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Warning to emerging screenwriters: staying on the Hollywood ladder has never been more treacherous. Writers must possess thick skin, but screenwriters also need bulletproof armor. For them, “Shaft” is more than just a film title.


Famed director Robert Altman once said, “I don’t think screenplay writing is the same as writing—I mean, I think it’s blueprinting.” 


Thirteen top screenwriters disagree.


For more than a century, screenwriters have snagged the short end of the stick, and are often treated more like hired help than artists. Screenwriter Jose Prendes knows. With laser focus, he points a spotlight on these tireless keyboard mashers that spin the tales we remember and weave the catchy dialog that rings in our ears. Ranging from micro-budget cinema to Hollywood blockbusters, these illustrious screenwriters finally open up about their down and dirty behind-the-scenes secrets. 

If you are interested in the nitty gritty of filmmaking and film writing, relive their heartbreaking, jaw-dropping, and sometimes wildly hilarious battles with producers and their zany roller coaster tales of studio interference. 


Screenwriters interviewed include: Shane Bitterling (Reel Evil, 2012), Carl Gottlieb (JAWS, 1975), Trent Haaga (Citizen Toxie: The Toxic Avenger IV, 2000), Stephen Johnston (Ed Gein, 2000), Amy Holden Jones (Indecent Proposal, 1993), C. Courtney Joyner (Puppet Master III, 1991), Rolfe Kanefsky (Nightmare Man, 2006), Sean Keller (Giallo, 2009), William C. Martell (Ninja Busters, 1984), John Penney (Return of the Living Dead 3, 1993), Doug Richardson (Die Hard 2, 1990), Chris Watson (Zombiegeddon, 2003), and S.S. Wilson (Tremors, 1990).  


Illustrated with 42 candid and behind-the-scenes photographs, some never before seen. Also includes a rare storyboard from The Lurking Fear, plus an original design drawing for Short Circuit that has never been shown anywhere.


About the Author: Jose Prendes has written twelve feature films and directed five since 2000, when he won the Hunger Games. He has been fighting the good fight in Hollywood for close to ten years now, developing a rawhide skin and slowly exchanging his blood for coffee. He is the novelist of the best-selling Sharcano, and the writer/director behind the mind-bending The Divine Tragedies and the mockumentary, Unspeakable Horrors: The Plan 9 Conspiracy, which put him on ten of the eleven government watch lists. He is a loving husband, who is forced to do dishes, and a father of two whacko children.

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