Working titles provide a focus for thought...

What’s the point in worrying about a TITLE for a script, the producer always changes it anyway!

It is true that producers often change the title of a script or the resulting movie from the original script title that was submitted to them.  This happens for a variety of reasons; sometimes the original title was not ‘punchy’ enough, or was too long. Sometimes the original title sounded similar to another film on a completely different topic.  Or sometimes the title is an exact match for another film on the same topic (Hurricane Katrina, for instance) because there is no copyright on titles.  Only the script itself can be copyrighted.

But the influence of a producer or distributor on our film script is years away for most of us. So why worry about a title in the interim?  Worry now about your script title now - in fact border on obsessive about it,  because your title is the FIRST MARKETING TOOL you have at your disposal.  Your script may have started off life as a grocery list - and that became your ‘working title’ for it.  “MY GROCERY LIST” is going to be a tough slog in the market place because it inherently lacks punch, or sparkle or as Hollywood says, ‘sex appeal.’

Maybe that’s your point - but with a bad or lackluster title it’s going to be an uphill battle to attract a producer or actor’s attention to your script.  So put some genuine time and devotion into finding the exact title for your screenplay that’s going to grab some producer’s attention.  Find a title that will stick in his mind, so that she finally requests your work just to get it off her mind.  Once you’ve got Brad Pitt signed for the lead - you can make the case to go back to ‘My Grocery List’ for the marquee!!

I hope that helps. And I wish you good luck with your screenplay.