The New Digital Filmmaker’s Guide: How To Get People To Read Your Goddamn Script!



Christopher Brennan continues The New Digital Filmmaker’s Guide series with a look at getting your script read.

So you’ve spent months developing your idea, another few months writing your script. Now, as you fine tune the story, dialogue and characters you might want notes and opinions on your project, right? See what other people think of your work.

This can be a very tricky process. A lot of times you can send out scripts for review only to spend the next few months simply waiting for people to finally get around to it.

With that in mind, today we are going to look at 5 effective ways to finally get people to Read Your Goddamn Script!

• Print Your Script

This day and age, it’s so quick and handy to simply send off a digital copy of your script. But there is a big difference between dropping your screenplay to someone in an email attachment and actually handing them the hard copy. For one thing, it shows that you took the time to print off a copy just for them. Also, it’s harder for that person to ignore the pile of pages sitting in the corner of their living room.

• Read Their Script

I mean think about it… Simply offer to read and analyse their script at the same time. Set a delivery date for when both reviews should be turned in, that way both readers will be on a deadline. This deadline will be motivated by the fact that each party wants feedback from their own script.

• Bribery Works

Another way to get your script read is by adding a little incentive. This doesn’t have to be too much. Even just giving the person a bottle of wine can be a really nice gesture. Something that shows that you understand and appreciate the time you are requesting from your reader.

• Provide a Synopsis First

Think of it from their point-of-view. It’s really hard to commit a couple of hours of your evening to reading a script. It really is. Especially if you don’t have any clue what it’s about. Another way to look at it is: when would you pick a film on Netflix without knowing anything about it? Usually you read the synopsis, watch the trailer, see who’s in it or check out reviews, then decide to watch it. By providing that kind material for your readers, it makes it easier for them to carve out the time to read your work.

• Create Promotional Material

This doesn’t have to stop at just the synopsis by the way. What about having a poster done up? How about shooting a little promo of the script? These things will help sell the film in the future anyway, so why not prepare them early to help get your script read?

So what do you think? Do you believe that these tactics might work? Why don’t we put it to the test. This week, offer to read a colleague’s script. And in return ask them to read yours.

By next week, you should have some really positive feedback that will help strengthen your story. And please, let me know how you get on by dropping a comment below or tweeting @chrisbrennan_1

Thanks for reading and good luck with your script!