It’s the FIIIINNNAL WEEK for the first round of the Scriptshadow Tournament!. The Scriptshadow Tournament pits 40 amateur screenplays against each other that you, the readers of the site, will vote on. Ultimately YOU will decide the winner. Today we have the last group of entries. Here are the previous weeks where you can find the 7 scripts that have already advanced…

Week One
Week Two
Week Three
Week Four
Week Five
Week Six
Week Seven

As you make your way through the final batch of entries, make sure to vote for the week’s winner in the comments section. Although it’s not required, your vote will carry more weight if you explain why you chose the script (doesn’t have to be elaborate, just has to be convincing). I say “carry more weight” because a vote for a script without any explanation from an unknown voter may be seen as fake and not count towards the tally. I will announce the winner of this week here, in this post, on Sunday, 10pm Pacific time. That script will then go into the quarterfinals.

WILD CARD ROUND – So next week, we’ll be highlighting eight ALMOST MADE IT screenplays. Four of those will go through to the quarterfinals. I haven’t fully decided on how I’m going to choose those yet but I’m leaning towards Scott’s suggestion of highest percentage of votes. We’ll see though. For everyone who finished SECOND or A CLOSE THIRD in their respective weeks, feel free to send me an updated draft to by this coming Wednesday. Yes, I realize that those in later weeks won’t have as much time to rewrite as the early weekers, but those are the breaks when you’re a wild card.

Onto today’s scripts!

Title: The Attacker
Genre: Action
Logline: After scoring the winning goal of a match by cheating, a soccer player has to go searching for his brother in the most dangerous neighborhood of the town that has just lost.
Writer: Jean Roux

Title: Brick House
Genre: Action
Logline: An ex-hitman must protect a child when his old gangster boss seeks retribution for a botched assignment.
Writer: Jason Prugar

Title: The Cheater
Genre: Comedy
Logline: A PI who specializes in helping AND exposing cheating relationships must navigate a business venture while juggling two lovers.
Writer: Evangelos Banks

Title: Felix
Genre: Horror, Coming-of-age
Logline: After his great-grandmother’s death, ten-year-old Felix is troubled by a potentially haunted family heirloom and his father’s increasingly strange behavior.
Writer: Casey Giltner

Title: Antiheroes
Genre: Action, Sci-Fi, Superhero
Logline: After a botched heist bestows a group of friends with superpowers, they decide to use them for their own personal gain, putting them in the crosshairs of both a ruthless villain and the organization of superheroes sworn to protect the city.
Writer: Patrick G. Emralino

WINNER OF WEEK 8: “The Attacker” by Jean Roux. Awesome job, Jean. The best concept doesn’t always win the week, but today it did. I’m excited to see how this one does moving forward. And let that be a reminder to all you second and third place finishers – send me new drafts by this Wednesday. The wild card round will consist of 8 scripts, 4 of which will be chosen to move on. Then we get to the nitty-gritty, the QUARTER-FINALS BABY! Can’t wait!

  • klmn

    Looks like some interesting scripts. I was hoping to see some regulars – but I’m not too Tore Up.

  • London_Gent

    Good week for the writer of Felix – I thought the logline looked familiar – it’s actually this weeks ‘Featured Script’ on the Blacklist.

    • scrimshaw

      Nice catch. I KNEW it was from somewhere but couldn’t place it.

  • carsonreeves1

    It is a fun premise. :)

  • PKE

    I read the logline and thought so too. Maybe it’s unfair but i said to myself: “When he starts with the game, i won’t read. When he starts with the game, i won’t read…” And he did. I’m sorry, i really don’t want to discourage the writer (i love the premise), but that’s just painful lazy execution. You can show me the football/soccer game like it was the opening sequence of “city of god” and still it wouldn’t be entertaining, because i know all those camerashots, cuts and angles and what is most important: the game itself! I don’t know shit of the favelas in rio. So, you want to start a movie about a footballplayer? Don’t start with showing me that he plays football…I mean, i’m sure there are plenty of things players do, that i’m not aware of and would be more entertaining and suspenseful.

    Sorry when this sounded a bit harsh. It’s early in the morning here and i really like the premise. Maybe i will give it another shot after a cup of coffee.

    Greetings PKE

    • The Colonel

      I don’t know, I would think most people going to see a movie about a soccer player would think it odd if it didn’t start with a game.

  • Zack Snide Err

    They all look pretty cool, I’d say ‘Antiheroes’ and ‘The Attacker’ are the that most stand-out.

    I also think that the ‘The Cheater’ could be awesome, but the logline muddles it’s irony.

    If it’s the PI that has to juggle his/her own two lovers than that needs to be clear in the logline as its a great hook.

  • JeanR

    Writer of The Attacker here !

    So happy to be part of the tournament !

    Thanks a lot to Carson and to anyone who will take time to read the script.
    Since I’m on a different time zone, I won’t be abble to be very reactive, sorry in advance !

  • Miranda Q Plumb

    I agree, I really like the premise. Considering that football is the most popular sport in the world but they’ve struggled to make good films set in that milieu, combining it with thriller elements is a great idea.

    • witwoud

      Yeah. We were discussing this the other week. The game itself is fairly uncinematic. It’s the craziness surrounding the game that you want to focus on.

  • Citizen M

    Where’s Wijnand’s script? And the other regulars who participated? Plenty of scripts from unknowns with unknown provenance made the grade. I think those who we know participated and adhered to the three months rule should get an automatic entry to the tournament.

    • Wijnand Krabman

      That’s up to Carson, I gave my opinion about this contest before, let’s congratulate today’s writers and allow them to have their moment in the sun

      • jeaux

        Class act, Wijnand.

    • gazrow

      I didn’t enter. Glad I didn’t the way things have panned out.

      Was really looking forward to reading some of the regulars work including Joe Marino’s (Rose in the Darkness) entry… but I guess that isn’t gonna happen. :(

      • Randy Williams

        I’m not glad the way things panned out either but I’m glad I entered. I like the method approach Carson laid out, it gives me a little more discipline than what I normally have. By employing it once, it makes it more likely I’ll utilize it from here on out on other things. And there’s always AOW for those who didn’t make it, but I’m disappointed that some 90 day challenge scripts I read didn’t appear because they were good, and “Boner” missing the tournament is a real shock.

        • gazrow

          No, I’m not knocking Carson or his ‘method approach.’ Just the last minute plot twist nobody saw coming: “Anyone can enter with any script written however long ago!”

          • Marija ZombiGirl

            I agree with you guys’ overall sentiment except for the fact that only regulars should be allowed to enter. No script contest is or should be that exclusive. And there are easy ways to check if the script was written during the three months allowed since all computer docs have a date of creation that’s impossible to change. A simple screenshot can be included with the entry and that should be mandatory.

          • Erica

            Not really, that was always the issue of proving when it was written. It was more of an honor systems.

          • Marija ZombiGirl

            Ok, I stand corrected then :) I’m a computer illiterate so what do I know? But, yeah, the honor system… If people would rather lie about their script, then what can you do? Sure it’s unfair to all those who bravely took on the challenge so something definitely needs to be figured out if C decides to have a second challenge one day.

          • gazrow

            Hi Marija, proving if the script was written within the 13 weeks is irrelevant as Carson moved the goalposts at the last minute and opened the competition to everyone regardless of whether their script had been completed in the allotted timescale.

          • Marija ZombiGirl

            Yes, I know :) I meant for the next time if such a thing should happen.

          • garrett_h

            I don’t think anyone is saying “Regulars Only” for the contest. Just that, initially it was thought that the contest would be for the 13-Week Challenge.

            It’s just that mostly regulars participated in the contest. Understandably. I mean, how could someone participate in the SS 13-Week Challenge if they’ve never been to the site?

            That’s like saying, for the Writer’s Store Industry Insider Contest, which gives you a logline from a pro to use for your script, “I think the contest should be open to all scripts regardless of logline, and not just the one provided by the Industry Pro.”

            And regarding the screenshot, that can be doctored. Just a little copy paste in Adobe PhotoShop. Heck, you could do it in MS Paint lol.

            We knew it’d be hard to police, though. But most of us here seem to be trustworthy enough. And there have been some script sleuths in the comments, digging up old drafts of submissions. Would have been tough, but worth it IMO to keep people happy and feel like their hard work meant something more than a pat on the back.

      • Miss Ma’am

        I wanted to read Joe’s, too, and also There Was a Little Girl.

