Eddie Kritzer: Leave me Alone

I have, for the past TWO MONTHS been dealing with this asshole Eddie Kritzer.  I sent a pitch in response to a Craigslist posting, which turned out to be to this guy who called me and said that he wanted $600 to read my script.  As in, he liked my pitch and therefore wanted me to sign an exclusive contract with him as my manager before he even read the script.

1. Real managers and agents read scripts before they sign contacts

2. Real managers and agents don’t charge you to represent you

He says it’s just an advance.  But the thing is, the only thing he’s ever sold or published appears to be through vanity press outlets; there are no movie deals on even his own factually dubious page.  All of his credits are really old and not terribly impressive.  He apparently has some connection to Bill Cosby, which I guess was impressive some time before I learned to talk.

He was also involved in a major, major scam called Edit Ink. It basically scammed writers out of money and gave commissions to “agents” that referred writers to get scammed — “agents” like Eddie Kritzer.

He keeps sending me e-mails and calling me, he will not leave me alone, even though I have REPEATEDLY told him I was not interested and told him REPEATEDLY that everyone I know in the industry told me HE IS A SCAM.  And on top of that he is a jerk on the phone and can’t be bothered to introduce himself, remember your previous conversations, and he mispronounced the word “bible”. Really.

So, just to be perfectly clear here, what it appears he does is troll Craigslist and then harass and bully people into giving him money.  That’s certainly what he has been doing to me.

I hesitated from posting anything because I’ve seen him threaten other bloggers who are honest about his behavior and I didn’t want to get into it, but other people need to know exactly what this man is doing to me. And if he comes here to defend himself I will simply add that to the list of things he is doing to harass me.

EDDIE KRITZER: LEAVE ME ALONE

Here is his contract:

Literary Management Agreement
1. By this agreement, Ashley F. Miller(Author) appoints Eddie Kritzer (E.K.) as her literary representative. E.K. agrees to use good faith efforts to place Author’s , manuscript/script, currently entitled BIBLECON ” (Work)and subsequent (hereafter “Work”),with a Publisher , Studio, Production Company, , , Television Network for a film/book. etc acceptable to the Author and to exploit and turn to account such other subsidiary and television and film rights in and to the Works as may be appropriate under the circumstances. We may use and/or employ subagents and corresponding agents for such purposes. E.K. shall make no agreement on the behalf of the Author without the Author’s written approval.
2. In return for services rendered E.K. in connection with the Work, Author agrees to pay and irrevocably authorizes E.K. to receive in its name, all monies due to or to become due to Author and to retain as its commission fifteen percent (15%) of all gross monies payable to Author . An advance on commission of Six Hundred Dollars ($600.00) shall be paid on the execution of this agreement.
3. In addition to the aforementioned commissions, E.K. shall be reimbursed for the expenses incurred on behalf of the Work (not to exceed a total of $100 without written permission), including photocopying, messengers, cables and overseas postage in connection with submissions for sales, both foreign and domestic, long distance telephone calls, copies of the published book when purchased by the E.K. for subsidiary rights submissions, and other similar and related charges. E.K. shall invoice author quarterly for such expenses or deduct same from funds received by E.K. for Author’s account.
4. E.K. shall provide a quarterly itemized account of all expenses to the Author and no expenses shall be due and owing until that itemized account is produced.
5. All funds received by E.K on behalf the Author shall be held in Trust by E.K. and E.K. shall exercise a fiduciary duty with regard to those funds and on behalf of the Author.
6. The Author shall have the right to an annual audit of the financial books and records of E.K. with regard to the Author’s account and E.K. shall produce all records relevant to the Audit. E.K. shall give the accountant conducting the audit access to all financial books and records relevant to the Account. The Audit shall take place at the principal place of business of E.K. unless the parties agree to a different location.
7. Any written notice called for by this Agreement must be sent by registered U.S Mail, return receipt requested, or by FedEx, DHL or UPS overnight courier to the addresses set forth in this Agreement.
8. This Agreement represents the complete understanding between the Author and E.K. and supersedes any prior oral understandings and may not be amended except in a writing signed by the Author and E.K.
9. This Agreement shall be construed under the laws of the State of California.
10. This Agreement is effective on the date of the final signature.

And an official opinion on it:

“Putting on my former lawyer hat (practiced corporate entertainment law for many years, law degree from Harvard, former VP of Legal Affairs for an entertainment co, former director of legal services @ NY’s Volunteer Lawyer for the Arts – just providing creds to let you know that I have a lot of experience in this sort of thing), NEVER pay some dude to read your script as an advance on his future manager commissions. This is a scam – you’ll never hear from him again. Real management agencies won’t ask you to pay them – where’s the incentive for him to do anything? And there’s no term, no ability for you to get out of it — I have too many comments on this management agreement to post in a small space. But needless to say, it’s something you shouldn’t sign.”

