Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I sold a script in Hollywood...FINALLY!

I think it's okay to say that Sony Pictures made an offer on the wedding movie script I mentioned before. Details to follow. It's for one of their indie deals so it's indie money (i.e. none).

However, I'm going to be in the WGA (Writers Guild of America). It's official, I'm a working screenwriter.

Oh the irony. This is the script I was told wouldn't sell. That I would be pigeonholing myself. Like I said before, there are no, not one, A-list commercial black female feature screenwriters ala Nancy Meyers, Aline Brosh McKenna, Susannah Grant, Diablo Cody, etc. We're pigeonholed anyway.

Hollywood is what it is. I'm going to write the stories I want to tell and try not to second guess what the marketplace wants. As the marketplace wants movies like TRANSFORMERS and I have no desire to write SLINKY:The Movie.

I've tried to write a plot driven movie versus a character driven one and it was horrible. There are some big, fun action movies and comedies I love. However, I do know what my wheelhouse (the most overused Hollywood word right now) is and my goal is keep getting stronger, to improve with every new script I write.

The timing of the sale couldn't be better. I was close to giving up. After all this time and so much writing, I was beginning to think this was not possible. In this POST, I said 2009 was my make or break year.

I'm still processing what all this means. A few of my screenwriters friends know and I swear could hear them screaming from Los Angeles or New York. Several have said the first sale is always the hardest. I also know there are writers have sold one script, never to be heard from again.

For now, I'm not going to worry about that. I'm going to finish my current script and see what happens. My manager is energized and feeling good about it.

He told me 76 spec scripts went out in July only one sold. The spec market is dead. I'm glad I listened to my gut and focused on my character driven wedding movie script. All the pressure I put on myself last year and earlier this year come up with a big spec film was insane.

Now I have a strong sample of my writing that my manager can send out. In Hollywood nobody wants you until somebody wants you. It's a very frustrating Catch-22. I know he's relieved. ha

65 comments:

Megan in Liguria said...

CONGRATULATIONS! That is awesome. Guess that means you'll be sticking around awhile???

cupcake said...

This is fabulous news, and I am thrilled for you. Here's to seeing your film at the multiplex!

Caro said...

Congratulations! So pleased for you.

Italianissima said...

Auguroni!!!! This is excellent news!!! Cannot wait to see the fruits of your labor on the big screen.

GGirl2 said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!!! I am ecstatically happy for you. This is awesome!!!! Looking forward to the movie.... God answers prayers.

AntoBlueberry said...

CONGRATULATIONS!
I think you may have a couple of advices you can give to another screenwriter with no script sold like me...

Ciao Chow Linda said...

That is so fantastic. I can't wait to follow your success and see the movie and all the great films you're going to write in the future. This is just the beginning! Go have a prosecco and celebrate.

KC said...

CONGRATULATIONS! I can't wait to see it, I love character-driven films. Good for you for staying true to yourself. Sometimes good things do happen to good people.

Tracie B. said...

YAY!! YAYissimo! that is such great news, arlene :)

Diana Strinati Baur said...

Hai fatto bene!!! It's so great, and yes stick to your guns girlfriend. I was talking with a writer friend yesterday who said that the enemy of all writers is the little voice telling us to write something other than we know is right for us...so there you have it....character driven, cool movies are SO my favorites (ok, maybe you are not necessarily trying to appeal to someone who lives on a hill in a foreign country:) so I for one will be waiting for its release and will make the DVD available for the rooms!! HA!! Good going.

glamah16 said...

Awesome! I'm so happy for you! This is great news. Keep the momentum going.

Texas Espresso said...

YAY!! Congratulations! That is FABULOUS news!

I much prefer character driven movies and books -- so good for you. Sticking to what you know and feel are best at. I am so happy for you that its finally paying off. It's so exciting!! WOOHOOO

*Belgian said...

Congratulations! That is great news! Good for you that you kept going at it and it paid off! Can't wait to see the movie!

Simone said...

Congrats!!!! Can't wait to read the entries as this wonderful opportunity unfolds!!

Loulou said...

Such exciting news! Can't wait to see your story on the big screen.
Felicitations!

City Girl said...

CONGRATULATIONS. I am SO SO SO HAPPY FOR YUO.

Ok, sorry for the screaming, but I am just so thrilled for you.

Monica said...

Congratulations. Now you can go shopping.

J.Doe said...

Congratulations!!!

Stekkino said...

FABOLOUS!!!! "I also know there are writers have sold one script, never be heard from again.

For now, I'm not going to worry about that. I'm going to finish my current script and see what happens." Thats the right spirit..good luck for the rest

joanne at frutto della passione said...

Congratulations! Really thrilled for you. If you ever up this way we'll celebrate! Can't wait to see it.

milanesemasala said...

Joanne just told me the good news!! SO happy for you. This calls for a major celebration. The drinks are on me when/if we meet up next week :)

Rose in Cali said...

WORK IT!!! Congratulations! Your hard work is paying off!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

Grazie tutto!!

All the support means a great deal to me. Especially earlier this year when things were not looking very good for this ragazza.

x

Arlene

Tina said...

Awesome! Persistence and patience pay off. Brava! Thank you for being an inspiration. :-)

By the way, I'm moving back to Italy in a few weeks and I'll be in Rome for an afternoon/night on October 6th. Aperitivo? Cena? Somethin? I don't know anyone in Rome!