        • Nick Morris

          Unfortunately, I didn’t get THERE WAS A LITTLE GIRL finished in time to submit for the tournament. But it’s near completion now and I do plan to submit it to AOW sometime in the coming weeks.

          Thanks for your interest in it, Miss Ma’am! Hopefully you’ll get to check it out very soon…

      • Joe Marino

        Hey, Gazrow! Really kind of you to say. In the end, though, there were some really solid specs throughout the challenge and I can totally see why they were picked instead. Honestly, I’m happy for it. l’ve had my spotlight already with Rose. It wouldn’t have been fair for me to take a spot from someone else who hasn’t had that spotlight yet. I did this just to have fun and try some new things. That’s why I love this community and what it stands for. I learned a lot from writing in 13 weeks, so no matter what, it was worth it. And if anyone ever wants to see my work, feel free to ask. :)

        • gazrow

          Hi Joe,

          I’d love to take a look at it. gazrow at hotmail dot com

          • Joe Marino

            I’ll send you an email today or tomorrow. Cheers!

    • Linkthis83

      I think Carson should do one more week and include up to ten scripts that remain, by regulars, and that wrote a 13 week challenge script. To at least get the opportunity to be read or to get feedback on why they possibly didn’t picked.

      (Or some variation of this suggestion)

      Are any of today’s scripts on the 13WC list SC compiled? (I’m aware not all entrants made theirs public – and no need to repost the list – I will go back and look when I get time if no one replies).

      • klmn

        I think – after the tournament – he should do another tournament only for those regulars who posted to Scott’s running thread and weren’t selected for some reason.

        • jeaux

          The Scriptshadow Bottom of the Barrel Tournament! Ha. Unfortunately, I’d be in that number as well, since mine didn’t get picked either. Oh well… I’ll just sit here in the broom closet under a 25 watt bulb, the barrel of a pellet gun in my mouth, and think about the decisions I’ve made that lead me to this point in my life.

          • Miss Ma’am

            Atta boy! That’s the spirit.

          • Randy Williams

            Oh god, please don’t encourage him to do a “scripts that didn’t make it in and why” day. I know the employees here at my assisted living facility will celebrate my appearance in another one of those things but I won’t. :) Let[‘s move on!

          • jeaux

            Of course! I was just joking. I had no intention of inciting a ‘runners up’ contest. This one played out and we’re moving on to round 2.

          • klmn

            Hey, C must be tearing his hair out on Thursdays trying to think up a topic. This might be an easy day for him.

    • Erica

      Little disappointed that I didn’t make the cut and I had to wait 8 weeks to find out.

      I worked hard writing a script in 13 weeks. I’m pretty sure Carson thinks my script is too generic, but in my opinion we’ve had a lot of very generic script in this tournament so far. No offense to the writers.

      I’m sure I shouldn’t be commenting right now as I’m too upset and I feel like I’ve just been kicked in the head, but life will go on. I feel bad for all our regular poster who were apart of the list that seems to have been ignored with script that were clearly written and even called out on several occasions not within the 13 week challenge.

      • garrett_h

        I think the worst part is, there were a few scripts that everyone KNEW had been around for a while. A couple of them for years I think. Yet they still made the cut. And after they were exposed they were allowed to stay (I guess it was too late to throw in a sub by then).

        I didn’t enter. But I really feel bad for all of you that got jobbed. I know it stings.

        Yeah, sure, “life isn’t fair” and “those are the breaks” and all that jazz. Still, seems like this could have been done a little better, so that it wouldn’t leave such a sour taste in peoples mouths.

        • The Colonel

          Just undermines the point of the 13-week thing.

      • Carmelo Framboise

        Your script wasn’t deemed generic by Carson because he didn’t read it. Your script’s title, genre and logline were compared to some other titles and didn’t make the cut – just like mine. I feel the same way you do; last weekend I was not selected by a local script challenge, so that didn’t help either. I also agree that many scripts/loglines were generic but that’s life.

        • Erica

          You’re right, I mean logline was deemed generic.

        • Scott Serradell

          Carmelo: Excuse my asking but did you submit “Irregular Army” for this?

          • Carmelo Framboise


          • klmn

            For you – and everyone who wrote a script – I suggest sending it to smish for one of her table reads. (If you can’t watch when it’s performed live, she posts them on Youtube so you can watch later).

            She and her gang – including E.D, and Scriptchick – are getting very good at this.

            You can get some insights about your script that you can’t just from reading it. Their comments on the script – after the performance – are helpful too.

          • Carmelo Framboise

            Can they pronounce “karagkiozopechtis”?

          • klmn

            Yes, but probably not the way you would.

            In my short they read, there was a stumble over “Santa Gertrudis.”

    • Comma

      I think that the fact that there was some kind of selection is a good thing for the contest (better average quality). If some unselected scripts were really really bad, a contest is not the appropriate place to discuss them, and to be kept out of the contest could be seen as a way of protecting them (from harsh commenters, like myself, sometimes). But I definetely would love to read and comment the unselected scripts and I think that something should be done to reward those who actually write their script in only 13 weeks, which is a great achievement. Anyway, all the “let’s write a f.g screenplay in 13weeks” now proved they are capable of finishing a script, they just have to repeat the process to improve their skills.

      • garrett_h

        I think we all halfway expected the results of the contest to be less-than-stellar. First of all, most commenters here are amateur. Sure, Max Landis can bang out a decent script in a matter of weeks (even days, or hours!) but most here can’t. No one was looking for the Academy Award Winner for Best Original Screenplay here.

        I always took it to be a fun little exercise, then the results get shared. We can read the completed scripts and laugh, cry, etc. And there may be a couple that truly were good. Or at least, a few of them had potential, and the writers could get some notes. Decide if they wanted to pursue their script or not.

        Me, personally, I can judge with different criteria. I was planning to take into account the scripts were written in a limited time under a set schedule the writer may or may not be used to, following Carson’s direction. But now that random, polished scripts have been thrown into the mix, it’s much harder to judge.

        “Do I judge this polished script harsher than this 13-Weeker? Do I judge them the same? Ah, fuck it, I won’t vote.” That’s basically how I felt, so I didn’t vote.

    • Magga

      Now’s the time to let the writers who were picked enjoy the opportunity, but there’s nothing stopping us from having our own contest in the comments section during some fish-mash Monday or whatever

      • Scott Crawford

        Fish-mash? That’s a FISHCAKE. I love fishcakes, I haven’t had one for ages. Next time I go shopping…

        • garrett_h

          I assume those are similar to crabcakes?

    • E.C. Henry

      Isn’t this JUST the finish of the opening round?

      • garrett_h

        Yes, the First Round is now over.

        So the scripts that won weeks 1-8 move on. There will be a supplemental round for the scripts that were “close” to winning (probably 2nd & 3rd place finishers) where they will move in to the Second Round with the winners of the First Round.

        That’s it. Any script that has not been posted Weeks 1 through 8 did not make the cut for the tournament.

  • Scott Crawford

    Voting closes in:

    Votes so far, 10/28/16, 11:41 GMT: 0 votes

    Antiheroes: 0 votes (0%)

    The Attacker: 0 votes (0%)

    Brick House: 0 votes (0%)

    The Cheater: 0 votes (0%)

    Felix: 0 votes (0%)

    Runner-up votes

    • gazrow

      Hi Scott,
      Might I suggest that votes for the premise are discounted? It’s a scriptwriting contest not a logline contest! Just my two cents…

      • Scott Crawford

        I would agree with you. It would mean a few fewer votes than in previous weeks but given that, as far as wild cards are concerned, we’re looking for percentages, it wouldn’t affect the results if I changed the rules now.

        I’m not a big fan of logline votes in AOW or any contest but I want to remain neutral, so what does everyone else think? Should logline only votes be counted, or do you need to read at least some of each script to decide which one should go through?

        • Marija ZombiGirl

          I think everyone has time for reading 10ps of 5 scripts so no logline votes :)

        • Scott Serradell

          If we are to be honest here it’s a fundamental flaw in democratic voting — because someone spending 30-45 minutes reading through a script and making detailed notes has the same vote power as the individual who just cruises by the boards and smells the loglines. No, it’s not fair, but what is the alternative?

          • Miss Ma’am

            Carson did say that votes that are accompanied by explanations weigh more than simple ‘I vote for X’ votes.

          • Scott Serradell

            This is true. But, again, how was this “weight” implemented? What I have seen week after week is Scott’s Herculean work of going through and tallying votes and, yes, he’s pointed out when the commentator is “new”…But, to my knowledge, the vote is still counted.

            If there’s any weight being thrown around here it’s by the other Olympians (Linkthis83, ScriptChick, and Randy Williams to name a few) whose dedication to these reviews raises the bar for all us.

          • Scott Crawford

            It’s not “Herculean!”

            As Marija says, it’s the honors system; let’s give everyone the benefit of the doubt. There are different type of voters:

            * There are some who quickly read, without stopping to take notes, a few pages from each, the make a gut decision over which they think is the best.

            * There are some who do the same, but write maybe a paragraph on each script before deciding their vote.

            * There are some who take the time to make careful notes (feedback) on as much of the screenplays as they have time to read.

            * There are people who haven’t read any of the scripts, or maybe just one, and are voting for it… for some reason.

            When I was doing my AOW jury duty, I was in the third camp, not as detailed as some, but I would try and give some feedback on each script. I didn’t enjoy it and I wasn’t particularly good at it, so I stuck to tallying and remaining “outside the fight.”

            I don’t, therefore, criticize people who don’t give huge feedback but nevertheless feel they can vote for a winner.

          • garrett_h

            I was having this conversation with friends recently about the democratic process.

            I love Politics. Studied it briefly, almost chose it as a career (I wanted to be behind the scenes, not a Senator or anything). It’s still an interest. I watch all the shows, read all the articles. I study the measures on the ballot. Friends and family ask me, “What’s Prop X mean? What happens if I vote for Prop Y?”

            Yet my vote counts the same as someone who strolls into the voting booth, no idea whats on the ballot, closes their eyes and checks a box.

            Kinda frustrating, but hey, it’s democracy! ‘Murrica!!!

          • Scott Serradell

            To quote Thomas Jefferson: “A democracy is never more than mob rule, where 51% of the people take away the privileges of the other 49%.” So yes, very frustrating…

            But, again: The alternative? Imagine coming to Scriptshadow everyday so fearless leader Karson could teach us good Communist values. And if your script has no GSU? GULAG FOR YOU!

          • garrett_h


            Hey, that rhymes!

          • klmn

            You could say the same thing about political elections. Some people research the issues, others are swayed by trivia.

        • Miss Ma’am

          It’s definitely too late for the first round because logline votes have already been counted for the previous 7 weeks. To be fair, they will need to count for this week, too.

        • Angie

          I am torn on this issue. Yes, it seems lazy to not at least try the first five pages. Others take 1 to 2 hours with their comments. Sometimes the screenplay is better than its logline so the vote may be unfair.

          On the other hand, we saw a rant on the quality of loglines last week. The poster implied studios and producers would only look at the loglines and pass or consider to read.

          This week’s scripts also have logline problems. A hard lesson not learned. Ultimately, this is Carson’s blog. He decides what goes and he has not objected to logline only votes. Past votes have been allowed so it too late to change for this tournament. In future, Carson can decide.

        • Kirk Diggler

          Voting for The Attacker – could use a little more character work and the plot machinations need some shoring up — but it is the one script that established the stakes rather quickly.

          Tried to reply under the vote totals but Disqus wouldn’t let me.

      • Jarrean


        Week 1.
        Winner: The Bait.
        An Incomplete script.
        Most cited reason for vote = concept/potential.

        It’s unfair to change the rules five steps from the finish line.

        • gazrow

          A lot of people who voted for The Bait actually cracked the script open, myself included, and could see its potential.

          I’m not expecting anyone to read every script to the end, but going forward, I think voting for a logline in a scriptwriting competition without reading a single word of the script is ridiculous and the vote should be disregarded.

          It’s like giving a Michelin star to a restaurant without even tasting the food just because the menu sounds great!

    • Carmelo Framboise


      Could be called The Striker, The Forward, The Centre-Forward, The False-9 or some other more suitable term that fits both his position and the story.

      • Scott Crawford

        Is this a logline vote or have read the scripts?

        • Carmelo Framboise

          I read the scripts and posted notes but Carson removed my comment – or it is pending for some reason.

          • Linkthis83

            It’s most likely pending. I saw it pop up originally.

          • Scott Crawford

            Right-ho! I’ve got a couple of posts waiting as well. I want your quotes as well!

            As I’ve said, I’m going to take it easy this weekend, but I will count all the votes.

      • gazrow

        Haven’t read it yet, but if the protag is the one under attack, shouldn’t it be called The Defender?

        • Carmelo Framboise

          Interesting. And he plays as a Striker for his team. He always knew how to attack in the pitch and now he has to defend. Himself.

      • witwoud

        The Foul.

    • E.C. Henry

      Scott, this is good prep work for the election. What are you doing NEXT Tuesday!

      • Scott Crawford

        Tuesday after next, surely. Next Tuesday is All Saints Day when everyone sits around and listens to All Saints songs:

        • ScriptChick

          Props to you, sir! For knowing who All Saints are. I recently bombed a karaoke sing along during Girl’s Night by singing “Never Ever” — and no one else knew the song! :tear: Isn’t that what Now That’s What I Called Music did? Take the songs played over and over and put them all on one cd? Should have stuck with Sir Mix-a-lot…

    • Lucid Walk

      My vote for Antiheroes

      • Scott Crawford

        A logline vote? I’d have to list it as such.

    • ocattorney

      Hi Scott
      This seems like a good place to bring it up… i submitted a script called “The Glow”… never was told it wasn’t in the contest… Is it going to be eligible for the “Wild Card almost made it” round? Since Carson hasn’t decided how he will choose them, I haven’t had anyone read or vote on “The Glow” yet and I’ve given some of those second-place scripts some really helpful notes – Bill Hays

      • Scott Crawford

        The Wild Card is only for scripts that made each round of the contest but didn’t win. It will probably be the eight scripts that came SECOND each week – they’ll have to send a NEW copy of their script to Crson by Wednesday. In th event that one of more writers fail to submit their script by Wednesday (e.g. non-regulars who didn’t win they so they haven’t bothered to come back) I would say the scripts that came, say, THIRD but with a very high percentage should submit their scripts.

        • ocattorney

          The wild card round is whatever Carson decides it will be.

          I sent Carson a request about mid-way through the contest, and it would have been professional to tell me “The Glow” wasn’t in the contest. the request involved a table read at the Sundance Film Festival in January, which, if you’ve read the script, you know it would be perfect

          Thanks for answering, Scott. Maybe someday you’ll see “The Glow” as a movie and you’ll ask yourself, “Why wasn’t this one in the contest?”

          Not sure if I’m going to send in an updated script or not. Might be better just to say Adios and I learned a lesson.

          I would pick Odysseus from he list posted- Bill Hays

    • Eric Boyd

      Hi Scott. You’re doing a great job as always. MY VOTE goes to FELIX. Some of the best writing I’ve seen from an amateur script. Every line shouts with confidence “I’m a professional and you will take my work seriously!” It’s very easy to see why it’s featured on the Black List and I don’t think Casey will be an amateur for much longer. As for the others I have thoughts but I’m unfortunately running short on time today. If any of the other writers are interested in what I have to say, just send me an email.


      and I’ll try and get back to you later in the week.

      • C.J. Giltner

        That’s high praise. Thanks for reading Eric.

    • Marija ZombiGirl

      Please put down my vote for FELIX :)
      I’m a little late to the game so my thoughts are gonna sound similar to the other voters': I love the writing – very clean, very pro. There’s a nice creepy overall atmosphere and like Poe, I also enjoyed Casey’s knack for capturing the “growing up” feel.

      • C.J. Giltner

        Thanks Marija! Glad you liked it.

    • klmn

      My vote = The Attacker.

      Every script this week is well written. None of the loglines really grabbed me, so I’m thinking Carson must have opened the scripts and read a little before selecting them.

      I read six pages of every script.

      The Attacker. Starting on a soccer match doesn’t grab me. People watch sports because they care about the team – they’re invested in the outcome. But this has no attraction for me.

      I like the name Belial. IIRC, it’s the name of a demon. Police launching flares to disperse the fans – does that happen in real life. Most original premise. Well written, easy to follow. Moving on.

      Brick House. Easy to follow, but the concept seems generic.

      The Cheater. I like the premise – this could go against Bait in the final round. (Good job of seeding by Carson).

      Well written, but maybe shorten the VO intro. Possible winner.

      Felix. Well written. I like the way this opens. Possible winner.

      Antiheroes. I’m not into superheroes and I question the wisdom of competing in that arena with something not labeled Marvel or D.C. But, reading on…

      Read to p7. Well written, but it doesn’t grab me.

      With everything written well, I find myself voting on concept.

      • Scott Crawford

        Ken, I appreciate you taking the time to give notes on these scripts but… shouldn’t you be busy rewriting HELLFIRE ALLEY, Mr. Wild Card!

        Just kidding, I’m sure you’re working really hard. Best of luck, you’re one of the most committed and determined writers I’ve seen on this website.

        • klmn

          I’ve already rewritten it, and sent it in. I don’t know if I’ll squeak into the Wild Card round or not – the percentages look pretty close.

          But I think Westerns are a hard sell regardless. Really, I think everything is a hard sell these days. I’ve been doing some querying and the economics of the feature business is just brutal.

          But it was good practice writing Hellfire Alley, before I make the turn into pilots.

          • Scott Crawford

            I’m sorry, it may have seen as if I’ve playing you around. I apologize for that. You’re DEFINITELY through.

            The “percentage” idea is more about picking scripts outside of the top eight (which you’re in already) in case those writers don’t bother to send in a new script.

            In my opinion, if you don’t send in a new copy of your script, you shouldn’t be considered for Wild Card week and someone else should have a go. I’ve put the list of Wild Card scripts in my post for people to look at. Hope it’s clear.

    • gazrow

      Hi Scott,
      If you’re still up, my vote is for: Felix.

      I thought it was the best written script.

    • Carmelo Framboise

      What an excellent job you have done once again!
      And I must say I am so touched that for the first time in this tournament a script that I voted for, wins! Yeheay!

  • Lucid Walk

    Dude, Antiheroes FTW!

    A spin on the current, over-saturated superhero genre, complete with a heist sequence? Hell yeah!

  • Randy Williams


    Congrats for making in on Round 1 of the Scriptshadow Tournament!

    I always thought that one word writer names like “Saki” look awfully pretentious on a title page, unless you’re writing short stories. For me it’s a trigger that makes me think, “okay, writer, you better bring it”.

    And this challenge script does bring it in many ways for me. I got a feel that it’s current, something that matches the current cinema flavors. One can easily insert a well-known comedy actress into the protagonist’s role and feel that it’s bait for any one of them.

    It’s an unpleasant subject and I felt very uneasy with the beginning voice-over. But then we meet Peggy and she smooths over that uneasiness with her lack of reserve.

    I like the little visual business like the panties and the butt cheeks. There’s an attempt to elicit laughter from dialogue but visuals as well in each scene.

    I was confused, however in the opening. I think by opening in the motel room and then she goes into the bathroom, the next scene, I assumed would be back in the motel room but it’s in an apartment. Even with the slugline, I immediately assumed the fat guys were in the motel room bed. Maybe make it extra clear, we’ve jumped in time and location?

    The comedy was okay for me, but not that laugh out loud. The first LOL came on page 11 with the good news, bad news question. And that joke was not related to the subject matter. Of course this is a challenge script and in rewrites comedy can be elevated. I’d try, perhaps to give us more comedy strictly related to the theme?

    I thought it very creative mirroring a character’s voice with the font used in the dialogue. I wonder how others will react to that. There are lots of spelling errors but again, it’s a challenge script. “Narrorator” and “Kodok” camera were two glaring ones in the first 30 pages.

    I stopped on page 34. It gave me the best example of what I mostly didn’t like about it. Again, it’s that lack of focus on the subject matter, Peggy and her choices. When Arthur starts talking about the Nazi V-2 rocket, I yearned for more of Peggy and the Oreo cookies at Walmart.

  • jeaux

    Been slammed at work lately and haven’t had much time to read the last couple weeks, but it looks like I’ll have some time for this last round. Read 13 pages of The Cheater. Some funny visuals so far. Peggy sounds like a mess, in a good way. As Randy pointed out, I too wonder about the choice of smaller text on the guy with high voice. Not a big deal, just “a thing”. Will read more. Would also like to read The Attacker and Felix as well.

  • Comma

    A quick review of the loglines.

    The Attacker
    At first sight, I didn’t saw the connection between the inciting incident (cheating) and the goal (to find the brother), then I undestood that the brother lost the game… that ‘that has just lost’ is maybe too far from the mention of the brother.
    I wonder if they’re pro players or kids. Give this script to K.Loach and it could be a hit.

    Brick House
    I can’t see the link between the goal (protecting the child) and the inciting incident (his old gangster boss seeks retribution for a botched assignment). Something is missing in my opinion.

    The Cheater
    I will start reading this. It’s the logline who hooked me the most. “helping AND exposing”: I would day the opposite, ince exposing the cheating is the most common PI business, while ‘helping’ cheating is kind of an original twist. I definetely like a PI helping cheating.

    I quit watching superheros a long time ago (I liked the first Burton’s Batman).
    I’ll give this script a try anyway since it seems quite ambitious.

  • GoIrish

    The Cheater – read to p.13. We open with 2-plus pages of voice over – something often cautioned against on this site. I’m not terribly bothered by voice overs, but I don’t know if this one did anything unique. Though it’s been a little bit since I have seen it , the intro reminded me of Hitch (with Will Smith) – and it didn’t really feel like an hommage (I am not sure one can do an hommage to Hitch)…so it may be worth taking another look at. We follow the voice over by the main character with a voice over by the narrator- I am not saying this can’t work; it just made me pause in the middle of reading wondering whether the multi-character voice over (with one the narrator) could work here. Then we get the blood scene. Gross out humor can be funny – unfortunately, this one just wasn’t working for me. I read a little further but wasn’t feeling compelled to stick around.

    (Appreciate the confidence, but use your full name.)

  • Scott Crawford

    I’m going to go VERY slowly this weekend. Too many edits to a post too fast and it goes into moderation. So I’ll only be updating the count every so often and if there are mistakes I’ve made I will WAIT to correct these rather than edit too quickly and risk going into moderation. Hope you understand. Good luck, everyone!

  • Randy Williams


    Congrats for making it on Round 1 of the Scriptshadow Tournament!

    Read to page 27. Why I stopped there later. Skimmed around after that until dad goes really bad until the end.

    The writing here is top notch, I thought. I’m quickly drawn into the story. Easily see this on screen. I felt the magic of childhood from Felix’s point of view. I do however, want to point out, that in that presentation, two things jerked me out personally of that magic the writer has spun.
    1. The description of mom’s comfortableness in her domestic housewife role and 2.The sociology of coming up from a trailer park in description of dad’s character. I don’t think either would be in Felix’s thoughts.
    Because the beats are so generic in this. Kids at play, family at the dinner table, attending a family funeral, the ability to create that magical childhood point of view, “She really liked red cars” is so important and I feel these descriptive adult inserts are unnecessary and distracting.

    I love the mystery box of dad’s indignation at Father Wolfe. The writer seems to be leading us down the road to some abuse angle and it keeps one on their toes.

    The appearance of the ventriloquist doll, honestly, for me, was a let down since we’ve seen this kind of story so often. I felt too, that why didn’t Felix know it was down there before, in ten years he’s never seen it? Then I realized they had just made a trip to the great grandmother’s garage. So, maybe present a mystery box first? Dad takes something from the garage while he is there with Felix, but hides it from Felix? Maybe a quick scene of him unboxing it in the garage but we don’t see it until later when Felix is surprised by it in the dark?

    Again, the beats are generic as I continued but the charm is there. The writing sweeps me along and I’m mostly satisfied but question how this competes with things with stronger hooks. On page 27, Jimmy’s explanation about what is going on seems premature to me. Not enough has happened for me to start explaining things and his explanation only mirrors my thoughts that this is all something I’ve seen already.

    I skipped to dad’s implosion. I know some here who have already in other cases expressed disapproval of violence against children, and this by the hand of their parent only makes it more shocking, will not like this. I felt it just didn’t seem “earned” by what came after it, although I felt the unease the writer intended for the scene, the suspense of of Father Wolfe there. It was well done.

    I can see this getting some votes on the strength of the writing.

  • Linkthis83

    The reason I initially started THE GRATEFUL EIGHT was because I felt the parameters surrounding this contest may not showcase those who accepted the challenge. I wanted to see what the writers around here were able to accomplish over those weeks.

    With that being said, if you are on the following list and want to be considered for THE GRATEFUL EIGHT, send me an email with your script, pitch, and SS13 in the subject heading by 11:59pm PDT 10/30/16:

    linkthis83 at yahoo dot com

    I haven’t figured out how I’m going to do the details of this, but I want to do something. And lord I know it’s an awful consolation to the actual SS tournament itself and the writers.

    (also, this is not intended to be a shot at Carson or this contest. This is about what I wanted from this contest for these writers)

    Let’s Write a F#&%ING Screenplay!!! 08/19/16, 21:53 GMT

    Finished, bitches!:

    Monster Investigations by Frankie Hollywood

    Nearly there, nearly there…:

    The Ancient War by Scott Serradell
    Anguish by Pat
    Antebellum by Daivon Stuckley
    Atlantis Waters by Randy Williams
    Dead of Night by John Bradley
    The Deadliest City by Sebastian Cornet
    Ghost in the Machine by Christopher Reilly
    Haunted Hospital by Wijnand Krabman
    Irregular Army by Carmelo Framboise
    Killer Killer by Wijnand Krabman
    The Last Safe Place by jeaux
    Neptune Beach/The Pictures by Robert O’Sullivan
    Pacifico by scrimshaw
    PHOBE – New Dawn by Erica
    Runaway Car by Magga
    The Sculptor by Kris
    Stacy Wentworth: The Last Boner Smasher by Eric Boyd
    There Was a Little Girl by Nick Morris
    Until You Remember by Lironah
    Untitled by Jonathan Soens

    Still writing the first draft:

    Bigfoot Lives! by Benjamin Hickey
    Dracula and Holmes by jaehkim
    The Hatchery by Joe Marino
    How to Hunt Vampires for Dummies by Sackninja
    Into the Smoke by Duvan.1
    The K-Rock Years/Rock Must Die! by New_E
    The Princess and the Janitor by Nodestar
    Soldier of Fortune by New_E

    Thinking about taking part now deadline has been extended to September 4th:

    17th City of Edan by Ripley
    Dreamwalkers by Lucid Walk
    Let’s Be Famous by stephjones

    • Frankie Hollywood

      I didn’t enter Monster Investigations b/c Carson wouldn’t answer me about pilots being eligible (I asked numerous times in the comments and by emails). I figured they weren’t, as 60 pages vs 90-120 wouldn’t be deemed fair.

      If he ever has a pilot contest I’ll enter in a heartbeat (but I ain’t holding my breath).

      Good luck to everyone who did make the cut.

      • Scott Serradell

        There you are! Midnight and I were trying to contact you a few weeks back, as there was a rare screenwriting forum in Portland and wanted to know if you had any interest in going. Shoot me an e-mail [felipserradell(at)gmail(dot)com] if you want in the loop for future events.

        • Scott Crawford

          Wasn’t Aadip Desai, like, chairman of the Pacific Northwest screenwriters club? I think he’s from Portland, he’s talked about it on Pilar’s podcast (he’s in LA now with his family for writing and stand-up).

          • Scott Serradell

            Actually it was a free screenwriting workshop put on by a gentleman named Steve De Jarnatt at PSU. Midnight gave me the heads up, since it’s not a common occurrence to have such a thing up here in Portland.

          • Midnight Luck

            I was surprised that anything was happening in PDX when I came across it. I did find out at the last minute when I got there that it was FREE to anyone going to PSU. Luckily they still let me in. I had arranged my whole day around making it to that.

            I wish more would happen in the area, sadly it is pretty slim.

          • Scott Serradell

            I’ll keep my eyes peeled as well. And there’s always the adage: If you can’t find fire, light one yourself!

      • Midnight Luck

        Please send me your deets so if something else comes along I can send you the information. I thought I had it, but it seems I didn’t.

        Every now and then I come across something screenwriting related happening in Portland. Not sure why Portland is such a deadzone for this kind of thing. If you listen to the newspaper or the news or just about anyone else they call Portland one of the hottest Film places in the country. I believe what they mean is: Hottest places if you are from Hollywood and want a kickback, we will make it worth your while to come here and shoot, yes we desperately want you big business money and fame.
        But for the little people? Not much at all. Just the Northwest Film Study Center, and now, I found out by going to this thing, I guess Portland State now has a Film Studies department.

        Anyhow, good to see you back on here, but you lost your Icon….. I’m always happy to see Frankenstein when he pops up.

        M ((at}} blackluck –dott- com

      • klmn

        I think he said that he might do a contest for pilots at a later date, but I’m not going to read back through all the posts and comments.

    • Erica

      Sent! Thank you for this.

    • hickeyyy

      Count me out – never got finished, unfortunately. Good for you on taking time to acknowledge these people though.

    • Jarrean

      Why not just have those on the LIST post/share their scripts during Wild Card Week? (I say WCW because I don’t want it to take away from those posted up above this week. Also, the playing ground would be even, as it’ll be re-writes vs newer concepts.)

      Scott, if he likes, could combine all links and loglines into a singular post for easy access.

      Then, the best xx number of scripts could move on to the next round.

      Otherwise, it’s just writers going from one gatekeeper (Carson) to a smaller one w/o a real platform (Link), no offense. Cause I’m assuming you’re just going to end up posting the same scripts here in the Disqus, no?

      And unless Carson plans on forwarding the winning script on to Lawerence, well then, everyone is essentially a winner! lol

      Anyways, congrats to all who did finish their scripts within the given timeframe. A major feat! It’s been fun lurking and now participating in the discussions.

      Happy Friday, everyone!

      • Linkthis83

        Not offended at all. I just want to see the scripts I didn’t get to see that I feel deserve the chance by accepting the challenge.

        I’m not sure how I will handle it. I also know that people may not want my thoughts on their script (or only my thoughts).

        I will most likely take the time to offer some feedback on whatever I get sent.

        Not sure yet what I will include in Disqus.

        I think suggestions are great. Appreciate you unlurking to do so :)

      • klmn

        I think it should be after voting closes on Wild Card Week. Why distract from Carson’s contest?

        • Jarrean

          It wouldn’t be a distraction given that the scripts submitted were all written specifically for Carson’s contest.

          What I was proposing was essentially “write in voting”. So, if The Ancient War was a favorite in WCW it’d beat out one of the other WCWers from the previous 8 weeks. Just an example.

          Hence, it’d compete against the winners of the last 8 weeks in the second round of Carson’s contest.

          But given your script will be competing in WCW, I understand not wanting additional competition.

  • Randy Williams


    Congrats for making it on Round 1 of the Scriptshadow Tournament!

    Read to page 30. I want to read more. I like this. It’s a simple set up but Bragg has swiftly and effortlessly gained my sympathy and confidence. So far, I’ve been fully satisfied with the action in this actioner as well. It seems like something that can be shot on the cheap with a ready made audience.

    I do question the beginning. The set up that Maddy needs to find a hiding place doesn’t seem to be exploited in that beginning. There is no suspense connected to that factor that I think there could be. When father and daughter are up in her bedroom, perhaps the camera can venture out the window and that teen delivery guy is accosted by or in with the “Courier” outside but Bragg doesn’t see it?. Maybe even present the Courier’s attack sooner and fill in some of the backstory with the gangsters later on? This would give us some suspense and pay off our questioning of why need a hiding place might be needed. He has his enemies as well as bringing the action sooner.

    Two other things I thought about. The aside about IP material on page 27 should be cut. Totally took me out of the story I was engrossed in. Second, the thought that gangsters would prepare a cell as a frilly pink child’s bedroom is unbelievable if that’s where they plan on keeping her after kidnapping her. Well, that’s how I would assume most would take it. Perhaps it’s something else. Maybe have the cell but it contains one of the girls ( I assume human trafficking involved) from the other cell alone in there. She can say something about the only one capable of looking after a child or something. This would reinforce the idea that they intend on kidnapping the child if that’s the intent, as well as give some humanity to these unnamed characters. Always a good thing.

    Hope to read more.

    • jbird669

      Randy, thank you so much for reading Brick House. I really appreciate your vote!

  • Poe_Serling


    Congrats to all the featured writers this week!

    With Halloween just around the corner, I was kinda surprised that
    Carson didn’t give serve up more of a chills and thrills platter.

    But hey, it’s his party…. his selections, his rules, etc.


    I started with Felix. I checked out the first ten. The style/format made
    for an easy read.

    I thought the writer did a nice job in creating a nostalgic snapshot
    into the main character’s life and family situation.

    As these type of stories go, things are probably about to take a
    turn down a darker path.

  • The Old Man

    Mr. Crawford, (Yes, you deserve respect.)
    Instead of risking moderation, why not submit your updates as a new post and delete the old one?

    • Scott Crawford

      It’s a good idea, and I always consider ideas, as any good writer should. I fear it might be messy, people like to reply to the tally post with their own comments.

      The bigger problem (for me) is that I’ve got two comments (one listing possible wild card scripts, the other with a link to the Blood List scripts) and they’re BOTH in limbo.

  • wlubake

    Initial thoughts based upon loglines alone:

    Title: The Attacker
    Logline: After scoring the winning goal of a match by cheating, a soccer player has to go searching for his brother in the most dangerous neighborhood of the town that has just lost.

    This feels disconnected. Why is his brother missing? Why does a professional soccer player go looking himself, rather than use the authorities? Where is this (as it makes a big difference if its in Colombia versus Seattle)? I kinda get where you are going here – most hated guy in town must go into the ghetto and face rabid, angry fans. But to me, this is so much weaker than most thrillers. This guy MIGHT be attacked by angry fans. In your average thriller, our hero faces people actively trying to kill him. I’m not moved by the concept, and feel the logline is missing information that would strengthen the stakes.

    Title: Brick House
    Logline: An ex-hitman must protect a child when his old gangster boss seeks retribution for a botched assignment.

    Again, there is a lack of information to make this logline stand alone. Who is the kid? Is the kid related to the hero somehow? Is he/she related to some other gangster-affiliated person. Also, this sounds like a passive story. He’s on protection duty, which means waiting for trouble to come to him. Compare this to Shoot Em’ Up where Clive Owen starts out as a protector of Monica Bellucci and the baby, only to become the hunter as he tries to get to the bottom of what is going on. Eventually, he has to become active. You need more of that here.

    Title: The Cheater
    Logline: A PI who specializes in helping AND exposing cheating relationships must navigate a business venture while juggling two lovers.

    This reads as an “observe as life happens” movie. Not a great pitch mechanism. Watching as a hero “must navigate a business venture” sounds awful. Sure, everyone loves a good love triangle, but it isn’t enough to hold up a movie. I’d say the most compelling version of this is: “A PI who specializes in exposing cheaters finds himself on the wrong end of an angry wife and client when he starts cheating with one of his targets.” Even then its a pass.

    Title: Felix
    Logline: After his great-grandmother’s death, ten-year-old Felix is troubled by a potentially haunted family heirloom and his father’s increasingly strange behavior.

    I’m “troubled” by capri pants for men, but it isn’t a compelling story. Look, I’m assuming for a horror movie this heirloom is responsible for some spooky shit. So maybe he’s trying to rid his family of a possessed heirloom, which his father will protect with his life. At least there is some conflict suggested, and goals.

    Title: Antiheroes
    Logline: After a botched heist bestows a group of friends with superpowers, they decide to use them for their own personal gain, putting them in the crosshairs of both a ruthless villain and the organization of superheroes sworn to protect the city.

    I’ll grant you that there is a unique setup here. Also, there is real peril suggested. I would rather see an “ultimate goal” in mind. Also, this will struggle (though purposefully) with sympathy for the characters, and thus getting your audience to care about what happens to them. That said, this is easily the most compelling concept/logline of the group.

    What I’d like to read, in order: Antiheroes, Cheater, Brick House, Attacker and then Felix.

    Overall, a rather weak group of loglines compared to prior weeks. Maybe why they are buried in week 8? Hopefully the scripts hold up better. Good luck to the writers.

  • Scott Serradell

    MY VOTE: “FELIX” (“Some really clean writing and a good set-up of atmosphere”)

    A QUICK NOTE: I’m steering clear of the brewing controversy today…But feel compelled to say I read two works (that will remain anonymous) meant for the contest that were not chosen. This is lamentable for a few reasons — but primarily because I found both to have fresh approaches to otherwise tired genres: The first succeeded very well in fusing fantasy with comedy, with some genuinely creative set-ups and funny scenes; the second was honestly one of the better scripts I have EVER read by an amateur on this site. The writer found an amazing true story (that has never been filmed!) and wrote it with a staggering amount of detail and care. I did the most I could in helping steer them to their goals, but my hope was that the community here could get them further. Another day perhaps. And I will say to both writers: Yeah, this sucks, but don’t get discouraged! Keep hammering your talents.

    Anyway. In order of reading (*time prevents me from doing any more than a precursory dip into each script, but I’ll do my best here…)

    — An interesting and inviting logline. It immediately grabs you. As does the first 3 pages, where we open at a soccer match. The writer could expand on this more however; if the foul in the impetus for the rest of the story I think it would benefit it by building it further and really emphasizing when it happens. Nice opening.
    — Unfortunately the dialogue kills the initial momentum. There is simply no tension and no snap to any of it. It feels a bit like play dialogue, where the emotions are broadcast out so sentimentally they border on saccharine. Honestly none of characters rang true because of this and inside a mere 10 pages I couldn’t go any further.

    — I like both the energy of this and how it’s being delivered. It feels different: “A PI who specializes in helping AND exposing cheating relationships…” I mean, I don’t think I’ve seen that before. Sounds good for comedy.
    — But, man, is this uneven. It’s almost as though the writer threw absolutely everything on the page and (unfortunately) it all stuck there. And instead of any really set up in the first 12 (where I stopped) it suffers from the screenwriting equivalent to schizophrenia. And what was going on on pages 5-8? A real estate deal? A rivalry? A realtor who drives a Maserati who can hold off for eight months for a sale? It all feels like it comes from way out in left field. Also: Jerry, Bussey, and Peggy — 3 similar names in conversation makes for a headache.
    — But, again, some of the writing was loose and a little crazy (in a good way). There’s some potential with this character but it really needs a story to be established sooner.

    — Clearly the writer has some chops here. It hits you with visuals and moves you along.
    — But it also feels familiar to me, like I could turn on Netflix right now and start watching it. I would have to read further (made it to 10) to determine what exactly my gripe is about this, but my gut says that the script is wearing its influences a little too loudly.
    — “A picture of 90’s American bliss”. I was alive and (mostly) conscious in the 90’s and I have NO IDEA what you are trying to paint here.

    * I only did a couple of pages into both of these so I can offer nothing — except to say that if there’s a genre other than ex-hitmen I could care less about, it’s superheroes. So, to the writers, accept my apologies but I don’t have the time (or inclination) to dive into either of these.

    Good weekend everyone!

  • Erica

    I don’t know bit for me, “The Cheater” totally reminds me of “The Bait” based on premise/logline. The stories inside are different but I immediately thought of Billie Bates script. Three pages of V.O. followed by a Narrator, yikes, kind of stopped reading after that as I thought too myself, how would I shoot this. Three minutes of screen time like that is an eternity.

    • Comma

      A ‘narratoror’ (what is that btw?).

      What I liked is that under the voice over there are little visual details, I loved the main character walking on glasses… twice.

      • Erica

        It’s still 3 minutes of still pictures, I had to do that in High School for TV class, after 1 minute you get bored.

        Also has a been there done that start.

    • Edex

      Erica, what was your logline? Throw it up on here.

  • Comma

    I vote for The cheater .
    It is the concept that hooked me the most and the writing is very good and funny. I read only 6 pages but I feel a writing quality which is rare in amateur scripts. I join the one who said to put full name and surname on the cover page.

    Not bad! Better than what I thought. I liked the way the superhero and the supervillan enter the scene and establish a world where superpowers exists. Besides, the small talk in the first scene is alittle bit too smal for me, and the timejump (one year later) doesn t feel a necessary device (it seems to me a less than standar way of setting things up).

    Brick house
    I like the way the 8yo girl talks. It sounds realistic to me. I didn t like when the main character doesn t give a tip to the teen delivering him an incomplete order. That was a good occasion to be a real gentleman and tip her. Then, the way the main character talk to the little girl about why some people are mad about him doesn t sound convincing. Why there’s always a room with a 80ies look? Fight to establish the time of the action rather than confusing things with details from other decades… i don t know it seems to me this 80 thing is becoming a cliché in amateur scrips, and the worst is that it’s just a detail, not something that really matters in the plot.

    The attacker
    The game description and the stadium atmosphere are very cinematic. Besides, I can t understand the tone… there is a disfigured supporter with a devil mask… this feels more comic book or junior tv cartoon serie than a theatrical movie. It could be good, I should read more, but I have feeling of unrealisticity, like the sport journalist calling the football player by name (I m not an expert in sports so I don t know…). The the team being hosted in a poor hotel… mmmm, this is something justified by the movie not by reality…. One more thing, I don tlike the description of the character with unfilmable details like he likes red sport cars, this kind of description scream ‘amateur’ for me, but again I don t know, maybe it s adevice to build a voice? I d like to hear what others think.

