Monday, August 2, 2010

The out of the loop writer's dilemma

Today was not a good day to be an occasional writer, full time mother. As I caught up on the news posted in the latest edition of The Hollywood Reporter, an article about the new Miramax caught my eye. One of the first productions to be released under the (re)new Miramax banner will be an animated gnome picture called GNOMEO AND JULIET.

Oh, please no! You have got to be kidding me! That animated piece that I just finished, that I've been excited about all summer long has just been blown out of the water. How I sooooo wish I could claim plagiarism, but it's obvious I can't. It's just another example of a great idea drifting through the ether that multiple people 'discovered' at the same time. And I'm kicking myself because I missed the news. With a 2011 planned release, GNOMEO AND JULIET must have been in the works for, at minimum, a full year.

There are differences. The multiple writers of the piece used Shakespeare as a template. I didn't. My only hope is that mine (titled TURF WAR) would have been better. As far as pitching the material? I already know it's a lost cause, because all of Hollywood will compare it to GNOMEO AND JULIET just from the logline. No one is going to want to put forth effort on a script whose idea alone is so close to a new release, no matter how good that other script might be.

But this is one of many dilemmas for a writer in such a high turnover industry. Am I sorry I wrote TURF WAR? Do I chalk it up to wasted time? No! I'm proud of my work, and hope it will, at the very least, showcase my talent. I guess what I'm saying is, don't stop writing! How many times can they remake Romeo and Juliet? Apparently, too many. How many times can we see battles between Vampires and Werewolves? I know, they're on the decline, but they'll return again. They always do.

So, for me, I hope that TURF WAR will at least do well in competition. And in the mean time, I'm off to write that next great idea that seems impossible to have not been tackled by someone else. Wish me luck! And keep writing!