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Thursday, March 23, 2017

Go Fish – Short script available for production - posted by Ingrid Short

Go Fish (9 pages in pdf format) by Kirsten James

Two young boys play cards and drink a beer in their father’s hunting cabin until the reality of their day unexpectedly catches up with them.

It’s the 1930’s, but it could be any time. Two young boys, Samuel and Henry, best friends, play Go Fish to pass the time. The winner of a hand gets a pull on a bottle of beer. Who’s going to know? Just the two of them alone in a cabin. Or are they alone?

*Spoilers*

Grandpa is in the cellar and Grandpa ain’t Grandpa anymore. Grandpa is a werewolf and he’s very angry. As you progress through the story you realize this isn’t two boys hanging out in Dad’s hunting cabin. There is a deeper story and threat that they must deal with or wait out before they can leave.

Production: Budget: Medium to Low depending on how creative you are with the werewolf; Location: One – hunting cabin; Cast: Two young boys, one werewolf.

About the Writer: Kirsten James is an aspiring screenwriter in her early 40’s, originally from NZ, living in the USA. She started writing short stories 2 years ago, and after a year learned that she was more geared to writing scripts. Kirsten has a degree in psychology and finds this a great asset to her writing.

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This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Marguerite – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - posted by Guest Reviewer

Marguerite (17 pages in PDF format) by John P. Dowgin

An aging diva finds her cherished voice failing her with a treacherous understudy waiting in the wings. But she has a few magical tricks up her sleeve…

“The devil’s voice is sweet to hear.” — Stephen King, Needful Things, 1991.

But it’s not the devil’s voice that takes center stage in “Marguerite,” a short script by John P. Dowgin — it’s Marguerite’s own voice, although there’s clearly some devilry going on behind the scenes. “Marguerite” is a modern Gothic horror tale rife with jealousy and treachery and the lust for fame and fortune. And voodoo.

Marguerite Woolsley is an aging African-American diva who will stop at nothing to preserve her youth… and her voice. She’s set to make her triumphant comeback in a modern revival of Scott Joplin’s opera, “Treemonisha,” which tells the tale of slave life on a southern plantation in the 1800s. But the title character is an 18-year-old woman, and Marguerite is in her 60s. As the screenplay tells us, “Her age shows even under stage makeup, but cannot dim her presence.” More important for an opera singer, though, is her voice, and it’s not what it once was. During a dress rehearsal she tries to hit a high “C” and her voice cracks. “The note she hits is not only clearly wrong, it’s not even close.” The producers panic, but not Marguerite. A little dose of voodoo — some candles, animals skulls, a necklace made of bones, and thirteen dead crows — and voila! Her voice is sweet again. As sweet as, well… the devil’s.

But Marguerite’s understudy, Therese, has plans of her own. And some voodoo of her own, too. Like a predator sensing weakness, she strikes, sabotaging Marguerite’s voodoo talisman, her gris-gris bag, and we watch as Marguerite withers. First her voice goes, and then, when we last see Marguerite, “Her face is ancient skin stretched over bone. Her eyes have recessed into her skull.”

And Therese is set for her “triumphant debut” in “Treemonisha.”

But there’s voodoo, and there’s voodoo. And when Marguerite’s gnarled hand reaches into her hidden voodoo shrine and retrieves the ancient book, the mysterious pearl box, and the magic red powder, it can only mean one thing…

…not so fast, Therese!

Budget: Rather high, but manageable, and definitely worth every penny. Locations (e.g., the Metropolitan Opera House) and some aging effects would be the most expensive budget items. If they were simulated somehow, the overall budget would be moderate.

About the writer: John P. Dowgin is a playwright, screenwriter, director and actor, as well as a founding member of the production company The Porch Room (porchroom.com) for whom he directed the original work ‘Antony & Cleopatra: Infinite Lives” at the 2013 New York International Fringe Festival. Two of John’s plays have been published in the compilation “Accidents Happen” by Samuel French, and have been performed in New York, Los Angeles, Indianapolis, Toronto, Dublin, and Australia. A number of his screenplays are also in ‘development’, which he suspects to be a theoretical dimension like Oz. He lives in New Jersey with his wife and son.

About the guest reviewer: Helen Magellan (a pseudonym) is a successful screenwriter with several produced short scripts under her belt.

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This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Change of Heart – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - posted by AnthonyCawood

Change of Heart (8 pages in pdf format) by Eric Wall

A desperate virgin’s excursion to a dive bar yields unexpected results.

Urban Legends. They’re part of our culture. Our collective memory. Stories that are told again and again – usually with a moralistic spin. Don’t shirk your babysitting duties for your boyfriend. Or park in Lover’s Lane. Or investigate that noise in the closet. And definitely never get drunk in dive bars and hit on total strangers…

Now THERE’S an urban legend that’s stood the test of time: the one about the guy who gets wasted, only to wake up the next morning with a nasty hangover, in a bath loaded with ice… and missing some body parts… Maybe it’s never really happened, but that’s some evil stuff right there. A creepy tale that’s even inspired a notable Korean horror film, “Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance.”

It’s a scenario that inspired writer Eric Wall as well – and he’s taken it to some surprising (and delightful) places…

Meet protagonist Dennis. A sad-sack waste of a man. 37 years old. A virgin. Recently diagnosed with a heart defect. The fates haven’t been kind to poor Dennis – and it’s about to get far worse. When we meet poor D, he’s slumped in a seedy bar propositioning every female in sight. You see, Dennis is determined to get laid. Resolving at least one problem. Unfortunately for Dennis, his pickup lines stink on ice. As do his chances tonight…

At least until Tracy – an attractive vamp – slinks in the door. Sidling up to the bar and Dennis’ side, Tracy strikes up a conversation. And – as phenomenally unlikely as it seems – she seems to be attracted to him. A drink and some idle banter later, and Tracey agrees to take Dennis to a hotel room. Needless to say, she’s got a few ulterior motives in mind…

A straightforward, gory scenario – at least in SOME writer’s hands. But Change of Heart has surprises in store. Not to mention – heartfelt laughs. Witty and intelligent, Change has some amazing one liners. Not to mention amazingly fleshed out and sympathetic characters – in an eight page horror script, no less! You like dark comedy? Then give Change of Heart a try. It twists your expectations in delightful ways… all the way to its frosty end!

Budget: Relatively low – locations include a low rent bar and a cheap hotel bathroom.

About the writer: Eric Wall is a New Jersey based screenwriter who has written several short scripts, two features and is at work on multiple TV specs. He can be reached at e_wall1498 (a) yahoo.

About the reviewer: Anthony is an award winning screenwriter from the UK with 2 features optioned and over 30 short scripts optioned, or purchased, including 8 filmed. Outside of his screenwriting career, he’s a published short story writer and movie reviewer. Links to his films and details of his scripts can be found at www.anthonycawood.co.uk.

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This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Enchanted Quill – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - posted by Steve Miles

Enchanted Quill (10 pages in pdf format) by Mark Renshaw

A troubled young woman seeking answers about her dark past discovers a magic software app that allows her to make wishes comes true, but at a price – each wish costs her a fraction of her soul.

Fairytales play on our most primal of fears; from our moral anxieties and deepest desires to the monsters lurking in our subconscious they resonate through the ages to serve as warnings to the frailty of human nature.

            MILLY (V.O.)
Once upon a time there was a little
Princess who was betrayed by her
Prince Charming.

Milly was once a young, free-spirited innocent – that was until she met Malcolm:

            YOUNGER MALCOLM
Your parents said they would be late.
They asked me if I could give you a
lift home.

Unwittingly accepting the ride, Milly finds her young life locked in a cycle of tragedy and abuse as she’s passed from one monster to another.

The years pass and the abusers move on leaving Milly to struggle with the horrors of her childhood. One day she stumbles upon the dark web where a magic app called The Enchanted Quill gives her the promise of revenge. Of course, a deal like this comes at a price, but what’s 5% of your soul per wish when sweet vengeance is at stake?

And this is where we join the tale. Not in an enchanted kingdom in a land far away but an abandoned warehouse with Malcolm and cohorts trapped and Milly able to control their every action with the aid of The Enchanted Quill.

And this Princess is in no mood for forgiveness:

            MILLY
Fuck yeah! Let’s get the endgame
rolling. Enchanted Quill obey my
whim, give Malcolm a compound arm
fracture, through the skin! Woo, I
did a poem!

Milly proceeds to recount her tale, jumping from the past to the present as she puts her tormentors through their own personal hell. From the visceral to the surreal: fingernails are removed, arm bones are gnawed on and in a nod to the source material the repetition of mundane tasks takes the form of torture. Imagine taking off your shoes only to put them back on again…over and over and over…

Writer Mark Renshaw draws out the darker aspects of a little known fairytale called The Enchanted Quill to deliver a uniquely modern tale of retribution replete with monsters, tortured souls and unflinching violence. If you like to wring every last drop of blood from your horror then this is for you.

Budget: Four characters. Simple enough location wise with one main room and a handful of exterior shots informing the flashbacks. Plenty of gore on this one so experience with make-up and some creative effects would be a bonus. Based on The Enchanted Quill

About the writer Mark Renshaw In 2015, a short film he wrote and produced No More Tomorrows won several awards on the film festival circuit. He also won a ‘Top Pick’ award for his short script, ‘Automatic Drive’ in the finals of Reel Writers Competition.

