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Watch Winning TV SPEC Screenplay of UNBREAKABLE KIMMY SCHMIDT by Sarah Cassell

The NOVEMBER 2016 Winning TV Screenplay 

TV SPEC of THE UNBREAKABLE KIMMY SCHMIDT
Written by Sarah Cassell

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Benjamin Camenzuli
KIMMY – Cass Van Wyck
TITUS – Percy Alexander Harris
JACQUELINE – Jane Smythe
LILLIAN – Becky Shrimpton
WILL – Hugh Ritchie
RUSS – Paul Whitaker

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Comedy

Kimmy creates a fake account on a millionaire dating website to help Jacqueline gain self-esteem.

Get to know the winning writer:

What is your TV Spec screenplay “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” about?

My spec “Kimmy Learns to Catfish!” is, at its core, about learning to accept emotional baggage. Everywhere but the core, it’s about Kimmy accidentally setting up a date with Jacqueline from a completely fake online dating account.

How does this screenplay fit into the context of the show?

This episode comes into play immediately after the end of season two. Each character revisits something in their past that is affecting their life currently. Kimmy reflects on her relationship with Dong. Jacqueline lets the trauma of her divorce affect her relationship with Russ. Titus’s lifelong string of unsuccessful relationships makes it hard for him to trust Mikey. Lillian, who, after years, still hasn’t come to terms with the death of her husband, spends the entire episode talking to a rat who stole her wedding ring. They each find a way to acknowledge their past, and its role in their present, by the end of the episode. Also, it’s very silly.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Brain box.

What TV show do you keep watching over and over again?

I’ve probably watched 30 Rock four times all the way through. Friends and Gilmore Girls have also gotten the go around twice each, at least. At the moment, I’m re-watching Curb Your Enthusiasm. It holds up.

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

I worked on this for about two months before calling it ready, but the main bulk of the writing was done in about a week.

How many stories have you written?

I write stories constantly, though not always in this form. I write and perform with the house sketch team Stockton at the Magnet Theater in NYC, so I’m generating several sketches every week. I’ve been working on a pilot as well, and developing a story for that has been an interesting process. This is my only spec script so far.

What motivated you to write this screenplay?

I’ve always considered myself a writer, but I decided I wanted to write for television when I started doing improv and sketch comedy. I took a TV writing class at Gotham Writer’s Workshop with Jim Mendrinos, who guided me through the process of writing this spec.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Landing on a storyline you can really get behind is a challenge, but the hardest thing about writing is probably editing – finding it in your heart to cut a joke or a bit that you love in order to serve the story. RIP to the jokes I left behind – I still love you babies.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Improv. Singing. Ukulele. My new skateboard that I am not good at riding yet. Snacks. My family. Dogs.

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

I had written this thing, and I didn’t know what to do with it. I started looking into festivals and programs that I could submit it to online, and WILDsound was the first one I landed on. I appreciated the feedback so much – it was incredibly helpful. It was clear that it came from a place of extensive knowledge, and that my script had been carefully studied and considered.

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

This is obvious, but write all the time. Don’t wait for the perfect idea – even a writing terrible thing is better than not writing a thing. Sharpen your skills daily so that when your perfect idea hits you, you are actually good enough to handle it.

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

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson


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TV SPEC of THE UNBREAKABLE KIMMY SCHMIDT “Kimmy is a VIP” by Mike Miller

Watch the October 2016 Winning TV Screenplay.

TV SPEC of THE UNBREAKABLE KIMMY SCHMIDT “Kimmy is a VIP”

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Ballantyne
KIMMY – Erynn Brook
TITUS – Martin Huss
JACQUELINE – Viktoria Napoleonova
LILLIAN – Michelle Alexander
ULLR – Brogan Caulfield
DORMAN – Michael Lake

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Comedy

Kimmy and Titus go on a quest to get Jacqueline back on an exclusive VIP list for a restaurant opening and Kimmy seeks justice after being rejected on Tinder.

Get to know the winning writer Mike Miller: 
 
What is your Kimmy Schmidt screenplay about? 

The feeling of not being included as we explore Jacqueline’s fear of being pushed out of high society, plus a little satire about the idea of exclusivity and how badly some people feel the need to be “above” others, and Tinder. Most of us can relate to the awkwardness of online dating, relationships, or simply being vulnerable.

How does this script fit into the context of the TV show? 

