Category Archives: 1st scene

HORROR 1st Scene Screenplay – FEAR OF THE DOPPELGANGER, by Jonah Jones

 

Genre: Horror, Thriller

The plot involves the lives of two versions of the same man who made a different decision years previously. As the story progresses, they both learn about the legend that if you meet your doppelganger, you will die.

CAST LIST:

Linda: Cassandra Sirois
Pamela: Vanessa Quaglaira
Narrator: Val Cole
Michael: James Murray
Phil: Nick Wicht

Get to know the writer:

 1. What is your screenplay about?

Michael; a man who made a decision in his teenage years which he regrets and his other self, Micky, who made the right decision and is now his doppelganger. The doppelganger knows about the protagonist and also knows that if they ever meet, they will both die.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Mystery, thriller, sci-fi.

3. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

Having the two characters played by the same actor wouldn’t work in any other medium except perhaps a novel. The science behind interference patterns can easily be explained but makes for great visual moments of patterns and wave-forms. Any cinematographer would drool at the possibilities.

4. How would you describe this script in two words?

Waves collide

5. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

I’ve answered this before but I don’t remember what I said so I’ll go with Ben Hur (the Charlton Heston version)

6. How long have you been working on this screenplay?

This is very much draft one because I’ve been busy on other projects but probably two months.

7. How many stories have you written?

Again – I’ve answered this before and I can’t remember. I’m currently away from my main computer – at the Myrtle Beach International Film Festival where they’re showing Letters Home, a film I directed. To return to the question; I’ve been writing stories in one form or another for forty years so I have a fair few of them on my hard drive.

8. What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the
most times in your life?)

Everything on my car CD player. Certain songs will always be in my head. Mostly 1960s British. Just heard Fields of Gold in a MacDonald’s. Could be that.

9. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Trying to make the science of interference patterns easy to understand but not allowing the film to become a schoolroom.

10. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Wild-life, playing guitar, cartooning. I recently took up film directing and I’m enjoying that very much.

11. You entered your screenplay via FilmFreeway. What has been your
experiences working with the submission platform site?

They are easy to work with and efficient with it. I also hawk our films around the festivals. Film Freeway makes that so much easier.

12. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings
on the initial feedback you received?

This site feels like a home from home. The atmosphere is always encouraging, rather than critical and all of us could do with more carrot and less stick.

******

Producer: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Director: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: Kimberly Villarruel

Camera Op: Mary Cox

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HISTORY 1st Scene Screenplay – SANDS OF LANIKAI, by Greg Blair

 

Genre: Historical Fiction

Before the first bombs were dropped on December 7th, 1941, two men arrived at different moments on the windward side of the island–in Kailua/Lanikai. One was bent on discovery; the other on destruction.

CAST LIST:

William Sands: James Murray
Paul Sands: Nick Wicht
Narrator: Val Cole
Isamu Anzai: Dan Fox
Takahashi: Fabio Abreu
Healani Lewis: Cassandra Sirois

Get to know the writer:

 1. What is your screenplay about?

Before the first bombs were dropped on December 7th 1941, two men arrived at different moments on the windward side of O’ahu. One was bent on discovery… the other, on destruction.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Historical Fiction / Mystery Romance

3. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

Sands of Lanikai is the “what if” story of Paul Sands, a new arrival to the islands. Mystified by a sudden family tragedy and blindsided by an unforeseen coming of age romance, he unwittingly confronts an undercover intruder who could change it all. Set against the backdrop of beautiful and rustic Windward O’ahu during the days before and after the attacks on Pearl Harbor, Sands of Lanikai paints a vivid picture of historic times and historical personalities. It twists and turns through a time period we all think we know well… only to entice, charm and surprise.

4. How would you describe this script in two words?

Mystery Romance

5. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

Saving Private Ryan

6. How long have you been working on this screenplay?

On and off, four years.

7. How many stories have you written?

Two

8. What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

Wicked Games – Chris Isaak

9. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Until a script is green lighted, do we ever really finish?

10. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Music

11. You entered your screenplay via FilmFreeway. What has been your experiences working with the submission platform site?

Similar to IMDB, but free.

12. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

The festival’s guarantee of a thoughtful and insightful feedback to my script entry.

Responses received from the festival, including those on formatting, dialog and cinematic structure have been very insightful.

 

******

Producer: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Director: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: Kimberly Villarruel

Camera Op: Mary Cox

Quyen Tran – January 2017 1st Scene Screenplay Winner

Watch the January 2017 Winning 1st Scene Screenplay.

Best Scene from the screenplay OCD Screenplay
Written by Quyen TranCAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Julie Sheppard
VIKTOR – Hugh Ritchie
DR. NAVID – Robert Notman
GWEN – Olivia Jon

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Drama, Romance

Two university lovers have an intense argument.

Get to know the writer:

What is your screenplay about?

OCD (working title) is about a young woman who begins to have dark obsessions after an HIV scare.

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Drama, Dark-Comedy

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

The script is currently 231 pages so it could be either a TV mini-series or film series. OCD should be made because it’s
an untold story relevant to the Millennial age.

How would you describe this script in two words?

“Digital Loneliness”

What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

It’s a tie between The Santa Clause or Deathproof.

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

Almost a year now.

How many stories have you written?

I’ve written several short stories but this is my first full-length story.

What motivated you to write this screenplay?

Something happened to me a year ago that left me in a state of devastation and I began writing this. It was the only thing that
made me feel better.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

A major obstacle was finding a quiet place to write. I live in a loud household. It’s hard to write when there is some annoying
noise going on. I’m still trying to find a quiet, private place. Mostly, I write at night when everyone is asleep. Headphones,
earplugs, and music/atmospheric sound help.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I’m currently reading Les Miserables by Victor Hugo, which I had put off for years because it looked so long and boring.
But I’m so glad I started, because so far, it’s one of the best stories I’ve ever read.

What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

I had also just rewritten the first scene so it was kind of a sign for me. Also, I found a coupon code on Facebook.

The feedback was paramount to my script’s consistent progress. It really encouraged me as a new writer, because it’s rare to get encouragement when people think you’re in your room all the time doing nothing, and you’re actually writing.

****
Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson


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Elisha Barnes – January 2017 1st Scene Screenplay Winner

Best Scene from the screenplay FAN SITE Screenplay
Written by Elisha BarnesCAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Ballantyne
ASHLEIGH – Petra O’Toole
DANNI – Rachel Salsberg
JOAN – Georgia Grant
MAN – Craig Estrella

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Comedy, Romance, Drama

Sexy lesbian Danni Montgomery lives in abstinence with her ex – an ex who still carries a torch. Meanwhile Danni is eyeing up a bisexual movie star and attempts to woo her by bulding her the hottest fan site on the web. After a series of successes and miscues, my story ends with an unlikely ending.


Get to know the winning writer:

1. What is your screenplay about?

Sexy lesbian Danni Montgomery lives in abstinence with her ex – an ex who still carries a torch. Meanwhile Danni is eyeing up a bisexual movie star and attempts to woo her by bulding her the hottest fan site on the web. After a series of successes and miscues, my story ends with an unlikely ending.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Rom-Com and dramedy

2. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

For one thing there is a dearth of movies about lesbians who aren’t criminals, psychos or prisoners. The women in my story lead everyday lives; never has a mainstream production company released a lesbian Rom-Com and the time is right for such a picture.

3. How would you describe this script in two words?

Funny & Sexy

4. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

A tie between Wizard of Oz and Spinal Tap

5. How long have you been working on this screenplay?

Off-and-on two years

6. How many stories have you written?

Five screenplays (and am in the note-taking stage for my 6th), 14 short stories, two novels and one one-act stage play.
My screenplays are currently for sale on Amazon.com in case anyone is curious how they turned out. Just go to Amazon.com and put “Elisha Barnes” in the search field and up popd three.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

Well, this is kind of embarrassing to admit but I once had a supercrush on a movie star and I thought if I built her a gee-whiz fan site she would contact me. She didn’t.

8. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

The feedback I received literally tore it apart and this is the 10th rewrite of the script.

9. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Going to the movies, Netflix, flea markets and garage sales and my two dogs, Pumpkin and Teak.

10. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

I had such a positive experience with my first entry – She’s Driving Me CRazy (also for sale) – that I had to try again. I’ve been thrilled with the feedback even though I don’t agree with all of it, but that’s normal.

****
Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson

TV CONTESTSUBMIT your Best Scene Screenplay or TV SPEC Script
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Martin Keady – January 2017 1st Scene Screenplay Winner

Watch the January 2017 Winning 1st Scene Screenplay.

