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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Stage 32 is "the social network for film, television and theatre creatives." They are free. They say they have "already hooked up dozens of struggling screenwriters with producers looking for good scripts." They have 15,000 members after two months; about 1/4th of those are screenwriters.

I don't know if anyone needs another social network -- I've got Facebook, Facebook fan pages for my books and novel, Google+, LinkedIn and the Twitter. And there have already been various versions of this idea. But it might be worth checking out if you're not already hooked in.



Hey Alex...I don't know if you can say there have been "various versions of this idea". Mandy is mainly a database with some job search capabilities and the other is strictly a screenwriters resource site.

Stage 32 is like Facebook meets Linkedin for film, television, and theater creatives.

The community is very active and creative. Projects are getting off the ground. Screenwriters who struggled with the "hows" and "whys" are finding connections to help push their scripts forward.

So, in short, this is hardly just "another social network". I don't know of many screenwriters who have had any success networking on FB or Linkedin. In fact, I know a ton of screenwriters and only a small percentage even have a Linkedin account.

This is a place for like minded creatives to make connections that matter. We think that's an invaluable commodity. And with over 15,000 members in just two months, I like to believe we're being proven right.

I appreciate your coverage. And I love the blog. Thanks for all you do in helping educate and inspire screenwriters.

Warmest Regards,

Richard Botto
Stage 32

By Blogger RB, at 1:15 PM  

I agree with Richard. I think the whole 'social networks' are covered stuff we've been hearing is a naive assessment. The internet is still very young.

By Blogger NILIGOAT, at 7:19 PM  

I have a huge Twitter presence because I moderate and co-founded a screenwriting chat there (Scriptchat), but with over 6000 followers on Twitter, I still have managed to find new people on Stage 32 and widen my network. Yes, there are a lot of social media sites, but none that solely caters to the film industry the way this one does. There's no searching endlessly for like minds. There availability is built in. Love it.

By Blogger Jeanne Veillette Bowerman, at 6:56 PM  

I have to respectfully disagree too, Alex. I am producer who has long been searching for the right script for my next project. I found that script on Stage 32. Further, for the screenwriter, this will be his first produced work after years of trying to break through. It’s been a perfect match. And not one I could have made on Facebook, Linkedin, or Google +.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:50 PM  

Appreciate the good thoughts and words, guys. And, of course, I'm thrilled to hear your experiences with 32 have been nothing but positive.

Just this morning, I received an email from an actor from Michigan who hooked up with a New York director and landed his first major gig in a feature production.

So many people spend years perfecting their craft and so little time building their network. The talent is there, but the ability to showcase it is not. Thrilled that can help bridge the gap and connect creatives.

Thanks again.


Richard Botto
Fair Warning Productions
Stage 32

By Blogger RB, at 3:18 PM  

Just wanted to drop by and leave my 2¢. I've been a screenwriter with a day job for the past 6 years. For most of those, I've been submitting like crazy with some positive response but not much else. Stage 32 has been a godsend. One of the connections I made within a week of being on the site is two-person team (director/producer & DP) trying to break in as well. A month later, we're going into production and I'm finally going to get to see some of my work pay off.

Don't get me wrong, I think FB, Twitter, etc. are crazy powerful tools for staying in touch with people you know or even promoting your work. That said, I think stage 32 is a better tool than both of those when it comes to actually getting things done. Everyone you meet is like-minded and the signal/noise ratio is WAY higher than anything I've tried before.

By Blogger DH, at 1:00 PM  

As another Alex have to agree with this Alex. Most of these sites seem to promise a lot and seem to serve to promote one or two individuals when anyone working in this business knows that while connacts are vital there is way too much BS. After I joined I kept getting self pat on the back stuff from someone and when I asked to please stop sending me the stuff I was totally dropped from the sites you either have to be willing to think one person is that great or just shut up. For the most part it strikes me as being back in High School...As for Linked In I have used it to my advantage many times tracking people down and using my FB connections along with IMDB to settle my being real.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:06 PM  

Hey Alex. Just checked your account. I do see one person who posted that they were looking to raise capital for a film. We allow members to post one such thread and we have a zero tolerance for spamming. You also have the right to block people at any time.

As to not receiving site notices, unless you request us to do so, you should be receiving them. Further, it is extremely easy to report a bug to Derrick Ontroveros, our lead developer. Everyone associated with the site is hands on and easy to reach.

As far as networking - Over 25K people have joined Stage 32 in 4 months. You have 8 people in your network. 8 out of 25,000+. Your wall is quiet because of that fact. You get out what you put in.

To take this one step further, you have a Kitty Kat cookie jar as your headshot. Who is going to take that seriously? What message are you trying to send?

The Stage 32 success stories continue to mount. Over the last 2 days alone, we've had one member from NY sell an idea to a mid-major, another from Chicago got hired to write a screenplay for a red hot producer, an actor from Brazil connected with a producer from Texas and now has a role in his next independent feature. These success stories are happening daily.

I couldn't be more proud of the Stage 32 community. Talented, resourceful, dedicated.

Richard Botto
Stage 32

By Blogger RB, at 12:54 PM  

Since Mr. Botto is communicating here, I want to know how Stage 32 got my information. The invitation to join was sent to me without any identifying information about how they got it. If a friend of mine is on Stage 32, and thought I'd enjoy it, great, I'll check it out. If they got it by buying a mailing list from some theatre company or film related website I subscribe to, I'd like to know that. Without any identifying information about their source, though, I'm always going to be skeptical. So, Mr. Botto, who told you to invite me to your service?


