Forbes India: Creativity May Suffer When Mature Projects Change Hands

06 Apr 2022
A study of movie development shows the dangers of late-stage handoffs.

Originally found at Forbes India, by Dylan Walsh

Justin Berg has watched Back to the Future at least 25 times. Same with the DVD special features — the voiceovers and backstory and interviews. It’s his favorite movie, and he’s long believed that part of the film’s greatness is attributable to the fact that writer-director Robert Zemeckis oversaw the project’s full arc, from birth to release.

“Zemeckis spent several years working on the screenplay before he even started shooting,” says Berg, assistant professor of organizational behavior at Stanford Graduate School of Business. “I think if instead he’d been handed a screenplay that someone else had written, he wouldn’t have had a vision for the film that was so unique and developed, so unified and coherent.”

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