Best Scene from the screenplay INT. CAR – NIGHT Screenplay
Written by Martin KeadyCAST LIST:NARRATOR – Julie Sheppard
PATRICK – Hugh Ritchie
YOUNG MAN – David Occhipinti

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Drama, Thriller

A middle-aged accountant has to drive home from work because there is a tube strike. When he stops at a traffic light, a young man taps on his windscreen – with a gun – and orders him to let him in.

Get to know the writer:

What is your screenplay about?

The enforced meeting of absolute opposites, as a middle-aged accountant is carjacked by a crazed, gun-wielding drug addict.

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Thriller and road movie.

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

Because (I hope!) it takes the viewer on the same mad, uncontrollable journey that the hero (the middle-aged accountant) is taken on.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Carjacking vérité.

What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

Withnail & I.

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

I must confess that this is one of the quickest scripts I have ever written – about a week, including a few all-nighters (fittingly, for a film about a carjacking that lasts a whole night).

How many stories have you written?

About 10 feature-length screenplays, including The Shakespeare Plays, a biopic of Shakespeare (http://theshakespeareplays.com/); about 20 to 30 short films; and about a further 10 stage plays and radio plays.

What motivated you to write this screenplay?

I was originally commissioned to adapt a novel about a carjacking that was so utterly unbelievable, implausible and plain atrocious that I just couldn’t do it. Instead, I was inspired to write an original screenplay about a REAL carjacking, which happened to a friend of mine and was utterly terrifying. She survived – just – and I thought that if I could take an audience on that journey I would have a great movie script.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Like all writers, a shortage of time. I was working during the day at the time, which is why I had to write it at night, which, of course, is the best time to write: no phone calls (or tweets, emails, etc.); no interruptions of any kind; and in addition your brain is naturally attuned to being halfway between sleep and waking, which is probably the best place to be as a writer.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Shakespeare (hence the Shakespeare biopic); sport (especially football and tennis, which I write about for LastWordOnSports.com); and (writing about and thus fighting in my own small way) injustice!

What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

After years (indeed, decades) of hiding my light under a bushel, as it were, I am finally determined to get my writing “out there” – whatever the response (good or bad, but hopefully not indifferent). The most useful part of the feedback was a comment about the title, “INT. CAR. NIGHT.”, saying that it did not really “fit” the story, as it was “too meta”. I understand and appreciate that, which is why, having thought about it, I would now switch the title back to one of the original two titles I had – either just “CARJACK” or “HIT THE NORTH”, a title borrowed from a great Fall song and utterly fitting for this story.

****
Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson


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Mike Briock – December 2016 1st Scene Screenplay Winner

Watch the December 2016 Winning 1st Scene Screenplay.

MALICIOUS INTENT
Written by Mike BriockCAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Ballantyne
JOHNNIE – Craig Estrella
VANESSA – Rachel Salsberg
ERIN – Georgia Grant
SPIDER – Christopher Huron
BENNY – Rais Moui

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Crime, Thriller, Mystery

The manhunt for a violent parole violator takes a deadly and harrowing turn when he turns the table on his pursuers (female Deputy Parole Officer and two Detectives) and comes after them instead with no mercy.

Get to know the winning writer:

1. What is your screenplay about?

Malicious Intent is about New York Deputy Parole Officer Erin Green and a team of NYPD Detectives are on a manhunt for vicious, vile, and ultra-violent parole violator Johnnie Carrillo, who has an Armani exterior with the personality of an automatic shotgun. Johnnie’s name strikes fear into anyone living in the seedy underbelly of New York City. Things take a very chilling, deadly, incredibly harrowing, and suspenseful turn when Johnnie unexpectedly turns the table on his pursuers… and comes after them without mercy.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Drama. Suspense. Thriller.

2. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

It has an independent vibe and budget. It is a believable, dramatic, intense, suspenseful, edge of your seat unrelenting thriller. Straightforward. Johnnie Carrillo is an intense and memorable character whom people will certainly talk about. Very strong female lead and supporting roles. It is a story that keeps you locked in from FADE IN to FADE OUT.

3. How would you describe this script in two words?

Harrowing. Suspenseful.

4. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

This question is very tough to answer. Hard to limit to a single film. I would say Mean Streets. The Fugitive. Goodfellas.

5. How long have you been working on this screenplay?

16 months.