By Blogger Brendina Pederhold, at 7:12 PM  

Brendina's concerns are also mine: I've also received an invitation without any identification, as if Stage 32 got my address from some list. Of course this makes one totally skeptical about the venture.

By Blogger Carlos A., at 4:20 PM  

In re: Brendina's comment, I received an "invitation" to an email address that I manage for my company. We are not in the film or TV business. So it would seem that Stage 32 is, at least in part, scraping websites for email addresses and spamming the hell out of everyone.

By Blogger Philip G., at 12:31 PM  

We're loving the Stage 32 network for many reasons but to name at least one reason is that our On Native Ground: Where Art Speaks!!ⓒ Youth Reporters were invited by a producer listed on Stage 32 and attended a rehearsal at CBS Studios for a reality pilot network series featuring talented youth ages 8 -18. The ONG Youth Reporters learned so much by conducting and producing interviews with the cast/crew and the Executive Producer Ms. Dyan Cannon. It would have never happened if we were not signed up and networking via Stage 32! Igwein! [not worthy but grateful] -patricia pena, Kickapoo Nation KS (founder/exec producer On Native Ground!ⓒ)

By Blogger OnNativeGround! and OnNativeGround: Where Art Speaks!, at 10:43 AM  

Very suspect posting language on Stage 32. In essence, you are giving your script to them for free. This is a deal breaker.


By Blogger writerdirector, at 6:25 PM  

I have a friend who said her screenplay was on there and ended up in a contest, but not with her name on it. Seems there ended up being some confusion. Not sure if she can talk about it though because her lawyer said they have to pursue things legally. Not sure what their rules are on ownership of the things that people upload. Could be giving them rights. I don't know.

By Blogger Unknown, at 6:47 AM  

Freddie, that's a serious nightmare.

If there's so many people posting and sharing (with possible anonymity) on all sorts of websites, someone can grab your idea and you might never find out about it unless it becomes big. Putting a copyright on it & registering it can seriously help, though, if things have to get legal.

By Blogger Hartley, at 12:46 PM  

I couldn't let this go. If it's too good to be true. It usually is.

It is a common tactic today for said agencies to form multiple, anonymous accounts and speak praises for their own agency in order to make it look legit. It happens all the time on Reddit.

Such seems the case here. The site is too new. No one yet seems to know enough to have a critical eye. Until then, it's all sugar-coated goodness.

Camera Dept.

By Blogger jparsonsfilm, at 10:44 AM  

WARNING TO SCREENWRITERS: Beware of THE HAPPY WRITERS, (Stage 32) Joey Tuccio. They claim to offer online and verbal pitches to development executives, agents and managers. I recently bought a written pitch service for $45. After a few days I was sent back a standard rejection; PASS that made no sense at all.
It said that the my pitch took TOO LONG to get to the logline. My logline was at the very top of the pitch! It also said that I needed to focus on the cast of characters??? You ALWAYS focus on the protagonist and his/her disadvantage as well as transformation and obstacles, which I did.
Lastly, the PASS email said that I didn't include anything on why this story stands out??? I wrote and entire paragraph about why this story is very unique and how it will grab an audience.
IDEA THEFT is rampant in Hollywood and if I had time I can tell you several recent sad stories about how your ideas get stolen online by unscrupulous services like Virtual Pitch Fest and The Happy Writers. You may want to think twice about services like these unless you want to give your ideas away to uncreative staff writers who are under pressure to come up with something new!!!

Mark Claro

By Blogger WRITER GUY, at 5:32 PM  

I had a couple of ideas that I wanted to turn into screenplays. I cannot remember how I came across Stage 32; however, but I thought that it would be a great help to me with what I wanted to do. Unfortunately, I had enough with the huge egos and animosity from those so-called screenwriters and such on that site. Do they even care how people see them? No, they do not. I had to report one person because of personal attacks against me. That person still has an account. The fact is that once you become part of the Hollywood machine, you must then treat people like crap because you believe that you are better than everybody else is.

Everybody hopes that their ideas will help those who need it. Unfortunately, there are people who will bring it down and ruin it for everybody else.

In defense of Mr. Botto and those who work with him to create Stage 32, the sad fact is that the members that I came across on Stage 32 are A-HOLES. I am sure that he did not intend to have his idea turned into a place where a-holes run rampant, unfortunately, that is what happened, and those of us who look for help from these professionals will receive none.

By Blogger Unknown, at 2:49 PM  

Stage 32 Moderator Beth is a humorless, drone, Nazis who wield her power indiscriminately.

Don't argue a point or disagree strongly with her dense, one paragraph, ill-informed posts or you'll be permanently blocked.

She's the reason Stage32 is a bust. That and the half-dozen "pros" who spend an inordinate amount of time trolling posts and bullying others.

By Blogger Unknown, at 1:47 PM  

Stage 32 is a joke; a money-making machine that pelts you with "opportunities."

I scheduled a Pitch, and waited, and waited, and waited for a call from the exec that never came. Refunds are a real hassle. They have a number but do not answer the phone. Their set-up is an office suite, and the number is for a common receptionist. Stage 32 has ordered the receptionist to not forward incoming calls to them.

Once I got through to Todd via email, I was told the Exec called and I didn't answer even though we verified my phone number was correct. I had to threaten legal action or a Credit Card chargeback before they released my money.

The site is inbred with a regular crowd of six or so who lord it over the peons. They're arrogant and unhelpful.

They hired a female moderator who wields her power indiscriminately; disagree with her and you'll be banned for life. She's also a Twinkie who peppers her posts with LOL and hasn't the slightest idea what she's talking about in the exceedingly bad advice she spews.

By Blogger Unknown, at 8:54 AM  

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