Contact: Gregg Mitchell (323) 782-4574
 
News Release: June 25, 2013
 
WGAW and Black List Form Strategic Alliance

LOS ANGELES -- The Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW) and script-hosting website The Black List have formed a strategic alliance with a mutual goal to advocate on behalf of writers, as well as benefit Guild members by providing them with a credible platform to help spotlight their work within the entertainment industry.

“The Writers Guild of America exists to advocate for writers, and it’s a mission we share. We couldn’t be more excited about working in cooperation in that effort, and, personally, as someone who came to Hollywood because of a deep admiration of storytellers, it’s quite a special moment,” said Black List Founder Franklin Leonard.

“Since the inception of this list, Franklin’s work has been all about celebrating writing and writers. I’m thrilled to make him an official partner of the Guild,” said screenwriter and WGAW Board of Directors member Billy Ray (The Hunger Games, Captain Phillips).

As part of the newly formed alliance between the WGAW and the Black List, all WGAW members will be able to add their script titles, loglines, tags, and representative information, as well as monitor their work’s ratings and user traffic, free of charge. WGAW members will also receive a 20% discount on paid Black List services to host their scripts and obtain reader evaluations of their screenplays. In addition, all scripts uploaded to the BL website by WGAW members during the first 30 days of the alliance announcement will be hosted for one month free of charge. Future months’ script hosting will be charged at the 20% discount rate all WGA members are entitled to receive.

In turn, the Black List will feature WGAW-related educational and resource information on its website, including information on the WGAW’s FAP (Feature Access Project) and WAP (Writer Access Project) programs, both of which aim to provide increased employment opportunities for diverse writers by making their work available to industry professionals, as well as links to WGAW Registry, the WGAW’s official screenplay and intellectual property registration service.

In conjunction with the launch of the WGAW-Black List alliance, the Guild will host a members-only educational event on Tuesday, July 9, at its headquarters featuring Black List founder Franklin Leonard, who will present a history of the List, demo its online service, and answer questions, including how Guild members will be able to access some of its services for free and others at a discount rate.

While one of the major challenges facing many screenwriters is "getting read” – by agents, managers, producers, or industry executives – the Black List has emerged as a viable tool for writers, both aspiring and professional, to increase the visibility of their screenplays in the marketplace. Since launching last fall, the Black List’s script-hosting website has been responsible for dozens of writers – from Los Angeles to Sweden – finding representation with major agencies and management companies, as well as more than a dozen script sales.

THE EVOLUTION OF THE BLACK LIST

In 2005, Black List founder Franklin Leonard surveyed almost 100 film industry development executives about their favorite scripts from that year that had not been produced as feature films. Since then, the voter pool has grown to about 500 film executives, and over 200 Black List screenplays have been made as feature films, which have collectively earned over $16B in worldwide box office and have been nominated for 148 Academy Awards, winning 25, including five of the last ten screenwriting Oscars.

In September 2012, the Black List launched a membership site for industry professionals that functions as a real-time Black List and screenplay recommendation engine. In October 2012, Leonard extended the Black List’s mission further by allowing screenwriters from the world to upload their scripts to its database for a fee, have them evaluated by professional script readers and, subject to that evaluation and their recommendation algorithm, sent to over 1,000 film industry professionals for consideration. For more information on the Black List, please visit: http://blcklst.com/ 

RSVP for The Black List Educational event at: Diversity with "Blacklist" in subject line. Info: (323) 782-4589. NOTE: WGA and Caucus members in active status only. 

The Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW) is a labor union representing writers of motion pictures, television, radio, and Internet programming, including news and documentaries. Founded in 1933, the Guild negotiates and administers contracts that protect the creative and economic rights of its members. It is involved in a wide range of programs that advance the interests of writers, and is active in public policy and legislative matters on the local, national, and international levels. For more information on the WGAW, please visit: www.wga.org.