Tina Fey, Robert Carlock and the awesome cast created these great characters with such strong points of view. You can’t help but have fun writing in those voices. Kimmy is such an unbreakable fighter for justice, so I wanted to write a script with stories that fit her idealism and give us a chance to see what Titus, Jacqueline and Lillian want. TUKS does a great job making a parody on society, which is something I absolutely love to do.

How would you describe this script in two words?    

Kimmyfisticated Thinkystuff

What TV show do you keep watching over and over again? 

Seinfeld

How long have you been working on this screenplay?  

I wrote the first draft in about 6 weeks after binge watching season one. I let it sit for a bit and then picked it up with fresh eyes for a few edits. Then season 2 came out and I spent a few more days editing to create this version. In my original script [Spoiler] Xanthippe was the culprit Kimmy confronts at ‘Excluse’.

How many stories have you written? 

I fell in love with comedy writing and Improv while studying at the Second City, then wrote and performed at our local comedy theater. Writing sketches every week was a great experience before I began writing for television and film. In addition to this Spec Script, I’ve written two original sitcom pilots and I have two more in process along with three feature screenplays.

What motivated you to write this screenplay? 

I love the world of Kimmy Schmidt and her hopeful idealism. I’ve been called an elf for being so optimistic and happy, so maybe I’m a little like Kimmy. Kimmy is such a great fighter for justice, I couldn’t resist writing for her. I think it is important to write Spec scripts that show you can write on a team and contribute to a world other writers have created. I hope some showrunner out there might read this script, laugh, and give me a shot. Plus, I have a nerd crush on Tina’s writing so doing this was just plain fun.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay? 

You know the saying “Be careful what you wish for”. I wished for Season 2 to come out, then it did and I realized I had to change my script.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about? 

My wife, family, friends, and dog on the top of that list. I’m passionate about learning, exploring the world, and fresh tracks on a ski day. I’m similar to Kimmy, so count on me to be passionate about fighting injustice and most other philosophies that boil down to treating everyone with respect and kindness.

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

I think it is magical when something I wrote is performed on stage or screen. I was influenced to enter the festival with the hope that some very talented actors would bring this script to life in a table read, and hopefully I’d make a few of them and some Kimmy fans laugh (or at least chuckle). The feedback made my day because, again, if I can make someone laugh I’m happy.

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

Write sketch comedy, take Improv classes, and play with creating characters. You’ll either learn a lot or just have a lot of fun…hopefully both. Carry a journal with you everywhere you go. Every time I feel awkward, uncomfortable, or something crazy happens I write it down. That moment might turn into a memorable scene, a storyline for an episode, or the premise of a film. It could also be that I just have a lot of awkward moments. Keep writing, stay hopeful, and as Han Solo said “Never tell me the odds”.

 

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

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson

January 17 2016 Writing Festival Details

The writing festival will be presenting the best of TV Screenplays:  2 Original TV Pilot Screenplays, 1 TV Spec Screenplay, and a Best Scene TV Pilot Screenplay at the upcoming January 3 2016 event.

Here are the details of the winning scripts we’ll be performing:

#1 – TV Pilot – LACIE BIDWELL, by Jameel Khan 

Genres: Comedy, Drama, Thriller, Science Fiction, Mystery

SYNOPSIS:

Twelve years after her father created the zombie virus that killed thousands in downtown Indianapolis, Lacie Bidwell is in college and still feeling the effects of the family name. She tries to move on an live a relatively normal life. But when a mys

#2 – TV Pilot – LIFE IN THE LAST LANE, by Debi Calabro

Genre: Sports, Comedy

SYNOPSIS: 

A character-based comedy that explores the fascinating and high stakes world of horse racing, the people that the track draws in and the inevitable conflicts that ensue from the giant personalities who are addicted to living life in the fast lane.

#3 – TV Spec of the TV Show (Netflix) UNBREAKABLE KIMMY SCHMIDT “Kimmy Gets Addicted” by Jen Turriff

Genre: Comedy

SYNOPSIS: 

Kimmy quickly becomes addicted to an iPad game. As she discovers she unknowingly made in-app purchases, she has to find a creative way to pay her debts. Meanwhile, Titus battles his own obsession and Jacqu

#4 – TV Best Scene -Absynthia by Seregon O’Dassey

Genre: Sci-Fi, Drama

SYNOPSIS:

An attack on a mercenary airship, while on a seemingly innocent cargo run sends the lives of the Captain and her crew into their not so innocent pasts. Will the events that unfold destroy the future for everyone that the government had carefully and deliberately planned?

 

Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson