If you want to sell your movie idea and actually get your movie made, stop procrastinating and take action. Start the process by breaking your BIG filmmaking project into small, manageable chunks. How do YOU plan on taking your movie project from script to screen?
Do you plan on finding prospective investors outside of Hollywood to fund your movie? Or do you plan on moving to Hollywood and then networking your way through the studio system?
How To Sell Your Movie Idea
1. What Are You Selling?
Everybody has an idea. Trust me. The other day, while waiting to get my oil changed, I sat within earshot of two idiots pitching movie ideas to each other.
Both thought the other was gonna jump at the chance to “produce” each other’s epic story. The problem was, both of these yahoos wanted the same thing – to get THEIR movie made.
(And both bragged about knowing some movie star.)
In this example, even if these guys were real, there was no buyer in the conversation, just sellers.
Before you make your pitch, make sure you’re actually pitching to a buyer. And secondly, make sure the buyer actually cares about what you’re selling.
2. Make Sure Your Movie Is More Than An Idea
Everybody in Hollywood has an idea for a movie. Everybody thinks they can write screenplays. Everybody thinks they are special.
Everybody is crossing their fingers, waiting and praying that SOMEONE ELSE will recognize their talent and sprinkle them with Hollywood famous fairy dust.
Ideas are everywhere and ideas are worth less than something tangible.
If you want to be taken seriously, make sure you have more than an idea. I suggest having the rights to an outstanding story, or some money in the bank, or the interest of a NAME actor. At least this is something.
3. Speak The Language Of Your Buyer
Everybody asks: What’s in it for me? If you don’t get this, you will pitch water to fish – with no success. (Fish do not need additional water!)
While I enjoy all movies, my own interests involve skateboarding, time travel and science fiction that explores theories of physics. I also like knowing if there is an easily accessible market.
Is there a niche target audience for your story?
Story aside, some people are interested in helping you because they think it will help them get laid, make more money or simply feel good on the golf course, bragging that that they are now a film producer.
What does your buyer want? If you do not know, you have no business pitching.
If this aspect of film producing seems totally cray, cray and you never sold a thing, I highly recommend you get some sort of sales job. This will teach you cold calling skills, how to face rejection and if you’re good, you might just make few bucks in the process.
Or you could just grab a copy of my buddy Scott’s book – Writing For The Greenlight. In it, you will find out what Hollywood script readers, producers, and studio executives want in a screenplay (and why) from someone who’s been there.