An excerpt from Reals’ script review for Vox Lux which will be available 03/12/19:
The film didn’t do super well as you can see here: BOX OFFICE NUMBERS and I think that was due to the fact that they didn’t seem to know how to market this piece. For reference, you can view the trailer:
From that quick trailer you can’t really tell what Vox Lux is. Is it an arthouse/indie flick? A satire? A dark comedy? A character study? The answer to all of these, in many ways, is yes… and no, and so I can’t fully blame the marketing team for not having a good sense of how to best focus their trailers/ads.
That said, there is something we can learn here – pick a lane and stick to it! This doesn’t just go for cutting the trailer to your next blockbuster, but for pitching your script. The more detail you give is great, but you also run the risk of confusing an exec or, worse, putting them to sleep!
For instance, if you have a satirical horror/sex comedy that has real-world connections and is a snapshot of our current culture, I would recommend taking a long, hard look at your script and deciding which genre it falls into most and/or what you can most quickly and easily pitch it as.
That is not to trash your Ferris Bueller’s Day Off zombie, teen, roadtrip masterpiece, but it is to say that your pitch primarily has one goal: get someone to read your script! In the same way a trailer has one primary goal: get butts into seats. Obviously, you want your audience to be excited about the read, but what is most important is that they actually READ YOUR SCRIPT!
So, you know horror movies do well and you can play up the potential for some young (cheap!) stars to be cast in your high-concept, timely horror piece – that is how you should pitch it. Let the reader discover the many hidden layers themselves when they read it. Otherwise, you could have the most socially biting script ever, but if you can’t pitch it and get people excited about the story, it will never see the light of day.
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