ScriptShadow; Top 100 Loglines

You may or may not be familiar with the site ScriptShadow.  It’s a very interesting site that is essentially a collection of reviews of screenplays.  It’s, if nothing else, an excellent crib sheet if you’re ever asked to do coverage.  And it’s also just plain old interesting.

In any event, Carson over there is holding a logline competition.  For giggles, I entered.  And, having almost totally forgotten I did, today I discovered that I’m in the top 100/~1000.  Also, people mentioned my script in the comments.  Double yay!

http://scriptshadow.blogspot.com/

FIRST PLACE – A review on Scriptshadow, which will likely garner (but not guarantee) requests from agents, managers, and producers.

SECOND AND THIRD PLACE – Second and third place finishers will have their loglines posted on the site, as well as a contact e-mail, in addition to receiving coverage from me.

Delinquent

I’m sorry I’ve been so lacking in interesting things to say.  At the moment I’m just showing up to work and trying to write a business plan.  I’m doing a slight re-write of my Nicholl Script, “Bible Con”.  I’m hoping to have it and a new script ready to send to Nicholl this year.

So, I dunno, not a lot going on.  I’m about to start working on editing a short, but I haven’t actually started yet.  I spend a lot of time trolling the internets for jobs.  Yeppers.

Otters

Too Cute

Life in LA; It’s the Economy Stupid

Sorry I’ve been quiet a while, crazy couple of weeks. I went to SC this weekend. I’m trying to put together a budget and business proposal for Bible Con, with plans to shoot it in SC. I think it can be done on a low enough budget that raising the money myself is feasible. I don’t know that I’ve described the story here, so have my logline:

Bible Con — Comic Con for Christians — goes straight to hell when Jesus and Mary Magdalene fall in love, the keynote speaker turns out to be an atheist, and the event is besieged by DaVinci Code fans.

It’s Best in Show meets The Life of Brian.

Nicholl Semi-Finalist, Movie Script Contest Finalist

I’m trying to do a rewrite now, but the drama in my life is making it difficult to concentrate on. I know too many unemployed people is basically what the deal is. One of my roommates is having to give up on LA and drive back home, selling all of her possessions to afford the trip. My other roommate is also unemployed, but theoretically has something coming up. Obviously, not a happy situation. And my closest friends can’t find jobs either.

And as much as I hate logging, and as much as it doesn’t pay me enough to live off of, I guess at least it’s something. Admittedly, the idea of getting my own project off the ground is probably all that’s standing between me and the cratering depression my current economic state brings on.

I’ve gotten a couple more requests that I haven’t kept up on posting. Maybe I’ll do that at some point.

Lost Weekend

I had a weekend that was no good for writing. I’ve set myself a deadline of end of Thanksgiving holiday for a rewrite of Bible Con and a Polished first draft of Dyke for a Day. I had time to work on it this weekend because all of my editing projects are floating in nebulous waiting for other people to do things. But I didn’t work because my shoulder is messed up. This didn’t make it impossible to write, but it was really uncomfortable to sit in front of my computer or look down. It’s still killing me. Maybe I should start dictating.

Instead, I just watched a lot of Christopher Hitchens. I try to imagine the God/No God debate from the other point of view and find I just cannot. Cannot imagine it. I suppose I am like Hitchens, I never lost my faith, I just realized I didn’t have it. I was eight, I found all my teeth that I’d lost in my mom’s room (why she kept them, I don’t know). And there it was, proof that there was no tooth fairy. And that meant no Easter Bunny, no Santa Claus, and no Jesus.

I am going back to Columbia, SC this weekend. Doing the red-eye Wednesday night/Thursday morning. I’m seriously considering trying to raise money and film my feature in SC. I think it could be done for a modest budget, and I think the idea of a Native Daughter shooting in SC is something that could raise some money. I have a lot of connections there, including with the university. I hold secret hopes that somehow I could tie it into the university and get a lot of young people involved with the production. There aren’t a lot of opportunities in film in South Carolina.

Maybe I’ll get some writing done on the plane. We’re going to not put odds on this.

I started watching Jeeves and Wooster. I highly recommend it.

Nicholl: First Phone Call, 17th Contact

I was sitting here in a pleasant reverie, remembering my trip two springs ago to visit New York and the Daily Show, just before I graduated film school.  I was trying to figure out where I should live and work and my family friend Gail Lieb has a talented son who works at the Daily Show and as a writer.  Anyway, I’ve always loved New York, and going that spring was really beautiful, and it was really difficult to commit to moving to LA after such a lovely spring week in NYC.

