GETTING NOTES & What To Do With Them, Part Three
by Frederick Bailey IAFT/L.A.
Frequently when someone approaches you with the suggestion of free rewrites on a script that you own, you’ll talk and find out that person has a diametrically opposed vision of your script.
A couple of years ago, a good friend in the business and her new partner asked me to do rewrites on a zombie script of mine. And after a lot of work, they finally got down to what they really wanted me to do, and it was the exact opposite of the way I saw the story.
That not only meant a huge rewrite—a lot of work at no pay—but it also meant telling the story in a way I didn’t feel comfortable with, which might destroy the story and ultimately make a sale impossible.
Their version of the story wasn’t my story.
When you get to that point, you have to ask yourself if it’s worth it. You want to make a sale. After all, you’ve got to pay the rent and feed your family, and when all is said and done, it’s just another zombie movie! It’s not art. It’s commerce. You have to make compromises.
This is a collaborative art. You need other people to get anything done.
But you have to weigh things in the balance.
On that zombie script, after consulting with my agent, I told them it was too much work. I had already made a fair amount of changes they’d asked for, so I said take the script as it is now and make your sale, and if you do, then I’ll be able to make the time to change the script the way you want it. They agreed to that.
And then, nothing ever happened.
Since then, I sold the script elsewhere.
Tune in here next week for Part Four.