I am in such a good mood these days. The movie business is so dynamic, there are so many opportunities for creatives like us, and I personally am feeling very optimisitic about it all!

This also corresponds to all the stuff happening in Cat!Land:

–At long last we have our Save the Cat! story structure software ready. It will be out in mid-October just in time for my back-to-back appearances at the Screenwriting Expo.

–I have two appearances in the UK before then: a talk in London that is being organized by Suzy Greaves (who can be reached at suzy@thebig-leap.com). I will also be returning to Penzance courtesy of the Cornwall Film Council who have invited me to speak to their filmmakers.

–And my book reached #908 on Amazon the other day! That qualifies Cat! as the fastest seller in my publisher’s history and a certified hit! Consider that Amazon tracks over 700,000 books!

A lot happening. And my gratitude to you who make it all possible is immense!

In the midst of all this, though, I keep meeting with writers and hearing pitches and waiting for that one solid out-of-the-ballpark idea. That is what we’re all about here — making sales.

It occured to me that certain trends repeat themselves and just when that old idea is seeming to be really old, someone comes along to make it fresh. This is how Porky’s became American Pie, how Oh, God begat Bruce Almighty, and how Risky Business morphed into The Girl Next Door.

So I sat down the other day and made a list of tired, old movies and story concepts that might just be ready for a comeback — if any smart writers out there can think of a way to write them in new ways. I call this “Isn’t it about time for…” and it’s a great idea-generating exercise. See if you agree or can add to the list!

Isn’t it about time for…

… a funny vampire movie. I’m thinking of Love At First Bite as the model, loved that silly thing when it came out, but isn’t it time for some smart person to make it fresh??

Isn’t it about time for…

… a reformulization of the Burt Reynolds movie Cannonball Run. With the success of Cars, why not?

Isn’t it about time for…

… a kid empowerment comedy like Home Alone? We have seen very few films starring anyone under 15 lately and, except for Dakota Fanning, few kid stars to fill the bill. Maybe the right concept would introduce a younger star to family audiences?

Isn’t it about time for…

… another Rocky? Not an actual one, THAT’S being made already, I’m speaking of a big, root for the underdog, feel good popcorn movie about one hero beating the odds? We shy away from those, but perhaps there’s a way to do a new one?

Isn’t it about time for…

… an original musical. The success of American Idol and even such dance films as Step Up and the Disney Channel mega-hit High School Musical seems to indicate that this is a certified trend, so why aren’t the majors churning these out?

Isn’t it about time for….

… a new bad guy? We’ve done Nazis, we’ve done aliens, we’ve done terrorists, who can we make into the new bad guy that can bring in audiences who want to see a real “mustache twirler” — who is that?

Isn’t it about time for…

… a new version of the buddy cop movie? Surely there must be a way to put two cops together again? But what’s the hook? Ten points to the writer who can give me a movie about a cop and an Eskimo! I’ve got the perfect title: Nanook & McClain. I’ve even got the perfect poster line: “He’s got thirty different ways to say ‘You’re busted!'”

I welcome all your ideas on this exercise, both answers to my ideas and gaps you see out there in movieland that need to be exploited. Finding those needs and filling them is what it’s about!