You’ve got your play lined up. Your passion project. This is it. The One. You know it in your bones. You’ve spent months, years searching for it and now you’ve found it. You’re ready to pour blood, sweat and tears into it. Do everything you can to make this production an incredible experience for everyone involved.
Did you get the rights?
One of the early exercises assigned in our Vs. Studio Producing Workshop is everyone has to try and acquire the rights to a play. Regardless if they’re ready to produce, if it’s something they’re even thinking about, they need to know if the rights are available. And Los Angeles, for a variety of reasons, is one of the most difficult territories in the country to acquire rights. Especially if it’s a newer play that has some heat on it.
Asking for the rights does two things.
One…it makes it real for you as a producer. The process of asking for rights, having to come up with dates and other specifics, concretizes your plans. (Don’t worry, just because you get the rights, doesn’t mean you must produce it on said dates. You can always reschedule or cancel. As long as you give advance notice.)
Two…it spares you a lot of heartbreak. You spent a lot of time finding your passion project. Before investing any more of your heart and mind, you need to know if it’s possible. That’s the big next step you need to take.
In a future post, I’ll discuss what you should do when the answer is “No” to your ask.