Well, looks like we have a little forward movement on my Quadrilogy project. If you’re late to the party, click on Current Projects in my Categories section to the right and look for the very first post in that category. Anyway, I scheduled a sit-down with Mr. Actor over lunch this past Thursday. I drove up to Chatsworth and we ate at the restaurant he works at part-time in between gigs.
He’s a pleasant guy and behaves in the way one might expect actors to behave; he enjoys talking about himself, but he was polite and allowed me to do my fair share of talking. We discussed the script. He brought up a few points that didn’t quite jell with him, such as character motivation and a few logistical concepts. I think my replies satisfied him.
With pleasantries out of the way, we talked business.
“How can I help you?” he asked directly. “What is it you want from me?”
I opened with a few lines about not wanting to sound crass and he quickly interjected that this was the best time to be straight forward. So I laid it out for him and told him that I needed his contacts, because I thought that was my quickest route to get my script to where it needs to go, which is in front of Joel Silver. I didn’t mince words and he appreciated that. He followed up with a few probing questions to assess the situation: Did I have representation? Was my script protected? Who else had I approached? Afterwards, he concluded that he had some ideas that might get me somewhere. That was nice to hear, but it was also a foregone conclusion or else why were we meeting in the first place? In my heart of hearts I knew what this conversation was a precursor to, but was hoping to avoid the subject. When he leaned back into his chair and folded his hands across his stomach, I realized it was unavoidable.
“So…why am I doing this for you?”
I babbled a few lines about him being cast in this great film, but we both knew that that wasn’t a certainty, so I just cut to the chase and said, “You tell me. What are you looking for?”
“Well, typically there’s a finders fee.”
“Yeah,” he nodded once, slowly.
I paused momentarily to mull over the fairness of that figure. “Done.”
Then we went back to eating.
So, here’s the game plan as we left it. I need to spend this weekend condensing my screenplay into a tight two to three page synopsis that has to be good enough to convince certain directors to read the full manuscript. I’ll tell you right now that trimming my story down to fit 130 pages was a difficult task in itself. It’s going to be interesting to try squeezing that content into three pages.