knew we wanted to be screenwriters........
when I realized I saw writing more like a bunch of pictures
than a bunch of words. I started writing when I was super
young as a way to preserve some of the stuff my imagination
would come up with. These days, it's the same thing. Movies
have always affected me in a deeply visceral way…they were
and at times still are, 100% magic.
I know I've succeeded........
when I'm living by the beach, writing screenplays for a
living. When paying the bills isn't painful, and when lots
of different people all over the world can connect through
the films I help create. Also: when Oprah calls.
My inspiration to write THE GREAT AMERICAN LOSER....
hit me randomly one night as I was brushing my hair in the
mirror (a weird Marsha Brady moment, I know). I wasn't
thinking about anything, and then all of a sudden I had a
thought: what if a normal girl landed a hot guy…and not just
any hot guy…her hot, former teacher who was wanted by
many…would the world as we know it still be able to exist
with a "Female Loser" comedy? Could it unfold in a real way?
…and that was the beginning.
inspired you to write?
It sounds lame, but it's true. Writing is just who I am.
FilmMakers Magazine: What did you do to
prepare yourself to write your first script?
Jessica DiGiacinto: I think I read half a
screenwriting book, got bored, and went into the whole thing
FilmMakers Magazine: Is this your first script
and how long did it take you to complete?
Jessica DiGiacinto: This is not my first script. And
it took a long time…maybe a year on and off. Plus more,
because it's still changing.
FilmMakers Magazine: Do you have a set
routine, place and time management for writing?
really. I prefer to procrastinate as much as possible. I do
get a lot of writing done during the day but it's erratic
until I sit down and actually force myself to concentrate. I
like coffee shops because whenever I get bored with my own
words I can just eavesdrop on someone else's.
Magazine: Do you believe screenplay contests are
important for aspiring screenwriters and why?
Jessica DiGiacinto: I do believe they're important.
While they're not the final say, they're a gauge on your
talent, pacing, characters, and overall idea. They're good
on a resume. Besides, who else is an aspiring screenwriter
going to turn to for advice? Their grandma? She'll love
everything you ever do so it's not necessarily best way to
Magazine: What influenced you to enter the FilmMakers
International Screenwriting Awards
/ Screenplay Contest?
Jessica DiGiacinto: I heard it was a good contest
with a lot of industry respect
FilmMakers Magazine: What script would you
urge aspiring writers to read and why?
Jessica DiGiacinto: In general, I think
it's a great idea to read other scripts for format and
dialogue help, but I couldn't list a specific one off the
top of my head because I don't think any one example is
going to be the holy grail. Just pick a writer or style that
you enjoy and go for it.
Magazine: Beside screenwriting what are you passionate
about and why?
Jessica DiGiacinto: Teaching, because it's an amazing
way to give back. Working to help people realize that we're
all in this together, so we might as well decide to love
instead of hate. …I'm also passionate about the MTV
masterpiece The Jersey Shore, but I don't think that's what
you meant by this question.
FilmMakers Magazine: Who is your favorite
Screenwriter and Why?
Jessica DiGiacinto: I don't have a favorite
screenwriter per se, but I think Tina Fey and Alan Ball are
just absolutely amazing. They get it. They really do.
Magazine: Name the director you would love to work with
Jessica DiGiacinto: I'd like to work with anyone who
gets me as a writer and who is interested in creating art
that brings a little joy to people's lives.
Magazine: Name the actor you would love to work with and
Jessica DiGiacinto: There are too many to narrow it
down to just one, but I really think Ryan Gosling has an
amazing way with both humor and pathos. He is also hot. This
FilmMakers Magazine: Any tips and things
learned along the way to pass on to others?
Jessica DiGiacinto: Most people who tell you "This Is
How You Do It" and "This Is Just How It Is" are either
bitter or full of themselves. Make your own rules. Do it
your own way. If you truly want to succeed, you will.
Magazine: What's next for you?
Jessica DiGiacinto: Hopefully: recognition, money,
and that beachside cottage I've been dreaming about. Also:
Season 2 of The Jersey Shore.
FilmMakers Magazine: Where will you be five
years from now?
Jessica DiGiacinto: This type of question always
makes me feel like hyperventilating just a little bit, so
let's just say I'll be Happy, Fulfilled, and Successful.