Universal pays screenwriter Willard Bradley $1200 for silent film synopsis

Universal pays screenwriter Willard Bradley $1200 for silent film synopsis

Universal Pays $1,200 for Synopsis.

Willard Bradley Takes Down the High Purse on an Eight- Page Picture Story.

The Universal has broken another record. It has paid $1,200 to Willard Bradley for an eight-page synopsis under the title, “The Beloved Imp.” The previous high record for a synopsis alone is $750, and was paid for a five-reel feature. In that case, however, a working script went with the synopsis. The Universal purchased only the synopsis with “The Beloved Imp.” Offers of a thousand dollars have been made on various competitions, and under special arrangements, all of them having certain strings attached to them. The Universal paid $1,200 strictly on the merit of the story, and is in accordance with the new plan of the Universal for buying scenraios.

Some time ago it be came apparent that the “per reel” method of buying scenarios was equitable neither to the writer nor to the com pany purchasing them. Frequently a script purchased as a five- reeler has to be cut to two, and it frequently happens that a story intended as a two- reeler is worth five reels in the hands of a competent scenario staff. The Universal intends to depend upon its own scenario staff for guidance as to the value of stories in future, and will pay for the story itself, and not for the number of reels in which the story will be produced. If “The Beloved Imp” ma” be accepted as a criterion, this system is likely to work out very much to the benefit of scenario writers. This story in synopsis form alone so appealed to the Universal that it made the offer based upon the merit of $1,200 for the story. It is a story of Scotch domestic life, the scene of which is laid in the mountain regions of Northern Scotland.

Willard Bradley, the author, is one of the best known scenario writers in the moving picture field. He sold his first scenario to the Universal in July, 1912, and it was produced with Edwin August and Florence Barker under the title “His Madonna,” as a Powers single reel, but before this he had written for the Biograph, Kalem and Vitagraph companies and has been a very prolific script writer ever since.

Ref: “Universal Pays $1,200 for Synopsis,” Moving Picture World, (19 Aug 1916), pg 1221.


Citation: Lindsay, Martin S. Universal pays screenwriter Willard Bradley $1200 for silent film synopsis. Website: WillBradley.com. Accessed 16 Feb 2019, <https://willbradley.com/work/film/willard-king-bradley/universal-pays-screenwriter-willard-bradley-1200-for-silent-film-synopsis/>. Bibliography. References.