Hi, I'm the Bitter Script Reader. Of course, that's not my real name. I used to be just "The Script Reader" until I had to deal with the shit you people shovel every day. Look, I get it. We're all just trying to make a living here and obviously not every screenplay is going to be genius. I get that most of you are decent guys - well, those of you not at a particular agency known by three letters that don't include either a A or an C. But here's the thing - is it too much to ask that you use some fucking common sense before sending out the latest turd from your hip pocket client?
I'll grant that there's a fair amount of what you send out that isn't going to appeal to everybody. Different buyers, different needs... I get that. I also get that taste is subjective. One person's favorite script might be another person's bore.
But here's the thing - I estimate that at least 20% of what you guys shovel is absolute drivel which you KNOW no one is going to be interested in. Half the time I think you guys lie just to get a story editor to take your submission, and the other half I think you just don't care. Within this 20% are screenplays so poorly constructed that they wouldn't make it out of the first round of a Screenwriting 101 class. Plots that go NOWHERE for 45 pages and then get resolved in trite fashions.
You know what several of these submissions I've read from you clowns this year has included?
1) A spoof movie of several films already further out of date than the most recent spoof movies to hit theatres. There wasn't a single original joke in there - aside from the fact you submitted it to a boss who doesn't make comedies!
2) A screenplay offensive on multiple levels, where the plot was mainly an exercise in having racist characters make racist remarks to the only black person they ever met. This was a comedy - but it's hard to figure out who the real butt of the joke was supposed to be: the ignorant bigots, their African-American victim, or the poor reader stuck spending 3 hours with this excrement.
3) A boring relationship story with no arc except that the main characters break up and get back together in alternating scenes.
4) A Misery rip-off that was devoted to inflicting as much psychological and sexual damage as possible on its female victim. Sure, the genre has worked before, but this was just vile. In Misery, there was an actual character arc and a point for all the torture that James Caan's character endured. Here, the script went with an edgy "downer" ending where the victim truly suffers a fate worse than death, and included acts and language that would repulse all but the most nihilistic of viewers.
5) Another nihilistic thriller about a morally conflicted hitman who takes a wrong turn after scamming his boss. I really shouldn't say too much about this one except to describe it as "Pulp Fiction meets Texas Chainsaw Massacre." I know - it sounds cool when you say it like that. Trust me, it's not.
There are a few of you chuckleheads who are so devoid of any taste when it comes to scripts that I now cringe when I see you submitted it. I'm not sure which is worse, those of you who send boring scripts with mundane premises, or those of you who seem be representing cannibalistic human-trafficking assassins who revel in writing their own autobiographies.
You do realize that at some point, someone is going to read this shit, right? Just getting some poor sap to say, "Send me the script" isn't a victory in and of itself. If you throw everything at the wall and hope something sticks all that'll do is convince people on my end that you have no idea what makes a good script different from a bad one. So wake up and do your overpaid jobs rather than screaming at your assistant for daring to nod his head in agreement when someone suggests that the agency could treat its underlings better.
The Bitter Script Reader
dictated but not read
1 month ago