Category Archives: FEATURE Screenplay Festival

July 2018 – Read the best of Screenwriter Interviews

Interview with Screenwriter Roberto Tomeo (HEART OF GOLD)
Interview with Screenwriter Roberto Tomeo (HEART OF GOLD)

Interview with Screenwriter Jason Boaden (ME & CINDERELLA)
Interview with Screenwriter Jason Boaden (ME & CINDERELLA)

Interview with Screenwriter Rene Collier (MISTAKES)
Interview with Screenwriter Rene Collier (MISTAKES)

Interview with Screenwriter Nevada McPherson (PIANO LESSONS)
Interview with Screenwriter Nevada McPherson (PIANO LESSONS)

Interview with Screenwriter Fabian Martin (HALFWAY TO MARS)
Interview with Screenwriter Fabian Martin (HALFWAY TO MARS)

Interview with Screenwriter Linda Hullinger (REAL TIME DENIAL)
Interview with Screenwriter Linda Hullinger (REAL TIME DENIAL)

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Winning Feature Screenplays for June 2018

ACTORFALLING STAR – Feature Screenplay
June 2018 Reading
by Katie Marshall

Submit your Film & Screenplay via FilmFreeway:

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

Director: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: Kimberly Villarruel

Camera Op: Mary Cox

Winning Feature Screenplays for May 2018

 

ACTORFOR A GOOD LIFE – Feature Screenplay
May 2018 Reading
by Natalia Maslin
 

  

ACTORAMERICAN SNAKE PIT – Feature Screenplay
May 2018 Reading
Dan Tomasulo
 

 

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

Director: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: Kimberly Villarruel

Camera Op: Mary Cox

Feature Screenplay – AMERICAN SNAKE PIT, by Dan Tomasulo

Genre: Drama, Comedy, Crime

Young Doctor Dan is a stuck-in-graduate school, some-day-would-be psychologist with a failing marriage and dead-end job. Desperate to change his place in the world, he takes a job at Walden House. This group home recently took on violent patients from the notorious Willowbrook, the worst asylum in American history. Doctor Dan attends an employment seminar and discovers he’s the only one applying for the job. He accepts the offer with no clue what awaits him.

CAST LIST:

Mayor Billings: Daniel Cristofori
Gwennie: Kimberley Wells
Chief Willy: Ted Powers
Narrator: Carina Cojeen
Dr. Dan: John Marcucci
Taimi: Kesley Dann
Harold: Luke Robinson
Meredith: Brianna Riche

Get to know the writer:

 What is your screenplay about?

Based on a true story of a young doctor who takes over and attempts to save a group home comprised of the most troubled patients from Willowbrook, the worst asylum in American history.

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Historical / Drama (Although it recently won the category for best comedy / drama)

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

American Snake Pit is in the vein of One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. The true story aspect makes this the first movie of its kind concerning the treatment of psychologically-disturbed patients coming from the infamous Willowbrook Institute, a hell on earth Bobby Kennedy called a “snake pit” in 1965. The movie is a heart-warming and surprisingly funny story of patients not just surviving, but flourishing for the first time in their lives, proving the resilience and hope of the human spirit.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Disturbingly hopeful.

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

All of Me

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

One year—but the memoir it is based on—10 years.

How many stories have you written?

Over 50. A little over half of them have been published.

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

Born in the USA. I live in Jersey. I live in Asbury Park—You got a problem with that? J

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Moving from the book toward the screen required changes. I originally thought it would be more documentary style—but ends up it is more “inspired by” as these changes were introduced.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I am a psychologist and teach at UPenn in the Master of Applied Positive Psychology program (MAPP) and designed and teach the Optimal Well-being program at Columbia’s Spirituality Mind Body Institute. My deep interest is the intersection of positive psychology and storytelling as an agent means

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

Director: Kierston Drier

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: Kimberly Villarruel

Camera Op: Mary Cox

FEATURE Screenplay Reading of FOR A GOOD LIFE, by Natalia Maslin

 

Genre: Drama, Family

A young hockey prodigy loses his brother and deals with the consequences as he learns a new family dynamic and develops a new father-son relationship.

CAST LIST:

Bill: Neil Bennett
Ben: Scott Beaudin
Narrator: Sean Ballantyne
Adam: John Fray
Morgan: Val Cole
Tim: Nick Wicht

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

Director: Kierston Drier

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: Kimberly Villarruel

Camera Op: Mary Cox

Winning Feature Screenplay for April 2018

Watch readings of the winning screenplays performed by professional actors:

ACTORPREY FOR THE DAY – Feature Screenplay
April 2018 Reading
by Richard M. Kjeldgaarad

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

Director: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: Kimberly Villarruel

Camera Op: Mary Cox

Winning Feature Screenplay Reading – PREY FOR THE DAY, by Richard M. Kjeldgaard

Genre: Thriller/Suspense

An early 30’s couple is flown from California to Florida by a Real Estate Investor with an opportunity that appears too good to be true. Once they arrive the couple soon realizes they have fallen into the hands of a con man and his “Henchmen”. They are robbed, taken hostage and beaten as their journey to financial security soon becomes a fight for survival and terrifying encounters in an abandoned home development out in the middle of nowhere.

CAST LIST:

Tara: Cassandra Sirois
Billy: James Murray
Kathy: Vanessa Quaglaira
Narrator: Val Cole
John: Dan Fox
Miguel: Nick Wicht
Mendez: Fabio Abreu

Get to know the writer:

1. What is your screenplay about?

John and Kathy Pearson are an early 30’s, financially successful couple living an Los Angeles and are flown out Miami to meet a Real Estate Investor, Miguel, with a Real Estate investment plan that seems too good to be true, rehabbing abandoned neighborhoods from the Real Estate bubble for great returns on investment. After showing them a few of the areas the pair becomes suspicious when Miguel invites some of “Contractors” out to meet them. They are subsequently tied up, beaten and forced to transfer all their money to Miguel. After the deal is done Miguel goes back on his word and orders his men to murder them. John breaks free and turns the tables on Miguel and his henchmen. John and Kathy flee into the swampy, derelict neighborhood they were originally lured. Miguel, having survived the escape hires “Human Hunters” and puts a price on their heads. From there it’s a cat and mouse game of survival in an worn down area far from any civilization

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Suspense/Thriller

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

It’s an edge of your seat, action thriller which will have an audience thinking “What’s next?. The backstory of the couple makes them characters the audience will cheer for and the bad guys characters the audience will genuinely hate. The isolation of the locale adds to the atmosphere and feeling of helplessness..

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

Page turner.

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

John Carpenter’s Halloween.

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

Took close to six months. Rewrote the story several times giving the two main characters more of a backstory and introduced more bad characters in the “Abandoned community”. The ending took a few rewrites as well to make it credible. Had to give the story more of that emotional roller coaster feel to it.

7. How many stories have you written? Scripts (Feature) Three horror, Three suspense/thrillers, Five character driven dramas, three short screenplays (20 pages) and A TV sitcom idea (Pilot and three scripts for the idea) a while back.

8. What is your favorite song?

(Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?) Any song off the original BOSTON album.

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

The pacing of the story was the most difficult part. Keeping the visuals, action scenes and characters all together and at a pace that was believable without taking anything or anyone to a situation that might confuse the reader. Also making the John and Kathy characters that I call “Transitional”

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

Reading biographies (For inspiration) Real Estate investing, Travel and Photography.

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

Great. A combination of guidance and encouragement through the writing process.

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

Feedback has been great. They definitely are thorough in their reading as I can tell from their notes. Again, always encouraging!!

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

Director: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: Kimberly Villarruel

Camera Op: Mary Cox