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Writing the Spec Script that Launches Your Career
Writing the Spec Script that Launches Your Career
Published: 2014/08/05
Channel: ScriptMag
Why You Should Always Be Writing a Spec Script
Why You Should Always Be Writing a Spec Script
Published: 2014/01/17
Channel: STCBlake
The Biggest Obstacle Writers Face Submitting A Spec TV Script by John Truby
The Biggest Obstacle Writers Face Submitting A Spec TV Script by John Truby
Published: 2013/10/02
Channel: Film Courage
How I Wrote My First Script In 3 Weeks And Sold It To A Hollywood Studio by Markus Redmond
How I Wrote My First Script In 3 Weeks And Sold It To A Hollywood Studio by Markus Redmond
Published: 2015/11/07
Channel: Film Courage
3 TIPS FOR A GREAT TV SPEC SCRIPT
3 TIPS FOR A GREAT TV SPEC SCRIPT
Published: 2016/03/13
Channel: TASH BecomeATVWriter
100,000 Movie Scripts Were Written Last Year And 62 Sold by Robert Lawton (CrowdSource Studios CEO)
100,000 Movie Scripts Were Written Last Year And 62 Sold by Robert Lawton (CrowdSource Studios CEO)
Published: 2015/08/27
Channel: Film Courage
What is SPEC SCRIPT? What does SPEC SCRIPT mean? SPEC SCRIPT meaning, definition & explanation
What is SPEC SCRIPT? What does SPEC SCRIPT mean? SPEC SCRIPT meaning, definition & explanation
Published: 2017/08/21
Channel: The Audiopedia
Exclusive - The Daily Show vs. Justin Trudeau: Read My Spec Script
Exclusive - The Daily Show vs. Justin Trudeau: Read My Spec Script
Published: 2016/05/31
Channel: The Daily Show with Trevor Noah
How To Write 3 Spec Screenplays In One Year by William C. Martell
How To Write 3 Spec Screenplays In One Year by William C. Martell
Published: 2014/10/18
Channel: Film Courage
Advanced Screenplay Formatting Tips : FRIDAY 101
Advanced Screenplay Formatting Tips : FRIDAY 101
Published: 2013/04/05
Channel: Indy Mogul
Celtx ScriptWriting Tutorial - #1 How to Create 5 Parts of Spec Script by VscorpianC
Celtx ScriptWriting Tutorial - #1 How to Create 5 Parts of Spec Script by VscorpianC
Published: 2015/11/09
Channel: VscorpianC
ALL ABOUT SPEC SCRIPTS!!!!!!!!
ALL ABOUT SPEC SCRIPTS!!!!!!!!
Published: 2017/07/17
Channel: emmalederman
How to write a Spec Script for TV #1
How to write a Spec Script for TV #1
Published: 2017/08/30
Channel: WritingCity
The Spec Script - 80 To 90% Of My Work Has Been Original Screenplays by Joe Eszterhas
The Spec Script - 80 To 90% Of My Work Has Been Original Screenplays by Joe Eszterhas
Published: 2014/09/24
Channel: Film Courage
Chuck Lorre on writing a spec script for "The Golden Girls" - EMMYTVLEGENDS.ORG
Chuck Lorre on writing a spec script for "The Golden Girls" - EMMYTVLEGENDS.ORG
Published: 2012/10/05
Channel: FoundationINTERVIEWS
What is a Spec Screenplay?
What is a Spec Screenplay?
Published: 2013/08/10
Channel: Script Mailer
Film Shooting script vs. Spec Script  - screenplay format
Film Shooting script vs. Spec Script - screenplay format
Published: 2017/07/19
Channel: Word Dancer - How to write a screenplay
How to Sell a Screenplay
How to Sell a Screenplay
Published: 2009/12/02
Channel: Howcast
QA 3: Why Was Your Spec Script So Successful?
QA 3: Why Was Your Spec Script So Successful?
Published: 2008/11/06
Channel: duelingtampons
How To Write A Winning Spec Script
How To Write A Winning Spec Script
Published: 2014/08/31
Channel: skinnypete1234
Howard Stern on My Spec Script
Howard Stern on My Spec Script
Published: 2016/05/30
Channel: ElRexican
What Is A Spec Script?
What Is A Spec Script?
Published: 2017/08/14
Channel: Wen Wen
"Writing the On-Air One-Hour Drama Spec:  The Script" with Charlie Craig
"Writing the On-Air One-Hour Drama Spec: The Script" with Charlie Craig
Published: 2013/08/12
Channel: UCLA Extension Writers' Program
The Greenhouse | How To Write a Spec Script
The Greenhouse | How To Write a Spec Script
Published: 2017/05/22
Channel: The Greenhouse Arts and Media
Breaking Into Hollywood:  Michael Shipley - Writing Spec Scripts
Breaking Into Hollywood: Michael Shipley - Writing Spec Scripts
Published: 2014/07/17
Channel: Breaking Into Hollywood
WHAT SHOW SHOULD I WRITE FOR MY SITCOM SPEC SCRIPT?
WHAT SHOW SHOULD I WRITE FOR MY SITCOM SPEC SCRIPT?
Published: 2011/07/31
Channel: whereyou123
"Using a spec pilot to break into TV writing" by The Bitter Script Reader
"Using a spec pilot to break into TV writing" by The Bitter Script Reader
Published: 2014/02/05
Channel: BitterScriptReader
How to submit a spec TV script.
How to submit a spec TV script.
Published: 2013/07/31
Channel: Gordon Firemark
The Spec Script
The Spec Script
Published: 2012/02/22
Channel: Peanut Attorney
Writing a Spec Script | Daily Vlog S2 Ep. 32
Writing a Spec Script | Daily Vlog S2 Ep. 32
Published: 2017/08/19
Channel: Julian Stuckey
What Is A Spec Script?
What Is A Spec Script?
Published: 2017/06/20
Channel: SS Business
TV SITCOM WRITING, WRITE A SPEC SCRIPT OR A PILOT?
TV SITCOM WRITING, WRITE A SPEC SCRIPT OR A PILOT?
Published: 2011/07/28
Channel: whats1my200
Top 10 Max Landis Spec Scripts Of All Time
Top 10 Max Landis Spec Scripts Of All Time
Published: 2015/11/27
Channel: Screen Dojo
RICK AND MORTY "CRIME AND PUNISHRICK" TV SPEC SCRIPT
RICK AND MORTY "CRIME AND PUNISHRICK" TV SPEC SCRIPT
Published: 2014/11/01
Channel: Wildsound Fest
McDonalds Radio Ad Spec Script
McDonalds Radio Ad Spec Script
Published: 2017/07/20
Channel: Official College Musical
NEW GIRL "SUMMER
NEW GIRL "SUMMER'S OVER" TV SPEC SCRIPT - Watch Full Reading
Published: 2014/02/06
Channel: Wildsound Fest
What does spec script mean?
What does spec script mean?
Published: 2015/09/26
Channel: What Does That Mean?
MAD MEN "A HOLD ON ME" TV SPEC SCRIPT - Season 4 Episode 6.5
MAD MEN "A HOLD ON ME" TV SPEC SCRIPT - Season 4 Episode 6.5
Published: 2013/07/11
Channel: Wildsound Fest
160 Out Of 20,000 Spec Screenplays Sell Each Year by Peter Russell
160 Out Of 20,000 Spec Screenplays Sell Each Year by Peter Russell
Published: 2014/12/11
Channel: Film Courage
How to Become an Indie Filmmaker : How to Write a TV Spec Script
How to Become an Indie Filmmaker : How to Write a TV Spec Script
Published: 2008/11/01
Channel: expertvillage
MAD MEN A HOLD ON ME TV SPEC SCRIPT - Season 4 Episode 6.5
MAD MEN A HOLD ON ME TV SPEC SCRIPT - Season 4 Episode 6.5
Published: 2017/02/21
Channel: Salina Amal
THE MARY TYLER MOORE SHOW "BRANCHING OUT" TV SPEC SCRIPT
THE MARY TYLER MOORE SHOW "BRANCHING OUT" TV SPEC SCRIPT
Published: 2013/10/11
Channel: Wildsound Fest
HANNIBAL TV SPEC SCRIPT "HONESUKI" - April 2014 Winning Screenplay
HANNIBAL TV SPEC SCRIPT "HONESUKI" - April 2014 Winning Screenplay
Published: 2014/04/20
Channel: Wildsound Fest
eat me up buttercup a hannah montana spec script by b
eat me up buttercup a hannah montana spec script by b
Published: 2017/01/04
Channel: Lola Jenkins
Penn alum Hollywood writer
Penn alum Hollywood writer's career: Spec scripts
Published: 2011/07/31
Channel: duelingtampons
What Is A Spec Script?
What Is A Spec Script?
Published: 2017/06/16
Channel: IS atm
2 BROKE GIRLS "AND THE SICK HORSE" TV SPEC SCRIPT
2 BROKE GIRLS "AND THE SICK HORSE" TV SPEC SCRIPT
Published: 2013/10/11
Channel: Wildsound Fest
Gilmore Girls Spec Script  - The Waiting Game Final
Gilmore Girls Spec Script - The Waiting Game Final
Published: 2017/05/08
Channel: Melissa Eck
SYS Podcast Episode 103: Screenwriter Dan Benamor Talks About His Recent Spec Script Sale
SYS Podcast Episode 103: Screenwriter Dan Benamor Talks About His Recent Spec Script Sale
Published: 2015/12/13
Channel: SellingYourScreenplay
TV SPEC Script Reading of ARROW "Second Chances", by Molly Driscoll
TV SPEC Script Reading of ARROW "Second Chances", by Molly Driscoll
Published: 2015/03/22
Channel: Wildsound Fest
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

