As with our Development Notes service, if your script is at the point where it should be shopped around town, we will give you suggestions for the companies that would be most interested in your script.

Special discounts off consults through Jan 31st, 2009:

$150 OFF for non-members ($500)

$220 OFF for members ($430)

If you would like to set up an appointment, please E-mail Matt at matt@scriptpimp.com.

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(3) Cowrite Contest: In Association with BENDERSPINK
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The innovative Cowrite Contest is now accepting entries for the first ten pages of the community-sourced screenplay.  Deadline for the first ten pages: JANUARY 18th, 2009.

A movie premise has been posted on the Cowrite website: www.cowritescipt.com.

Writers now have the opportunity to submit their version of the first ten pages of the story. The best opening ten pages, selected by the Cowrite judges, will be posted on the website, and the story will build from there. Every other week the best ten-page submission will be added to the developing story until the script is finished and ready to be sold!

Over $35,000 in cash and prizes.  $3,000 in cash and prizes awarded to a writer every other week.  Grand prize is a paid rewrite.  All winners will share in any script sale.

In association with BENDERSPINK (A History of Violence, The Butterfly Effect, Just Friends).

www.cowritescript.com

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(4) Recent Script Sales – December / January
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For the first part of 2009, dramas mixed with thrillers and a buddy comedy fill out the script sales thus far.  Most notable is Disney’s latest project based on the Jules Verne novel “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea: Captain Nemo.”  McG (Charlie’s Angels) is tabbed to direct.

 In December, remakes and popular franchise sequels ruled, with a handful of comedy, thriller, and dramas, including:

--“H2,” the sequel to Rob Zombie’s 2007 take on “Halloween”

--“Terminator 5.”  Christian Bale attached.

--A reinvention of “The Crow,” based on the graphic novel.

--Remake of the 1980s comedy “Arthur”

In addition, the rights to F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby” have been purchased for another screen adaptation.  Baz Luhrmann is on board. 

And in a somewhat surprising move, considering the critical success of the original, a new rendition of the Michael Douglas/Kathleen Turner adventure-comedy “Romancing the Stone” is in development.  No producers attached as of yet.

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(5) Box Office Report – January 2nd-4th
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Fueled by the star power of its leads, and the holiday season requirement of family fare, “Marley and Me” has passed the 100 million mark in just its second week in theaters, followed by the equally audience-friendly Adam Sandler pic “Bedtime Stories.”  The rest of the top 10 are rounded out by possible Oscar nominees, including “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” “Seven Pounds,” and “Doubt.”

The Top Ten* 

(domestic totals in parentheses, with the number of weeks in theaters as of January 4th)

1. Marley and Me ($106,664,046) – Week #2

2. Bedtime Stories ($85,539,168) – Week #2

3. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button ($79,297,086) – Week #2

4. Valkyrie ($60,743,921) – Week #2

5. Yes Man ($79,507,388) – Week #3

6. Seven Pounds ($60,147,298) – Week #3

7. The Tale of Despereaux ($43,661,775) – Week #3

8. The Day the Earth Stood Still ($74,424,256) – Week #3

9. Doubt ($18,705,481) – Week #4

10. Slumdog Millionaire ($28,676,598) – Week #8

*ranked by top weekend box office films from December 2nd – 4th    

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(6) 2009 Cinestory Screenwriting Awards – Script Pimp Offer
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Looking for a path to becoming a working writer?

Enter the CineStory Screenwriting Awards for a chance to work with industry pros at the exclusive CineStory Writer's Retreat - four days of script feedback and career advice in the beautiful mountains of Idyllwild, California.

Retreat attendees get four 90-minute one-on-one sessions with CineStory mentors and staff, all of whom are practicing and respected industry professionals. During these meetings, writers can discuss everything from the script(s) they submitted for feedback to jumpstarting their careers.

When not meeting in one-on-one sessions, writers participate in mentor moderated "informal rooms," which cover everything from pitching like a pro to the state of filmmaking in the digital age. In addition, mentors and writers gather for meals, drinks, film screenings, and other special events.

Grand Prize: Winner(s) receives over $8000 in cash and prizes as well as two industry mentors for ONE YEAR.

Extended Deadline: January 31st, 2009 ($70)

EXCLUSIVE SCRIPT PIMP DISCOUNT:

Mention Script P.I.M.P. and save $15!  Extended fee only $55 per entry, or two for $90.

