Thursday, April 23, 2009

This is the end

I am just super excited. I said to myself long ago when I first started Not Dead Yet that this was the script that finally got me started. I felt that way because of how much smoother the process was, and how much more fun. And now that things are happening - well, I'm pretty much jumping out of my skin every moment of the day. Every time I see I have a new email I'm wondering if it's one of the people in high places.

Yes I know many things could still go wrong, but I'm annoyingly optimistic. But don't worry. The Beefcake is like King Pessimism so he keeps me from floating off into the atmosphere. I keep him from going on a killing spree.

I've gotten a few notes from people - no major changes, but an occasional observation about a minor change that might help my chances. One of my favorite notes was that I don't NEED the changes. This thing can sell as is. But the changes might help get it done faster.

That's shit you want to hear.

The funny thing is, when I started this I never imagined it would sell. I mean, it would be great, don't get me wrong. Money and a movie and launching a career and all that. But this is an expensive film and most people think of zombies as cheap, so I never thought anyone would want to buy it. But a few people in the know have indicated that it could indeed sell.

I'd also like to give thanks to World War Z. It makes it easy for me to point to a zombie action film and prove that this is a viable concept. It's supposed to come out next year and if it does well I'm in like Flynn. If it tanks I am screwed.

But that's a year from now.

Anyhow, one note that resonated with me the most, and the one I immediately set out to correct, was my ending. More than one person has remarked that it's REALLY depressing. It's not supposed to be. It's supposed to be bittersweet, but that's evidently not coming across, and some readers feel a bit let down.

So I said "But in Dawn of the Dead they end up thinking they're safe until they're attacked by a horde of zombies. And in Night of the Living Dead everybody dies."

Except those are horror movies, and as I am so fond of telling people, this is not a horror film. It's an action film.

And before you get all "But it has zombies!" Yeah well Twilight has vampires. So shut up.

I can't be a hypocrite. I can't keep going on about how my story is an action film and then ignore one of the staples of the action genre - the stabilized ending. Action films don't always have a happy ending, but they're Shakespearean. They always end with a king on the throne. And my ending left things all out of balance and hopeless.

So I added four lines of dialogue in various places and that's all it took. Now when the producers who pick it up read it they won't be quite as depressed. I still don't do happy endings, but at least this one won't quite make you want to slit your wrists as you leave the theater.

The only annoying thing is that it made the script go from 112-113 pages. One hundred thirteen is a prime number. My OCD senses are aggravated, but it's worth it if my script sells or gets me a job just a little bit faster.


  1. I think my OCD sense would LOVE it if I had a prime-number page count. Can't that be a good thing.

    Really excited for you and NOT DEAD YET. Hope things happen big.

  2. Thanks. Me too.

    And I'm a fan of even numbers. If someone changes my volume to level 11 I will change it to 12 just to ease my mind. I'm pretty messy as a person, but something about odd numbers, particularly prime numbers, bothers the crap out of me.

    Shit I may even go through my script and try to cut it back down a page.

  3. OMG!!!
    113 pages!
    What else was 113 pages?
    That's right!...

    Cutthroat Island!


    do I have to type it?

    okay. I will.

    Showgirls was 113 pages long!

    (I, uh, just like anal)

    Miss Blake! Seriously, now.
    113 is better than 112. Y'know why?
    More Vitamin Emily!


Please leave a name, even if it's a fake name. And try not to be an asshole.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.