How to pitch a screenplay to literary agents

Written by jonathan mclelland Google
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So you’ve written a great screenplay, and you’re ready to get a literary agent. Sending out a query letter is the first step in acquiring a literary agent, however, the real test comes when you have to pitch your screenplay to a literary agent. Yet, with several tips, you will be able to blow the agent away by your professionalism and your creativity.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Screenplay
  • Detailed Story Outline
  • Viewer Demographics

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  1. 1

    Gather your screenplay and begin to read through it again. However, this time, make a list of all important story plots and segments that are found within the entire script. Take these main story points and outline them within a spreadsheet, starting from the beginning to the end.

  2. 2

    Count all of the different locations and settings that your script covers. This will show the literary agent that you are not only a writer, but also someone who is interested in the actual production of the script.

  3. 3

    Write down the various characters and their relationships with one another. It is important that you are able to discuss the main character obstacles and struggles within the story at a moments notice. Streamline the characters and their struggles into a one to two minute speech. Be able to inform the literary agent of all main points within the story without having to spend in upwards of ten minutes to do so. If they are interested in your story, they will ask more detailed questions.

  4. 4

    Research the viewership that your screenplay would reach out to. For example, is it a romantic comedy? Horror? Drama? Children’s film? Finding this out will allow you the opportunity to show the literary agent the possible financial benefit your screenplay will have for the agency as well as the production company they pitch your screenplay to. Compare your screenplay to at least three different films that have done well at the box-office, but also explain how your screenplay is different and unique compared to these movies.

  5. 5

    Bring at least three copies of your screenplay and various information that you have compiled throughout your research and preparation. Always speak in an upbeat tone and make sure to not rush your pitch. A great attitude and a willingness to listen to the literary agent will help your chances in getting signed with the literary agent.

Tips and warnings

  • Always do as much research and review of your screenplay before pitching it to a literary agent as possible.
  • By not being prepared, you will most likely not have a successful pitch meeting with an agency.

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