MFA, screenwriter; WGA member whose credits include the English-language screenplay for the Oscar-winning film Spirited Away, and the Oscar-nominated Howl’s Moving Castle. Ms. Davis has written for Pixar, Working Title, Miramax, Disney, and is presently writing an animated feature for Fox. She is a recipient of the UCLA Extension Outstanding Instructor Award in Screenwriting and contributing author to Cut to the Chase (Gotham Books/Penguin).
I get extremely nervous before pitches, and I once heard that the human body has 90 minutes of adrenalin. After it’s gone, you don’t feel afraid anymore. So I thought—I’ll just freak myself out for 90 minutes prior to my pitch to the head of Warner Bros., and then I’ll be completely calm for the pitch. Clever, Cindy, very clever. Instead, I got myself so worked up that I threw up in the bushes on the Warner Bros. lot. Here’s a tip I’d like to share: don’t do that. There are many tricks to working in Hollywood, which I unfortunately learned the hard way. And if you’d like to avoid throwing up in the bushes, I’d love to help you.
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Watch an interview with Cindy about screenwriting: