The Scoggins Report: February 2012 Spec Market Roundup

The Scoggins Report is a compilation of sales and trends in the industry. Archive editions can be found at The Business of Show Institute and on www.thewrap.com. Details on every person, project, and company covered by the Report can also be found at www.ItsontheGrid.com. The Report is reprinted at ScriptMag.com by permission of the authors.

The Scoggins Report
by Jason Scoggins & Cindy Kaplan

February 2012
Spec Market Roundup

When last we checked in on the spec market, we thought this week’s Scoggins Report would have to open with some sort of silver lining comment.  Turns out we needn’t have worried — February’s spec sales numbers ended on par with January’s.

As you’ll see from the below grid, February 2012 is a bit off of February 2011’s very strong numbers, but you know you’re getting jaded about the spec market when you start looking down your nose at  9 spec sales in a month.  That would have been the second highest month of the year in 2010.  And we’re still up year-over-year for total spec sales.  Take that, 2011.

Here are our favorite highlights from this week’s Report:

•       Last month’s buyers were more interested in material that had been in the marketplace for a while than in new specs.  None of the 42 specs that went wide in February have sold, and five of the nine sales originally went out prior to 2012.  Three of those were among the dozen or so 2011 Black List scripts that hadn’t yet been set up by the end of last year.

•       WME’s outstanding 5 spec sales in February ties its single month sales record from November 2011.  UTA’s record is also 5 (March 2011), and the only agency to top that in the past three years is CAA, which sold 7 in October 2011.

Here are February’s overall numbers, with year over year comparisons:

2012

2011

2010

2009

 New Specs

36

38

42

60

 Number Sold1

9

11

8

7

 Percent Sold2

11.1%

28.9%

19.0%

11.7%

Genres Sold

1 Action

1 Comedy

1 Drama

2 Horror

3 Thriller

1 Action

2 Comedy

2 Horror

1 Sci-Fi

5 Thriller

3 Action

3 Comedy

2 Thriller

3 Action

2 Comedy

2 Thriller

1 Total sales in February

2 Sales percentage of scripts that came out and sold in February


Weekly Activity Breakdown

 

Week of January 30:

•       4 scripts hit the tracking boards (2 in January), none of which have sold

•       6 additional sales were reported, 3 of which were in February (“Day 38,” “Gaslight” and “NSFW”)

Week of February 6:

•      15 scripts hit the boards, none of which have sold

•      2 additional sales were reported (“Picture Book” and “Saving Mr. Banks”)

Week of February 13:

•       9 scripts hit the boards, none of which have sold

•       1 additional sale was reported (“The Waiting”)

Week of February 20 (Presidents’ Day):

•       5 scripts hit the tracking boards, none of which have sold

•       1 additional sale was reported (“Invertigo”)

Week of February 27:

•      9 scripts hit the boards (1 in March), none of which have yet sold

•      3 additional sales were reported — 2 in February (“Blood Mountain” and “The Most Wonderful TIme”) and 1 in March (“Bloodshot”)

 

Genre Breakdown:

Five of February’s nine sales were of scripts that came out prior to 2012.

 Genre

Total

Sold

% Sold

 Action/Adventure

8

0+1

 Comedy

9

1

11.1%

 Drama

1

0+1

 Horror

5

2

40%

 Sci-Fi

2

0

 Thriller

8

0+3

Spec Sales (alphabetical by title)

 

Blood Mountain

Writer:  Jonathan Stokes

RepsUTA (Ramses Ishak, Michael Sheresky, Scott Carr, Geoff Morely) and Energy Entertainment (Brooklyn Weaver)

BuyerDerby Street Films

Genre:  Thriller

AttachmentsMovie Package Company’s Ray Mansfield and Shaun Redick will produce with James Gibb.  Derby Street’s Rachel Durkin and Nicola Horlick will executive produce with Stokes and Weaver.

Notes:  Originally went out in July 2011; made the 2011 Black List.

Logline:  After his team is ambushed and killed in Pakistan, a young army ranger must escort the world’s most wanted terrorist over dangerous terrain in order to bring him to justice. While being hunted by both of their enemies, they must find a way to work together in order to survive.