Anyway, I’d just sent Josh an e-mail telling him how much I’d loved his book, especially the formatting.  (What?  I like the formatting.  Shut up.)  And I got a phone call from one of those previously mentioned big guys.  Actually, it was a different person at the same big guy agency.  But he called me, so that was exciting.  And he expressed interest in the Mockumentary genre and was very pleasant on the phone.  He’s based in New York, and for some reason, that struck me as really awesome, since that’s where I was in my mind.

17: it is one of my lucky numbers, because it’s prime and 3*17 is 51, and I always thought that was cool because 51 looks prime, but it isn’t.  (Why are you always harshing my nerd high?)

Me, Gail, and Spring in New York

Me, Gail, and Spring in New York

Nicholl: What I’ve learned so far; 15 and 16

What I’ve learned: You don’t break into the industry with a Mockumentary.

People really enjoy reading them, but no one wants to make them or believes you can write based on them.  Which is weird because there’s a screenplay sitting there that they really enjoyed, but despite the success of The Office and Best in Show, and reality style in general, Mockumentaries are apparently too difficult to set up in Hollywood.

I wrote the screenplay because I liked the story and I love mockumentaries, I really never thought it’d be getting attention from Hollywood.  From small indie producers, maybe.  Maybe I hoped Christopher Guest would somehow find it on his reading list.  But I didn’t figure Hollywood would be interested.  And I was wrong in that they seem to have liked reading it enough to stay in touch with me, but not enough to take it on board.

15: Congratulations on your recent 2009 Nicholl Fellowship success! We read about you and would love to read your script BIBLE CON.

At *** Entertainment we manage about 50 writers in television and film, and produce feature films as well.

I’ve attached our **** Entertainment release form, and need it filled out for each piece of material being submitted. Despite its stringent language, I can assure you this is an industry-standard release form. Please fill out the form and either scan and email with the script, or fax the release to *** and then e-mail the script, or you can throw it all in the mail as well – our address is in my signature below.

16: I actually got this a long time ago and missed it

Congrats on your script being a semi-finalist in the Nicholl competition!
Sounds interesting–may I read it?  My company manages screenwriters and playwrights and we are always reading new screenplays to find potential clients we can introduce to the Hollywood studio system.
Can you email me a copy?

Nicholl: 14 and counting

14th: From a management/production company

Congratulations on being chosen as a semifinalist for the Nicholl Screenwriting Fellowship.  This is a very prestigious honor and quite an accomplishment.

I am a literary manager at ***, a full service management/production company with deep expertise in talent and literary representation.  We represent some of the most prominent actors, writers and directors across all platforms (film, television, new media).  Our production arm has partnered with *** in Michigan to produce independent films and has projects set up at studios such as *** and several TV networks.

Should you be seeking representation, I would love to read your screenplay, BIBLE CON.

Nicholl: Big 4, Major 3

So, when it comes to agencies in LA there are basically “Big 4:
CAA ·ICM · UTA · WME
And the “3 other majors”:
Gersh · APA · Paradigm

13th: From one of the big guys:
I am an agent here at *** and would love to read BIBLE CON.  Attached is a standard release form that I just need you to agree to when responding to this email with the script attached.  Lawyers! They ruin all the fun.  Seriously, kudos on your achievements and look forward to reading your script.

This guy is triple classy in that the script’s title was in the subject line, my name and script were both in the body, and he sent me an e-mail thanking me for the submission less than 60 seconds after I sent it in.

Nicholl: Anyone heard of Script Funnel?

The ScriptFunnel team would like to congratulate you on your Nichols Fellowship achievement. You are undoubtedly being contacted by managers and development execs alike and we wish you all the best during this exciting time.

We’d also like to ask for a small moment of your time so we may introduce you to our service. ScriptFunnel’s mission is to bridge the gap between entertainment professionals and writers like you. What does this mean? Look, we know that your achievements have garnered you and your project some attention, and let’s face it, you deserve it! That being said, wouldn’t it be great to reach an even wider audience of agents, managers and execs? ScriptFunnel is home to over 800 working industry professionals who listen to what we have to say about the material that is funneled (aka vetted) through out site.

Working with ScriptFunnel is a no-lose situation. You join our writer community, submit your film or television script, and we vet it through our coverage services (you receive back two pieces of coverage from two different Industry Analysts). If your project receives a “consider” grade or higher (averaged between the two pieces of coverage) we alert our professional contacts and they can immediately request your material. Furthermore, if your script receives a “consider” or higher grade, we will refund the cost of submitting your script. ScriptFunnel isn’t here to make money off of coverage services…that’s just our vetting process. The reality is, ScriptFunnel is a budding eManagement company whose services are two fold – working with you to develop your script, and getting your script in front of the eyeballs that matter.

I’m going to do their logline competition because it’s free.  But to submit your script is 125 dollars.  Way, way more than it cost to submit to the Nicholl…