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Looking to adapt one of Ray's stories...
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For a long time, I've had a strong hankering to create a screenplay from one of Bradbury's works. It's a story that touched me on many levels, and I almost can't resist. However, I'm fully aware of copyright risks, in addition to Ray's own feelings on the matter. But I have absolutely NO intention of offering the completed script to any studio without Ray's consent; besides, I don't even have an agent yet, so the idea alone of me being able to pull this off is laughable. For all intents and purposes, it would remain a piece of "fan fiction", unpublished and unused.

I'd like to be given some advice on this just to clear my conscience, as I deeply respect Ray. Would it be all right to proceed with the screenplay, as long as I don't seek to publish it or submit it to a studio?
 
Posts: 6 | Registered: 31 March 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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If it's staying private to you - i.e. you do not PUBLISH it - then you can do what you like. If you show it to anyone else, you are probably still OK as long as you are not trying to make money from it or deprive Ray of income (or potential income). If you make it publicly available, you'd be in trouble!

I do some scriptwriting myself (I have a masters degree in screenwriting and teach it as well). Attempting an adaptation of an existing work can be a good exercise, but why not adapt something where you COULD use the script if it turns out to be good? Find something that's in the public domain - Poe, du Maupassant, Dickens - Project Gutenberg is a good place to look. (Google it!)

It's really difficult to get anyone in the professional world to look at a script by a new writer**. Even harder if the script is based on a property you do not hold the rights to. If you have professional ambitions, do yourself a favour and write something original.


** For further explication of this fact, try the following link (CAUTION: strong language, not suitable for those of a nervous disposition!)

http://blogs.villagevoice.com/.../harlan_ellisons.php


- Phil

Deputy Moderator | Visit my Bradbury website: www.bradburymedia.co.uk | Visit the Center for RB Studies: www.tinyurl.com/RBCenter
 
Posts: 5028 | Location: UK | Registered: 07 April 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Phil,

Thanks very much for the advice, and most important of all, thanks for not getting acidic when you offered it. On the few occasions that I've brought this subject up on other forums, those who replied felt obliged to talk down to me as if I were a stupid child.

For the record, I HAVE worked on original pieces in my own time, and wouldn't hesitate to offer those to a publishing company and/or studio rather than something based off someone else's efforts.

Oh, and Harlan Ellison rocks, BTW.
 
Posts: 6 | Registered: 31 March 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Basset Hound:
Hi Phil,

Thanks very much for the advice, and most important of all, thanks for not getting acidic when you offered it. On the few occasions that I've brought this subject up on other forums, those who replied felt obliged to talk down to me as if I were a stupid child.

For the record, I HAVE worked on original pieces in my own time, and wouldn't hesitate to offer those to a publishing company and/or studio rather than something based off someone else's efforts.

Oh, and Harlan Ellison rocks, BTW.

Ray has been known to re-write the endings to movies, just for the fun of it. Over the decades he has even been called in to be what is now called a "script doctor." The best pubic example would be "King of Kings." They did not use his suggested ending, due to it being too expensive, but they did use his narration, spoken a friend of his, Orson Wells. Big Grin


John King Tarpinian
You know what you are, Mr. Bradbury? ... You are a poet! -- Aldous Huxley
 
Posts: 2745 | Location: Glendale, California | Registered: 11 June 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Basset Hound:
...Oh, and Harlan Ellison rocks, BTW.


Agreed!


- Phil

Deputy Moderator | Visit my Bradbury website: www.bradburymedia.co.uk | Visit the Center for RB Studies: www.tinyurl.com/RBCenter
 
Posts: 5028 | Location: UK | Registered: 07 April 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by jkt:
...They did not use his suggested ending, due to it being too expensive...


There aren't too many possible ways of ending the story of the life of Christ!


- Phil

Deputy Moderator | Visit my Bradbury website: www.bradburymedia.co.uk | Visit the Center for RB Studies: www.tinyurl.com/RBCenter
 
Posts: 5028 | Location: UK | Registered: 07 April 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by philnic:
quote:
Originally posted by jkt:
...They did not use his suggested ending, due to it being too expensive...


There aren't too many possible ways of ending the story of the life of Christ!

Ray wanted an overhead shot with the disciples each walking away...following the four points of the compass while JC walked on the sea then fading away. Renting the crane and the special effect was too expensive. The studio was so cheap they would not pay Ray or Orson to use their names in the credits or promote their efforts.


John King Tarpinian
You know what you are, Mr. Bradbury? ... You are a poet! -- Aldous Huxley
 
Posts: 2745 | Location: Glendale, California | Registered: 11 June 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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