NOLLYWOOD: It's Possible To Earn Millions As A Screenwriter
Sanchez Aghahowa held the 1 million Naira check in his hand and looked at it for a second.
Though he had a straight face, in his heart Sanchez had done 3 back flips in excitement.
The screen writer carefully put the cheque into a book, and then placed it in his backpack, which he carried in front of him all the way to his house in Ikeja.
Who knew a man who loves to tell stories for film and television could earn such an amount, for just one script?
Sanchez Aghahowa has written, produced and directed some of the biggest series on television, like, Tinsel, Hotel Majestic, Shuga, Hush and Jemeji.
He has almost 10 years’ experience creating, writing, directing and producing shows for TV, film and online.
Bounce News spoke to Sanchez on how upcoming screenwriters can survive in Nollywood.
"First of all get a pseudonym, so that when you have to write scripts that are dodgy, or you do not like, you will not attach your name or career to it, because when you start, you cannot control what is done to the stories you write.
"Also never negotiate from a place of hunger, just take whatever you are given, because when your hungry you do not have a choice, but as time goes on, things will improve” he told Bounce News.
So, to build a reputation, Sanchez advises writers to create stories that actors will love or find challenging.
“I can name 4 story writers working today that became famous because actors they do not know, fell in love with their characters in the script they were given.
"Top actors get 10 to 15 scripts a week, when they see your own they should say this character will give me my next award” He said.
He also encouraged screen writers to be friends with directors, and learn how to strike a bargain, reassuring writers that there is nothing wrong in writing for a director you believe in for free.
“You can write a film script for free for a director you believe and then tell him that when the movie starts making money, you will have a share of the profits.
"Even when you want to charge, do not ask for more than what the industry can afford at the time.
"It’s the same thing for actors, you cannot see an actor who consistently gets 20 million Naira per film, it will vary. ” he explained to Bounce News.
Sanchez constantly trains screen writers because he loves competition.
He says that when there are more scriptwriters the movie industry will grow, and there will be more money for everybody.
The writer who still believes that all the stories about Nigeria and its people have not been told in Nollywood, gave more advice, as he wrapped up his interview with Bounce News.
“A movie producer might not love your script, but once he reads it, and can see like 100 people that will pay for it, he will call you back.
"Once you can capture the eyes, the mind and the heart of the audience, you are on the right track” he said.