Watch the May 2017 Winning Best Scene Screenplay.
Genre: Drama, Comedy, Romance, Fantasy
A struggling and anxious artist is pleasantly surprised when one of his sketches of a beautiful woman comes to life, only for him to see. But things get complicated when she starts seeking the ability to become a real human being in the world. MIDNIGHT IN PARIS pairs up with STRANGER THAN FICTION in this existential tragicomedy.
Get to know the writer:
What is your screenplay about?
An aspiring artist unavoidably hates his lonely life and miserable career, until one of his sketches, that of a beautiful woman resembling his mother, comes to life, only for him to see. But things take unexpected turns as she starts fancying the idea of being a real human being out into the world.
What genres does your screenplay fall under?
There’s no specific genre I would categorize it. I would certainly cross some genres out. It’s not horror, although it does contain some horrific dream imagery about the characters’ relationship fears. It’s not comedy, although there are some darkly absurd interactions of Mark (the protagonist) with a chorus of everyday people. Lastly, it might be a drama, but not a sheer one; not everything sources from conflict, the heroes’ tragedies come from their mere changes of heart.
Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?
It’s the only medium available out there to transcend its essential meaning. Mark speaking to the audience, the dreams and close-ups, the montage successions between two irrelevant moments, messing with the soundscape… everything is inserted in there to serve the story, and can only be present in a movie, not in a book, not in a graphic novel. The same plot could exist in a story for these mediums too, but it would have to take a completely different approach, and even conclusion.
How would you describe this script in two words?
What movie have you seen the most times in your life?
That would be Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill (12 times each ‘Volume’). It’s a movie coming from the auteur’s heart, even its downfalls seem to be an artistic triumph, because they come directly from mr. Tarantino’s intentions.
How long have you been working on this screenplay?
A lifetime, then two years and a half, and then two months.
How many stories have you written?
Three, with each one seeming like it comes from a different person (maybe that’s the truth too).
What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)
Nantes by Beirut. Saying the same lyrics in a different context to convey changing feelings is just a form of ingenious simplicity that I’ve never encountered before (or after).
What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?
Procrastination (our century’s plague), growing up, moving out, surviving in a new environment, trying to finish college, working, eating, sleeping.
Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?
I must stress out that I really love writing, in any possible form, be it dramatical (theater plays, screenplays, books) or for a newspaper. Other than that I really love criminal law, which I’m also studying, reading (another form of writing, too, I guess), hiking, and taking very, very long trips in completely different places.
What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?
I found it on FilmFreeway and upon reading the description I honestly felt like my submission budget would be well spent. And what a great decision that was! Not only was the feedback insightful, it also felt like coming from someone who actually grasped both the soul and bones of the story, with all its humane mistakes and draft missteps. I felt like receiving feedback from a great friend, who also bears deep knowledge of the screenwriting world.
Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com
Editor: John Johnson
Camera Operator: Kierston Drier
Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne