Thursday, August 14, 2008

Just Do it: Pt. 2,432

From Steven Grant's Permanent Damage column this week:

"A little story. I've managed to seriously option two properties to Hollywood over the years, a miniseries I did at Dark Horse in the '90s called ENEMY, and, a couple of weeks ago, my Boom! Studios miniseries 2 GUNS.

2 GUNS was originally written as a screenplay, because that's how I saw it and I wanted to write a screenplay; I didn't want to concern myself with the various structures needed to make it a comics story. It became my calling card screenplay whenever anyone asked me for a sample. While it was partly an exercise for me, to reacquaint myself with screenplay structure etc., (by the way, I recommend David Trotter's THE SCREENWRITER'S BIBLE, a mostly nuts and bolts approach that should really be all the screenwriting advice you'd ever need) it was also a story I wanted to tell, and, if it got to that stage, a movie I'd want to see.

Mainly, it was an idea I wanted to do badly enough that I wrote it up without having a set market for it, which for me is a pretty big leap.

I got nice comments on it, when I got comments at all, but no sales. That happens, and to people with a hell of a lot more screenwriting experience than I do. Then Ross Richie and Andy Cosby " I'd given Ross a copy some years before " said they wanted to turn the screenplay into a comics series. Which was fine with me.

The comic appeared. Offers were made. Right before San Diego, Universal bought it. Now it looks like it'll be a movie after all. Ain't life funny?

But here's the point: I wrote it not as something specifically to sell " I'd probably have changed a lot of things if I were approaching it from that perspective, even though I'd certainly hoped to sell it " but because I wanted to do that particular story. I wrote ENEMY for the same reason.

And they both sold to Hollywood.

So there's no need to design comics to sell to Hollywood. Write and draw them how you want them to be. Hollywood wants what Hollywood wants. If you're lucky, they'll want what you've got."

Emphasis mine.

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