Business Overview

Screenwriters write scripts and stage directions for the film industry. Screenwriters may either write their own original stories, or they may adapt their scripts based on previously written stories (e.g., from books, short films, etc.)

Who is this business right for?

This business is excellent for someone who loves film and understands how a movie comes together on the big screen. They should love to put their own creative twist on stories, whether they're new and bold or a tale as old as time. Writers need to understand what audiences are looking for, and how to merge their creative vision with public demand.

What happens during a typical day at a screenwriting business?

Screenwriters may have the following to-do list on any given day.

  • Developing outlines for scripts
  • Researching/developing characters
  • Finding/managing an agent
  • Attending meetings with producers

What is the target market?

The target market is typically producers, or those who finance films. You're looking for someone who will read your script and then pay you for the rights. Some screenwriters may choose to get their scripts turned into films on an independent basis, though this is much more expensive and difficult to do successfully. In this case, screenwriters may be asked to star in, direct, or finance the film on their own or with the help of a small team with a limited budget.

How does a screenwriting business make money?

Screenwriters make money by selling their scripts to producers, or by producing their own films for a cut of the eventual profits.

What is the growth potential for a screenwriting business?

There will always be demand for talented screenwriters who can create stories that spark audience’s emotions and imaginations. The growth potential for someone who can consistently attract audiences is practically unlimited.