Posted by Richard "RB" Botto

Welcome to the weekend, everyone.

Well, it was an exciting week around these parts. First, a couple of our Happy Writers screenwriters who pitched and secured meetings through our pitch sessions had their projects moved into development (and another who pitched is now in post-production Stage 32 Success story). Second, I found out this morning that a very active Stage 32 filmmaker connected with a financier here on the platform and is now in pre-production on a major feature film with offers out to some very prominent actors. And finally, two of our Stage 32 members, Michel Merkt and Max Karli, were nominated for FOUR Golden Globes with Michel taking home the gold for ELLE, which won for Best Foreign Film (Read more here  and here )

On a scale of 1 to 10, not bad!

It should be noted that every single person I mentioned above has worked with dozens of Stage 32’ers over the years. And many more are involved in their next projects. That’s the power of networking and winning champions.

Find your tribe!

On the Weekend Blog this week, a number of interesting articles, Lounge discussions, tips, tricks, videos and Stage 32 news. Breath it all in! But after you do, please remember to share this blog on your other social media channels and with anyone you feel would benefit from the material.

Of course, if you’re so inclined, I invite you to share your thoughts, musings or rantings on any of the content below in our Comments section.

Enjoy, and have a creative weekend!



4 Benefits of Having a Collection Account on a Film or TV Production

Nowadays many independent film productions work with collection accounts. Institutional financiers, production partners and international sales agents often require a collection account before committing to a independent film or a TV project. To find out what a Collection Account is and how it can benefit you in your distribution Click here!

Screenplay or Novel: or Both?

I don’t believe that jumping genres should be avoided simply because someone out there in cyberspace said you shouldn't do it. I converted novels into screenplays, and screenplays into stage plays, with pretty good contest results and, if nothing else, it was a lesson and … fun.

I say, if you have the passion to write, then write. If it’s a screenplay I would opt for simplicity and consistency over complexity and inconsistency. In a novel, stick with plot and structure and do whatever the hell you want. In either case, Picasso had good advice: “Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.” To read this entire article, click here!

The 2017 Working TV Writers Lab

Happy 2017 everyone! I wanted to announce an exciting new online lab that I'm bringing into Stage 32 this month. I have brought in Spencer Robinson, a literary manager from Art/Work Entertainment to be a mentor for an intensive 8-week working writers lab.

Art/Work represents some of the top writers - leading and emerging - talent in the industry today including writers on Arrow, The Last Ship, Chuck & Justified, as well as feature writers like Eric Heisserer who's films include Lights Out, which has grossed close to $150 million, and Arrival starring Amy Adams.

Over the course of 8 weeks, Spencer is going to work one-on-one with 20 Stage 32 members to take a TV pilot idea from concept to completion, as well as help you write your series bible! If you're interested in being part of this lab, learn more here!  Looking forward to working with you! 


Building Your Theater Career: From Regional Theater to Broadway (Jan 12)

Are you an actor looking to make the leap from educational theater to professional theater? Or have you built an on-camera career but would like to work in theater more? Outside the major markets of New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago, there is a lot of work for actors in Regional Theaters all over the country. Building a career in theater requires a strong working knowledge of the business, how to build relationships with casting directors, and how to best market yourself.

In this Stage 32 Next Level Webinar, actors Uma Incrocci and Christian Pedersen will walk you through each step of advancing your career in theater. They’ll share from their own experiences auditioning for and working in Regional Theaters, tours and off-Broadway.

What You'll Learn:

  • A breakdown of the different major markets
  • Different Equity contracts, how much they pay and what they mean – the difference between LORT, SPT, etc
  • How to get your Equity Card
  • Apprentice/Intern Programs at Regional Theaters
  • “Do I need an MFA?” An in-depth chat about this very present question for actors, with insight from Erica Jensen who attends many MFA showcases every year in New York
  • Equity Open Calls – how to prepare, and many tips from both sides of the table
  • Working in Union, Non-Union and Educational Tours
  • And much, much more!

To register and get the full list of things you will learn, click here!

How To Recoup Your Film's Profits Through Collection Account Management

Nowadays many independent film and TV productions that have multiple parties involved are looking for the best way to recoup profits on a completed project. One of the best ways to assure the parties involved with your film (producers, investors, financiers, sales agents and talent) see their returns is to have a collection account in place.