His second film Surrender was released in September 2016. It has won Exceptional Merit awards for best Short Film, Writer, Lead Actor and Original Score in the Depth of Field International Film Festival.

‘Surrender’was most recently showcased in the Awareness Film Festival in Los Angeles and will feature in the Sunderlands Film Festival in May.  

Mark is currently working on producing his next script, a sci-fi short called ‘The Survivor.’ Filming is due to start in Milwaukee in mid-March.

You can check out his work on his website at Mark-Renshaw.com and on Mark’s Script Revolution profile.

About the reviewer: Steve Miles started writing scripts around five years ago after realizing that his social life was vastly overrated. He enjoys writing in a variety of genres but leans toward raw, grittier characters and the worlds they inhabit – from the deadly serious to the darkly comic. Drinks coffee, owns an unhealthy amount of plaid and uses a calculator for the most basic of sums. Check out more of his work at sjmilesscripts.webs.com

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This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Truth or Dare – Short Script Review (Available for Production!) - posted by Dane Whipple

Truth or Dare (8 pages in pdf format) by P.H. Cook

We all have our secrets.

A night of babysitting can be a trying feat under normal circumstances. But what if the child you are sitting is a mix between Damien from The Omen and that kid from Looper?

As a favor to a coworker, married couple Brynn and Mike Carter are looking after young Jayden for the weekend. It’s nothing they can’t get through with a little pizza and a lot of wine. At first, Jayden seems perfectly content to play his uber-violent video games, until BZZZZ, ZAP, the power goes out. To pass the time without electricity, Brynn suggests a game of truth or dare. Little does she know, truth is sometimes a thing best kept secret.

Things start off normal enough, embarrassing dancing, movie impersonations, etc. But then, Jayden starts to ask some questions that are… difficult. He seems to have a preternatural ability to probe the weak spots of Brynn and Mike’s relationship. Like a young Hannibal Lector, Jayden knows just what to ask in order to manipulate and intimidate. Will Brynn and Mike’s relationship survive the weekend? Will any of them survive the night? From here, it’s a slow burn to an unforgettable finale. Give away the surprise ending? I wouldn’t dare!

The best payoffs in psychological horror scripts arise organically out of well-plotted circumstances. The illustrious, enduring finales of The ExorcistPsycho, and of course Silence of the Lambs, are all made possible through their impeccably-structured first acts. So it is with Truth or Dare, which, in a few short pages establishes a situation that is at once high-concept and highly relatable. All of this builds to an ending that is both inevitable and completely surprising. It’s a rare feat and an absolute stunner of a screenplay that will unquestionably electrify the festival circuit.

I dare you to make this picture, because truthfully, the script is phenomenal!

Budget: Low. One room, three actors, and a pizza.

About the writer: Born and raised in Sweden, P.H. Cook is the director of the short film Them That’s Dead and writer of produced feature films Finders Keepers: The Root of All Evil and Blackout. She started writing screenplays in 2006 and has written over sixty short screenplays and ten features. She can be reached at gatortales (a) gmail.

About the Reviewer: Dane Whipple has one hand in his pocket, and the other hand is playing a piano. He is currently working on that screenplay everyone keeps talking about: The Wild Age. Contact him at dane.whipple (AT) live.com

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This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Congratulations Anthony Cawood! First Kiss – Filmed - posted by Don

First Kiss – Filmed!

YouTube is a great place to find all sorts of training videos, but not everyone wants to learn news things.

First Kiss – A Short Film from Justin Stearns on Vimeo.

Like them on The Facebook

Discuss on the discussion board

+++++++++++++++++++++++
This just in from Antony:

Just finalising sale of First Kiss to a film maker in Atlanta [Stearns Media Group – Atlanta]… found on SimplyScripts again.

Cheers

Anthony

You can check out a review of First Kiss

Read more of Anthony’s voluminous body of work.

About the Writer: Anthony is an award winning screenwriter from the UK with over 15 scripts produced, optioned and/or purchased. He is the author of the immensely useful How to… Sell Your Screenplay. Outside of his screenwriting career, he is also a published short story writer and movie reviewer. Links to to his films and details of his scripts can be found at www.anthonycawood.co.uk. His movie reviews can be found at www.subterrene.co.uk.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Writer’s Block by John Hunter – Filmed! - posted by Dane Whipple

Writer’s Block (pdf format) by John Hunter – Filmed by Jeff Easley

Billy Wilson would kill for a good story. Will he die for one?

