Final Draft’s Marc Madnick Talks Version 9 and the Writing Spirit

By January 31, 2014Main

If you’re a writer in the industry, at some point you will probably use Final Draft. It’s the industry standard and a precious tool across the board, from producers to directors to designers. The company has been growing rapidly since the software was released in 1991. 

It’s clear the program offers an intricate, supportive format for its writers. But another reason Final Draft has gained steam is due to its communicative creators. At Sundance, I had a chance to sit down with CEO Marc Madnick. The charismatic and passionate co-founder of the company was excited to chat about the new plans for the software. He also divulged about its inception. Madnick, himself, started of as a writer. 

“Running a small business is very creative. It turned out to be more creative than actually sitting and writing. Even though I never really stopped.” Given Marc understands the world of screenwriting, he’s established a sense of community among his users. I witnessed this comradeship at the Final Draft Awards this year. Nancy Meyers, John Ridley and other established writers shared inside jokes about the program and their adoration.

Marc explained, “We are a software company, but we are a writing company. Being a Boston Red Sox fan, losing makes you all a family. The struggle brings you all together. We put that message out there just like The Script Lab does. “

I was eager to hear his ideas about cultivating the program. “You can never stop developing. We’re up to date with all the Windows and Mac operating systems. We colorized our script notes, and in the Mac, we have full retina display. Mac even has the ability to dictate your script.” He goes on to describe some of the many new features on Final Draft 9. “Our navigator, our character arcs, the script notes are better.”

“Our iPad reader lets you read and only annotate, which is perfect for executives. That’s free and on the phone and on iPad. But the pages must be the same. You can find 30 apps on the phone, but none of these companies match up. Can you imagine someone showing up [to a reading] and the director says lets get to the page top of 50 and the top of 50 is different! People say why does it take you a little longer? Because it has to line up and that takes a lot. And when we go to China, the Chinese scripts are going to have to match up with the American scripts. And that’s where our technology will come in.”

It’s that precision and dedication that makes Final Draft the standard for any writer who wants success. The version is on sale through tonight check it out!