Oscar-Nominated Screenwriters Share Worst Studio Notes

Some doozies from the WGA Beyond Words event you have to check out.

Allison Schroeder, Theodore Melfi, and Barry Jenkins from the WGA 'Beyond Words 2017' event.

Recently several of the Writers Guild of America Award nominated screenwriters appeared at the annual 'Beyond Words' event. One of the questions they were asked: What was one of the worst studio notes you were given on a scripted project? Here are a few excerpts:

Eric Heisserer ("Arrival")
"It was the start of a pitch, I said 'There's a spy and his wife.' The executive said, 'There is no wife. Continue.'"

Allison Schroeder ("Hidden Figures")
"I was really excited, I was pitching this thriller with two female leads, about espionage. [The executive] said, 'Oh! We love it! It's great. Can you either change it to incest or two men? I said, 'If you'll really hire me? Yes.'"

Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick ("Deadpool")
"We wrote a parody of 'The Sopranos' called 'The Tomatoes.' It was all fruits and vegetables in the leads. it was the Tomatoes vs. The Bananas. The note came back, 'We love it, but do they have to be fruits and vegetables?'"

There are some really smart people who work in movie and TV development. However that's not always the case. Plus there is always the LCD factor — Lowest Common Denominator — wherein the suits are constantly concerned about losing the audience. So yes, sometimes a screenwriter has to deal with some bad notes.

For the rest of the article from The Wrap, go here.


Oscar-Nominated Screenwriters Share Worst Studio Notes was originally published in Go Into The Story on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Go Into The Story – Medium

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