A man and a clerk haggle over store policy.
Wanna know the magic bullet for writing a good comedy script? Sorry, there isn’t one. Thanks for playing. Next!
But if you want to get close, here’s a tip – write a script that highlights a universal frustration, then go over the top and lambast the living hell out of it. That’s why satire is so effective: one of the purposes of humor is that it functions as a psychological defense; providing us poor humans a way to deal with the million miserable things that happen to us regularly – and keeping us from going postal.
Fortunately, there’s no limit of stuff to rag on. And close to the top of the list? Not having access to a bathroom during an… emergency.
That’s the focus of For Customers Only, a short that deals with bathroom humor – in a very literal sense. When the script opens, poor Trent Page is having a bad day. And it’s about to get even worse. He’s waiting for the bus when his stomach gurgles, signifying… well, you know. He heads to a nearby convenience store to use the bathroom, only to be informed it’s for “Customers Only.” But Trent doesn’t have his wallet. And the old clerk, Carl, is standing firm. Trent attempts to give Carl his phone as collateral. No dice. Upping the ante, he hands over his Rolex. That sacrifice buys him the needed permission; at least until another customer arrives – intent on robbing the store! Things only get, uh, shittier from there…
Admittedly not a high-brow, For Customers is a humorous rollercoaster of fun…all the way to it’s over the top conclusion. If you’re looking for a comedy, give this script serious consideration. After all, it’s a tale your audience can relate to.
About the writer: Brett Martin is an unrepped screenwriter living in Los Angeles that specializes in cross-genre thrillers. He sold an action/thriller to Quixotic Productions, owned by actor/producer Brett Stimely (Watchmen, Transformers 3). Mark Castaldo of Destiny Pictures recently hired Brett to write an inspirational sports drama. Montreal-based CineVita Films is producing a concept short for Brett’s new contained thriller spec, which is a unique modern take on a classic public domain fairy tale that Hollywood’s never cracked – yet.
Budget: Pretty cheap. You just need a convenience store to shoot in (maybe the Clerks location’s available?) That – and a handful actors – should do the trick!
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