Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Agent/ Search For Representation PART TWO

… more on my exploits of getting my film ‘Meat Men’ made.

Well, as I was relating last blog-time, I had gotten to realize that this script is going to need some sort of representation and $$$ to get it off the ground. Much to my dismay a great deal of futile attempts had basically led to nothing, so I decided to take the task into my own hands.

Reason 1
I sell better in person. You can’t put your foot in the doorway and block it from closing via email. Doesn’t work as well.

Reason 2
For my own sense of self worth, I’d rather be crapped on in person. A good ol’ Stanley Steamer just feels better when you can look ‘em in the eye.

Reason 3
Daddy got bored.

Ok, so I found an agency here in Savannah (thank you Mr. Brian Albano for your help). This guy’s website sounded perfect: Smaller shop, looking for lower budget comedies esp. character pieces, evidentially mucho contacts… blah blah blah. The kind of place that would take a chance on an un-known writer like myself.

[For professionalism I’ll allude to who this agency is, but I’m not telling names]

I read up on the agency’s requirements, made up a little synopsis, then gussied myself up and headed on down. Should have known from the beginning that kind of a b.s. deal was about to go down. His office was in a very small part of Savannah, basically the outskirts. Being that it was tucked into the scenic outpost of an industrial loop, who wouldn’t have thought this was the place you go to get million dollar movies made?

I rolled up at 9 am, which was when the place was supposed to open, and checked the door: still locked. As I basically stood there gaping through the tinted windows, I hear this guy pulling up behind me. He gets out of his sweet Dodge Charger and asks what I was doing; I explained who I was and how I wanted to bring the synopsis of ‘Meat Men’ down in person. His remark was “Kind of weird, but ok.”

So, we go inside this little place and take a seat. As he looks over my synopsis I’m checking out his place. Small. From what I saw it was basically an inter-office meeting room and then his little office. He had some stuff up on the walls of what he’s done, but nothing too impressive. Lots of books on films and the proverbial ‘casting couch’, on which I was sitting (note to self: burn those pants). He read the synopsis and said he’ll read the actual script. I walked out on air, feeling like a baller. Great.

The next week I bring him my screenplay, all printed up and purty. This right here is the moment where I started thinking, ok, this is kind of crap:
First of all, I could see over his shoulder he was working on some sort of car-show/pharmacist convention something or other… not what I expected. Secondly, he asked if I would like to do some ‘in-front of the camera work’ and he had this modeling gig he thought I could do. I said “no, thanks I appreciate that but I really want to make money off of my mind”. He asked again in that slightly pushy yet nice guy way and I again steered the convo back to the screenplay. He went on with a slightly insulted manner to paw through my script.

As he looks at it we get talking and he’s asking me all kinds of questions and making all kinds of observations: What’s the budget? Man, your formatting looks like crap. Who do you see playing these characters? What would you compare this to? Oh, you can’t say ‘cum-guzzling queen’. What’s the demographic this is aimed at?
All kinds of questions, all kinds of answers. He even handed me a copy of The People VS. Larry Flynt, the Hustler movie so I could look at the proper formatting.
While we were talking I was flipping through Larry’s super-sexual exploits. It made for a very surreal scene, if I ever were to write it, say for a blog.

The third thing that hit me as being ‘off’ was he implied I would have to act as executive producer, being that this is my first film and I’m an unknown. (Dude, if I’m an executive producer, WTF do I need your ass for?)

We sort of ended on the ‘ok, give me a week and I’ll see if I can get through your script’ note. I left, this time somewhat less impressed. However, this was a real agent and he could be the guy to open some doors, so I still figured let’s see what happens.

At the same time, I began thinking of myself less as just a writer, and more as a producer. What moves would need to happen to get this off the ground? Who could I contact? Who do I know that could/would help get things moving? – More on this next time in ‘BLAST FROM THE PAST’.

I waited two weeks to give the man some time to get his head around my movie and its humor, and then called him. Our conversation went pretty much no-where:. I told him I had some ideas as to casting/producing/marketing and he told me that didn’t matter, all I needed was money. Secondly, he said he was ‘halfway through’ the script, which to me meant he hadn’t touched it since he put it down right in front of me. I ended with “All righty then. Let me know if you get someone who wants to throw down some money to make this film. Have a good day, sir!” (Always polite, my biggest failure in personality)

So that was that. I really don’t expect to hear from Johnny Movie anytime soon, however I’ve moved on to bigger and better things. More on that next week!

Tune back in, same Meat time, same Meat channel!!

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