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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Madame Lucinda – Short Script (Available for Production!) - post author Guest Reviewer

Madam Lucinda (11 pages, pdf format) by Jason K. Allen

A young man visits a psychic seeking knowledge about life.
But are there hunchbacks, dungeons, transgenderism and werewolves in his future?
And is that a bad – or a real good thing?

Ah, Fortune Tellers, Psychics and Tarot Card Readers – the bane of the honest service world. Or Saints in glittery costumes – depending on which supernatural side of the fence you’re on. Either way, we’ve all seen them at fairs, boardwalks, pulp magazines – and even your neighborhood strip mall (if you live in a fun place, that is.) And no matter the particular spiel, each psychic bellows a similar claim:

They can see into your misty future. Want to know if you’ll land that perfect job? Meet your true love? Win the lottery? Then just hand over that cash, and they’ll explain…

In the clever short Madam Lucinda, our story revolves around young Tommy (20s). Entering a psychic’s “boudoir”, Tom sits down with Madam Lucinda to listen to what she has to say. Make no mistake – you’ll want to know Lucinda’s visions, as well. Quickly, Tommy realizes the truth. Madam L is colorful. Witty. Sarcastic, even. Babbling about outlandish tales. But is that due to the spirits talking through her? Or a release of psychic built-up crap?

            MADAM LUCINDA
Soon you will go to grocery store.
There you will… purchase milk!

I don’t drink milk.

Confused, she studies his palm.

            MADAM LUCINDA
No, not milk! You will
purchase… various groceries!

You think you know where this story will end? Well, you’re NOT psychic – don’t even try!

But we firmly predict you’ll laughing out loud. So peer into the crystal ball laptop you bought at Best Buy – and make sure to read this goofy gem, and peer into the (amusing) spirit world!

Budget: Low budget enough – depending on your tastes. Some FX is involved, which can be rectified by a visit to a Halloween costume shop. One location, two actors and one over-the-top actress (who will have a blast) for the role of Madam Lucinda.

About the Writer: Jason K. Allen is a writer and filmmaker from Nashville, Tennessee. His screenwriting credits include the short films AMERICAN SOCK, which won Best Screenplay at the 2014 San Diego Film Awards, and AUTUMN LOVERS, winner of the Audience Award at the 2013 Artlightenment Festival in Nashville. He also wrote the feature film LUCKY FRITZ starring Julia Dietze (IRON SKY) and Corey Feldman. You can contact Jason at allen.jason.k (at) gmail. See IMDB for his complete credits.

About the Reviewer: Debra Johnson is an award winning screenwriter. She currently has two shorts in pre-production. For more information on Debra, visit her website at

Read Madam Lucinda

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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, April 18, 2017

Shelter – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - post author Guest Reviewer

Shelter 7 pages in pdf format by Bill Sarre

A homeless teen faces eviction from a men’s shelter – the last haven in his troubled world.

Theres no story if there isnt some conflict. The memorable things are usually not how pulled-together everybody is. I think everybody feels lonely and trapped sometimes. I think its more or less the norm. – Wes Anderson, six-time Oscar nominee, three times for screenwriting.

Ask any screenwriter. Conflict glues a story together. It’s an inevitable binding ingredient; essential for one’s masterpiece. Depicted in war, drama and action, Conflict’s always effective. Both to a macro – and micro – degree.

In his rivetingly tale Shelter, talented scribe Bill Sarre wields conflict with subtlety. As we journey through the script, Wes Anderson’s words ring out clear as a bell. “…everybody feels lonely and trapped sometimes.” The result is a truly gripping story – on a raw, bone achingly personal scale.

The two main characters: Daren, a 17-year-old denizen of the New Hope Mens Shelter, and 50-year-old Maggie – the world weary mistress of the space. Daren is a good kid – but one plagued by substance abuse issues. Not to mention homelessness. It’s a brutal life for anyone to survive. And unimaginable for a teen. And as bad as it is, it’s about to get worse. As the script opens, Daren’s hopes spiral out of control when his best friend is gunned down in a drug deal. Daren reacts to the news by trashing his room. He passes out in a drunken binge… bringing down Maggie’s wrath on his head. A woman at the breaking point, she shrieks at Daren: “I thought you were different. But you’re just like the rest…” Disappointed by his actions, Maggie screams at Daren. She demands he pack his things. And leave….

Enter Lucinda – Daren’s guardian angel. A bright and cheerful case worker, Lucinda is the teen’s only hope – stuck between Daren’s hard knock life and the world weary pain of Maggie. Stepping into harm’s way, Lucinda fights for Daren. She gently leads the teen through his problems. And begs Maggie for compromise.

The result as the narrative unfolds: a dizzying literary display of characters – conflict and despair. A dramatic masterpiece ala Wes Anderson, Bill Sarre’s Shelter is a raw, crisis riddled tale. Drama directors take note: Shelters a ‘slice of life’ story for the festivals – one that speaks of strength of character. Not to mention kindness. And hope.

