This should be interesting on a lot of fronts. WME, and now Gersh have secured financing to make motion pictures. They're even hiring development executives. ("They're not limiting their interests to only clients' projects"--then what's the fucking point? What are you going to say to your clients when you're making a film that isn't a Gersh package? "Our clients weren't good enough to round out this cast?")
As soon as studios start cutting fees, oh boy, the agencies are just gonna go make movies themselves. Hey, I'm as frustrated as anyone with the studio system, but I'm not sure I want my agency owning my film. I think we've all seen how that works out when a TV studio sells one of it's shows in syndication to it's own network. People have sued for millions and millions because of unfair market compensation for TV properties.
I think this is a terrible Pandora's box that won't be open very long, and will end badly.
By the way, agents and agencies are the ones who get their clients to do all of those shitty movies, so they can package and sell them. Agencies have people who's only job is to convince actors and dirrectors to sign on to known turds. Now, what is an agent going to say to you when a film the agency packaged and produced bombs, or is terrible? Wasn't the studio/keystone cops routine what kind of insulated them from Bombdom and kept you thinking they were protecting you all along?
"That script just got overdeveloped. What can you do?"
To me, this is kind of hilarious. Agencies making movies. What's next? The WGA and SAG getting credit lines from JP Morgan?
I moved from LA a year and a half ago to escape the writer's strike. I have to say, going back was quite an experience. First of all, the weather (even with June gloom) was amazing. I rented a convertible and cruised around for five days taking meetings with executives and friends. It was sunny and 75 every day. I don't really miss LA, but I miss the weather. I'm married now, so I don't really miss the girls. Living in LA and being married was kind of like going to strip a club. Some guys love strip clubs. As a married guy, I think it's torture. Anyway, hot girls are EVERYWHERE out there. As a writer, your chance of out kicking your coverage is very high in Southern California. Sure, you'll be married to a crazy actress, but she'll probably take pilates classes, and it's better than the girl you'll meet in your book club who looks like Ugly Betty.
Visiting LA reminded me of something very important. There truly are great people in the entertainment business. Some of them are agents, and a few even inhabit networks and studios. There truly are a ton of people on the "other side" of the business who want to discover new talent, and love writers. I was able to get together with a few of my "fans," and I have to say, if I stopped writing tomorrow, I would always want to be friends with these folks. These are the people you want to be combing the biz for as much as possible. People who are real, and truly have a soul. The whole thing reminded me that, hey, it's not a picnic on their side of the business, either. It's tough right now, but the mood seems to be that things are picking up.
If this isn't rock bottom, I don't know what is. It'd kind of be like being a crack addict and also becoming a drunk.
I have a half-hour comedy spec going out here soon. Hoping for the best. We've discussed a number of possibilities for it, including doing it as a web series (which would be very cool).
You just never know.