This ain’t no rant…but….
I have a feature screenplay that I would dearly like to see produced for the silver screen. The Irish silver screen, preferably, but the script, Pixer Knows, being a universally themed story of a boy’s quest to find his place in the world, and to express himself through imaginative storytelling, would surely appeal to all…
So what’s your problem? You might ask: a trillion and then some scribblers out there would also like their screenplays made. What makes your script any different from theirs?
Probably nothing…though it has won The Atlantis Award at the Moondance Film Festival, USA in 2011, and it did reach the finals of the PAGE International Screenwriting Awards, 2010, [top 1% of over 5,000 scripts!]
So what exactly is your problem, you might ask again. Why don’t you just send it out to producers and wait for the phone to ring?
My problem, is this: My script is a big-budget, family fantasy feature, with a main character who is 11 years old, and from the Irish Travelling Community. And while I have had no problem in getting a Development Executive from a major Hollywood studio to read it…his response left me with a conundrum…the market, apparently, is looking for another Harry Potter…in other words, a character already known to the targeted audience, via the novels, the merchandise, the recognizable branding…my characters, most of them unique, but some from Irish Myth and Legend…are not globally recognizable…
I could argue with that last bit…Fionn McCumhaill makes an appearance. Is he not globally recognizable? Okay, maybe not…
Anyway, the script submission journey so far has not been an easy one. In Ireland, I have found it difficult to even get a response from certain Irish Producers, while others have gotten back to say that they are not reading unsolicited scripts. I sent it to one of the bigger, more prolific production companies we have in this country right now…a well-oiled machine, I would have thought…and I waited, and I am still waiting…FIVE months later!
The thing is, I KNOW that it would be difficult to fund this as a feature script…it is suitable for animation, which would obviously be very expensive to produce, though it would also work as part live-action, and part animation. Recently, the CEO of a wonderfully productive organisation…an Irish animation company doing great work on a global scale, whom I wrote to out of sheer frustration…responded promptly, suggesting a couple of companies to try…his company’s business is primarily TV and while they have an LA office, they have a very specific niche that they target, so therefore, don’t review spec feature scripts. He did suggest a couple of companies that I should try…but I didn’t have the heart to tell him that neither had even responded to my initial emails of inquiry.
So there it is…a script that has received the following praise…
“Pixer Knows” is a visually stunning, beautifully written screenplay. The symbolically charged journey taken by the three young friends will appeal to a very wide audience.
“Pixer Knows” is a beautifully written, utterly original screenplay which will attract younger and older audiences.
The non-stop action, visually stunning special effects and touching story of childhood friendship is a treasure which could be a very successful film. All Judging comments from the PAGE International Screenplay Awards 2010.
“This script offers a wonderfully original, fun and creative adventure story.” Judging comments from Bluecat Screenplay Competition 2010. Pixer Knows reached Semi-Finals
“What a wonderfully engaging and entertaining tale you’ve woven here! Your script has all the elements of a classic children’s fantasy: an unlikely hero, a cruel and heartless villain, a colorful cast of anthropomorphized animals, and a legendary warrior who has to be reminded of what’s worth fighting for. I think you’ve crafted a story that children will truly love, and I especially liked the hilariously whimsical name that Mikey chose for Pixer.” Judging comments from the Fresh Voices Screenplay Competition 2010. Pixer Knows reached the Quarter Finals.
And there it sits, in the dark…and while I may very well put the novel version into the queue of work that needs to be done…time is passing, but my frustration is not…so any advice is gratefully appreciated!