To take advantage of this offer submit via www.cinestory.org with the code SPIMP09 (not available through Withoutabox).

Entry forms and details available at www.cinestory.org or contact info@cinestory.org for more details.

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(7) Workshop & Writers Database Info
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*Writers Database Home Page: http://www.scriptpimp.com/writers_database/index_wdb.cfm

Script Pimp's Writers Database features the current needs and submission guidelines for over 1,000 total company listings, 300 film production companies, and agencies accepting material from new screenwriters. Database members also may send their loglines and synopses into us for general feedback, as well as ask industry-related questions. 

*Writers Workshop Home Page: http://www.scriptpimp.com/script_coverage/index_ww2.cfm

Script Pimp's Writers Workshop provides screenwriters with A-level development notes and consultations. A professional story analyst will write extensive notes, 4-6 pages long, giving you a detailed review of the strengths and weaknesses of your screenplay. With a grade of "Recommend," Script Pimp will assist you in circulating your work to agents, managers, and producers at no charge.  Numerous writers have seen their work optioned or produced as a result of the Workshop.

*Talent Pimp Home Page: http://www.talentpimp.com

Acting anyone? Talent Pimp concentrates its tools and resources for actors and actresses, complete with our own knowledge base of the industry, updated detailed listings for 550+ agents, 700+ managers and 550+ casting directors. Talent Pimp is now available to working and aspiring professional actors for a fee of $35 for 1-year of unlimited access. Build your own professional page and upload your resume, headshots and demo reel.

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(8) Ask the Script Pimp Expert – Writing Action in a Screenplay
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Sounds easy enough—write what’s happening in the script.  However, it’s not exactly as simple as it seems, especially to first-time writers. 

Penning action is, in some ways, just as integral as dialogue and story elements.  Though it falls under presentation, possessing above average writing skills and the ability to truly lure in the reader through your storytelling abilities may be the determining factor in whether or not a) your script gets read, b) the producer decides to hire you for other writing projects, and c) your professionalism as a screenwriter.  The screenplay might be fantastic, but if the narrative is sub-par, there’s a chance the reader, possibly a potential investor or producer, will overlook the greatness that is your premise and instead look upon you as another inexperienced writer.

A couple tips (of many) to consider:

1.  Keep action short, but not too short.  In other words, no one wants to read huge paragraphs of description, but too little description won’t paint a vivid picture of the scene.  Focus only on the necessary details.  Maybe a sentence or two to set up the scene, and then dive right into the main action.  Also, to help avoid talking heads conversations, use lines of action to break up dialogue throughout.  But again, be certain the action makes sense for a given moment.

2. Don’t get too fancy with descriptions, and never, ever tell us what a character is feeling, or their backstory.  Too often, novice writers will reveal exposition in the action line that we are not able to see on-screen.  Keep it visual!

3. Avoid repetition and “dull phrases” through paragraph consolidation.  The following sentence: “Joel walks quickly to the harbor.  He boards the boat.  The captain looks at him strangely.  He returns the stare.  They shake hands.  They don’t really know one another.”  Can be changed to: “He hurries to the harbor, quickly boarding the boat.  The captain and Joel trade a curious glare.  They shake hands, though it’s apparent they don’t know each other.”

Does action in a script need be the stuff of Hemingway and Frost?  No.  After all, no one’s necessarily publishing the script, so the action merely serves as a blueprint, like the rest of the screenplay.  But do give greater attention to the action itself in terms of style, description, and succinctness. 

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(9) Script Pimp Success Stories – 2008 Competition / Workshop
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With the help of our mentors, Chadwick and Matt have Script Pimp 2008 finalist screenplays out to scores of producers and agents and are looking forward to the next 20 finalists for the 2009 Competition. 

The top 20 scripts have sparked interest from managers, agents, and production companies worldwide..  Former Workshop Recommends are also finding success with their screenplays and already produced films.

Most recent updates. . . .

Former Script Pimp Recommend screenplay STRENGTH AND HONOR and writer/director Mark Mahon continue to rack up festival awards worldwide, including Best Picture at the New York International Film Festival and Boston Film Festival.  Pic stars Michael Madsen, Vinnie Jones, and Richard Chamberlain. 

Aaron J. Patton, a former Script Pimp Recommend for his screenplay UNHINGING ROWE is now being represented by Gallagher Literary Management.