Petulia said...

So awesome! Sorry for the tardiness of the message but I have been traveling- as usual.
Congratulations! It really feels like this year will end up being a great year, a memorable year. I am so happy for you!! bravissima

WineGrrl said...

Whoopeeee!!!

anna l'americana said...

And we knew you when....!

Auguri and many,many more.

Monie said...

nyc/caribbean ragazza,


Wow! Congratulations!

Anonymous said...

WOW!! Big congrats. I was taking a personal health day and decided to check out your blog. That's wonderful news. Keep up the good work and go out and celebrate today!

Ms. ATL

Scintilla @ Bell'Avventura said...

Wow!!!! Can you hear me screaming too!! I'll be able to ask for your autograph soon :D

Kim B. said...

So happy for your good news!!! Now I just have to wait for them to pick the director, cast, film it, etc. Details . . . I wanna see it!!!!

So proud of you and so glad you have great news ringing in the new (school) year.

way to go!!!

Jill said...

Congratulations! I am so happy for you and your much-deserved success! Brava!!

Jim said...

Congratulations - I have no idea who you are, but I know exactly how you feel right now.

You should be really proud - it's a ton of work to make something like this happen (even if you downplay it as "indie"). Any success is great success!

Way to go!

Anne in Oxfordshire said...

Congratulations and well done...really pleased :-)

Jess said...

That is totally fantastic! Congratulations!

Shelley - At Home in Rome said...

This is HUGE amazing news and proof that your courage and determination have paid off... and that the universe is behind your plans and dreams. Take things one day at a time and don't think too far ahead, enjoy this victory! Have a celebratory mojito for me woman!!!! So proud of you and happy for you!!!!

thisismewriting said...

Congratulations! I'm so happy for you.

Linda at Ice Tea For Me said...

Congrats. I hope this is the first in many scripts being sold.

I admire you for moving to another country and starting a new life. Your hard work is paying off.

Jessica said...

Congratulations! Such wonderful news and couldn't happen to a better person. We should go out and have a celebratory prosecco soon.

homebody at heart said...

That is fabulous! I have no doubt that you will sell more, then one day, you'll be "discovered"! I'm so glad for you! Just a few more exclamation points!!!

Lilacspecs said...

Hooray! Congratulations!!!

Gil said...

What great news. Congratulations!!

Los Angelista said...

OH MY GAWD!!! Whoo hoo! I am so very happy for you. Congratulations!

This seriously made my day. I think I'm going to go cry because I'm so damn happy for you!

Stresa Sights said...

Congratulations to you! I've been following your story for some time and I'm so happy for your news... You are an inspiration to anyone with a dream.

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

Wow.. Just got online and saw all these new comments. Grazie

I'm verkemplt.

Scatteredmoments said...

Congratulations!!!!

hdurrow said...

Congratulations! What an awesome moment! Great work and patience paid off!

Anonymous said...

Happy for you. Looks like all the hard work pays off on the sale. It will still take some time for the "coins" to roll in for you. Be patient. selling the script was a big step. Keep your head up. V

Lola said...

I KNEW IT!!!

Bravaaaaaaaaaaaaa! CONGRATULATIONS. Can you hear me screaming from the other side of the river?

Good for you for not betraying your instinct and sticking with the character-driven plot. When we met for lunch, I KNEW something good was going to happen shortly after your birthday!!

I'm so very proud of you and your well-deserved success.

Ciao
Lola xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Anonymous said...

Frequent lurker delurking here. Congratulations, that is outstanding news!

Floria in Tokyo

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

thanks for delurking...

and grazie tutti.

GigiSxm said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!! can't wait to see it on the big screen

Lenox Ave said...

All I can say is congratulations!

Carol de Assis said...

I'm really happy for you! I've been following your blog for quite a while now, but I hardly ever post a comment. I really admire your strength for the choices you have made, and I am really glad that your dream is coming to life. Tanti auguri! :)

Liane Spicer said...

HUGE congrats! I knew you would do it!

Peter @ italyMONDO! said...

AUGURI!

Moi said...

Congratulations!!!!

babyboyla75 said...

Arlene, I just got back into roma, Congrats ! on selling the script I knew you would, now I can say I knew you when LOL I can't wait to see it on the big screen.
I would love to come check out the italian film festival also, Let me know what I have to do.
keep up the good work and I hope to see you soon since we are in the same city !
ciao
David

yvonnemjones said...

I teared up when I read this, I was so proud. You're my shero, and by this time next year, I hope to be following in your footsteps. So proud!

bblogger said...

Congrats!! I was just thinking "if I want to get this book written, can I do that abroad?" You've answered my questions. THANK YOU! :)

odessa said...

oh my goodness, CONGRATULATIONS! i'm so happy for you. keep us posted..can't wait to see your movie in the theaters!

This Time Now said...

Wonderful news!
You see, just when you're about to give up is when a breakthrough happens!

Happy for you!!!

Felicia, This Time in Seoul

Valerie said...

Let me add my hearty woo-hoo (even if a little belatedly as life has gotten in the way of blog reading). I'm so happy for you, and glad to see someone stick to their guns and succeed for following their hearts. Bravissima!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

grazie mille!

carrieitly said...

Getting this in a bit late but CONGRATULATIONS!! I literally 'yelped' when I read your news! Really, you're inspiring!