A blog about movies and filmmaking.

Do What I Say – Don’t Listen To Me

In filmmaking on December 6, 2011 at 11:36 am

Starting out in this business – what business, you ask; well, any business really. So let’s just focus on one little snippet, how about Life, itself.

Too big? Okay, then how about the movie business?

That’s better, and it makes sense with this blog? Alright.

The only thing you probably no doubt already know about the movie business (and life!) is everyone’s got an opinion and they’re more than willing to give it to you. Hence, the reason I have this blog, why you probably have a blog, and you probably read three dozen other blogs. We all want answers, and guidance, and a fast-break that’ll get us noticed. Well, I got some great news for you sister… I have your answers, right here.

The simplest I can make the answer is, there is no answer. Take all the advice you want, read all the books and listen to all the gurus you want. But at the end of the day, what you do to make an impact will be your own unique way of doing it, and more than likely it won’t work for anyone else.

I know, that’s a rip-off and a cheating way to answer, but if that’s not what you’re looking to hear, then you’re in the wrong field my friend.

I spend a lot of time on certain blogs commenting, critiquing, and making suggestions on how to better people’s screenplays. I also do the same for friends (no, don’t send me any scripts), and I tell them all right off the bat; these are just my opinions, take ’em or leave ’em. Because if you’ve ever paid the slightest bit of attention to anything, you know that everyone has different tastes. Some people love Michael Bay movies; others can’t stand them. Some appreciate the high-art of the French New Wave; others don’t want to “read” their movies. Some people will LOVE that crazy, unforeseen twist in your screenplay about the killer extension cord that’s really just trying to get home to it’s baby cube-taps. Others won’t.

The thing to realize is you have to take what everyone says and either apply it or don’t. If a suggestion makes sense to you, try it. If one person says you should put in as many references to STAR WARS as possible, don’t. If a dozen people say you can’t have people carving sweet potatoes into penises in a kid’s movie, then you probably can’t…Unless you want to cause outrage and controversy.

I’ve had people read scripts of mine and say something is impossibly unrealistic – and it’s something that actually happened, but then I change it to something even more strange and outlandish and it’s fine.

William Goldman has the famous line, “nobody knows anything.” Not that I’m worthy, but I’d change it to, “nobody can agree on anything being right.”


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