Monday, 11 July 2011

On being Compared to Coppola ... sort of!

Two of my scripts - PIA and PIGPEN just got into Round Two of the Page 2011 Awards! There were nearly 4,500 scripts entered so it's fantastic news .

Also just back from teh Galway Film Fleadh and Fair where I had an hour's consultation on PIGPEN with Gill Dennis (veteran screenwriter of Walk The Line, the Johnny Cash movie; worked on Apocalypse Now etc) at the Galway Film Fleadh.

His first comment : "You've led a baaaaad life!"

It's a pretty violent script in parts! Be more worrying if the comment was about a fluffy flick!

Anyway, it was a great hour going through the script; good tangible comments that are easy to implement and I'm looking forward to the rewrite. In terms of my habit of packing action into paragraphs, he referenced Coppola on Apocalypse Now. Apparently, Coppola had kept the script short so it would look less expensive to make. Therefore you had:-

Bombs fall

The temple collapses.

How many weeks, he asked Coppola, do you think that will take to shoot?!

His screenwriting masterclass was great too. He has 12 questions he asks, primarily of himself and then of characters, which can not only provide the energy to give emotional power to a story but will provide you with your character arc for every project, be it a series or a feature script...

Full blog on those questions once I've followed up on all my meetings at the Fair but it was a good week - starting when one producer said they could give me 2 million !!


  1. ANDD????? you cant' throw two million in there without explanation. I thought Gill was great too.

  2. Sorry, didn't see your comment!

    Story re the 2m - I looked at the script when I got back - written in 2003 - and realised it needed mega work so I rewrote and rewrote and got another writer to look at it - first act too slow, mostly very positive - so I played catch with it again and dispatched it to a writer-director I share feedback with - he thought it should be an entirely different story (y'know, told from the father's POV not the child's etc). So, long and short answer, I haven't sent him the script because I know it's not good enough and you only get one chance. Meanwhile ta publisher asked for the remainder of the book based on the script so that had to be polished and honed. So I haven't got back to the 2m script yet. Though I did hear from another producer - who was willing to promise the other 2m, leaving me with the first 1m to raise, that that is the impossible money. The first bit. I need wealthier friends!!