I would like to reply in part to Mr. Ambros' email.
Fact: every year the Writer's Guild accepts over 40,000 scripts and treatments. Each year Hollywood produces and releases only about 300 feature films. A handful are commercial successes.
The other (better) way: If a film company likes an idea (or pitch) they will pay or make a deal with a writer or team to come up with a script. Usually it's between low and high six figures. When M. Shayamalan's Sixth Sense eventually became a wild success, he was paid something like 5 million US dollars for his next pitch, plus directing fees. This would be for Unbreakable. Last year DreamWorks paid a writer (David Benioff) $1.12 million against $2 million for an untitled pitch. As in - writer "Oh, here's my idea for a movie...... producer or studio "That's sound great, here's $1.12 now and the rest later" and the cost of making the movie, oh probably upwards of $50 million. This same chap had recently sold a supernatural thriller "Stay" (to Regency Enterprises) for more than $1.8 million. Anything's possible. The movie industry grosses US$40 billion. Titanic made 1835.4 million US$. Sixth Sense 661.5 million US$. All this information is available on the internet.
Very often a purchased script will be re-written anyway, (unless writer and director are one and the same) but along with that is the potential for the original message to get completely obscured, whether for the sake of making something more commercial, egos, or whatever. In this case, because the "story" is so important, it cannot be altered or diluted, therefore it should involve only to a director who would do it justice. It would be very important for the "Group" to have control of the story and not give it up to an outsider who may buy it and do what his will dictates. It happens all the time. That's why very often a writer wants to be the director so that "this time it'll be done right." In Hollywood there is no one standard, predictable way to get material sold and on the screen. Getting a star, a producer or director interested in the project is the best way to go and at this point you'd better have a script ready to show (even if it is re-written later) If a star, producer or director, can see the potential to do great things with the story, he/she will be interested. The story is the most important factor, a skilfully written script is helpful, as is a correctly formatted script Having said that, Woody Allen apparently doesn't even work from a typed script. So, there are no rules really, just a story which must be told and perseverance.
When the time comes that a story line is agreed upon, as I mentioned earlier, I would be honoured to put it in script format. I have studied and put it into practice over the past six years and I would submit each scene to all of you for discussion amongst yourselves and with all the talent, imagination, creativity and personal experience, it is more than possible to come up with a more than excellent script. Screenplays can be downloaded if anyone would like to see how they are formatted, or some can be bought in bookstores, but usually these are "shooting scripts" and not "spec" scripts which is what we have to write. That means that there are just a few technical differences, e.g. in a spec script one doesn't put in camera angles, instructions for the director or actors, and so on. All that is done by the studio later.
Perhaps we could select an idea and give it a shot.
Who will be in charge of the project?