Wednesday, July 25, 2007


I am producing a feature-length documentary about the culture of spec screenplay writing and how the craft, coupled with the lure of fame and sole credit, make for a highly unique universe. I am approaching this project from two angles:

  • Writers and filmmakers who have achieved success by way of the spec screenplay, and

  • The “aspiring” who work at their dreams, not only in Los Angeles, but to the farthest reaches of the country and abroad (Nigeria, no less)

This blog has been created to serve as a kind of “call sheet” for progress, profiles, anecdotes, and dialogue as this project takes shape.

The “script” calls for following the corps of writers who manage to keep their visions on track, often against the tide of naysayers and numbing hardships. With shootin
g now well underway, the process has already brought forth a number of unique stories as my crew follows a diverse group of individuals and writing teams as they develop their ideas and lay them out in character and action. Some of these unfolding stories have already proven to be inspiring, funny, unrealistic, noble, impractical, empowering, and wholly wonderful.

I am also documenting the sub-sets that have developed around the spec-writing culture. This includes screenplay software writers, story gurus, coaches and editors, consultants, and analysts. And, of course, the real support people – the spouses, lovers, children, and readers.

I bring some measure of experience to the process. I am a 30-year-member of the Writers Guild of America and secured my own entrĂ©e into the film by process of writing several spec screenplays, one of which sold and opened the door to a career in theatrical and television motion pictures, plus a number of episodes for several dramatic series. (It’s mostly all there on IMDB.)

My early experience as a journalist and then in technical filmmaking has created a foundation for the video production company that I started five years ago. My company, FrontPoint Visual, creates commercials and informational videos for a number of public interest clients, with a special stake in health care and the environment. A partial client list includes: the AFL-CIO and Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, American Oceans, Campo de Cahuenga, IBEW, Coalition for Clean and Safe Ports, SEIU Social Workers, AFSCME.

As this process evolves, I am hoping for the contributions and participation of all who can bring any light, humor, wisdom, or understanding to this “American Idol” for the keyboard set.