A collection account is an account in the name of a neutral third party who receives revenues generated by an independent film or TV project on behalf of the multiple beneficiaries from local distributors. This process is called collection account management and is an effective tool to guarantee that the beneficiaries receive their share of the revenues.

During this webinar we will explain the functions and benefits of having a collection account in place for an independent film or TV project, how collection account management is set up and which parties should be involved in the entire process.

What You'll Learn:

  • The purpose of having a Collection Account in place for your film or TV project
  • - Who engages the collection account manager (CAM)?
  • - The relationship between producers, sales agent, financiers and CAM
  • - Receipt, allocation and disbursement of revenues generated from distribution agreements
  • - Which are the risks of film production, financing and distribution without a Collection Account?
  • - How does Collection Account Management eliminate or reduce these risks?
  • - How does Collection Account Management work?
  • - The Recoupment Schedule explained and much, much more!

To register and get the full list of things you will learn, click here!


2nd Annual Stage 32 Happy Writers Comedy Contest

Stage 32’s Happy Writers 2nd Annual Comedy Contest is back and we’re searching for original comedy features and original comedy TV pilots and comedy TV specs.

Grand Prize Winner meets with Paradigm Agency, Vertigo Entertainment, Kevin Hart's LOL Network, and more!

2nd Place Winners meet with industry executives!

All finalists will have their loglines presented to 500 working industry executives! 

Pitch Opportunities

Daniel Vang - Manager, Good Fear Film + Management - Saturday, January 14th · 2:30 - 4:10 PM PST - Specializes in all genres, all formats.

Jared Waine - Development, Ensemble Entertainment - Saturday, January 14th · 4:30 - 6:10 PM PST - Specializes in thrillers, horror, drama, and sci-fi features & TV pilots.

Rachel Crouch - Creative Executive, Cold Iron Pictures - Sunday, January 15th · 11:30 - 1:10 PM PST - Specializes in all genres of feature scripts.

Jeff Faehnle - Head of Development, Nasser Entertainment Sunday, January 15th · 2:30 - 4:10 PM PST - Specializes in thriller, comedy, and action features.





SAG-AFTRA Doubles Down Law Barring IMDb From Posting Actors’ Ages 

IMDb Asks Court to Prohibit Enforcement of Actor Age Censorship Law 

Apple Sets Its Sights on Hollywood With Plans for Original Content 

Ryan Kavanaugh Hit With Fraud Suit By Ex-Relativity President; Says CEO Has Resigned, Porn Shoots In Office 

Producers Wonder: How Long Before VR Creates Its ‘Great Train Robbery’? 

The Hollywood Reporter’s Cinematographer Roundtable 

ASC Awards: Cinematographers Unveil Film Nominees 

Golden Globes: ‘La La Land’ Sweeps & TV Newcomers Soar 

To Win A Best Picture Oscar, Producers Need A Great Film – And It Helps To Have Three Little Letters

‘La La Land,’ ‘Moonlight,’ ‘Fences’ Nab Producers Guild Nominations 

BAFTA Nominations – Full List 

East vs. West at the Oscars: Will a Coastal Contender Prevail Again? 

Fox Hits Back Again At “Futile” Netflix Efforts In Executive Poaching Suit 

Hollywood's Merger Mania: Inside the Studios' "Size Anxiety," Scramble to Match Silicon Valley 

Lionsgate to Distribute Participant Movie Slate Internationally 

New Leadership Steps Up at Tribeca Film Institute 

Cannes Mayor Plans to Launch International Series Festival in 2018


Watch: Joel & Ethan Coen – A Tribute 

The Beauty of Cinema 2016


How to Be Unforgettable: 6 Ways to Make an Amazing First Impression 

The Art of the Tease: Reel ’Em In With A Trailer That Looks the Very Best Your Film Can Look 

Getting A+ VFX: How Top-Notch Visual Effects Can Make Your Indie Feature Dazzling 

11 Indispensable Pieces of Advice from 2016's Best Cinematographers 

26 Reasons Why You Didn’t Get the Part

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As always, we welcome thoughts and remarks on ANY of the content above in the Comments section below...


From USC to Sundance Labs: How Social Media Brought My Filmmaking To Life!
4 Benefits of Having a Collection Account on a Film or TV Production
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