John Weidner

The Screenwriting Secret

There's something they're not telling you. Because it's a secret. Heard repeated over the years, time and time again. From several sources, friends in the industry, writers who swear on a stack of scripts that it works.&nbs...read more

Posted at 02 Dec, 2015 | By: John Weidner | Categories:  Writing Tips

Colin Costello

Theaters Are Waiting

Soon, we will be inundated with jingling Target commercials. Oh, that already happened. And Ralph’s will surround us with turkeys and squash set in woven whicker horns. Oh, that happened, too. So the holidays ARE here....read more

Posted at 12 Nov, 2015 | By: Colin Costello | Categories:  Writing Tips, The Biz

John Weidner

Movies To Save

If - like Matt Damon in "The Martian" - I found myself marooned on some distant planet, these are the top 10 life-sustaining movies I'd have to have to survive until a rescue mission could come save my ass. 1. "ORDET"  ...read more

Posted at 03 Nov, 2015 | By: John Weidner

Colin Costello

How To Scare

I love Halloween. It’s truly my favorite holiday next to Chrismukkah. For countless October, neighbors were able to feast their eyeballs upon the “scareriffic” decorations in our yard, making me the Clark &l...read more

Posted at 22 Oct, 2015 | By: Colin Costello

John Weidner

Anatomy of a Rewrite - Part 2

Let’s go back to the beginning. It started with a quote. From Plato, to be exact. "Bad men do what good men dream of." That got me thinking, wondering about the monsters among us. Which was the jumping off point for...read more

Posted at 06 Oct, 2015 | By: John Weidner

Colin Costello

Beat Your Script

After working the Story Expo last weekend and finishing notes on my good friend’s first feature script, it got me thinking that it’s time to go over some common mistakes first-time writers make. Don’t feel ...read more

Posted at 22 Sep, 2015 | By: Colin Costello | Categories:  Writing Tips

Colin Costello

It's More Than a Spec

For the love of God, don’t shoot the messenger! I was inspired to write this blog after attending the wonderful Secret Door Pitch, a reward for being a finalist in The Script Pipeline Screenplay Contest. I enjoyed meet...read more

Posted at 11 Aug, 2015 | By: Colin Costello | Categories:  Pitching, Networking, Selling, The Biz

Colin Costello

One Drink or Three?

I was recently reminded to write this blog at a popular screenwriting event. A typical question while waiting for a brown drink on the rocks is, “What is your script about?” The new-ish writer will usually launch...read more

Posted at 28 Jul, 2015 | By: Colin Costello

Colin Costello

I Won!

True story. After I received an email Thursday night that I had won Screencraft’s 2015 Comedy Screenplay contest, I zipped off my reply: ” C’mon! Is this some kind of sadistic joke?” It was not. I had...read more

Posted at 09 Jul, 2015 | By: Colin Costello | Categories:  Networking, Selling, The Biz

Steve Trautmann

In Defense of Character

When proponents of the Three Act Structure feel inclined to offer some justification for their faith in the System, they usually point to Aristotle. Most people are positive that Aristotle set down in stone the mandate that ...read more

Posted at 06 Jul, 2015 | By: Steve Trautmann | Categories:  Writing Tips, The Biz

Steve Trautmann

Three Acts Too Many

There are several problems with the Three Act Structure of dramatic writing. First, it's used almost exclusively by writers and development people. Most other filmmakers, especially once the filming begins, either ignore it,...read more

Posted at 25 Jun, 2015 | By: Steve Trautmann | Categories:  Writing Tips, The Biz

Colin Costello

Females!

It all started when I was being gobbled whole by a female producer’s very manly leather chair. I fiddled nervously with my bottled water's label, contemplating how I would respond when she said I want to make your film...read more

Posted at 16 Jun, 2015 | By: Colin Costello | Categories:  Writing Tips, Networking, Selling, The Biz

Steve Trautmann

My Sitcom feels Like a Feature

Over the past few years, the number of scripted TV shows has been steadily increasing while development and releases of features has been shrinking. As such, many feature writers are obviously looking for ways to transition ...read more

Posted at 09 Jun, 2015 | By: Steve Trautmann

Colin Costello

Community

Inspirational. Touching. Moving. Spiritual. Physical. Tears. Anger. Laughter. Drama. Comedy. Drunken Jenga. No, I’m not describing the next Wes Anderson film, but it sure does sum up my weekend at a retreat in Lake Arr...read more

Posted at 04 Jun, 2015 | By: Colin Costello

John Weidner

Anatomy of a Rewrite

Nobody likes to hear their manager tell them their new spec sucks. I don't care how savvy you are, how jaded, or how used to rejection you claim to be. It just plain blows when your rep tells you straight up, that if he sen...read more

Posted at 26 May, 2015 | By: John Weidner

Colin Costello

It's Not What You Say, It's What You Don't

I’m currently rewriting a screenplay that's scheduled to shoot in July for two months. As I was sprinting through the second act over the past week (the fastest I have ever completed any act), one of the fears that came...read more

Posted at 19 May, 2015 | By: Colin Costello | Categories:  Writing Tips, Selling

Colin Costello

Going Up?

If you should be so lucky as to be hired by a producer or a production company to write their film, I say, “Congratulations, friend.” I also offer a Costco-sized jar of Advil. Writing for a company comes with its...read more

Posted at 05 May, 2015 | By: Colin Costello | Categories:  Networking, Selling, The Biz

Colin Costello

Learning From Failure

As promised, I’m back with the results of our Kickstarter campaign for our film “Immurement.” In short, we failed. Was it an epic flop? You betcha. We only raised 30% of our $18,000 goal. So what went wron...read more

Posted at 21 Apr, 2015 | By: Colin Costello | Categories:  Pitching, Networking, Selling, The Biz

Colin Costello

Alone vs. Lonely

Ernest Hemingway once said: “Writing at its best, is a lonely life.” Of course, Hemingway was a miserable drunk who blew his brains out! Probably not the best example for newer writers. By definition, writing fo...read more

Posted at 07 Apr, 2015 | By: Colin Costello | Categories:  Writing Tips, The Biz

Colin Costello

Kickstart It

If we were to pin a Hollywood exec down and serve him a Sodium Pentothal cocktail or threaten him with a “Bill Cosby” Cappuccino, he may tell you the truth about the studio writer system – that there really ...read more

Posted at 17 Mar, 2015 | By: Colin Costello

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