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A spec script, also known as a speculative screenplay, is a non-commissioned unsolicited screenplay. It is usually written by a screenwriter who hopes to have the script optioned and eventually purchased by a producer, production company, or studio.

Spec scripts which have gone on to win Academy Awards include Thelma & Louise (sold by Callie Khouri to MGM for US$500,000 in 1990), Good Will Hunting (sold by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck to Miramax Films for US$675,000 in 1994) and American Beauty (sold by Alan Ball to DreamWorks SKG for US$250,000 in 1998).[1]

History[edit]

In 1933, Preston Sturges is believed to have sold the first spec script in Hollywood history. Fox bought The Power and the Glory for US$17,500 plus back-end revenue. The movie did poorly at the box office.[1] However, in 2014 the film was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry.

Spec scripts have not always held as much cachet in the business as they do now. Ernest Lehman describes how his original script for North by Northwest was unusual at that point in his career:

Originals were not smiled upon in those days, believe it or not. There was very little interest in originals in those days. [...] Studios, distributors wanted the assurance of someone else having thought a property worth publishing[...] In those days, if you went to a party in the Hollywood community and somebody would ask, "What are you working on, Ernie?" and you replied, "I'm doing an original now," the response would be "Oh." [...] Like they were a little embarrassed [...] If you were working on something that you were going to create all by yourself, they'd secretly think, "He's in bad shape. Working on an original." That definitely was the climate at one time in this town.[2]

In the late 1960s, William Goldman sold his spec script Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid to Warner Bros. for US$400,000 in a studio bidding war. The script went on to win the Academy Award for Best Screenplay. This event precipitated a rise in screenwriters writing on spec.[1]

Attracting producers[edit]

If the writer of a spec script has an agent, the agent will identify a number of prospective buyers who may range from small independent producers to executives working in the major studios, and attempt to build up 'heat' under the script. The script may be sent out simultaneously to all the prospective buyers in the hope of attracting a bidding war.

If the script sells, the writer may receive a payment of anything from a few tens of thousands of dollars to several million. If not, the script is sometimes dead in the water because it is now in the databases of the studios and development executives, and has been marked as having been 'passed' on.

If a spec script is not picked up, but the script is considered good, the screenwriter may be offered a writing assignment. Spec scripts are often written by unknown screenwriters looking to prove their storytelling ability and make a name for themselves in the film industry.


See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Heidenry, Margaret (March 2013). "When The Spec Script Was King". Vanity Fair. 
  2. ^ Brady, John (1981). The Craft of the Screenwriter. p. 204. 

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