2010 Success Stories - Year in Review
When it came to Script Pipeline writers hitting it big (and in a couple cases, ridiculously huge), 2010 was our biggest year to date as far as success stories.
From contest winner Evan Daugherty and Writers Workshop "Recommend" Micah Barnett selling their specs for close to $4 million in studio deals, to other writers landing top-notch representation, all the way down to Jesse Eisenberg, star of SP's The Living Wake, earning a Golden Globe nomination for The Social Network, it was an incredible year. Not a bad way to celebrate a 10-year anniversary. . . .
Here are some of the highlights, as well as info on our upcoming contest deadline.
To all these writers (and actor), a big congratulations from everyone at Script Pipeline!
SP Competition Winner Evan Daugherty's Snow White Spec Sells to Universal for $3 million
The Lowdown: After first securing a writing gig for Warner Bros. in 2009 on their Masters of the Universe franchise, then in September 2010 learning that John McTiernan (Die Hard, The Thomas Crown Affair) will direct his script Shrapnel (see story below), a few weeks later, Evan's other spec, Snow White and the Huntsman, sold to Universal for $1.5 million against $3 million. As of today, Charlize Theron is on board to play the Evil Queen, Michael Fassbender for the Huntsman, and Riley Keough close to the Snow White lead. The deal marked one of the biggest spec sales in years.
Script Pipeline's Involvement: Having had minimal luck with Shrapnel, Evan submitted to the 2008 Script Pipeline competition, and the script was first reviewed by one of SP's regular Workshop analysts, who instantly highly recommended the script. The rest of the staff, including founder Chadwick Clough, agreed: there was something special about this one. Although the concept might be a tough sell (two dudes hunting each other in the woods), SP sent the script to a handful of industry contacts, which resulted in marginal interest. That is, until Energy Entertainment received the script with a high recommendation from SP. So they decided to schedule a meeting with Evan. . . and a promising career for a young writer began.
Micah Barnett Sells Spec to Warner Bros.; SP "Recommend" The Merc List Optioned
The Lowdown: Micah's Script Pipeline "Recommend" spec The Merc List, a futuristic action/thriller, was optioned by the producers of Paranormal Activity. In December 2010, his other spec, The Rabbit, sold to Warner Bros. in the high six-figures. Chris Tucker, who doesn't exactly jump on board just any project, is attached to star.
Script Pipeline's Involvement: By far, the fastest time an SP writer has gone from Workshop submission, to "Recommend" grade, to final notes from a Senior Analyst, to representation--less than a week. When Micah submitted The Merc List to the Writers Workshop, it was probably one of the better scripts we had received all year. After some fine-tuning, the script was sent direct to Jake Wagner at FilmEngine by SP General Manager Matt Misetich. Jake signed the writer in a matter of days. From there--well, things definitely took off. Check back in 2011, as we're sure Micah's career will continue to progress.
2009 Contest-Winning Script Shrapnel to be Directed by John McTiernan
The Lowdown: John McTiernan has directed some of the most iconic action films of all time. It was a relative surprise, then, when he signed on to direct Shrapnel, winner of the 2008 Script Pipeline Competition. McTiernan kinda sorta ran into some legal trouble this year, but our bet is he'll come back to filmmaking with guns blazing--or in the case of Shrapnel, hunting.
Script Pipeline's Involvement: While we at Script Pipeline are pretty confident Evan would have, at some point, got his foot in the door with this incredible writing sample, it was his grand prize win in the 2008 contest that helped move things forward much faster than simply sending out queries. Just one of those scripts that would have otherwise been somehwat difficult to garner interest.
2010 Contest Winner Tripper Clancy Finds Representation
The Lowdown: One of the better comedy writers in recent Script Pipeline memory, Tripper had a great script on his hands with Henry the Second. But it was by no means guaranteed to land somewhere, grand prize contest win or not. The voice of the screenplay was so unique, though, that it only took a couple months for Tripper to find a manager. His script is now in development with 21 Laps (Shawn Levy) and Roughouse (Danny McBride).
