What is the Blood List? – An Interview with Creator Kailey A Marsh

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Every Halloween, Kailey A Marsh releases The Blood List. For movie industry insiders and fans, this means they get a peek at a baker's dozen of the hottest horror and genre scripts that will take up residence at a theater near you over the next few years. Kailey talked to GEEK about how the Blood List came about and what it means to be part of the chosen few.

GEEK: What is the Blood List?
KAILEY A MARSH: The blood list is the top 13 most liked dark genre screenplays of the year. Each year over a hundred feature film executives vote on their top three favorite scripts in the horror, thriller, sci-fi, dark drama and dark comedy screenplays from the calendar year of October 31st to October 31st. The Blood List has become the industry standard for what’s good in the genre world.

Tell us a little about who you are.
I’m originally from Naples, Florida, but I moved out to Los Angeles to go to The Art Institute of California – Los Angeles, where I learned all about being on set and film making. I grew up falling in love with television and cinema, and I knew I wanted to pursue a career where I got to create my own.

what is the blood list interview with creator kailey marsh What is the Blood List?  An Interview with Creator Kailey A Marsh

photo by Alysa Austin

What do you do now that gets you access to these apparently amazing scripts?
I’m a literary manager and producer at Station3. Becoming a literary manager is something I sort of fell into. I was working as an assistant at management/production company Circle of Confusion, and I got to experience what it’s like to work with clients, develop material, and learn how to maneuver through Hollywood and score your clients jobs. My bosses relationships with their clients was very multi faceted as is the job. These days selling anything is hard so you have to be very entrepreneurial in your approach to building your clients careers. I also love that as a manager you get to create long lasting, close relationships with talent who become your frequent collaborators. Also, since as a manager you get to produce you can be working on non client related project and also client projects so it’s the best of both worlds. Now I work with writers, directors, & producers in features, television, and new media so it’s all very diverse, and exciting.

How did the Blood List come about?
The Blood List was created in October 2009. At the time I was still an assistant, and had just created my tracking board Trackula as a common interest tracking board for people in the industry. I hosted a screening series where we would watch new, or obscure horror films, and it was a forum to talk about projects we all liked and new talent to track. Board members were asking who some of the up and coming genre writers were so I decided to ask everyone what their favorite scripts were and compile a list…and that became The Blood List. Now it’s obviously a lot more calculated, and I choose executives to vote on their top 3 favorite dark genre scripts, and then tally the votes to get the top 13 scripts of the year.

What is the success rate of the scripts you often find on this list each year? Which has been the biggest success?
There’s always a mixture of scripts that have big attachments and are already set up. And then there’s scripts that are with baby writers and are still available. Over the years big titles like BLACK SWAN, CHRONICLE, HOUSE AT THE END OF THE STREET, GIRL WITH THE RED RIDING HOOD, STOKER & the upcoming film WARM BODIES were all scripts on The Blood List. I wouldn’t say I credit their success in any way to the list, but more that I think the list is a great way to vet scripts, or bring the good material to the top.

Have there ever been any surprises (good and bad) over the years?
The list has evolved over the years, and I’ve seen more genre scripts on The Black List and The Hit List, which come out a little bit after The Blood List, so at least I can tell people have been reading more genre material. I’m glad that it’s created a platform for new horror voices to get recognizes, and for more established writers to gain more exposure for their genre material.

You can read the official 2012 Blood List here (downloadable PDF) or view Blood Lists from the previous years here.

To learn more about the Blood List and to follow Kailey online…
The Blood List on Twitter
The Blood List on Facebook
Kailey on Facebook

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