How to Pitch Your Screenplay or Film Idea
Pitching your screenplay idea to an investor, actor or studio executive is one of the toughest parts of being a storyteller. Many screenwriters and filmmakers freeze up when they go into “the room“.
Paul Castro, writer of Warner Brother’s August Rush (Starring Robin Williams) lays down some amazing advice in the video below on how to CRUSH IT when pitching your screenplay or idea.
This video is from his award-winning online course: The MILLION DOLLAR BUSINESS OF SCREENWRITING If you are a screenwriter and want to make a living writing in Hollywood, this course is a must! Enjoy!
BONUS: Some of the BEST Online Screenwriting Courses & Books available:
- Aaron Sorkin Screenwriting MasterClass
- David Mamet Dramatic Writing MasterClass
- Jim Uhls’ (Writer of Fight Club) The Screenwriters Toolkit
- Paul Castro’s The MILLION DOLLAR BUSINESS OF SCREEN WRITING
- Paul Castro’s The Million Dollar Screenplay
- Stephan Palmer’s Good in a Room – FREE AUDIO BOOK VERSION
- Michael Hauge’s & Chris Vogler’s Screenwriting & Story Blueprint: The Hero’s Two Journeys
- Karl Igelsias’s Writing for Emotional Impact – FREE AUDIO BOOK VERSIONS HERE
- Save the Cat!® The Last Book on Screenwriting You’ll Ever Need – FREE AUDIO BOOK VERSION
- Linda Seger’s Making A Good Script Great – FREE AUDIO BOOK VERSION
If you like How to Pitch Your Screenplay or Film Idea, then take a listen to:
MasterClass: Aaron Sorkin Teaches You Screenwriting
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– The next subject is pitching. Oftentimes you’ll be called in to pitch your original idea, and oftentimes, studios or production companies will listen to your pitch and hopefully will give you a writing assignment to go back and write it, and then they have right of first refusal or they’ll own that project. So what is pitching? Pitching is simply telling a story. Creating a cinematic, dramatic, visual, visceral story for that person to go, “Wow, I see this, I feel this, “and I want to be part of this.” So that’s all pitching is. And you always want to pitch, just like a log line, with title, genre, and the pitch. But instead of a log line that’s very lean, this is going to be lengthy. I like to tell the story of, imagine if you were walking with one of your friends, your best friend, and your best friend said “Hey what did you do last night?” And you said, “I saw a movie.” Your best friend says, “What movie did you see?” You tell them. “What was it about?” And you tell them, and that’s it. You’re gonna tell them the story. And it’s not gonna have every single detail, but they’re gonna have a picture of what you saw last night, and they’re gonna either wanna see it, or not wanna see it based on what you say, your passion, your enthusiasm, the visuals you paint, and if there’s any emotional attachment. People cannot ignore an emotional response. So if you can create that in somebody, then they’re going to respond favorably to your pitch. Alright, that’s really important. Another key to pitching, is to get in the same frequency as the person that you’re pitching to. So both my parents are New Yorkers, they have New York accents, and they talk very fast, and they talk like this, and they’re Italian, and they’re constantly going 100 miles an hour. So if my parents were executives, and I was pitching to them, I would speed up my cadence, and I would have severity up, and severity down, along with telling a great story. And if I pitch someone else that talk like this, “I really like your story, Paul”, then am I going to be at this level? No , I’m gonna slow it down, and I’m gonna get into their energy field. Out of respect, not mocking or mimicking, but now I’m in their world out of respect. And as a result, they’re going to be more receptive to what I’m pitching them. Okay? So that’s the art of pitching. And again, you need to believe that you’re adding great value to this person. It’s not oh, I hope they buy this. I hope they think this is good. You need to walk in there going, “Oh my God! “This is going to employ thousands of people. “It’s gonna make them a gazillion dollars. “It’s gonna enhance their reputation “because they put out quality work. “You have to buy this, this is amazing!” And that’s how you have to pitch as far as you’re adding tons of value. Of course you’re gonna be in business with each other. And if you don’t believe in your idea to that level, then you need to take a few steps back and re-sculpt it before going in there and pitching it.