To Hell with the Screenwriter!

January 20th, 2015

in Articles

You've heard it before, no one in Hollywood wants to be the first to try something new. But find a winning formula and they'll remake the hell out of it!  Studio movies are production by committee where executives attempt to guess at what the crowd (moviegoers) will be willing to spend forty bucks to leave their house and go see.  Not what makes good adult storytelling. A good story (screenplay).

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2015 Oscar Nominations for Original & Adapted Screenplays

As well as full list of nominations

January 15th, 2015

in News

As expected based on their Golden Globes success, "Birdman" and "The Grand Budapest Hotel"dominated the 2015 Oscar nominations collecting nine each respectively. Other notable nominations were: "The Imitation Game" (eight), "Boyhood" (six), "American Sniper" (six), "The Theory of Everything" (five), "Foxcatcher" (five) and "Whiplash" (five).

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Interview with Screenwriter Mark Bomback

Screenwriter's Monthly April 2004

January 4th, 2015

in Interviews

Godsend stars Greg Kinnear and Rebecca Romijn-Stamos as grieving parents who get the chance to have their son back thanks to a doctor doing secret fertility research (Robert De Niro). He clones their dead son into a new fetus that she can carry to term. Eight years later, the boy grows up to be the same as he was before, only now he’s having murderous visions, speaking in weird voices and generally disrespecting grown-ups. It is Mark Bomback’s first produced script since 1998’s The Night Caller, though he hasn’t had any shortage of work. He worked on Constantine and is writing a draft of Die Hard 4, as well as plenty of paying, though less visible, rewrite and development work.

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Interview Archive: Jeff Nathanson talks CATCH ME IF YOU CAN

This interview appeared in our March, 2003 issue of Screenwriter's Monthly Magazine

December 22nd, 2014

in Interviews

Jeff Nathanson is shy. When he comes into an interview, he leans all the way back to put as much distance as possible between himself and the interview. He also prefaces each response with a deep breath. Perhaps the critical lashing he took from Speed 2 made him cautious. Even the successful Rush Hour 2 was no critics’ darling. However, Nathanson has reason to be proud now as Catch Me If You Can lingered at the top of the holiday box office and earned various award nominations. The film stars Leonardo DiCaprio as Frank Abagnale, a real life con artist who traveled the world, forged checks and impersonated pilots, doctors and lawyers.

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INTERVIEW ARCHIVE: David Ayer Talks TRAINING DAY and DARK BLUE

This interview originally appeared in Screenwriter's Monthly Magazine in April 2003

December 14th, 2014

in Interviews

David Ayer looks more like the guy his characters would arrest than the guy who wrote about the characters. With a shaved head and goatee, he fits the gangster stereotype. Talking to him, though, reveals a man of ambition and intellect. After a successful script doctoring career and after writing the script that gave Denzel Washington his Oscar for Training Day, Ayer took on another sort of corrupt cop story, Dark Blue.

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SOME ADVICE ON PITCHING

December 13th, 2014

in Articles

Writers at different stages in their careers will pitch under different circumstances. An “A” list writer can pitch just an idea in a room with the hope of walking out with a deal. New writers might be pitching a completed screenplay at a pitch festival with the hope someone offers to read the script. A query letter is a kind of pitch, but “pitching” itself usually refers to a verbal presentation.

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A Look Back at The Bad and the Beautiful and Looking into the Future of Your Collaborations

December 5th, 2014

in Articles

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Confessions of a "Sometimes" Procrastinating Screenwriter

November 20th, 2014

in Op/Ed

First let me stop writing the script I am currently working on so I can pound out this short editorial. Though I should say allow me to stop bleeding at the keyboard as I struggle with the current scene I am writing. I have to admit that I am my own worst enemy as a writer.  I procrastinate, often, and it can sometimes be so debilitating that I never finish some screenplays. Why?

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Seven Lessons from Bob Nelson's NEBRASKA Screenplay

March 16th, 2014

in Script Reviews

The Oscar nominated movie NEBRASKA, with an award winning screenplay by Bob Nelson, is in my opinion one of the better scripts recently produced for screenwriters to learn a little something about the craft. Why? It’s the epitome of efficient and dramatic storytelling. The script is pithy, direct, yet it has depth and emotion (theme) that is so subtle in its presentation. 

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