Everything I hate about Hollywood and the comic book industry in one convenient email (sent to me earlier today). Here's a link to the website.

Having Trouble Selling Your Script?

Learn How to Write and Produce a Comic Book That Will Capture Hollywood’s Attention!

Comic books are red hot in Hollywood now. Numerous blockbuster movies including Sin City, 300, Road to Perdition, Wanted, and Hellboy started out as indie comic books.

With its combination of words and visuals in one attractive package, a comic book can be a great sales tool when pitching your project to movie studios and producers because it’s easier for these busy professionals to see beforehand what the movie will look like.

Today, it is much easier to sell a graphic novel than a spec script. With a comic book in hand, you separate yourself from the huge crowd of new screenwriters that only have a spec script to peddle. Studios are looking for pre-branded properties with an existing fan base. You need to build an audience and generate buzz prior to submitting your project to producers or film financiers. And comic books are a great, low-cost starting point to develop your story world.

Writer Martin Shapiro (Chopper, Lair of the Fox) will take you inside the comic book industry and teach you everything you need to know to get started, including how to:

Hire a good artist Lay out the panels for maximum impact Construct the visual elements like a film director Create vibrant character designs Color the pages like a cinematographer Do speech balloons Self-publish the book on a tight budget Distribute your book to bookstores Produce an iPhone and iPad version of the book Market your product via the web and conventions Submit your book to agents and movie producers Using a creator-owned comic book as a case study, the instructor will demonstrate the tools and skills necessary to create strong, cinematic artwork that brings your script to life. We’ll also discuss the potential pitfalls faced by beginners that can severely hamper a project. Most of this insider information is NOT available in books or online.

Date: Saturday, October 2, 2010 Time: 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm Location: The Writers Store in Burbank Instructor: Martin Shapiro Prerequisites: None

Seating is limited. Enroll today for only $79!

Teacher Bio: Martin Shapiro is an award-winning WGA screenwriter and producer. He created the horror comic book series Chopper and co-founded Night Owl Comics. His action-thriller screenplay Lair of the Fox was sold to Ilya Salkind (Producer of Superman). Mr. Shapiro has written and developed projects for MGM, HBO and numerous independent production companies. He received his Master’s Degree in Screenwriting from UCLA.

Guest speakers will include the following industry pros:

Andrew Cosby is the creator of the TV series Eureka on the Sci-Fi Channel, currently in its fourth season. Andrew is also the co-founder of BOOM! Studios, a comic book publisher that currently has 7 movies in development at major studios. BOOM! has signed a deal with Disney/Pixar to produce comic books based on their properties.

David Wohl is Editor-In-Chief of Radical Publishing (publisher of Caliber, Hercules, and Freedom Formula). Previously, he was the Editor-In-Chief and President of Top Cow Productions. With over twenty years of experience in the industry, he was responsible for bringing numerous Top Cow titles to the shelves, co-creating and writing The Darkness and Witchblade, even serving as the producer of the Witchblade TV series. Radical Publishing currently has production deals with Universal Studios, New Regency, director Bryan Singer, Johnny Depp, Sam Worthington, and Wesley Snipes.

No offense to David Wohl, Andrew Cosby, or Martin Shapiro (well, maybe a little). I'm sure the workshop will be very informative. Instead, I hate hate hate the idea that Hollywood screenwriters will jump onto the comic book bandwagon in order to produce a comic in order to convince a Hollywood producer to buy their story. ("Having trouble selling your script? Learn how to write and produce a comic book that will capture Hollywood's attention!") Screw you. Seriously. You want a "pre-existing fanbase?" How about actually writing comics for the love of the medium itself?

I adore comics. If you're not serious about being a comic book writer for its own merit and reward, stick to your crappy screenplay and leave our comics alone.

To clarify, it's not that I have a problem with Hollywood screenwriters writing comics. I have a problem with them writing a comic book with the sole purpose of developing an IP ("intellectual property") for a film. Hell. If you refer to your comic book as an "IP," also, screw you.

One might argue that there's a double standard here. After all, comics have benefited (in some regards) from Hollywood's keen interest and large bank account. Why not use comics to kick start film properties? For years, publishers have released comic books based on films. Yes, but I've seen a lot of bad indie comics flood our industry because a writer had this idea he wanted to turn into a movie. It's insulting to people who take their craft seriously.

If you feel the need to defend this Hollywood corruption, feel free to post a comment. I'm in the mood for a good discussion.