Tag Archives: July 2016 Short Screenplay Winner

Shiv Sudhakar – July 2016 1st Scene Screenplay Winner

Submit your First Scene to the Festival: http://firstscenescreenplay.com

Watch Table Reading of the July 2016 Winning First Scene Screenplay.

SENIOR PRANK by Shiv Sudhakar

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Comedy

A group of cunning high school seniors must outwit their principal in order to pull off the ultimate senior class prank.

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Val Cole
AL – Dan Cristofori
CARL – David Occhipinti
FRAN – Viktoria Napolenova
ALFRED – Michael Gaty
GUS – Mark Boutros

Get to know the winning writer:

1. What is your screenplay about?

It’s about a group of cunning high school seniors who try to outwit their wary principal in order to pull off the ultimate senior prank.

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

Whether we happen to be in high school or not, I think it speaks to the high school kid in all of us who secretly want to pull off the ultimate senior prank without having to face the consequences. It’s about rules and how some rules are meant to be broken sometimes. It reminds us that having good friends is important in life–even as we get older and you can never go wrong following your instinct.

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

Funny and Original.

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

Way too many to count. Titanic. I hate to admit it, but it’s true.

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

About 2 years.

6. How many stories have you written?

About 5-6.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

The most impactful experiences in my life were in high school. My teachers and friends taught me a lot about life and how to be a good person. I wanted to give back, so I decided to volunteer my time and tutor students struggling in the high school I went to. This script came out my own positive experience in high school and tutoring the students.

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

I work full time as a physician and take classes part-time at Academy of Art to complete my MFA. I wrote this script on my own time, so I would say the biggest obstacle was time, but like anything in life, you find time for what you love to do.

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

Teaching. I really like teaching high school students. I don’t get paid for it, but it is a real treat to go back to my own high school and teach in the same classrooms to the new generation of students. I also love to run!

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

Like any writer, I go through extremes of what I think my script could become–the next oscar winning screenplay or the worst screenplay written…like ever. I entered to see if anyone else besides myself would actually like it! The feedback was really positive and motivating. It made me feel it could go somewhere. I started pitching it and got a request last week (which I know does not mean anything–the executive may not like it and then I’m back to sqaure one, but still it was fun to send it to him since I have never been able to get any of the scripts I have written in an executive’s hands…until now!)

11. Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

Everyone says write what you know, but I would say weave in what you know with what you want to see on the movie screen. Find a mentor and listen to him or her. Write as much as you can and read as many scripts as you can. Get coverage. Don’t ever send out your first draft. If you look at the success stories of many professional screenwriters, almost everyone has a unique journey which lead them to the big break. Professional screenwriters exist–so why can’t it be you? Life’s not a spectator sport–like my favorite high school teacher taught me–you have to go after what you want.

****

Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com
Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne
Editor: John Johnson

Kelly Crawford – July 2016 1st Scene Screenplay Winner

Submit your First Scene to the Festival: http://firstscenescreenplay.com

Watch Table Reading of the July 2016 Winning First Scene Screenplay.

NINE SCARS by Kelly Crawford

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Fantasy, Romance, Thriller

A teen romance thriller that takes place in a world in which everyone has nine lives. In this world of nine lives, an aspiring football player must risk all of his lives to rescue his girlfriend from the ruthless leader of a gambling syndicate who’s trying to fix the college football championship game.

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Val Cole
KEITH – Dan Cristofori
PRINCIPAL – David Occhipinti
ROBBIE – Michael Gaty
MATT – Mark Boutros
JAMIE – Viktoria Napolenova

Get to know the winning writer Kelly Crawford:

1. What is your screenplay about?

IN A WORLD IN WHICH EVERYONE HAS NINE LIVES, AN ASPIRING FOOTBALL PLAYER MUST RISK ALL OF HIS LIVES TO RESCUE HIS GIRLFRIEND FROM THE RUTHLESS LEADER OF A GAMBLING SYNDICATE WHO’S TRYING TO FIX THE COLLEGE FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME.

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

IT’S ORIGINAL, WITH A COMPELLING REMINDER THAT WE HAVE ONLY ONE LIFE TO LIVE.

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

ACTION PACKED!

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

THE RELUCTANT ASTRONAUT

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

ONE YEAR.