    I recommend to find a better title, something connected to the plot or the genre.
    I liked the writing but there are too much ordinary tabletalk, the set up is slow (and not much is actually settled up about the true plot). I stopped when they find the puppet… it’s not a very original horror element. I should read more to see where this goes. I must say I m not very into family horror with kids as main characters. One last thing, why 1994?

  • witwoud

    My vote goes to BRICK HOUSE, for the simple reason that it was the most exciting. I don’t know why the relationship between Bragg and Maddy is being left unspecified, and I’m not fond of that sort of thing on the whole. But the basic set up — tough guy must protect 8-year-old girl from other tough guys — is working for me.

    ANTIHEROES just didn’t do it for, concept-wise. Maybe it’s because these ‘flipped’ superhero scripts are becoming as commonplace as ‘flipped fairy-tales. And in the first few pages, instead of setting up the superhero-containing universe, we just get an awful lot of yak from a bunch of twenty-somethings.

    CHEATER — I liked Peggy’s opening voiceover. This feels original and all-too-plausible. But I couldn’t get any sense of what the story was about from the logline or the first few pages. ‘A PI … must navigate a business venture while juggling two lovers,’ doesn’t sound like much of a film.

    THE ATTACKER — Love the idea, but the first twenty pages didn’t pull me in as much as they should have. Fact is, I found it hard to care whether the footballer rescued his ‘stocky, prematurely balding’ brother or not. And in a ‘rescue’ film, that’s bad news. On a more positive note I really liked Belial and the brooding atmosphere of ultra-violence.

    FELIX — I’m afraid possessed dolls and ventriloquist dummies have simply been done to death in horror films, and there’s nothing here that’s going to make it stand apart from the pack. Some good writing, though. Felix and his fantasy life was well done. The kids’ dialogue sounded realistic, while the adults often sounded ‘written’. (“It’s vitally important you continue your biblical education…” Do even priests talk like that?)


    Congratulations to all. As in previous weeks, the quality of the scripts here is way above average. I must admit, before the competition started I thought we’d be seeing a lot of rushed, incoherent, patchy scripts. Instead, Carson’s three-month boot camp has produced a lot of polished and professional work.

    • garrett_h

      “Instead, Carson’s three-month boot camp has produced a lot of polished and professional work.”

      That’s because quite a few of them were polished. Possibly the majority of them. And a couple may have actually been professionals.

      • BMCHB

        Damning with major praise?

        I don’t get your point. I was part of the process and most likely won’t make the Wildcard round. I’m fine with the rules.

        Balls that my script, and others, were written before.

        I am unemployed. Zero money. Lots of time.

        ”…quite a few of them…” ??? Name them, garrett.

        • garrett_h

          Show me where I said, “BMCHB did not participate in the 13 week challenge. Her script was written beforehand.” And then I’ll gladly sift through months of comments to dig up which scripts were a part of the challenge and which ones were not.

          I don’t even know which script was yours. Is it in this batch? Or one of the previous weeks?

          • BMCHB

            Her? Nice. Am I pretty? Blonde?

            As I said last week, and I’ll be honest, I expected at least one or two from the original/Scott’s list this week, BUT eleven out of forty ain’t too shabby.

            I guarantee you that of the thirty something scripts on Link’s list today only ten MAX were submitted.

            I’ve connected privately with several contributors on SS,emails, exchanging notes, and two, IMO, great scripts that were submitted didn’t get featured.

            If there were ‘pro’s’, I couldn’t tell the difference.

            My favorite script was ‘Something true… skycraper hearts’. that got nowhere.

            Who are you voting for this week?

            Kind of unfair to steal this weeks writers’ moment,


    • jbird669

      Witwoud, thank you so much for reading and voting for my script! You made my day!

  • Scott Crawford

    As a first commentator you will be LISTED as such, but I’ll add your name.

  • Randy Williams

    “Disturbia” and “Apt Pupil” were great reading experiences for me and pretty good movies. My vote goes to something similar on this list, “Summer of ’84”.

    • Scott Crawford

      I was interested in MAXIMUM KING, I cracked it open and gave it a scan – using the search words function as I often do. I have a thing for MAXIMUM OVERDRIVE, I always was really scared by it!

      But probably the most famous behind-the-scenes anecdote – when King showed George Romero the scene where the kid gets run over and, due to a special effects malfunction, it looked like the kid’s head exploded! And Romero threw up! And King was SO happy he made George freakin’ Romero throw up!

      Well, it isn’t in there.

      And Yeardley Smith, I’m a fan of Yeardley Smith, I think she’s great. Has the writer HEARD Yeardley Smith? He’s captured King well but he fails to capture Smith’s humor. And there are lots of lame jokes about The Simpsons that also suggests the writer doesn’t know the history of The Simpsons except that it happened just after this film.

      OK, so when you’re doing a true story, especially the making of a movie, you’re going to do a lot of research and find out things, hopefully, that I don’t know. But I know a LOT about movies. And The Simpsons. Probably most people reading this script do too, it’s inevitable. Ran into a similar problem a while back on AOW when a writer wrote a “making of movie” true story script and I immediately spotted on page ONE a couple of mistakes because I’ve read the history of that movie AND the autobiography of one the background characters and… well, it felt to me a if the writer hadn’t.

      Sorry for the long post, I wasn’t expecting to write such a long post, but what I’ve read of MK so far has disappointed me.

  • Frank Fowler

    Hey guys and girls – first time poster, long time lurker. Really enjoy reading the amateur scripts and seeing fellow writers provide great, constructive feedback. Although this does not qualify me in any way to be an authority, I will give a bit of my background — I’m a writer/producer living in LA and got my “big break” back in 2012. Since then, I’ve sold two specs, a number of pitches, and have two scripts in production at studios. I’m repped by one of the three-letter acronyms and am a member of the WGA. Carson even reviewed one of my scripts awhile back and gave it a “worth the read,” but not [xx], so still plenty of room to improve as a writer!

    First, let me say – great job with this contest for those who participated. It’s not easy to write a screenplay. I’ve had a lot of help along the way so I thought I would (finally) stop lurking and post something. As most of you know, the feature screenplay market has certainly shifted over the last five years, with fewer specs being bought outright and more scripts being “packaged” with talent before a studio buys them. It’s certainly much harder now to get a screenplay sold today than it ever has been before. But enough with the bad news you already know. As a producer, I read probably 20-30 scripts a week, and if I’m being honest, maybe one of those I read all the way through. I end up reading the first 5 pages of the rest and search for the end of Act 1 and the end of Act 2. I probably read more of a given script than most producers and certainly more than agents and studio execs. Most studio execs and top agents don’t read screenplays at all. They rely solely on coverage.

    I quickly scanned the five screenplays this morning (certainly not enough to provide honest, valuable feedback – sorry) and thought I would share something that might be helpful to all of you. Now, I’m not a fan of writing to the current market, but I do believe in writing for the current reader. Before your script becomes a film, it will live as a document that will be read by hundreds of people. Therefore, it is beyond important that you make your script READABLE. And not just in the grammar and punctuation sense. I can forgive English 101 sins more easily than I can forgive chunky scene descriptions and paragraphs of dialogue. If you have at most 5-10 pages to hook a current reader, those first 5-10 better be zippy and grippy. Make the time pass, fast. And above all – BE CLEAR.

    And that brings me to a helpful tip that has benefited me in my own writing… POV. As a reader, I want to be brought into the story through someone’s point of view. I want to be directed into the world by a guide – someone who is in control. And one way to do that is through POV. Too often I read competent screenplays that have paragraph after paragraph of third person scene description. He does this. She does that, etc. It’s a visual medium – direct the reader where to look, when to listen, what to notice, why to care, what to think. WHAT ARE WE WATCHING? I find it really helps the reader engage the visual senses and actually imagine what is going on in the script.

    Consider the opening of DEATH WISH (remake) by Joe Carnahan:


    A VOICE. Powerful and profound in issuing the following–


    –And this is what guns do guys–

    The erratic, cacophonous din of a TRAUMA E.R. overtakes–



    Defib-paddles FIRE. The low thump of voltage follows. A HEART MONITOR falters, then fails to the drone of a flatline.


    A GUNSHOT VICTIM (GSV) prone on a gurney, his last breath evaporating inside a respirator mask.

    E.R. NURSE

    He’s coding. Full arrest.

    The VOICE belongs to this man–


    –forget it. I’m gonna split him.


