Joshuah Buckle

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Why does it have to be so hard for new talent to get into the film industry?

I find it strange that the entertainment industry complain so often about not having original ideas, but then don't actively listen to new creators.

I have a few feature films scripts, about twelve in progress. I also have an original sci-fi drama television series written. Other than that I am also a published writer. Why do agents/managers and producers ignoring all of those people like myself who actually have original ideas.

The next big ideas person in the industry could be sitting somewhere in the world and their talent is being wasted.

I would love to get your thoughts.

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    Mar 11 2012: This might sound frustrating at first but what I suggest is change the word hard in your question to the word EASY! Repeat it to yourself a million times if you have to, everyday until it sinks in your head! "Why does it have to be so "hard" for new talent to get into the film industry?" You should be saying, Why does it have to be so "EASY" for new talent to get into the film industry? I promise that if you start just by doing that, a whole new universe of opportunity will open up to you. Don't sell your ideas, sell yourself first! The rest will fall into place. Be humble so that by being so, it will show and it will flow into the work that you do! Forget your EGO. The message, the story, the ideology that you write of, is it meaningful to you? Or do you hope it is meaningful to others?
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    Mar 9 2012: Joshuah,
    One of the "problems", or "features"...depending on how one looks at it, is that there are MILLIONS of talented people in our world. One has to have the right combination of talent, determination, and interest to pursue, and do well in any career. Based on my own experience of "stumbling" into the film industry as an actor who simply evolved from exploring my own love of theater as a hobby, I believe it is most important to LOVE what we are doing. Performing in film was simply an offshoot of theater, and I was doing what I loved, so it was successful.

    Networking, being in the right place at the right time, knowing people in the industry, is an important part of the process, as several people have mentioned on this thread. If you believe strongly in the value of what you have written, how about producing it yourself, or with a small local production company?

    Rather than thinking/feeling about the process as "getting in", perhaps it would help to think about it as doing what you love, and mingling with people who are doing the same thing. You are already "in" if you are doing what you love doing...now figure out how to take it to the next level:>)
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    Mar 9 2012: I am not in the film industry, but I work in another industry where there are hundreds of thousands of people working hard for their big break - the startup/entrepreneurship industry. From what I have observed, many new comers don't get breaks because they don't know anyone.

    As someone stated, its not what you know, but who you know. Investors will often put money into an okay idea with people who they know on some level rather than betting the farm on an unknown variable. I am shocked how much this occurs - people often hire through their network locking out newcomers with stellar talent.

    Joshua, don't bother working on honing your writing. Work on honing your networking and social skills. Good Networking will pay far more dividends than being a good writer.

    Why does this happen? Part of it is that people are more comfortable with known quantities, but part of it is that people are lazy. Why not take the investment opportunity with two guys you know who have a good idea vs. spending time searching for the stranger (and developing trust with them) with the fabulous idea?

    Now maybe if that stranger with the fantastic idea crossed your path, you'd be interested, but its too hard to search for him/her among the hundreds of thousands of other people with lame ideas who believe that they have the next hot thing. So take the okay idea with the guys you know are good.
  • Mar 8 2012: I think there are a couple of issues involved here Joshua.

    Firstly the film industry is a highly lucrative industry for those who find success. And like any lucrative industry, such as professional athletes, the supply of new entrants always exceeds demand. Therefore with the thousands of people pitching new ideas, the producers/studios can be as choosy as they like.

    The other issue involved is that in most cases making movies or TV shows is extremely expensive and yet despite all the modern technology in the world today, there is not a tool or program (that I am aware of) that can accurately predict the return on this investment (ROI). Consequently as the ROI is difficult to predict each decision about which movie to produce carries a lot of risk. Now, executives across any industry traditionally have low-risk appetites, for fear of being fired if the risk doesn’t work. For movie executives this is particularly so, especially given something like 95% of movies produced don’t make a profit, so studios need to rely on the 5% of big blockbuster movies that do.

    Therefore producers or studio execs are probably less likely to accept a new original idea and instead go for a proven formula such as a film adaptation of the latest top selling book for teenagers e.g. Harry Potter, Twilight, The Hunger Games. It’s a shame because there are so many talented writers with great ideas out there, but everyone is afraid to try something new.

    If you are trying to get your films off the ground perhaps try using a crowd funding service like Kickstarter. After all some of the best films are the small independent ones that have a shoestring budget.
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    Mar 8 2012: It's not what you know, it's who you know.

    There are always guarded gates (a bit like a nightclub queue) and even a great new idea must wait its turn.
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    Mar 7 2012: New statistics show that paper-back book publishing is at an all time low and is a continuing trend.
    Ive had the opportunity over the last year to ask writers (mainly coming from article writers from a few of my favorite sites) why they chose to start selling e-books instead of publishing paper backs and if/why I should do the same.
    You may be wondering how any of this is relevant to this topic, well this is why..
    The unanimous reason is not because ebooks are becoming more popular, but because writers are getting so incredibly sick of being rejected by publishers for unknown reasons, having to jump through expensive and time consuming hoops and having to be as strategic as a military commander in deciding what to write, who to send it to, what to say and when to do it...all for the luxury of YOU paying their salary.

    It appears this issue is very much the same.
    My advice is that (for the moment) attempt to form a web series, like many others in your situation are currently doing; Perhaps in the chance of making a name for yourself through the back door whilst being as creative as you like.
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      Mar 8 2012: That is partly what I am doing. I only got into books as another way to get into film. My first book was picked up by a publisher in the UK and they want more from me. It's all about getting my name out and hopefully once the books sell enough I can try to shop it around to be turned into a film and that will get me in the door. At the moment I am starting to make short films myself.

      I guess it would make it a lot easier if a producer or agent came across this and decided to give me a chance. I don't see that happening.

      Thanks for the advice and ideas, will definitely take it on board.
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        Mar 9 2012: Joshuah,
        I just noticed this comment after writing my first comment:>) Good...you are making short films yourself, getting exposure, and if they want more from you my friend...give it to them!

        Of course it would be "easier if a producer or agent came across this and decided to give you a chance", and if YOU "don't see that happening", why should THEY see that happening???
        Believe in yourself and continue to do what you love:>)