Budget: Low. The main ingredients: modern settings. Solid actors. P.S. If someone makes this movie, let me suggest the music for the closing credits here:

About the writer: An award winning writer, Bill Sarre has had scripts place both finalist and quarter finalist with Page and Bluecat. Another short of his, The Grieving Spell, was recently grand prize winner of the London Film Awards. Bill can be reached at Bill.sarre “AT”

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

Read Shelter (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.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Original Script Sunday (has come on a Monday) - post author Don

Over on the Original Scripts page are seventeen original scripts for your reading pleasure.

Note that script submissions are closed this week. If you are a member of the discussion board, I invite you to try your hand at the April One Week Challenge.

– Don

Friday, April 14, 2017

Whatever it Takes – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - post author Guest Reviewer

Whatever It Takes (Reader’s cautioned. 9 pages in pdf format) by Paul Clarke

To escape imprisonment, Tom is willing to do whatever it takes…

Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration. — Thomas A. Edison

True, Edison’s point was about the importance of hard work and perseverance, but the fact remains — one percent inspiration is essential. Especially for creative endeavors, inspiration can be the critical ingredient that makes all the difference – between the extraordinary and the mundane.

In Whatever It Takes, a short screenplay by Paul Clarke, protagonist Tom understands the importance of inspiration well. He’s a successful writer, hard at work on his latest novel. The reason Tom’s successful is that he lives (and dies) by Edison’s rule. When we first meet Tom, he’s locked in a dingy hotel room – writing hard enough to save his life; pouring ninety-nine percent perspiration onto the page.

Yet, Tom just can’t find that last little bit – the inspiration required to make his novel pop. But he’s willing to do whatever it takes to make it happen. How much?

We’ll soon find out.

For instance, Tom’s novel is set in a prison. So he gets down to role playing; hard core. From the get-go, he’s locked in his hotel room… barricaded from the outside. His agent has the key, there are bars on the window and Tom’s dressed in a prison jumpsuit – he hasn’t bathed in several days. A dedicated writer, he’s gone to great lengths to make it all seem real, including a primitive shiv hidden in his bed… not to mention, a make-shift noose.

Whatever it takes. So they say.

But even after a brush with death, Tom still can’t summon his muse.

Enter Katie (age 27), Tom’s girlfriend. And what a grand entrance she makes: “She rips the coat off revealing a Halloween-style slutty prison warden costume. Complete with thigh-high boots, and fishnet stockings.”

With a naked Katie, underneath. Which is when the story virtually explodes… into a funny, bawdy, high-energy romp, reminiscent of Spencer Tracy & Katherine Hepburn. Or Clark Gable & Claudette Colbert. Cary Grant & Rosalind Russell; any classic couple you can name. If they’d been making films in the twenty-first century, that is. And summoned the spirit of Mae West…

A masterpiece of set-up and pay-off, Whatever it Takes is a lot of fun. The first half? Suspenseful. The second is a riot and a great pay-off. Are you a director who likes intelligent raunch mixed with drama, not to mention a riveting tale? Then let Whatever It Takes inspire you. Put in the perspiration to do this right, and it’ll be a film festival favorite!

Budget: Fairly low.

About the writer: Paul Clarke is an Australian based screenwriter who works as a cinema manager by day and paid coverage writer by night. His success so far has included a top 10 place in the Writer’s Store Industry Insider competition. And is currently working on a selection of short, feature, and pilot scripts. He can be reached at paul.clarke.scripts “AT” gmail

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

Read Whatever It Takes (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.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Cards – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - post author Guest Reviewer

Cards (5 pages in pdf format) by Rick Hansberry

A pair of copyrighters continue their career-long battle long after retirement.

There’s a lot to like about “Cards,” a short script by award-winning screenwriter Rick Hansberry. First of all, it’s so well-written that it’s a special treat for those of us who simply enjoy reading screenplays. If that’s you, go ahead and give it a read. The atmosphere is nearly perfect, vivid characters abound, and snappy dialogue almost leaps from the page. It’s a pleasure to read.

More importantly, though, “Cards” is a filmmaker’s dream. It tells a heart-warming story about life-long “frenemies” with a touch of humor and an element of suspense. There’s even a little romance in the air. All in five pages!

Fred and Jack, two curmudgeonly 70-somethings, have been friendly rivals for many years, in fact long before the portmanteau “frenemies” was coined. Every morning, they meet in the local greasy-spoon diner to needle each other — under the watchful eye of Ida, the waitress, who ensures their needling stays cordial. Without her scrutiny, there’s a good chance it might not. As the script tells us, “Ida dangles the coffee pot over their mugs. Her eyebrows arch, inferring that if they don’t behave, no refills.” They behave. Mostly.