 

Day 38

Writers:  Chris Rossi & Gabriel Scott

RepsAPA (Ryan Saul) and Untitled Entertainment (Jennifer Levine)

BuyerSyfy Films

Attachments:  Richard Farmer is attached to direct. Mary Viola and McG will produce through Wonderland Sound & Vision.

Genre:  Action adventure

Notes:  Originally went out in August 2010.

Logline:  TWISTER meets PREDATOR. A team of storm chasers finds itself caught in the path of a category 5 tornado, but the real problem is what’s inside it.

 

Gaslight

Writer:  Ian Fried

RepsWME (Mike Esola, Daniel Cohan) and Prolific (Will Rowbotham)

BuyerExclusive Media Group

Genre:  Thriller

Attachments:  Exclusive Media’s Guy East, Simon Oakes and Nigel Sinclair will executive produce.

Notes:  Originally went out in June 2011; made the 2011 Black List.

Logline:  Secretly imprisoned in a London insane asylum, the infamous Jack the Ripper helps Scotland Yard investigators solve a series of grisly murders whose victims all share one thing in common:  Dual puncture wounds to the neck.

 

Invertigo

Writers:  Bradley Cramp & Ehren Kruger

BuyerColumbia

Genre:  Unknown

Attachments:  Kruger will produce with his Bobker/Kruger partner Daniel Bobker and Original Films’ Neal Moritz.

Notes: Andrea Giannetti will oversee for Columbia.

 

NSFW

Writers:  Simon Boyes & Adam Mason

RepsWME (Daniel Cohan) and Brucks Entertainment (Bryan Brucks)

BuyerUniversal

Genre:  Thriller

Attachments:  Joe Johnston (CAPTAIN AMERICA) is attached to direct.  Max Minghella and Eloise Mumford are in talks to star.  Brucks will produce with Blumhouse Productions’ Jason Blum.

Notes:  Originally went out in June 2011.

Logline:  A young paralegal is trapped in an office with a killer on a secret mission to destroy files and anyone who stands in his path.

 

Picture Book

Writer:  Ben Magid

RepsWME (Mike Esola) and Energy Entertainment (Brooklyn Weaver)

BuyerSkyrock Ventures

Genre:  Horror

Attachments:  Damian Mace and Alexis Wajsbrot are attached to direct.  Weaver will produce.  Skyrock’s Sameera Eligeti and Paul Rock will executive produce with Magid.

Logline:  Contained horror/thriller in the vein of THE OTHERS.

 

Saving Mr. Banks

Writers:  Kelly Marcel

RepsWME (Philip Raskind)

BuyerDisney

Genre:  Drama

Attachments:  John Lee Hancock is reportedly in talks to direct.  Ruby Films’ Alison Owen will produce.

Notes:  2011 Black List script.

Logline:  The story of how Walt Disney secured the rights to “Mary Poppins.”

 

The Most Wonderful Time

Writer:  Steven Rogers

RepsICM (Nicole Clemens)

BuyerRelativity Media

Genre:  Comedy

Attachments:  Jesse Nelson (I AM SAM) is attached to direct and produce with Imagine’s Brian Grazer.  Imagine’s Kim Roth will executive produce with Rogers.

Notes:  Diane Keaton and Robert Redford are reportedly circling the project.

Logline:  A story about two people who live for the future or hang onto the past, which prevents them from living in the moment, and not appreciating what is right in front of them.

 

The Waiting

Writers:  Mark Bianculli & Jeff Richard

RepsWME (Danny Greenberg, David Karp) and Anonymous Content (Elana Barry, Rosalie Swedlin)

BuyerWarner Bros.

Genre:  Horror

Notes:  Chantal Nong and Sarah Schechter will oversee for Warners.

Logline:  Mysterious events occur when two high school filmmakers decide to create the illusion of a haunting to mess with an unsuspecting neighbor.  REAR WINDOW meets PARANORMAL ACTIVITY.


About The Scoggins Report:

The Scoggins Report is a terribly unscientific analysis of the feature film development business based on information assembled from a variety of public and non-public sources.  The numbers in the reports are by no means official statistics.

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