Film Courage: Let’s suppose I’m at a networking event or I get invited to a great festival and it’s a mixer. So someone says “Hey, may I see your work?” And I know that it’s probably not ready, what’s the best way to let them know that where I am not hurting their feelings?
Wendy Kram, owner of Wendy’s LA4hire: Oh, sure great question. I would say “That’s fantastic. I’m doing revisions, can I get your card and can I send it to you when it’s ready?” And “Can I drop you an email reminder when it’s ready? Sure that would be great.”
Film Courage: So you are not waiting a year for the revision? You are keeping you in their mind, “Hi, I met you and thank you for…”
Wendy: Exactly and you know what, it could be year if that’s really what it takes. To me, it’s ready when it’s ready so it could be “I met you a year ago at Sundance and I mentioned a sci-fi 1-hour drama that I have and I finally have it ready and it’s been vetted.” And actually I don’t even know if I would go into all that detail and here’s a brief premise.” Very, very briefly. Executives don’t want a whole big description because they also can be libel. They don’t want to hear ideas in too much detail because they are not allowed to accept them for legal reasons. But if it’s someone that you have met and “Just to give the a refresher this is the sci-fi 1-hour pilot about an alien that comes to earth and can I send it to you?”
And they will either respond and say “Great” or they might say “No.”
There also is another subject which is a submission release forms because a lot of executives will not take material without a submission release form, if it’s not being submitted by an agent or manager.
Film Courage: Interesting. Yeah, I’m wondering if people really understand that when people…and I’ve seen that on people’s Twitter bios “I do not take… [unsolicited material].” You know? I see it all the time and for a newbie do you think they realize the implications of how it’s a turn off when someone says “No.” Like that, they are reasons why. It’s not because they don’t think your idea is good, it’s because they are protecting themselves.
Wendy: Right. So then there are ways around to try and bypass that. And yeah that would probably fall under a whole conversation about networking and submission policies.
Film Courage: But for someone to respect that when they see that someone says “We do not take blind submissions.”
Wendy: Yes. Well, a good counter can be “I’d be happy to sign a submission release form.” And as I say that, my disclaimer is that as I say this – I am not an entertainment attorney.
Film Courage: Sure.
Wendy: So whoever may be listening, if you get a submission release form, I advise you to show it to an entertainment attorney. And it is up to you to decide whether to sign it or not. But that is a way around that legality of them not wanting to accept that at all.
Question For The Viewers: On a scale of 1-10, how hard is it for you to get industry professionals to read your finished screenplays?
About Wendy Kram:
Seasoned Film and Television producer, Wendy Kram, created L.A. FOR HIRE, a consulting firm for production companies, writers, directors and anyone in media and PR seeking Hollywood connections and expertise on how to get their project to the next level.
With over fifteen years of experience in the entertainment industry, Wendy has supervised and produced a number of award-winning motion picture and television films for companies including: Walt Disney Studios, Sony Pictures, Hearst Entertainment, Sandollar Productions, Granada Entertainment, CBS, NBC, ABC, USA, HBO, Showtime and Lifetime Networks. Credits include “Mad Money” with Diane Keaton, Queen Latifah, and Katie Holmes, the award-winning miniseries, “Sally Hemings: An American Scandal” with Sam Neill, and the romantic comedy, “Making Mr. Right” with Dean Caine for Lifetime Network. Wendy has a track record working with A-level talent, agents, filmmakers and executives.
As a native New Yorker who loves the city she grew up in, Wendy recognized a gap between many New York-based production companies and the Hollywood community. L.A. FOR HIRE was created to help fill this gap by providing a bridge between Hollywood’s key decision makers and companies in New York and other metropolitan cities around the globe.
Our clients come to us in order to help them navigate through the Hollywood system, where we provide insider knowledge and know-how that comes from our years of experience.