James K. Watts’ script BECKWOURTH, a 2008 Script Pimp Screenwriting Competition finalist, is currently under option.

Former Script Pimp Recommend screenplay WORM by Marc Samson has been optioned by Sandcastle Studios.

Evan Daugherty, finalist and Grand Prize winner in the 2008 Script Pimp Screenwriting Competition, has secured literary writer representation from Jake Wagner at Energy Entertainment with his script SHRAPNEL.

More to come as companies gear up for 2009. . . .

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(10) Recent Feedback - Writers Workshop / 2008 Competition
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Script Pimp's Writers Workshop closed 2008 with tremendous positive feedback.  As always, thanks to all the writers who took the time to send in their comments.

Recent quotes:

“I'd like to say thanks to you guys for the feedback provided on my screenplays. The readers' realistic, knowledgeable approaches and insights helped me to develop the scripts greatly, and they also helped me to grow as a writer and editor of my own work.” – Forrest G. (12/8)

“You guys are exceptional! Not only do you find all the weaknesses in the script and make your recommendations on how to make the script great, but you also acknowledge the good parts of the script. All hope is not lost. That's what exceptional teachers do: first praise then lay out the positive criticism”. – Enza F. (11/28)”

“Great notes--felt like the evaluator really got the story and what I was trying to do. I will be re-submitting my next draft.” – Jami D. (11/17)

“I just want to say that your notes are incredible. I've read through them a couple of times because there is so much good information and things to think about regarding my script. You've given me a lot of great ideas and great direction.” – Roy L. (11/15)

“Thank you for your evaluation.  Your keen and thorough observations were greatly appreciated!  Also, all your feedback scales were clearly a ten including the length of the evaluation and the quick turnaround time.” – D. Friedman (11/12)

“Thanks for the feedback, very informative.” – Ken L. (11/12)

“I just looked over my notes.  They look thorough, on the mark, and of total use as a tool for me to rewrite and resubmit to you in a timely manner.” – Lori J. (11/12)

“I just wanted to shoot you a quick thank you email for all your help and great feedback over the years.” Matt O’Neill (11/6)

"I shall only wish I had found you guys sooner. The notes are superior in every respect. I will be busy now. Many thank yous. Moreover, I found your customer service excellent, please thank Matt Misetich for me." – Douglas L. (11/2)”

And some responses from our 2008 Writing Competition. . . .

"Looking forward to future dealings with Script P.I.M.P. Thank you again for your support and help. Also had a very enlightening conversation with [the finalist mentor consultant].  He was most gracious, very insightful, and open to hearing about my future efforts as well." – Ed Cound

"Many thanks for hosting the awards event!  It was a great opportunity to meet the other writers.  Thanks as well for setting up the phone meeting with [a finalist consultant]." – Suzan Flamm

"Really enjoyed talking with you and sharing war stories with the other writers [at the awards party].  Always good to connect with more film folks." – David O'Donnell

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(11) Script Pimp in the News
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To view all Script Pimp company credits, visit: http://www.imdb.com/company/co0173374

View all Script Pimp Press:

http://www.scriptpimp.com/features/creative_screenwriting.cfm

Script Pimp's "Rogue's Gallery":

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3if7b717939831cbe299581383a70dea5a

Script Pimp's feature film "The Living Wake" reviewed by Variety: http://www.scriptpimp.com/newsletters/variety.cfm

Script Pimp on TV (Peter Bart's Sunday Morning Shootout) Script Pimp Newswire:

http://www.scriptpimp.com/news/home.cfm

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(12) Technical Edits on Scripts and Novels
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Script Pimp offers copyediting for screenplays, teleplays, and novels. Editing includes a thorough check for grammar, formatting, and, if applicable, sentence structure and suggestions to improve narrative pacing and flow in the hopes of improving the readability (and thus the marketability) of your work.

Rates start at $.03/word and vary depending on the individual writer's needs. We will also perform a FREE one-page "sample" edit for you to determine if the service will meet your needs.

For more info, or to request a free sample edit and price quote, please E-mail matt@scriptpimp.com and write "Editing Services" in the subject line.

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(13) Script Pimp Production: Rogues Gallery
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Former Script Pimp "Recommend" writer Brian Watanabe's screenplay, Rogues Gallery, is currently in post-production. Script Pimp owner Chadwick Clough serves as executive producer and first brought the action/comedy project to Sean McKittrick's Darko Entertainment.