Writer's Block (Short Film) from Jeff Easley on Vimeo.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

The Original Review

Words, words, words! For writers, words are life. On a good day, words flow onto the page to create stories that move and inspire us. A well-written story can uplift and…um…hang on, I swear I had something for this. Dang, writing is tough.

Billy Wilson knows all too well the struggle with the blank page. Sitting on a park bench looking for inspiration in a bottle of booze, Billy has a serious case of writer’s block. As Billy ponders just how to come up with a truly unique story, along comes a proverbial spider: Vance Buttons. You see, Vance has a secret to share. He is a serial killer. A well-practiced, calculating, pre-meditated murderer. With half-drunk whimsy, Billy queries for a few specifics. How to choose a victim? Randomly. Geographic preference? Never the same place twice. Just when it seems Billy has found something new to write about, one more problem crops up. He is dealing with a killer after all. Will Vance put Billy out of the misery that is writer’s block, or put him out of his misery altogether? Is Billy writing the story, or is the story writing him?

Feature films dealing with the writing experience pack a potent, powerful punch. Some of film’s truly great screenwriters, from Charlie Kaufman to the Coens, have tackled the subject. AdaptationBarton Fink, and Wonder Boys have all built reputations as favorites among both filmmakers and audiences. In this grand tradition, Writer’s Block succinctly taps into a subject that consistently garners accolades on the festival circuit and beyond. If you are looking for a film with an intelligent build to an unforgettable finale, I recommend you come down with a case of Writer’s Block.

Quickly, before the killer strikes again!

Pages: 4

Budget: Low. Assuming you can find a park bench, that is.

About the writer, John Hunter: With the completion of (4) boffo features, a litter of riveting shorts, a one hour take-your-breath-away sci-fi TV pilot and first 30 minute episode for that series, I am now officially THAT guy — The one who really needs an Agent or Executive Producer. Contact me at x32792 (AT) yahoo.com

About the Reviewer: Dane Whipple is the man who fixed the 1919 World Series. How did he manage that? Saw the opportunity, I suppose. He is currently working on that screenplay everybody keeps talking about: The Wild Age. Contact him at dane.whipple (AT) live.com

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This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Pick-Up – Short Script Review, Available For Production - posted by James Barron

Pick-Up pdf format by Brian Lewis

Stranded on a desolate country road, Julie is forced to call her recent ex for a late night ride.  However, the couple’s bickering is quickly cut short by an unseen creature who will stop at nothing to get inside.

Run-ins with the Ex can be tough.

Unbearable physical proximity combined with intolerable emotional distance. Memories flooding in –  the smell of her perfume, the stupid fights, the way her smile lit up her face. Your heart pounding in your chest. Palms sweaty.

And to top it all off, an evil monstrosity trying to murder you in the dead of night.

Okay, maybe that last one doesn’t apply to everyone.

But for former lovers Nick and Julie, stuck together on an empty stretch of road, jealousies and petty grievances give way to fear; a fear so intense and immediate it drains away everything else.

Something is hunting them.

Something dark and primal that will shake them to the very core and test every inch of human resolve. They’ll need each other, faults and all, if they’re to have any chance of surviving the night.

Written with a visual style to rival the best Creature Features, Pick-Up offers up believable characters and bone-rattling thrills galore.

Budget: A bit of a challenge. Probably some FX/CGI required. The hardest part will be beating back all the actors chomping at the bit to work with such a great script.

About the writer: A graduate of the Seattle Film Institute, Brian Lewis has been writing screenplays ever since high school. He’s also a musician, editor, video engineer, and DIY filmmaker. Be sure to check out more of Brian’s work on his Vimeo and Youtube channels.

About the reviewer: James Barron is a former law student turned screenwriter who loves to write comedy along with the occasional horror/thriller. Check out his work at JBarronScripts.com

Read Pick-Up (11 page short horror in pdf format)

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This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Ready or Not – Filmed - posted by Ingrid Short

Ready or Not (pdf format) by Steven Clark

A simple game of hide-n-seek takes a turn for the worst.

Discuss this on the Discussion Board

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
The Original Review

Mom and her son play a fun game of hide-and-go-seek. But, what if what you find is not what you were looking for?

This micro short can be as scary as you want to be. Snap this up now.

It’s a perfect weekend shoot and an excellent calling card short film that, as written, can be a family friendly horror comedy or an very un-family-friendly horror.

Pages: 2

Budget: Shoestring budget, two actors – Mom and son, one interior location.

About the writer: Based in upstate, NY, Steven Clark is the writer of over 30 short scripts, several of which are under option, in pre-production, or have already been made into films. On A Clear Night, a family Christmas feature aimed at a Hallmark Channel-type audience, is currently in the works. Steven can be reached at Steamroller138 (a) gmail.

About the reviewer: < crickets >

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This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

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