Have you ever wondered how actors find jobs? Or how casting directors find actors? Wonder no more as I take you behind the scenes of BREAKDOWNS! 🎬
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Today’s #FemaleFilmmakerFriday is all about that Actor Website! I recently redid mine in a majooooor way and am here to share what I learned along the way!
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» Production Checklist Cheat-sheet: http://eepurl.com/gf7Z25
For more #filmmaking tips, visit www.katehackett.com/blog
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» Stock footage provided by Videvo
Hi there! I wanted to talk about something a little newer to me and share what I’ve been learning over the last few weeks.
What is script coverage? Very basically, it’s a general summary of the script, usually written by an assistant for an executive, agent, manager, etc. Coverage can also include the reader’s thoughts – what’s good, what doesn’t work, etc. It has, of late, however, become available for newbie writers who want to get feedback on their scripts and do not have a way to reach out to those execs. It’s a little controversial – some people think you shouldn’t be paying for general feedback on your script – and coverage isn’t really the same as ‘notes’.
Notes give you more detail and suggest deeper changes; coverage is basically “this is good, make this” or “this is not for us, pass”.
I personally am still new enough to the writing game that I don’t have a super developed opinion on it. Sites like The Black List or WeScreenplay have certainly helped people crack in; they have also been a waste of money for others. I think your mileage will vary. I have a great group of note-giving friends, however, so I definitely would be using coverage as a tool to get my name out there more than as a way to receive feedback, which is probably for the best.
THAT SAID. I haven’t really sought coverage out until very recently; I submitted to a festival that included coverage for every script, so I received some feedback for The Dog Park. At first, I figured I wouldn’t even look at it – I know I like the script, opinions are a dime a dozen, and it probably doesn’t really matter in the grand scheme of the industry. I still believe all those things, but it WAS nice to sit back and read THIS:
by Kate Hackett
Contest: WeScreenplay TV Contest (2019)
Page Count: 33
|Overall Impression||10.00/10||(97 percentile)|
|Overall Weighted Percentile||96|
|Note: Percentiles are based on historical data of scores given out by this analyst.|
You have a great script! The whole thing worked.
Your dialogue was great and flowed really nicely from scene to scene. Each character had their own voice. It was very easy to read, and I was never confused by any of this. Your action descriptions and dialogue worked well together. You painted a clear picture for me while reading.
I especially loved the scene with the alarms and post it notes. That was very well done, and super creative. I could see it visually, and what was great about it was that there was little dialogue, it was all action, but the comedy got across.
I thought Niemph was a very relatable and likeable character. Her story is all too relatable, and Dan’s responses to her about why he wants to break up were super representative of men as a whole. I related to your story, and I really enjoyed reading it.
I like how you introduced other minor characters such as the mom and friends, but didn’t make it about them. You popped them in to show us that they are there in the story.
The dog park scene was great as well. I honestly flew through reading your script because it was such an effortless read. I really enjoyed the characters and their banter. I read it like Gilmore Girls with their fast-paced wit.
I liked Niemph’s new friends at the dog park too. I like that you didn’t dwell on the break up, and are making this a story about a woman remaking her life. I like that he unintentionally left her with an emotional support dog. Your story has the tone of everything happens for a reason.
So that’s what coverage can look like! And when it’s that good… what a nice feather to pop in my cap!
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This question comes from one of my wonderful Patronage supporters. If you’d like a change to see the inside of the industry in a really interactive way, please come join us!
It happens. You audition friends or watch their work and realize: this isn’t right for this project. It doesn’t mean they aren’t wonderful talents, it just means that their skills are better suited for a different film or show. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it can still hurt feelings to hear a ‘no’ so you want to be careful how you reject your friends.
In general, when you don’t get a job… you just don’t hear back. You MIGHT hear “they passed” via your agent or manager but more often than not, it’s just crickets. Don’t do that to your friends. They’ll know you went another direction, you have to tell them first. And YOU have to tell your friend; don’t make their agent do it. Reach out — and medium matters. If this is a big opportunity for someone, you need to call. If it’s a small production, text or email are fine.
Start with a compliment. You’re a friend, this shouldn’t be too hard! What about the performance did you enjoy? We loved the way you made us laugh on this line! No one else did that! It was so creative. And mean it.
The next thing you can do is involve the team in the decision; you aren’t operating in a vacuum, nor is this singularly your decision. I absolutely love working with you, but after consulting at length with <the director/producer/whoever>, we had to go in another direction. We, and I, think the world of you and know what a strong talent you are, this just wasn’t the right film. It’s okay. It’s okay to reject your friends. You don’t love them less and that is this industry.
If you do want to work with this person, close with that! I can’t wait to get a chance to work with you; I’d love to develop something with you. Let me know if that’s of any interest! and then go do that!
Be nice, express remorse, find another project. Rejection is a necessary part of this industry — both getting it and giving it — and knowing how to dole it out will make you someone people want to work with again and again.
This is a big one. The big one, maybe. This is a question I get very, very often and it’s a huge topic sooo… Please leave me a note if you’d like more videos about this!
And as always… If you liked this video, please join me at katehackett.com/patronage!