Script Pipeline's Involvement: When it came to quality of writing, our last three contests have been spectacular--and 2010 was no different. Henry the Second caught the eye of FilmEngine, an SP industry contact, and Tripper was signed by them in Fall 2010, a mere handful of weeks after the end of the competition.
Workshop "Recommend" Script Produced, Secures Distribution with Anchor Bay
The Lowdown: Operation Endgame, starring Ving Rhames, Ellen Barkin, Rob Corddry, Zach Galifianakis, and an ensemble cast, produced by Chadwick Clough, had its theatrical/DVD release in 2010. The action/comedy is now a bestseller on DVD.
Script Pipeline's Involvement: Years back, a first-time screenwriter named Brian Watanabe submitted to the Writers Workshop to have his script, Rogues Gallery, reviewed. It received an almost instant "Recommend" from analyst Clea Frost and was shortly thereafter read by Chadwick Clough. The script must have struck a nerve: Chadwick immediately gave the script to Sean McKittrick at Darko Entertainment, and some time later, the project found investment and was produced. It was the first SP Writers Workshop "Recommend" to become a film.
2009 Finalists Write/Direct Their First Feature Film, Virgin Alexander
The Lowdown: Former finalists Sean Fallon and Charlotte Barrett lured the interest of producers to get their screenplay Virgin Alexander off the ground. The film has wrapped production and stars Rick Faugno, Bronson Pinchot, Paige Howard, and some fantastic up-and-coming actors.
Script Pipeline's Involvement: Although their finalist script, Denny Delivers, fell short of attracting major attention, the two writers used their contest placement as leverage to get a producer to look at Virgin Alexander. From Sean and Charlotte: "Being Script Pipeline finalists changed our careers. We went from begging friends for a read to now directing our own script with an incredible cast. We are forever grateful to Matt, Chadwick, and the entire Script Pipeline team."
Star of The Living Wake Jesse Eisenberg Nominated for Golden Globe
The Lowdown: Jesse Eisenberg, co-star of Script Pipeline's first produced film, The Living WakeThe Social Network. Odds are, an Oscar nom lies in the future. (released in 2010), was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Actor. Jesse also won the National Board of Review "Best Actor" award for his role in the uber-popular
Script Pipeline's Involvement: The Living Wake, a project produced and developed by SP founder Chadwick Clough, not only showed off the dramatic (and comedic) abilities of Eisenberg, who starred alongside Mike O'Connell, but uniquely illustrated the impeccable range of a budding young actor. Check it out on Netflix.
Script Pipeline, LLC is a full-service screenplay analysis and resource hub designed for writers, producers, and film industry professionals.
For over 10 years, Script Pipeline has been a leader in screenplay analysis, serving not only as a coverage service, but a link connecting up-and-coming writers with development executives. Through a composite directory, Script Pipeline has gathered the specific needs and submission guidelines of production and management companies, literary agencies, independent producers, and creative executives searching for scripts. Along with extensive resources, this information is available through their members-only Writers Database, where users may search through 1,300-plus listings. Database members also have the ability to send queries/loglines for free review and inquires about writing, film, and the industry in general.
Script Pipeline continues to offer top-notch coverage services and the potential to have one's script circulated to production companies, agents, and managers through our Writers Workshop, which reviews screenplays, short scripts, and TV specs and pilots. Rave reviews and success stories continue to fuel the Workshop, as more and more writers benefit from Script Pipeline’s wide array of resources, from one-on-one consultations to basic story notes.
Most recently, Operation Endgame, a former Workshop "Recommend" screenplay written by Brian Watanabe, was released in 2010, as was Script Pipeline's first production, The Living Wake, starring Mike O'Connell and Golden Globe-nominee Jesse Eisenberg ("The Social Network").
Writer Evan Daugherty optioned his 2008 contest-winning script Shrapnel, set to be directed by John McTiernan, and in 2010 sold a spec, "Snow White and the Huntsman," to Universal for $3 million. Later that year, Writers Workshop "Recommend" Micah Barnett sold his spec "The Rabbit" to Warner Bros. for six figures after Script Pipeline linked him up with management.
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