Screenwriting : Script Ideas by Bill Lonero

Bill Lonero

Script Ideas

I wrote a screenplay about a Western and I got a lot of great feedback. Unfortunately some of the feedback I got was that Westerns aren't in fashion right now. Wish someone would have told me that before I spent almost a year writing and researching it. Any suggestions on what a good topic to write about is? Seems like Hollywood is just rehashing a lot of movies/stories that have already been told.

Craig D Griffiths

Bill Lonero Westerns are in fashion. A film can take 10 to be made. A good film is always in fashion. So keep going.

Hateful 8

Hell or High Water

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (Okay a stretch).

Sisters Brothers

There are plenty. You do not want to be chasing a trend . If are new to writing there will be 10,000 writers with a rep in front of you for that Trendy Genre.

Westerns, now that is a much shorter line. So when someone says “What about a western?”. You’ll be near the front of the line.

No script has ever made the writer worse. So take the learnings and write your next script.

Bill Lonero

Thank you Craig! Very good advice. I will start on my third script and wait for Hollywood to circle the wagons and bring the Western back!

Craig D Griffiths

The best plan.

Jim Boston

Bill, you're right.

Hollywood's leaders ARE rehashing lots of movies/stories that have already been told. These leaders are TOO DAMN SKITTISH with a buck.

TOO DAMN AFRAID!!!

Bill, stick to your guns...and all the VERY BEST to you!

Bill Lonero

Thank you!!

Louis Tété

Bill Lonero i don't think you should pay attention to trends, story is all what matters. Following trends is a way to force yourself to write something you might not even want to write. Plus trends are like fashion, it comes and goes, so don't be a puppet to those.

Allen Johnson

I agree with the idea of write whatever you’re passionate about. If you chase the market it will tend to feel forced and will certainly be not as personal as a story you just have to tell. Westerns are great! Keep it up.

Brian Knight

Change it a bit and make a space/sci-fi series... JMO.

Dan MaxXx

my 2 cents: use specs as writing samples. If you wanna play the Hollywood game, know going in that nobody wants to make your spec ideas into movies. However, everyone is looking for new brilliant voices (and you're cheap to hire). Show your scripts to everyone with a legit job title & office space.

Stephen Floyd

Write the story you have to tell. Everything else is minutia.

Derek Reid

At least a Western doesn't really have a shelf-life. If no one is biting now you can pull it out of the drawer every so often down-the-line to shop around.

Frankie Gaddo

Westerns were huge during the golden age of Hollywood. There aren't many coming out these days as they've pretty much been replaced by the action genre. Personally I love westerns and would very much like to see more. I've written a western as well. If you like the genre, why not? Though steering away from only writing them is a good idea.

Robert Sacchi

Westerns have been around for since the beginning of movie making. Deadwood: The Movie (2019 TV Movie), The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018) , Godless (2017). They don't make as many as they did when Westerns were king but that doesn't mean someone won't make them. Still try to sell the film. You can also try adapting the story line to a Science Fiction movie (Outland). Then you will have two movies. Good luck.

Steven Bogart

Westerns are out until they're not, like almost any other genre. Write what you want.

Imo Wimana Chadband

Write the story that you want to get out. What you're passionate about. But also, put an original spin on it. Make it so that the Western isn't the regular degular Western, but one that is so intriguing, they pay attention to you, the writer. As Dan said, it can showcase your talent and get you in the door. No script written is a waste :) On to the next.

Bill Lonero

Thank you everyone for the great comments. It's helped me look at it from a different perspective. I really like the idea of adapting it to a sci-fi. Thank you Brian Knight. All of these comments are fantastic.

Ian Eyre

Combine your Western with another genre. Put a twist on it.

Doug Nelson

Westerns are always viable. It's true that the olde tyme oaters and singing cowboys are pretty much no goes in today's market, but that doesn't mean that the entire genre is dead. The 3:10 to Yuma found an audience as did the Cowboys, Indians and Space Aliens spoof. As in any script you just need to find its hook for its target audience.

Peter Roberts

Beside the fact of fashion (in whatever market) constantly changing there is also the truth that anything of quality and/or that introduces a new twist is attractive. In addition fashion has a tendency to go round in circles (e.g. what went out of fashion in the sixties, seventies, eighties may become popular again today). It is probably time for westerns to come back.

Dan MaxXx

Nobody told Taylor Sheridan he shouldn't write modern westerns. The guy has carved himself a great career.

Bill Lonero

I’ve started adapting my western as a sci-fi and am quite surprised how adaptable it is. Some name, period and timeframe changes and it seems to sit rather nicely. The premise of the story is timeless and really can be used for any genre but sci-fi seems to fit the best as I mull it over in my head. Thank you to everyone for the suggestions and advice. I was ready to throw in the towel with this script but you have given it new life.

Peter Roberts

Great to hear you getting on well with new idea Bill.

Bill Lonero

Thank you Peter! It’s reinvigorated my passion for this script and story. Originally it was a true story and now it’s a pseudo true story. The premise is based on facts but the characters and the timeframe have all changed. The exciting part is coming up with new names for all the places and characters in the story to fit a sci-fi genre without making it corny and predictable.

Philip Sedgwick

At the Wild Bunch Film Festival. Heaps of westerns in competition. Last night we saw The Wild Bunch and had two authors with books about the film and Peckinpah here. Was great!

Bill Lonero

That’s great to hear Phillip. I’m assuming “The Wild Bunch” was in reference to The Doolin-Dalton gang? If so, it’s great to hear that a true story about the West was depicted.

Philip Sedgwick

Bill Lonero It was the Peckinpah classic. However, the founders of this fest are from OK, so maybe Doolin-Dalton fit in.

Bill Lonero

Philip Sedgwick that makes sense since the Doolin-Dalton gang were from Oklahoma. Very cool!

Karen Stark

The Sister Brothers is a western.

Vasco Saraiva

Good scripts are always in fashion.

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