The website of the famed Hollywood screenplay “Blacklist” will now allow emerging screenwriters to upload their scripts. According to The Wrap, writers can do so for a fee of $25 and for $50 they can have their script evaluated by a professional script reader.
The “Best Unproduced Screenplays List, ” known as the Blacklist, was created by film executive Franklin Leonard in 2004. To compile the list, Leonard solicits the advice of studio executives, but he is now realizing that some of the best scripts out there might not make it onto the executives' desks.
"The old days of hoping your aunt's husband's sister-in-law who works at CAA can help you out by slipping your script to an executive are gone," Leonard told the site.
"We recognize that there is a gross inefficiency in the marketplace for screenplays, and people still want to find good scripts.”
So should up-and-coming writers hold out hope that their work will be noticed once it’s featured on the site?
Based on the reputation of the Blacklist – and based on a handful of high-profile success stories -- there’s a strong possibility that film executives seeking scripts will make use of the site. If Leonard is able to generate the same level of buzz for writer-uploaded scripts as he has for the studio-approved unproduced list, there’s a good chance a few unknown writers might gain some recognition that they might not have otherwise
Some notable films that once appeared on the Blacklist include “The Queen” and “Little Miss Sunshine,” which both landed on the list in 2005, and “Juno,” which was listed in 2007. In 2009, “The Social Network” appeared on the list and went on to become one of the most acclaimed films of 2010. The film, which chronicles the origins of the Facebook phenomenon, earned eight Oscar nominations, including Best Picture.
In 2010, Chis Terrio’s screenplay “Argo” found its way to the list. Set during the 1979 hostage crisis in Tehran, the amazing true story was eventually optioned by Warner Brothers (NYSE: TWX) and caught the eye of Ben Affleck, who signed on to direct and star in the film.
That same year, “Looper" also made the list. The Rian Johnson penned sci-fi drama was later snapped up by Sony pictures (NYSE: SNE) and received wide critical praise.
Still, we know a great script does not necessarily guarantee a great movie. While some Blacklisted screeenplays were made into movies that went on to earn critical acclaim and box office success, a few cinematic bombs have been unearthed from the Blacklist.
In 2009, “Neighborhood Watch,” which would become 2012’s “The Watch,” proved to be a major disappointment. The 2010 list included "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter" and the tepid Taylor Lautner vehicle “Abduction.” Both films earned scathing reviews and failed to make a dent at the box office. That same year, “One Day,” which would become a quickly forgotten romance staring Anne Hathaway, was also recognized. The unsuccessful Jonah Hill comedy “The Sitter,” which also appeared on the list that year, suffered the same fate.
Those would like to share their script can do so by visiting the Blacklist’s official site and creating an account.