Watch the October Winning Feature Screenplay Winner.
PONTIFF OF NO RETURN by Eric Boyd:
NARRATOR – Misha Harding
THE POPE – Charles Gordon
MASSIMO/HOLMES – Jerald Bezener
ATWATER/DA LA CRUZ – Rob Salerno
MARY – Katelyn Cooper
PRESIDENT UTLEY – Julie Burris
Get to know writer Eric Boyd:
1. What is your screenplay about?
The Pope, a former soldier, goes on the run, to thwart the American President’s evil plan to stoke a holy war in the Middle East; and gets some help along the way from a bad-ass Virgin Mary.
2. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?
I just think people would enjoy it.
3. This story has a lot going for it. It’s a satire, with a religious nod with a lot of Pope-ACTION! How did you come up with this brilliant and crazy story?
I was watching an episode of the Simpsons where during a soccer-riot a statue of the Virgin Mary comes to life and starts kung-fu fighting all the hooligans and just fell in love with the idea of an action-hero Virgin Mary.
4. What movie have you seen the most in your life?
Star Wars, because… you know, Star Wars.
5. This is a very tight, emotionally engaging and fun screenplay. How long have you been working on this screenplay?
I started brainstorming it last summer. In December I thought I had everything and convinced myself it wasn’t the stupidest idea ever. I then banged out the first draft right before Christmas, and I’ve just been tinkering with it ever since.
6. How many stories have you written?
This is my 14th screenplay and I’ve since written another. I’ve been writing on and off since I was in college. I’ve only written screenplays and feel like I’m more dedicated to it now than ever.
7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?
I just had this really fun idea that I couldn’t stop thinking about and the more I thought about it the more I fell in love with it. The only way I could get it out of my brain was by putting it on paper.
8. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?
At first, I was pretty hesitant to write this because I thought the premise was too “out there”. It really forced me to think about what was happening and why it was happening until I could present it in a way to the audience that was believable instead of asking them to just believe. Ultimately, I think the story benefited from those obstacles rather than the idea being so good that it just writes itself.
9. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?
Star Wars because…you know, Star Wars.
10. What influenced you to enter the WILDsound Festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?
It was recommended to me by another writer who had lots of good things to say about it and after entering two screenplays, I have to say I agree. The feedback was great. The reviewer told me what they thought worked and didn’t work and even offered some suggestions to fix the stuff that didn’t work. I’m definitely entering my new screenplay as soon as I finish my next rewrite.
11. Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?
Since I’ve never attempted to dispense generic writing advice before, I decided to google “how to write a screenplay”. As I was going through the results, I realized what I was doing was stupid and felt like an idiot, so I decided to google “how to write a good screenplay” and I felt much better. I guess the moral of the story is if you set out to write a screenplay, your first priority should be to make it good.
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