6. How many stories have you written?

TWO SO FAR.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

FIVE YEARS AGO I SURVIVED A BRAIN HEMORRHAGE AND BEGAN CONTEMPLATING MY MORTALITY. IN DOING SO I THOUGHT ABOUT A WORLD IN WHICH EVERYONE HAS MULTIPLE LIVES AND THAT LED ME TO CREATE “NINE SCARS”.

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

GETTING CONFLICTING FEEDBACK ON STORY IDEAS.

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

SHARING THE LOVE OF JESUS CHRIST.

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

THE FEEDBACK WAS EXCELLENT. VERY CONSTRUCTIVE AND HELPFUL. I ENTERED THE FESTIVAL BASED UPON THE NUMEROUS POSITIVE REVIEWS I READ ABOUT THE FESTIVAL.

11. Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

WRITING IS A CONTINUAL LEARNING PROCESS.

 

****

Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com
Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne
Editor: John Johnson

Stephen Milek – July 2016 Short Screenplay Winner

Watch the July 2016 Winning 1pg. Short Screenplay 

MATERNAL FEAR by Stephen Milek

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Kaufmann
PAM – Elizabeth Rose Morriss

Get to know writer Stephen Milek:

1. What is your screenplay about?

My screenplay is a psychological thriller based on events that happened to a friend of mine. She was heading to bed and looked at a baby monitor to check on her son and saw a white orbs circling around her son. Not wanting to wake her son up she googled what to do and found an incantation to say to send evil spirits away.

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

A relationship that lives in the aftermath of an abortion is
The fear a parent has for their children is universal. When something unknown threatens an innocent child even non parents feel a sense of dread. I believe a film like this could tap into those universal fears.

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

Mother’s fear

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

As a kid I probably watched The Goonies the most and still revisit it as an adult and still ranks as one of my favorite movies.

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

When I found out about the 1 page screenplay challenge I tried to come up with a good story that could be told in a short time. Since I only found out about the challenge shortly before the deadline it was a pretty short time that I was working on it.

6. How many stories have you written?
Around 10

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

I liked the challenge and love to get feedback to strength my writing skills. The story comes from wanting to tell a complete story in 1 page.

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

The one page limit posed the biggest obstacle especially with the end. In my first draft there were more characters and bigger ending. But a lot of editing had to be done to get the one page ending but still try to keep the intensity of the script.

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

Movies in general. I write for a blog and help run The Milwaukee Twisted Dreams Film Festival.

Besides that I work in a hospital as a pharmacist.

10. Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

I still feel like I am learning so not sure what advice I could pass on.

The biggest part of learning to write is seeking meaningful feedback. I always appreciate tips on how to make my writing better. I also try to read other screenplays to get a feel of how the pros do it.

*****

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

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Julie Merrick – July 2016 Short Screenplay Winner

 

Watch the July 2016 Winning 1pg. Short Screenplay 

PRO-PETE by Julie Merrick

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Kaufmann
ALYSSA – Elizabeth Rose Morriss
ANNE – Mandy May Cheetham

Get to know the winning writer Julie Merrick:

1. What is your screenplay about?

Pro-Pete is about a man and a woman who love each other. Leave each other. Hate each other. Nearly die while separated – and then, in the end, forgive each other fully completel

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

A relationship that lives in the aftermath of an abortion is
evocative. The story does not take sides or suggest right or wrong, but instead explores human emotion, with themes of perseverance and forgiveness.

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

Unfeigned, responsive.

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

To Kill a Mocking Bird.

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

Not long (a few months), although I had the idea for a while.

6. How many stories have you written?

Many stories, but I have about 6 complete screenplays written.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

I like stories that have a core narrative of hope, but that are not afraid to include elements of dark emotion. I don’t think many people dare to write a story that includes abortion (because of it’s controversy and extremes).

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

I faced the normal obstacles – writer’s block, writer’s doubt,
writer’s despair, writer’s mania. Finishing a story that satisfies yourself is very difficult (I think for all but the most confident of writers).

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

I find playing music difficult, but fun. I also like Super Mario games.

10. Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

Enjoy the process and keep learning.

*****

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

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Chris Beadnell – July 2016 Short Screenplay Winner

Watch the July 2016 Winning 1pg. Short Screenplay 

THE TRENCH by Chris Beadnell

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Kaufmann
EASON – Robert Notman
1st LIEUTENANT – Neil Bennett
GERMAN SOLDIER – Devin Upham
CARTER – Michael Kazarian

Get to know the winning writer Chris Beadnell:

1. What is your screenplay about?

A moment in time during the fierce WW1 Battle of the Somme. It focuses on a decision made by a young soldier. A decision that, if he was to survive the war, he may have later regretted.

