Exhibition For Your Script

Written by Olivia Hummel on April 22nd, 2022

Olivia Hummel is a Marketing Specialist at ScriptHop. She also works as internal team support. Olivia has a BA in Screenwriting from Webster University and is an aspiring writer.

An exhibition, as defined by Merriam-Webster, is "a public showing (as of works of art, objects of manufacture, or athletic skill)." We associate an art exhibition with paintings, photography, sculptures, and we interact with their presentation by walking through a museum space — looking (sometimes gawking), discussing, and connecting with these various mediums. Art is influential, multidimensional, and personal.

Film is all of this and more, and it depends on a similar exhibition space. Scripts may be written, but they're the culmination of text for a visual medium, and whether they have the good fortune to make it through Hollywood's filters to the screen shouldn't be the only thing determining their value; the Hollywood lottery shouldn't be a script's only opportunity for consumption and appreciation. It's time scripts and their pitch material were provided with their own file format for the purpose of exhibition. And such a format should be designed to help the script increase its odds at beating Hollywood's filter.

Although lookbooks, series bibles, and presentation decks grant access to the visual medium, there are significant drawbacks to all three. For one thing, combing through them can be like digging through the trash for one specific sticky note needed for an important plot point. The pitch content contained within their sprawl can become muddled, and difficult to understand. Also, such pitch decks lack the ability to interactively engage the reader.

I offer that the best format for presenting a script's vision is "The Packet" - and one of the great things about it is that the writer can make their pitch as private or as public as they want. (In fact, writers have far more control over their pitch material and script delivery with a packet than they do with a PDF). A packet helps bridge the gap of the written form to the visual medium. Within its design, the writer chooses an array of images, quotes, and captions to tease and entice the recipient to continue onward — to dive deeper into the story and script itself. Every single element in The Packet has been tailored to create an engaging interaction with the script. All the recipient has to do is click on a link which sends them to a visual and auditory experience exploring a script as one would engage with an art show or exhibition.

With the Packet, not only does the writer create a stunning showcase of their vision, but they can make sure their point-of-view for their story resonates. The writer is in complete control to create an entire experience. Taking Hollywood's expectations into consideration, the Packet's format addresses each element needed to be successful within the guardrails of industry standards. Enticements such as the presentation of images and dialogue samples are embedded within extensive character descriptions and other crucial summaries Hollywood demands, such as a logline and synopsis. As a reader dives into the worldbuilding materials provided by the writer - that interact with the script itself - they find their own vision for the project is enhanced. This completely replaces the outdated and static lookbook.

In true exhibition form, ScriptHop's Packet invites exploration due to a packet's innate ability to lure the recipient to keep scrolling. Entry Points can be inserted within a character description, providing the exact moment in the script where a character's distinct traits flourish — as an agent or actor reads the character description, they can literally jump into a powerful scene in your script. This is a way to literally capture a reader's interest. Continuing even deeper into a Packet, the recipient discovers the "Writer's Selection." This section, like entry points, entices a viewer to read the script in full. Rather than flip through a script, or the lost sticky note of a lookbook, an agent, director, producer, etc. can simply scroll — this spelunking into your project and diving deeper creates dopamine-like hits of interactivity.

In today's modern, digital-engrossed world of social media, online marketplaces, and the desperate need for an image to capture a thousand words, the reliance on compelling visuals and pithy pitches has never been greater. With today's industry expectation, a script is no longer enough to satisfy. The Packet offers memorable content created by the writer, themselves, through a scrollable exhibition of various mediums including images, videos, soundtracks, and more. The ultimate goal of the images is to entice the reader to read the script.