So I promised to talk about screenwriting as well. Since I'm on hiatus from projects for a few weeks, I'll have to relay some old stories. The first is from one of the first pitch meetings my writing partner and I went on.
We show up bright and early for the meeting and hang out on the studio lot until just before we're due - god forbid you show up early and look desperate. We take the water that's offered right away, because otherwise, you'll be asked 5 times if you want water.
We're ushered into the inner sanctum of the high powered executive. Small talk ensues, then we launch into our adult-themed comedy pitch. Bear in mind that the executive has already been pitched this adult-themed comedy idea by our manager and agreed to meet with us based on the idea.
He lets us get through the entire pitch, then asks us who we see as starring in it. We've prepared for this, so we rattle off the name of one of the best known comic actors.
His response? "He wouldn't do a movie like this. Not any more."
We go for a lesser known comedian. "That would be slumming for him."
How about TV actor? "Can't open a movie."
At this point, we begin to feel like the executive is enjoying our desperate tap dancing a little too much. So we say, "Well, who do you see in it?"
"Have you thought about Dakota Fanning?"
"Um...child star Dakota Fanning? Like 11-year-old Dakota Fanning?"
"Yeah, she's really hot right now."
"Ok. But the lead character is a man undergoing a series of sexual experiences."
"Yeah, but you can change that."
"Ok. Sure. I suppose."
After the meeting, the exec called our manager to tell her how much he liked us but that our idea had been done to death. He'd already been pitched a bunch of coming of age stories for Dakota Fanning.