6. How many stories have you written?

6 screenplays (completed). Currently working on 3 more, which are in various stages of completion.. I have another 8 screenplays plotted and ready to write.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

I really wanted to write something gritty, intense, and suspenseful with an independent feel and vibe. I wanted it to be strong female protagonists in great peril against the most vile and vicious bad maIe antagonist I could dream up. Someone so badass and cold that he is seemingly unstoppable and thoroughly grips the audience. I wanted it to feel “real” and “believable”, but at the same time keep you on the edge of your seat.

8. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Editing. Making hard decisions to delete a few good scenes to maximize flow. Also, the ending. I had two very good endings. I went with the ending I felt is more believable. In the other ending, the lead female protagonist makes a decision that the audience would love, but that she really wouldn’t make in real life. So, in the end, I kept it real.

9. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Photography.

10. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

I was actually contacted by the festival and asked to enter. I was given an offer I couldn’t refuse.


TV CONTESTSUBMIT your Best Scene Screenplay or TV SPEC Script
Voted #1 TV Contest in North America.
SCREENPLAY CONTESTSUBMIT your Best Scene Screenplay or FEATURE Script
FULL FEEDBACK on all entries. Get your script performed
SCREENPLAY CONTESTFIRST SCENE (first 10pgs) SCREENPLAY CONTEST
Submit the first stages of your film and get full feedback!

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Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Ambert Epling – December 2016 1st Scene Screenplay Winner

Watch the December 2016 Winning 1st Scene Screenplay.

UNSPOKEN
Written by Amber Epling

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Ballantyne
GABRIEL – Craig Estrella
CELESTE – Rachel Salsberg
DOCTOR WATERS – Georgia Grant
RUSS – Charles Gordon

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Drama, Mystery

Celeste Grey, a mentally-challenged 20-something girl, who has no ability to speak escapes from an institution after being raped by an associate of the institute. By fate, she ends up on a ranch with 50-something RUSS, whose wife had been institutionalized before committing suicide, and his handsome, self-centered adult son (GABE).

Get to know the winning writer:

1. What is your screenplay about?

Unspoken is about a young woman who is mentally disabled and she finds her way to a ranch, where a man and his son take her in and care for her and her soon to be unborn child. While they are trying to hang onto their ranch, they come to realize that, while they thought they were helping her, she actually winds up helping them.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

The genre is a drama.

2. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

This movie is very inspiring to a lot of people in this world. This woman who is lost, alone, deaf and is pregnant has no hope in the world. The hope she finds is in two people who would be the most unlikely candidates to take care of her. It goes to show that just because people have disabilities and can’t speak for themselves doesn’t mean that they are voiceless and that they don’t have a heart. They just might be the ones to save you, not the other way around.

3. How would you describe this script in two words?

Dramatic and Uplifting

4. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

The Man In The Iron Mask and The American President

5. How long have you been working on this screenplay?

This film has been completed for several years now, just waiting for the right opportunity.

6. How many stories have you written?

Over the course of 15 years I have written 20 films.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

This story came about in regards to a family member who suffered a tragedy that resulted in her having extreme handicaps after giving birth to her second daughter. She can’t speak, she can’t feed herself or walk, but she is bright and very intelligent. She still has her mind and uses it to communicate to her family by using a letter board. Much like the main character, she suffers deafness and has to be treated much like a child. That is kind of what brought the story to a head.

8. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

The only obstacles that I faced while writing this, was the obstacles that I have faced with all of my films. I have been trying my best to get my work publicized and at times I felt like I was in a stalemate and that my films could never make it, but I realized that I was good enough and I knew this was a film that had a great message and it needed to be told, so I finished it. Along with the personal story that comes along with this story, I knew I had to do this, so I gathered all my courage and strength and told myself that this was one that will mean the most.

9. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Photography

10. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

I was on Twitter and the account for the festival came up and I checked it out and decided to give it a try.


TV CONTESTSUBMIT your Best Scene Screenplay or TV SPEC Script
Voted #1 TV Contest in North America.
SCREENPLAY CONTESTSUBMIT your Best Scene Screenplay or FEATURE Script
FULL FEEDBACK on all entries. Get your script performed
SCREENPLAY CONTESTFIRST SCENE (first 10pgs) SCREENPLAY CONTEST
Submit the first stages of your film and get full feedback!

****
Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne