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'Tis The Season

Welcome to Smashcut! A PSA Newsletter dedicated to giving you all the industry news in an entertaining and informative way. December is here – the best month of the year filled with holiday cheer. With that said, we’ve got another awesome newsletter lined up for you so grab your electronics and check out this month’s edition. With all the great material packed into one place, it’s going to take you days to finish.

Our guest columnist this month is Bob Saenz (screenwriter, author, and filmmaker), discussing living with rejection. Beverly Nault (PSA member and writer) will review the book Screenwriting Unchained by Emmanuel Oberg (first of a two-part series). Looking for good books on screenwriting? Beverly will give you the real deal on what books make the grade what ones don’t.  

Want to know what’s happening in Hollywood? The deals, the dealmakers, and dealbreakers? Look no further than Smashcut. We do the work, so you don’t have to. From membership happenings to box-office numbers, Smashcut has what you need. So, sit back, pull up your smartphone or tablet and be prepared to spend all day enjoying the wealth of information we have obtained.  If you are so inclined, please drop us a line – have any news to share, would like to contribute to the newsletter? We’d love to hear from you.
Carlo Dall’Olmo (Screenwriter/Board Member): Making strides in recovery from surgery. Have been focusing the last year on reading (not sure why but it’s been a lot of fun). Looking forward to 2021 ending and 2022 beginning. 

Chuck Crawford (PSA Member): Slowly recovering from his broken right arm.  Giving serious thought to filming his own scripts one at a time.  Presently looking for investors for $1-2 M and with his athletic background will be approaching pro athletes locally to possibly form a consortium within his company, Star Link Productions, LLC.  Tired of Hollywood and its closed doors and do-nothing gatekeepers.

Bill Douglas (Writer/Member): Looking forward to his first PSA meetup on the 9th. Finished his adaptation of his self-published mystery: Fear Beyond Reason. Screenplay title changed to The Last Murder. The first thing he learned is, it's a whole new ballgame writing a 120 page adaptation as opposed to a 250 page novel. The advice he’s read says never write like a director, but he’d really like to hear from some experienced screenwriters on just how to draw that line. 

Scott Gore: (Screenwriter/Board Member and PSA Member): He submitted the first draft of his screenplay Albert (about Albert Einstein. 151 pages) to Danny Manus at No Bullscript Consulting for Extensive Notes so he can start working on his re-writes.

Pam Hicks (Screenwriter/Member): She started Act 1 of her new screenplay titled Selling Soap.  As a professional soapmaker, owner of Gold Canyon Soap Company, a small, female owned business, she found plenty of conflict in all aspects of the creative soapmaking process so she thought, "Why not write about it!"  She finding that she’s got plenty to write about in Act 2 but starting the screenplay with the Hook and Inciting incident in Act One has proven to be quite difficult.  She’s currently coaching herself through the process by watching Tyler Mowry and Michael Hague on Youtube.  There are some wonderful Youtube videos out there about every step of the screenwriting process.  She’s watched them all and will always remember one video on Midpoint, telling the audience that the midpoint in Titanic is when the ship hits the iceberg.  After that the characters are more active in reaching their goals.  She’s currently selling her soaps at the Gold Canyon Grubfest from 4-8 pm every Saturday and soon they will be presented in a spa in Gold Canyon.  The new script is in her mind, just need to get it out on paper. 

Brian O’Connor (Screenwriter/PSA Member): Orange Purpose won an Award of Prestige - Best Animation at the Vegas Movie Awards and is currently a Finalist for Best Animation at the 4th Dimension Independent Film Festival in Bali and Beyond the Curve Film Festival in Paris.  Orange Purpose and A Very Lemmy Christmas will play at A Night of Misfit Films in Scottsdale over the Thanksgiving weekend.  Finally, The Seasons of Saguaro Sam is part of the FlickFair Film Festival in December.

December 14th
In The Works: Actors Reading Writers

December 21st

Writers Insight Workshop – West Valley

Tony SevereDiary of a Lost Scribe – Here’s to You – the Unsung Heroes
By Carlo Dall’Olmo

Table reads are an important tool to a writer’s growth. There I said it. Happy? No? How come? Not deep enough? Not poetic enough? Well, it’s too bad cause ‘that’s a fact Jack’ (to paraphrase Bill Murray in Stripes). Table reads just are. They give writers an opportunity to hear their words out loud and get immediate feedback. Why then am I not taking advantage of it? PSA does 2 a month and from what I understand, writers love the feedback. Writers who have gone to the tables reads all have the same feedback – it’s very helpful.

Read More
Tony SevereLiving With Rejection
By Bob Saenz

When new screenwriters are in their honeymoon period, that time when all is unicorns and rainbows and they’re sure their first script in its first draft is going to bought by their choice of studio, the specter of rejection is the last thing on their mind. Their script is just TOO good to be anything but snapped up in a bidding war.

Read More
Tony SevereScreenwriting Unchained: Reclaim Your Creative Freedom and Master Story Structure with the Story-Type Method®  , Emmanuel Oberg*
By Beverly Nault

According to Emmanuel Oberg, his Story-Type Method (Method) is more flexible than the three-act Structure. Based on Aristotle’s Poetics, his Method provides a fractal, versatile blueprint to construct screenplays that are either Plot-led, Character-led, Theme-led, or a hybrid combination. He disagrees that certain action beats or turning points need to occur at specific pages or percentages and explains why his Method better serves by addressing each category’s unique purposes. 

Read More
Resources for Screenwriters


Stage32 Education

Roadmap Writers Programs

Final Draft

Script City

Happenings in Tinseltown





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James Lapine Signs With WME


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TV Pilots 2022: The Complete Broadcast Guide



Nancy Meyer Set to Receive USC Comedy’s Oakie Award

‘Squid Games’ Creator Confirms Plans for Season Two

Leonardo DiCaprio to Play Cult Leader Jim Jones in MGM Film

FYC Movie Screenings Are Back in Full Force – But With Some Adjustments

Writers Guild Approves New Feature Film Credit for “Additional Literary Material”



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