How much should a writer expect to make for a low budget ($100K) feature?
I know this is a very vague question but I'm just looking for a ballpark answer.
If I were to sell a screenplay to a producer making a $100K feature, what would be a reasonable payment to expect?
Results 1 to 10 of 13
06-18-2012 01:06 PM
06-18-2012 06:37 PM
- Join Date
- Apr 2005
- Seelys Bay, Ontario
At that budget level any compensation is not going to be very much. Has the producer done anything before at this level? Will the end result be bigger than the sum of its parts, and possibly go somewhere? At that level I think you'd need to consider whether the project will do anything to advance your career. Will it open doors to bigger things.
I'd want to see a budget breakdown of where the money is being spent. At this level you are essentially investing your script because you won't be getting 'fair' compensation unless you knocked it out over a weekend.My films are at www.vimeo.com/channels/beeflix
06-19-2012 06:25 AM
You get a screen credit. If you come to the set, pizza at least. If you're only writing, it might take you quite a while just to get that.
Last edited by craigbowman; 06-19-2012 at 06:35 AM.
- Join Date
- Feb 2009
06-19-2012 03:46 PM
If I had $100,000 to make a movie off of your script, I'd pay you $5,000 to option the script plus points on the back end, $10,000 to buy you clean out of it, altogether. $100,000 is enough to pay a screenwriter something for his trouble. Writers have to eat. He has no movie without your script. If he wanted to make a movie from his own script, he'd have done that.
What's more: if you write a movie for yourself and get someone to finance the production - you should pay yourself something for your writing. We have too many starving artists in this industry and it's because we think from a nihilist belief that "everyone's hurting". From dealing with businesspeople in my production business, I have learned that the difference between people who make a lot of money and people who make no money (like me before I came to grips with this reality) is that people who make no money assume that everyone is as broke as they are and that those people expect everyone else to be broke, also. People have money because they spend money - smart people save some money but smarter people invest it. People do lose respect for you if you get greedy, but they also lose respect for you if you don't respect your work enough to ask to be compensated.
06-20-2012 05:02 PM
- Join Date
- Oct 2011
I am wanting to get into the filmmaking business and I would personally much rather direct my own script for free, and written to the exact specifications, to work with what I have, then to pay someone for their script. You know what you might consider doing is learning directing and directing your own script, if no one wants to buy? It would be a quite a bit of work in a different direction, but it might be worth it.
06-25-2012 02:01 PM
- Join Date
- May 2008
A guideline is 2.5% of production budget. You would of course want bonuses if the thing makes money. "Back end" however, is usually what you bend over and reveal. With a small production like this, try to push for being attached as a producer and also insist on a percentage of the gross, the "first money" made back in any distribution deal. Research these concepts.
06-26-2012 07:09 AM
- Join Date
- Aug 2008
- Lvl 6 (catacombs)
<$5000. But why sell your screenplay to a $100k production. If it is good enough for that, it is probably good enough for a $1M+ low budget, that uses the "$1M blueprint method" (e.g. go look at Adamo Cultraro's films on IMDB, he uses this method, as do most low budget films in this budget range) where 5-7% is budgeted for buying the screenplay and script doctoring it, so maybe 5% to you as the writer of the screenplay. The $1M blueprint method is for productions $500,000 to $5M, so that means $25,000 to $250,000 to you as writer of the screenplay. I would think most $100,000 productions are going to be done by a producer/director who also writes the screenplay, but I suppose some such productions might buy a screenplay.
Last edited by Randall_Oelerich; 06-26-2012 at 07:14 AM.
06-26-2012 12:11 PM
I'm not sure of the exact budget yet but I don't expect it to be too high. I just wanted some idea of what I might get.
Man, some of you guys act like it's easy to find big budget productions to produce a screenplay just because a little guy will.
Please give me the contacts one might need to make this happen.
And I don't think it's all that surprising to find lower budget features actually shelling out for a decent screenplay.
As long as they aren't exceeding budget requirements, why not? It's a very important piece of the puzzle. Don't downplay it.