Thursday, February 7, 2008


So, by now, some of you have probably figured out what I was thinking about... but maybe you didn't figure out all of the details.

I think there are writers who can write lyrically, visually and well enough that they can script out a classic.

I am not so vain as to think it's me.

But I do believe that person is out there.

And so, in honor of this week's "Annie Awards," which also includes script writing as part of its list of honors... I'd like to propose, announce (and God Help Me, fund) the First annual Script That Classic Contest!

And the classic I'd like to propose be scripted - retrofitted backwards from classic cartoon (as listed by our friend and periodic poster Stephen Worth) is "Falling Hare."

The rules are pretty simple:

Watch the cartoon. Write a script in Final Draft, or in RTF format. Mail it to me at Include your name, address, contact information, etc.

I will then log it, anonymize it (remove all names, etc.) and then submit it for judging.

And while I plan on reaching out to other board artists, directors and story people to help go through the stuff and give opinions, I would like the final judge of this to be Stephen Worth.

Pick the best of the bunch. Show script writers what's right.
And in return, you can take the worst of the bunch, and gut it.

Here's what happens when a winner is picked.

The winner will be announced, and un-anonymized. I will see that the winner is paid a "teleplay fee" for a short-subject script - as determined by the IATSE/TAG 839 rules. I think it's a little less than $2000. This may be out of my own pocket, but I'd like to see this person be paid to punch up an existing project. (Note: If the winner is from out of state, travelling to a punch up meeting would be on them.)

I will personally make an in-kind donation to the ASIFA-Archive.

I humbly ask other producer on this 'blog to chip in work as well. (Hell, the more that gets chipped in, the less out of pocket I face. I'm not an idiot. :) )

But it boils down to this: I will only do this if Stephen judges, in deference to his knowledge of the past. I freely admit - I know less about this than a lot of people. So I'll need the assistance of people with artier minds than I.

The cartoon is picked - one of the classic cartoons of all time. Chosen by someone with not only an encyclopedic knowledge of animation... but who directs the archive that honors it.

I'm in for the parts I can bring to the table. My time. My scripty-producer head. Cash. And opportunity.

Stephen? Whattya think?


Matt Wayne said...

The more I think about this, the more I think it's actually easier than writing a 7-minute cartoon. You don't have to worry about what kind of artist is boarding the cartoon, and how much "acting" you can count on from the visuals. You don't have to worry about what doesn't play and what's going to have to be staged a certain way so it does play. You don't need to worry about a director liking the smell of their own poo and smearing it all over your carefully constructed, expertly paced series of visual gags.

I wish all cartoons were made this way.

Bitter Animator said...

On an unrelated topic, how did the writer's deal work out for animation writers now that the strike is over?

Anonymous said...

To quote David Byrne

"Same as it ever was... Same as it ever was..."