Monday, July 28, 2008


is a word that is usually thrown around to talk about actors, but it should be also be in your vocabulary to discuss your career. What makes you bankable as a writer/actor/producer/director/reader/pa, etc? Have you worked on formats ranging from mini-dv to 70mm? Have you been optioned or produced or had a feature distributed, either in home video or theatrically? The more things you can do to add to your resume, the better. For instance, here is a writer's importance chart.

Have an idea
Have a good idea
Have a great idea

Wrote a treatment
Wrote a good treatment
Wrote a great treatment

Wrote a script
Wrote a good script
Wrote a great script

Had a script optioned
Had a script optioned by a reputable producer
Had a script optioned by a studio

Had a script produced on mini-dv
Had a script produced on hd
Had a script produced on 16mm
Had a script produced on 35mm

Had a produced script distributed on home video
Had a produced script distributed in limited theatrical
Had a produced script distributed in wide theatrical

Have your produced, distributed script break even
Have your produced, distributed script make money

If you look at the above chart, you will see that the higher you go on the food chain, the more likely you are to MAKE MONEY for an agent, manager, producer, or business partner. The more MONEY you can make, the higher you are going to be on the radar of someone important. Look at shows like WIPEOUT. There is no way that an agent or manager actually enjoys that show, but they see the potential for the show to MAKE THEM MONEY, and that's all they care about...and for good reason.

Now, if you have a 35mm feature that had a wide theatrical release, please e-mail and we should have lunch. However, the point of this post is that any little thing you can do to make yourself more marketable will help with the process. Winning festivals is okay, but doesn't add to your BANKABILITY.

So, what does add to the marketability for a writer? Being part of a film that makes money is the number one way. The next way is to be commissioned to write a script. Once again, you will then be making them MONEY. After that, the further a project gets through the process, the more likely it is that it was a quality project and thus...BANKABLE. Potential clients want to know that other people have trusted you with the success of their project BEFORE they place their success in your hands.

So, the thing to take away from this...the reason an actor is BANKABLE is because he has proven that he can MAKE PEOPLE MONEY. So, make yourself bankable in your career and you will begin to make some headway. Even if it's your buddy's film, if you believe it will be produced, try it out. The way most writers make their living is through writing on assignment.

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