The film revolves around two teams of government assassins, using code names from the Tarot deck, who work in a secret underground facility. On The Fool's first day at work, his and the teams' boss is killed under mysterious circumstances, and they must find the person responsible before the facility explodes--or before the potential rogue kills The Fool and the others first.

Fouad Mikati directs an ensemble cast which includes Joe Anderson ("Copying Beethoven," "Across the Universe"), Odette Yustman ("Cloverfield"), and Emilie DeRavin ("Lost"), as well as veterans Bob Odenkirk, Ving Rhames ("Mission: Impossible 3", "Animal"), Ellen Barkin ("The Big Easy"), Will Arnett ("Arrested Development"), and Jeffrey Tambor ("Arrested Development"). Film is produced by Michael Ohoven ("Capote"), Sean McKittrick ("Donnie Darko"), and Kevin Turen.

Recent articles on Rogue's in Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, and Creative Screenwriting:

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3if7b717939831cbe299581383a70dea5a

http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117989592.html?categoryid=13&cs=1

http://www.creativescreenwriting.com/csweekly/trenches/082908_Rogues.html

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(14) Miscellaneous - Top Websites for Screenwriters
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Here's a guide through the screenwriting community with Script Pimp's list of FIVE STAR WEBSITES for screenwriters. If there's a site you'd like to request to be added to the list, please email matt@scriptpimp.com.

NETWORKING SITES:

American Zoetrope

http://www.zoetrope.com/

Screenwriters Federation of America

http://www.screenwritersfederation.org/phpBB2/

Shooting People

http://www.shootingpeople.org

TriggerStreet

http://www.triggerstreet.com/gyrobase/index

BLOG SITES: John August http://johnaugust.com/

Artful Writer http://artfulwriter.com/

RECENT SCRIPT SALES ~ Done Deal

http://www.scriptsales.com/

FREE SCREENPLAYS ONLINE ~ Script Pimp, IScriptDB, Simply Scripts

http://www.scriptpimp.com/show_me/free_screenplays/

http://www.iscriptdb.com/

http://www.simplyscripts.com

SCREENPLAY CONTESTS ~ Movie Bytes, Script Pimp: 

http://www.moviebytes.com/

http://www.scriptpimp.com/show_me/contests/

SCREENPLAYS TO BUY ~ Script Pimp

http://www.scriptpimp.com/show_me/screenplays/

SCREENPLAY REVIEWS ~ Screenwriters Utopia

http://www.screenwritersutopia.com/modules.php?name=Content&pa=list_pages_categories&cid=2

SCREENPLAY CONSULTANTS ~ Script Pimp

http://www.scriptpimp.com/show_me/script_consultants/

http://directory.google.com/Top/Arts/Writers_Resources/Screenwriting/Script_Consulting/

SCREENWRITER INTERVIEWS ~ Screenwriters Utopia

http://www.screenwritersutopia.com/modules.php?name=Content&pa=list_pages_categories&cid=1

SCREENWRITING BOOKS ~ Script Pimp, Writers Store http://www.scriptpimp.com/show_me/screenwriting_books/ http://www.writersstore.com/products.php?cPath=129

SCREENWRITING RESOURCES ~ Script Pimp, Google

http://www.scriptpimp.com/show_me/resources_and_reference/

SCREENWRITING SOFTWARE ~ Final Draft, Write Brothers, More

http://www.finaldraft.com/

http://www.screenplay.com/

http://plotbot.com/

http://www.scriptassist.com/

SCREENWRITING MAGAZINES ~ Script Pimp

http://www.scriptpimp.com/show_me/magazines_and_papers/

SCREENWRITING SUPPLIES ~ Writers Store, ScreenStyle

http://www.writersstore.com/products.php?cPath=130

http://www.screenstyle.com/

OSCAR SCRIBES ~ Script Pimp

http://www.scriptpimp.com/show_me/oscars/

POSTING SCRIPTS ONLINE ~ InkTip, Script Shark

http://www.inktip.com/

http://www.scriptshark.com/specmarket.cfm

SCREENWRITING HOW-TO ~ Screenwriting.info

http://www.screenwriting.info/

FREE SCREENWRITING EDUCATION ~ Script Fly

http://www.scriptfly.com/