And each morning as they munch their breakfast to the sound of golden oldies on the juke box, they have a friendly/not-so-friendly competition. They scribble feverishly on their paper napkins, and when they’re done, Ida judges the results. Her verdict this morning? “They’re both good,” she says. Rats!

But what do they scribble on those napkins every morning? That’s the real question. We don’t find out until the end of the script, but when we do we also learn a lot about Fred and Jack. And that’s the heart of the story.

“Cards” is a sweet slice of life, and it would be extremely simple to film. One location — a diner. Three very choice roles for some “seasoned” actors, and a few extras. This could easily be a film festival favorite.

Budget: Low

About the writer: Rick Hansberry is a screenwriter, producer and director with more than 20 years of industry experience. His SAG Foundation award-winning “Branches” features narration by Daniel Stern and garnered international festival awards. In 2017 his thriller/horror film, “Evil In Her” was released on Amazon Video and Vimeo On Demand. His most recent short, inspired by true events, has won praise for its portrayal of one girl’s positive approach to handling her Type 1 Diabetes. You can view It’s Not Permanent free. Rick has shorts and features available here and is presently available for hire for new story ideas, rewrites and adaptations. He can be reached at djrickhansberry – AT – msn, (cell phone 717-682-8618) and IMDB credits available here.

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

Read Cards (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.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Lone Star Runner Hunnies – Short Script Review (Available for Production!) - post author Anthony Cawood

Lone Star Runner Hunnies (7 pages in pdf format) by C.J. Walley

Fleeing a drug deal gone wrong, four girls held up in a lonely Texas diner face the dilemma of capture vs saving a mortally wounded friend.

Roadside diners make great locations – for almost any genre you can mention. Comedy. Romance. Horror. And crime dramas are no exception. (Pulp Fiction and Reservoir Dogs, anyone?) But you need a talented writer to populate such a setting properly. With fresh, interesting characters.

Fortunately, Lone Star Runner Hunnies has a surplus. Enter Ameena, KJ and Scotty.

As the script opens, the girls burst into a rundown café, agitated and out of their depth. They’re clearly running away… from something or someone. Scotty and Ameena dash immediately towards the back, ignoring startled clientele. They’re heading towards the restrooms. And for whatever reason, it’s urgent. (Get your minds out of the gutter, folks. This is a crime script – not comedy.)

KJ plops down at the nearest table. She’s quickly approached by the cook, a down-home type named Jake. Though concerned, Jake does his best not to pry. He takes KJ’s order. She grills poor Jake about the soup. And uses the menu to hide her tears.

Meanwhile, in the bathroom – things are getting urgent. Ameena cleans up the blood as best she can, hands Scotty a syringe…

…and joins KJ outside, whispering across the table. What are they gonna do next? And is Scotty even gonna survive?

Which is when an unexpected visitor appears at the door. Throwing the mother of all spanners in the works…

What makes a good crime story great? Well, just like diner food – there are a few essential ingredients. Interesting personalities. Rich visuals. A ticking clock of some kind. Not to mention mystery.

An expert of this genre, writer CJ Walley breathes fiery life into his characters – and leaves plenty of questions between the lines. What happened before the diner? We never fully know. But we (and Scotty) are dying to find out. With Lone Star Runner Hunnies, Walley’s recipe is complete. Resulting in an expertly executed narrative that (unlike Scotty) deserves to be shot.

Budget: Relatively small – rent a diner and that’s it.

About the writer, C.J. Walley: I began writing in 2012 and I’m pleased to say it’s been very exciting so far. I have been fortunate enough to have a short produced by a director in London and Amazon Studios have spotlighted one of my features as a notable project. My scripts place within the top 10% of various major screenwriting competitions and, as I continue to write new specs, I am remotely collaborating with a producers, directors, and actors in LA, NYC, New Orleans, Atlanta, Washington DC, Zurich, Amsterdam, Sydney, and Dallas while occasionally blogging for Stage 32. If you’re an aspiring filmmaker, then I’d love to join forces with you whatever the scale, do not hesitate to reach out and drop me a line. (CJ “AT” CJwalley DOT COM;

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

Read Lone Star Runner Hunnies (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.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Truth or Dare by P.H. Cook – Filmed - post author Don

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

A troubled couple, agree to babysit a boy with issues of his own.

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Sunday, April 9, 2017

Original Script Sunday for April 9th - post author Don

Over on the Unproduced Scripts page are eighteen original scripts for your reading pleasure.

– Don

Friday, April 7, 2017

The Unlikely Temptation of Christ – Trailer - post author Don

The Unlikely Temptations of Christ by (7 pages, pdf format) Mark Moore (irish eyes)

After fasting for forty days and forty nights, Jesus is tempted by the devil, in the most unusual ways. (short, comedy)

Thanks to everyone who watched and liked the film!

Check out the trailer

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