Winning SCI-FI Short Screenplay – A DAY IN A CONNECTED LIFE, by Michael E. Lucas

Genre: Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Comedy

Mark wants a nice snack and a beer but his kitchen has other ideas.

CAST LIST:

Narrator: Julian Ford
Mark: Steve Rizzo
Amicus: Dan Cristofori
Toilet/Beautiful Face: Emily Weir
Mistress: Penelope Corrin
The Phone: Rachel Salsberg

Get to know the winning writer:

What is your screenplay about?

A Day In A Connected Life is a dark SciFi comedy set in the near future in the smart house of a 36-year-old Silicon Valley techie. After a long run, Mark comes home with a strained heart and a need to have a cold beer. His house won’t listen to his irrational needs; they would disrupt his diet and endanger his heart. The refrigerator, toilet, and phone gang up on him to ensure he does what’s best for him. His hilarious argument with the refrigerator (to give him a beer) only encourages his artificially intelligent house to parent Mark toward rational decisions. But, Mark’s emotions just continue to drive him. He ignores their rational choices and they don’t understand his emotions

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Humor and SciFi

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

A.I. (Artificial Intelligence) will be predominant in our lives before 2030. Our current attitude, that machines are to serve us, must change. We will be interacting not with machines, but reflections of our own consciousness

How would you describe this script in two words?

Hilariously Plausible

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

The movie is The Matrix and the TV series is the 2004 version of Battle Star Galactica.

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

I first started it in 2014 and then I put it down for 21/2 years. I finished it in March 2017

How many stories have you written?

I have written 3 stories.

What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

I like the blues. Robert Cray is my go to man.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Time and responsibilities were ever present through the process. Writing the back story first, helped me to trim a 23 page script to 13 pages.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Poetry

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

I was looking for professional feed back. I also am looking for recognition. The first feeling was happiness. My craftsmanship was validated. I knew I was at least on the right track. The feedback also helped with a script problem that had eluded me.

****

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

Director: Kierston Drier
Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne
Editor: John Johnson

Camera Operator: Mary Cox

TV Pilot Screenplay – OLYMPUS RISING by C M Landrus

Watch the September 2016 Winning TV PILOT Screenplay.

OLYMPUS RISING by C M  Landrus

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Julian Ford
ASHER – Nick Hendrick Wicht
WILDHOFF – Sean Ballantyne
MICAH – Kheon Clarke
RYKER – Donald Molnar
DIANA – Alicia Payne
TEGAN – Katelyn Varadi

Get to know the writer:

What is your TV Pilot screenplay about?

The gods of Mt. Olympus awaken as human teenagers to struggle with the immortal bonds of kinship while reclaiming their rightful places as rulers of humankind.

Why should this screenplay be made into a TV show?

As a high concept genre show that employs Greek mythology as a backdrop to tell human stories, Olympus Rising is highly marketable and will have no problems finding an audience. It is also set up to generate many seasons of adventure and potential spinoffs. With a diverse cast that speaks to the modern era, the characters of Olympus Rising will keep audiences hooked with their relatable struggles loosely veiled under a fantasy umbrella.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Trauma-informed fantasy

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

The Twilight Zone (the original)

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

As of fall 2016, Olympus Rising will be three years in the works.

How many stories have you written?

I wrote my first short story when I was nine years old. After that I lost count.

What motivated you to write this screenplay?

In 2013 I crashed and burn on a major project that I had been preparing for for over six months. Frustrated and depressed, I shut myself away in my little apartment and binged on zinfandel, dark chocolate, The Vampire Diaries, Supernatural, and Heroes. Then I decided to write my own TV pilot where the protagonist was a total loser. I wanted to do something that was fantasy but didn’t want vampires, werewolves, or witches. I decided to use Greek mythology because, even though it’s prevalent in storytelling, I hadn’t seen anything that really used it directly in a while. The line, “Olympus rising” just popped in my head, and I started to develop ideas from that. Within a few days I had an outline, and it took about two or three days to pound out the first draft.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Compared to other writing projects, Olympus Rising, has gone really smoothly. I had a pretty clear idea of what I wanted from the beginning and have had tons of great feedback from people I trust. Every time I got feedback, I would take the time to rewrite it and tried to be flexible yet true to the characters and stories I had envisioned, and I didn’t worry about the time it would take me. I just set my own timelines by which I wanted to have this project polished.

One of the issues that kept coming up was making sure my protagonist was strong enough in the pilot to lead the whole show even though it has an ensemble cast, and in the pilot, Asher shares much of the main story with Micah. Plus Asher is supposed to be kind of a loser (by unfair societal standards), and it can be hard to make a loser engaging and strong.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I love learning languages and practicing martial arts.

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

I wanted to start submitting my pilot to festivals just to get some initial feedback and see how it played out to give me a better idea of what to do next. I also wanted to start small and work my way up to bigger festivals. Fantasy Sci-fi seemed like a very supportive group that would enjoy reading a fantasy pilot. The feedback was encouraging.

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

I’m not a big fan of advice, especially from other people. Just do what works best for you, and don’t let other people (including me) tell you how it should be done.

*****

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

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballatyne

Watching Winning Sci-Fi Short Story Reading: STARMAN – LIFE ON TRAPPISTONE by Dermott Hayes

Story performed by actor Julian Ford

STARMAN – LIFE ON TRAPPISTONE  by Dermott Hayes

Get to know the winning writer:

1. What is your Short Story about?

Suppose a person from another planet discovered they were from Earth, that their planet was colonized by aliens? And discovering this, how would it reflect on the world in which they lived? Does history repeat itself and are we always destined to repeat our mistakes

2. What genres would you say this short story is in?

Science fiction, mystery, a moral tale

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

Begin Again

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

High Noon

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

1 day, for this story and 10 weeks, since, 9 new episodes.

6. Do you have an all-time favorite novel?

In Dubious Battle by John Steinbeck

7. What motivated you to write this story?

I read a news story about three planets, 20 light years away, orbiting a dwarf star, discovered by astronomers working in a deep space observatory in Chile. I was listening to David Bowie while I read it. That same day I responded to a WP blog prompt, called Writers’ Quote Wednesday Writing Challenge. The verbal prompt for that week was ‘obsession’ and I chose David Bowie’s ‘Starman’ as my ‘writer’s quote’.

8. What artist would you love to have dinner with?

James Lee Burke

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

Cinema

10. What influenced you to enter the 1pg. Short Story contest?

It came up in a Film Freeway email notice on the same day I finished writing it. I thought it was serendipitous.

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

Write short and true, so readers can walk with you, in the same world.

If anyone wants to read the ensuing eight episodes – the last one has yet to be written – they’ll find it on https://dermotthayes.com/

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

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