Screenwriters or scenarists are
scriptwriters who write the screenplays from which films and television programs are made.
Most screenwriters start their careers writing on speculation. That means they write without being hired and paid for it. Selling such a script calls to sell a "spec-script". Only a handful of spec-scripts are produced every year.Fact|date=April 2008
Many of them also work as "
script doctors," attempting to change scripts to suit directors or studios; for instance, studio management may have a complaint that the motivations of the characters are unclear or that the dialogue is weak.
Script-doctoring can be quite lucrative, especially for the better known writers.
David Mametand John Sayles, for instance, fund the movies they direct themselves, usually from their own screenplays, by writing and doctoring scripts for others. In fact, some writers make very profitable careers out of the script doctoring food chain, being the ninth or tenth writer to work on a piece; in many cases, working on projects that never see exposure to an audience of any size.
A few screenwriters have also found work by selling a treatment (approximately 10-30 pages) or synopsis (usually 1-2 pages), of their screenplay even if it isn't completed yet. This is however extremely rare.
One of the most important elements in bringing an idea to fruition for a studio to produce is attaching the right screenwriter to the project. Often projects are sold to studios who then assign their own preferred screenwriters to complete the script or write the final draft.
Most professional screenwriters are unionized and are represented by organizations such as the
Writers Guild of America, East. The WGA is final arbiter on awarding writing credit for projects under its join.
WGA screenwriting credit system
List of screenwriting software
* http://www.screenwritercenter.com/ Screenwriter Resource
* [http://www.inktalent.com/ Inktalent.com] Screenwriter Resource.
* [http://www.sellmymoviescript.com/ SellMyMovieScript.com] Screenwriter Resource.
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
screenwriter — ► NOUN ▪ a person who writes a screenplay. DERIVATIVES screenwriting noun … English terms dictionary
screenwriter — [skrēn′rīt΄er] n. the writer of a script for a film screenwriting n … English World dictionary
screenwriter — UK [ˈskriːnˌraɪtə(r)] / US [ˈskrɪnˌraɪtər] noun [countable] Word forms screenwriter : singular screenwriter plural screenwriters cinema someone whose job is to write stories for films … English dictionary
screenwriter — [[t]skri͟ːnraɪtə(r)[/t]] screenwriters N COUNT A screenwriter is a person who writes screenplays … English dictionary
screenwriter — noun Date: 1921 a writer of screenplays … New Collegiate Dictionary
screenwriter — /skreen ruy teuhr/, n. a person who writes screenplays, esp. as an occupation or profession. [1920 25; SCREEN + WRITER] * * * … Universalium
screenwriter — noun One who writes for the screen, who writes drama for film or television; especially a professional who knows the conventions appropriate to such work … Wiktionary
screenwriter — Synonyms and related words: choreographer, comedian, dramatist, dramatizer, dramaturge, farcer, farceur, farceuse, farcist, gagman, joke writer, jokesmith, librettist, melodramatist, mimographer, monodramatist, play doctor, play fixer, playwright … Moby Thesaurus
screenwriter — screen|writ|er [ˈskri:nˌraıtə US ər] n someone who writes plays for film or television →↑playwright … Dictionary of contemporary English
screenwriter — screen|writ|er [ skrin,raıtər ] noun count someone whose job is to write stories for movies … Usage of the words and phrases in modern English