Marvel To Launch Writers Program

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Rumor has it that Marvel Entertainment hopes to hire more than a half dozen film writers for a in-house writers program, to work and develop ideas for future comic book film projects. It sounds like they’re trying to develop lesser known comic properties to the big screen. According to Nikki Finke , applicants are required to sign a non-disclosure agreement and a 70-page 1-year non-negotiable contract before they are even allowed to come in for a meeting. Of course, the contract gives Marvel Entertainment full ownership over everything the writers create while they are in the program.

I wonder how a union like the Writers Guilde of America fits into the picture. Writing staffs are a common place for television productions, but film has always been a very different game. The WGA has some pretty strict rules about how many writers can be credited to a project. I assume that Marvel will be utilizing the team to develop treatments for future comic book adaptations, and hiring big buck name-value screenwriters to produce an actual script. But what will that mean for the team of writers that came up with the story? I know Disney has a similar writer’s fellowship program, but I’ve never really understood how the whole thing works.

I will say this, it is a very smart move on Marvel’s part. Imagine the material that a full time writers team will be able to produce over a year. I suspect that Marvel is looking to ramp up their production slate even more in the years to come, especially if the next few films are the sucesses that everone believes they might be.

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