Wednesday, April 15, 2015

How to get a pitch meeting

razor7 writes: Can you explain the process of ACQUIRING a pitch meeting.

In most cases, you need an agent or manager before someone (such as producer or studio executive) will hear your pitch, and your rep can set it up. Otherwise, you'll need to have a personal connection to the person you're pitching (but even in that case, you might need a rep). I first pitched a TV idea in a general meeting with a producer because my close friend was the producer's assistant and pre-pitched my idea to her to find out if she'd like it before I met with her. However, the producer wouldn't have met with me if I didn't have some kind of representation.

I got another opportunity to pitch my take on a movie adaptation when a friend of mine (whom I met when he was a manager assistant and I was an agent assistant) reached out to me. So the overall answer to your question goes along with my overall answer for everything: move to LA and start meeting people (probably through a job) so that you can start cultivating relationships and opportunities. Also, you'll need to have writing samples before you pitch anything; people generally won't hear pitches until after they've seen the kind of writing they can expect from you.

Readers, how did you get your first pitch meeting? I'd love to hear stories in the comments.


WhopperKing said...

Got my first meeting through my manager. He sent my script to a production company, they liked it and wanted my take on an adaptation. The adaptation didn't end up going anywhere, but the collaboration was positive.

caraleehubbell said...

I pitched a rom-com at a pitchfest awhile ago (2010, I think?) I developed a pretty good short list of "we're interested" people but nothing really, ultimately panned out. I'm curious to see what other say here.

PTM said...

I think @WhopperKing makes a very good point that even though the project they went into pitch didn't go anywhere, ultimately the collaboration was positive.

I think sometimes we get caught up on that next immediate job, and selling THIS ONE THING, but if you actually get the meeting, you should try to "book the room" not "book the job." Get them to be fans of you - your personality, your writing etc. Show them that you are a good and friendly human being that is easy to work with.

Even if they don't want to buy THAT script, being on their short list of people they may want to work with down the road could turn out to be an even better result.