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

This would make a very short but intensely powerful film. The final twist is sure to have the audience walking out with a dilemma of conscience and a sense of what might have been. Or what might NOT have been.

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

Mercy’s consequence

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

The Shawshank Redemption

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

It took about 2 weeks. About an hour to write and then some hard core editing

6. How many stories have you written?

About 11- 12. Quite a few others in various stages of completion

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

I wanted to write a one page screenplay as an exercise in learning the art of keeping only the important parts to tell the story, and learn how to cull the unnecessary in a body of work. The story itself is based loosely on fact.

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

Keeping the script to one page. My first draft was almost 3 pages long! As a learning exercise it was great to study the script in such an intimate way to know what had to stay and what could be discarded. It was not an easy process.

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

Sport and humanitarianism.

10. Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

Just write. And edit, and edit and edit. Post your work on trusted script writing forums to get ideas and feedback. When you are comfortable, enter your work in comps.

*****

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

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

 

Steve Biggs – July 2016 Short Screenplay Winner

 

Watch the July 2016 Comedy Short Screenplay Winner.

FIRE! by Steve Biggs

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Kaufmann
CAPTAIN – Neil Bennett
PRISONER – Devin Upham
SOLDIER #1 – Robert Notman

Get to know the winning writer Steve Biggs:

1. What is your screenplay about?

A firing squad that gets interrupted by a 9-1-1 call.

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

It is fun, Fun, FUN!

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

Very funny

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

Star Wars

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

It took 24 hours. Up to the hour I submitted it. The idea and gags were instant, I did have to trim off 1/3 of a page.

6. How many stories have you written?

Probably no more than two dozen. (Do white lies count? ‘Cause I’ve created lots of those.)

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

The challenge of a one page script. How many jokes and gags could I put on one sheet of paper? Right now there are seven, but put into the hands of a skillful director and actors there could be many more.

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

Spell checking and getting it past my assistant.

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

People. I love people and the human (mortal) experience. In worldly terms, I love my little business.

10. Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

Don’t play video games. Don’t take a job that kills creativity. Don’t write because you think it will make you important. Don’t write out of your own wounds, I do not want to sip from the cup of your bad mental health. Keep your day job especially if it will keep you connected to real people. Relax; every fight, confrontation, speeding ticket or tooth that gets pulled, gives you material.

*****

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

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Sally Spitzli – July 2016 Short Screenplay Winner

Watch the July 2016 Winning 1pg. Short Screenplay 

TREED by Sally Spitzli

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Comedy

This is a black & white silent comedy short with subtitles.

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Kaufmann
VOICE OVER – Elizabeth Rose Morriss

Get to know the winning writer:

1. What is your screenplay about?

A woman uses a child to con a guy at Christmas.

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

It’s a funny little black & white “short” that an audience would enjoy.

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

Universal appeal.

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

“The Wizard of Oz”

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

I worked on the 1-page script a total of 5 minutes, but the story goes back decades. When I was a divorced parent of a little girl, times were tough and we couldn’t afford the $50 Christmas tree we saw on a lot. My daughter was only 8 years old, but had a sophisticated sense of humor. When I told the salesman I only had $10 to spend, he told me he was sorry but they didn’t have any trees for that price. As he walked away, my daughter tugged at my coat and said, “Mommy, does that mean we can’t have Christmas?” Her timing was perfect and her delivery was Oscar-worthy. The man turned around, looked at her angelic face and said, “Of course, you’re going to have Christmas, Honey.” He took my 10 bucks, nailed the tree to a stand, tied it to the top of my beaten up old VW, and tearfully waved to us as we drove off. On the way home, my little girl said she thought that would be a good movie like those “old ones on TV.”

6. How many stories have you written?

I used to be a travel writer, radio/TV/print commercial copywriter. Presently, I have a TV movie screenplay ready for purchase and I have almost completed a novel. The screenplay is a sweet story that deals with families and Alzheimer’s. The novel is raw and deals with spousal abuse, infidelity and murder.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

It looked like fun and I already had the story in mind.

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

Trying to fit it on one page.

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

My family, (including the dog) home, charities.

10. Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

If something touches you, chances are it will touch other people, as well. Write it down.

*****

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

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne