When A Script Option Stalls, What Does A Screenwriter Do Next? by
Barrington Smith Seetachitt and Janice Rhoshalle Littlejohn
Film Courage: You both are determined to have LOVERS IN THEIR RIGHT MIND (is that the name)?
Film Courage: …Made into a movie. When did you go from the mindset of writers to producers? Did you feel that at some point you could pitch it and someone else would make and it then you started to realize “Okay, if we are going to make this it has to be…”
Janice: Well…it was kind of interesting when we first developed the outline for the project, it did have a production…it was for a production company.
Barrington: Her book was under option so they were open to writers. They sent the book out apparently to a few writers to see if they might have a take on it and I’m not sure that they got a great response but Janice had said “Can I try?” and they said “Sure.” I think what this company was probably looking for was a little bit of…
Janice: LOVE ACTUALLY.
Barrington: LOVE ACTUALLY with like multi-racial couples because if you’ve read the book it’s kind of a how-to guide.
Janice: So WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOU’RE EXPECTING.
Barrington: Right, that had just come out.
Janice: The Steve Harvey book had just come out.
Barrington: Why can’t I remember the other one?
Janice: It was a dating book that was made into…
Barrington: Women Are From Venus?
Janice: No…why can’t I think of the name because Niko was in the second one but it made two films and so I think they were looking for something more ensemble and maybe a little bit broader and a lot more comedic. I tend to be someone who gravitates toward independent film. I’m a huge fan of drama and so my idea was along the line (even though this was a little comedic) like MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING where it was one couple that was dealing with the intricate intercultural dynamic. And you know, GUESS WHO’S COMING TO DINNER was also big like what I was thinking of films in this genre, it always dealt with one couple and they relationship with their families so they thought it was a really cool idea but they didn’t feel that they could sell it.
And in the interim Navid and I had been dating and he is an actor. He was on HOMELAND. He played Abu Nazir for to seasons. And he said “Well I want to see it because you’d been talking to me about this project…” And his big thing was am I research for this or what? What’s really going on between us? And so he, Barrington and I the production (watch the video on Youtube here).
MORE VIDEOS WITH BARRINGTON & JANICE