HOLLYWOOD FORMULAS (Part 1: Screenwriting)

First life.

Life, whether you desire to write, produce or direct has simple rules for fulfillment and happiness (i.e. Be nice…Act with love…Work hard…Trust God) that are absolutes.

Anyone, yes anyone can write, produce or direct but the key is “and be happy”… then apply these 3 Formulas, or roadmaps, be patient…. and “Happiness is “guaranteed”.”

(OK, nothing is ever guaranteed…but it is likely)

PRODUCER-4-Spielberg (Happiness is more than a 3-minute pitch to Spielberg, who says “Yes”, and you get a WGA minimum writing assignment or an 18-month option, with two 1-year extensions.)

Life today has us driven by the need and desire for instant gratification and monetary success.

We’ve had 40 years of being marketed to with phrases like “Go For The Gusto”, “Life is Short”, “Success is For Takers”, “Live Life To The Fullest”, “Microwave It”, “Just Add Water”, etc. with the advertiser’s subliminal message being to make one inadequate, incompetent or feeling slightly less-than and in-need of a magical elixir (the promoters product) to fix the inadequacy….instantly.

Be it “Baby Boomers”, “Gen X” or “Millenials” we have been inundated with these phrases, and within the film industry they’re “It’s who you know”, “My idea is great”, “If only I had an agent”, “I haven’t gone to Film School”, “If only I could Sell this Script”, “Why doesn’t anyone believe in me”…. “I just need”, “I just want”, etc… and if I access it, pitch it, get it to sell it I’ll be fulfilled & happy.

Whoa Nelly.

Life is already great.

God, whatever form it is to you, has his/her act together.

Thus, slow down, be patient and approach Filmmaking & Hollywood with these common sense formulas, plus a work ethic roadmaps, then you should succeed.

Be patient.

And with respect to the film industry “Be patient, supportive & productive.”

“Be patient, supportive & productive.”… is a mantra that that leads to success.

However, within Hollywood, a very competitive industry based on self promotion and instant gratification it is hard to be patient and supportive.

The first question to always ask yourself…”Would you rather be comfortable or be successful”.

DVD-CHRISTMAS (Superb Christmas gift for yourself or any wannabe Filmmaker, Screenwriter or Director… www.WebFilmSchool.com)

Pick one… and I bet you go for comfortable…. for truly is being successful without comfort worth it.

Now, I’m sure you’re saying “But I can have both” and yes you can have both “but not at the same time”.

Be patient.

First, in Hollywood as well as life, work at (A) being realistic by (B) living within your own skin, (C) working hard, (D) being supportive and I truly believe (E) success with comfort will come and you will, in Gods time, have both.

In a moment I will apply this productive-patience approach to Filmmaking, Budgeting, Screenwriting, Producing & Hollywood….

Here’s the bottom-line: “Hollywood is not a fad. Hollywood will wait for you.”

There will always be movies. Point. Period. End sentence.

The movie industry is getting bigger and bigger and bigger.

Yes, Major Distributors (Sony, Disney, Paramount, 20th, etc) are making less and less but the internet demands more and more, the revenue streams are growing and as China is building the world has become global with more and more revenues from product placement, merchandising and licensing increasing.

Always remember this, “the movie industry will never ever disappear as long as the family structure still exists.”

Huh? Why?

Movies are and “always will be” the cheapest form of entertainment when compared with (1) Music Concerts, (2) Live Theater and (3) Sporting Events. Therefore the movie industry will always exist as long as the family exists and momentary escapism is needed.

Here’s what I mean… As long as the family exists (1) Children, especially teens, always want to get the heck out of the house and aware from their parents…(2) parents, by-the-by, also want some space from their kids… and the cheapest form of escapism and entertainment is-and-always-will-be “movies”.

Let’s talk money.

Ticket to a great movie is only $12.

Ticket to “Hamilton”, a Broadway play, is $700.

Standing Room Only ticket to the “Cubs World Series” was $1,000.

Ticket to “The Boss” or a Hit Concert are…

Movies are cheap and movie theaters, as long as there are families, will always be here.

And, as long as movie theaters are here, they will always need product.

Thus, please be patient, but be productive.

Don’t sit back and wait for life to come to you but be productive, participate and good things happen…but not on your schedule….but good happens… if you participate.

Now let’s apply some common sense, be patient, rules to Screenwriting, Filmmaking & Producing.

First, Screenwriting


Be productive. Move your fingers. Learn a skill. Develop your craft

In Hollywood everyone believes that if you have a talent for writing, which is a gift of dialogue (aka: “good ear”), keep writing, develop your skills and learn the craft that you will sell your 4th Script.

Got it… You will sell your 4th Script.

Writing-2 (You can read all the screenwriting books and scripts you want… but to learn writing… you must write… now move your fingers.)

There is only 1 way to Sell your 4th script… WRITE YOUR 3rd.

There is only 1 way to write your 3rd script… WRITE YOUR 2nd.

There is only 1 way to write your 2nd script… WRITE YOUR 1st

There is only 1 way to write your 1st script… MOVE YOUR FINGERS.

…get the point?

I bet most of you are now saying “I’ve written my first” but you probably have only written your 1st Draft of your 1st script likely without a Treatment, a Beat Sheet and Coverage then you haven’t even written the first draft of your first script.

So, be patient, Hollywood will not disappear.

Hollywood will wait for you.

Hollywood needs writers, who (A) understand the craft and (B) have a gift of dialogue.

Thus, keep writing, practice your craft, develop your skill and more than likely you’ll sell your 4th Script.

Be patient.

FYI: In forthcoming posts, all of which are contained in my DVD or Streaming Film Schools, I’ll outline how to Write a Treatment, Prepare a 40-60 Scene Beat Sheet, Get Coverage, Register & Copyright, Type Great Dialogue, Secure an Agent and Sell your 4th Script.

Happy Filmmaking,

Dov Simens





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21 comments on “HOLLYWOOD FORMULAS FOR SCREENWRITING, DIRECTING & PRODUCING (Part 1: The Screenwriting Roadmap)”

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