    PAUL KERSEY, 40, possesses the relentless sense of purpose and hawk-eyed precision common to his calling: Trauma Surgeons wield out-sized egos and skill-sets which tend to separate them from their Hippocratic contemporaries.

    The E.R. NURSE hands him a scalpel with a 15 series blade. He pauses before passing it quickly over the sternum. The skin splits like stretched silk. A bone saw follows the scalpel’s path, cleaving through the dense mass of breast plate.

    PAUL KERSEY (CONT’D) (urgently precise)

    Spreaders. Move. Let’s go guys. Losing time.

    A set of RETRACTORS slot inside the rib cage and actuate, separating the two halves of the chest cavity with a sickening thunk…

    …the victim’s heart appears. Quivering in full arrest. Only crucial seconds remain before it shuts down completely.

    Paul remains composed and in full command.

    This scene could have been written a number of different ways – but most often, writers choose to write in staid third-person scene descriptions and dialogue. E.g. – Paul Kersey, a doctor, operates on a man with a gun shot wound or something like that… and then proceed to describe everything going on in the room in the same way. Carnahan jumps POVs from Kersey’s to the Victim’s to even the inanimate – the retractors! I’m being led through the scene by Carnahan’s prose. It’s quick. Clear. Effective. Evocative. And as a reader, I’m in. I want to read more.

    Sorry for the long post, I hope it was helpful. If not, feel free to disregard! Just struck me as I read a couple of pages of these scripts today. Keep up the good work here and thanks to Carson for hosting such a cool forum for writers! And yes, there are producers who lurk scriptshadow…

    (Not my real name) Frank Fowler

    • klmn

      Thanks for posting this.

    • BMCHB

      Fantastic insight. Thanks.

    • Zero

      I feel that it’s because so many websites/blogs/gurus/pros advise not to direct on the page that many newer writers are afraid to use POV and smash cuts and things like that.

      Of course, one learns to use them properly as one keeps writing. But learning that kind of guiding writing is an advanced technique.

      It’s also that that scene, imo, is not as clear as could be – and a lot of article and book writers emphasize clarity. Third Person Objective is usually the best bet for clarity – but, and I agree with you here – not for getting an intimate, interesting viewpoint.

    • gazrow

      Excellent post, thanks!

    • Wijnand Krabman

      Some times it is better to write third person other times P.O.V. is better. It depends, if our job is to create a visual in the readers head anything is permitted. I don’t like descriptions like smash cut, if you write it well enough a little intelligent director knows what transition is needed.
      INT. room
      Frank is entering we see he has a gun in his pocket.

      It’s obvious that we start with a wide shot because we have to know we are in a room and that frank enters, second: we need a close to make clear he has a gun in his pocket.

      • Paul Clarke

        He’s not talking about actual POV shots, that’s up to the director and cinematographer to work out.

        He’s talking about storytelling point of view. Every scene must have a lead character with a clearly established desire that they actively pursue. Combine this with well-crafted writing and we experience the story through them. Through their point of view. Like physics, everything is relative. A bad guy in one story could be the good guy or mentor in another, it all depends on your perspective and relation to them. That’s why having a clear main character helps solve so many issues before they even arise.

      • Lisa Chapman

        Does he have a gun in his pocket or is he just happy to see us? lol

    • Erica

      Thank you for sharing, this is great insight. I must have missed this post earlier, maybe it was hiding in moderation limbo.

    • Scott Serradell

      Frank (or whatever your name might be),
      Thank you for such a great post (not that we asked for it.) It’s kind of cool to learn that there are producers who observe the proceedings here (because who doesn’t like being spied on!) But, more importantly, that there are those with some sway in Hollywood who give a damn about the craft of writing (I bet your real name is Francisco and you use “Frank” because it sounds cooler.) That you are a writer yourself is rather inspiring (Did you choose “Frank” because Elmore Leonard was already taken?) If and when you had the time I think a lot of us would be curious to what screenplays of late have caught your interest (but don’t worry, we won’t be holding our breath. Did you see that last “Hunger Games” BTW? Don’t worry; it wasn’t that good.) Anyway, great advice! Please drop by anytime (preferably head first!)
      Scott (which IS my real name. Granted, it’s only one syllable. And it’s kind of boring. But “Elmore Leonard” was already taken.)

    • moog

      Excellent post – thank you!

    • ocattorney

      Hi Frank
      Interesting post,I was wondering about the people who only read the first five pages of a script. In “Titanic” by James Cameron, you’re still inside a submersible diving on the wreck. In “The Exorcist,” you’re in Iraq watching a geological dig. Writers use the first five pages to set a mood because they know the audience isn’t going to leave the theater. Indiana Jones had a great intro in “Raiders” that determined how we will always think of him, as an action hero who limps because he’s been beaten down a lot, and he’s never stayed down.
      The thing about POV of view is, NOTHING in the script actually appears on the screen after the movie is made. The #1 thing you experience is the Music. The dah-duh of “Jaws” made us afraid. No one at Fox understood “Star Wars” until John Williams added the Overture and his other great score.
      To properly judge a script, I always ask the writer (if possible) to tell me what it’s about. When the audience leaves, what will they take away? Are there moments of elation? Maybe it is possible to dismiss a bad script by only reading five pages, but if the script made it to your desk, maybe someone read the part where Rose fell madly in love with Jack and then the ship hit the iceberg, and they almost died in the frozen water… that’s the part I would use to judge.
      OK, elation. In the scripts that you read all the way to the end, are there moments of Elation? High points full of happy emotions? Because I’ve read so many scripts here where there are none – Bill Hays

    • Marija ZombiGirl

      Hey Frank :)
      This is a great post from which any amateur writer can learn a lot. And while I agree with you on every point, I also have to raise another one which, to me, goes a long way to say a lot about some screenplays: we’re mostly WRITERS, not DIRECTORS :) There are obvious differences between the two and never more obvious than when co-writing with a director. I have only one produced credit to my name (a French DTV movie that was released in 2010) but I have been lucky enough to co-write several scripts with different directors (projects that never got off the ground for reasons too long to go into here). And I have learned a lot thanks to their visual instincts making it somewhat easier for them to tell a story visually than for a writer relying more on getting emotions across. Thing is, we don’t all have access to directors and as the above example demonstrates, it’s very obvious that it was written by a director (same with Carnahan’s other brilliant scripts). We can only study those scripts and try to figure out WHY they work so well (while disregarding the camera directions of which there are often too many for my taste) and that is where your post comes in handy with a great explanation.

      Anyway, thanks for taking the time to post and please come back more often :)

      • Carmelo Framboise


    • -n8-

      One of the things I harp on and it’s very similar to your comment of pov is what I call point of entry. Honestly, of all the scripts I read both pro and am the thing that strikes me right away is the entry point into the story, the scene or the character.

      Like carnahan’s decision to open that script in a very urgent, very high stakes and very dramatic fashion lends itself to a heightened point of view. And calls for the exciting prose. The fast pace. But it’s all cauz of his choice to enter the script with that particular scene.

      And I’m not recommending that all scenes or scripts start with a bang. One of the best points of entry into a story I’ve ever seen was the leftovers. I’ve read lindelof’s pilot a couple times and his point of entry is brilliant– a young mother is doing the most mundane of rituals- washing clothes at a laundromat while talking on the phone to bill collectors all the while her infant cries. Sounds boring. It is boring. But it’s also foreboding. The reader can feel the sense that something is about to happen. You just don’t what. But you feel it in the writing, in the tone.

      Point of entry. I think about it constantly when i develop ideas. It’s so important. Cauz it wins over the viewer the reader even you as a creator when you come up with something special.

      Ok, been up way too long. Need some sleep. Have the longest work weekend ever. #weho on hoalloween.

  • wad_d

    I have a question and curious what people think. I wrote one of the scripts that has a chance at the wild card. I’m making some changes and was wondering if people think I should submit it with the colored revisions, or submit a clean draft (and not have the revisions marked)?

    • Scott Crawford

      I say revisions UNMARKED. Not everyone will have read the whole screenplay, anyway, so won’t care HOW MUCH you’ve written, only that it’s improving all the time.

      You wrote Untitled…, right? Your biggest problem is the lack of a title! Pick a title, ANY title – choose from the list of titles that we came up with a few weeks ago – and put it on the title page. Also rework the logline if you had any advice on THAT (I’d say the same for anyone else resubmitting their work – no revision marks, rework the logline as advised).

      Best of luck!

  • smishsmosh22

    congrats CJ! Did you write this for the contest? How long were you on the Black List before you were chosen to be featured?

    • C.J. Giltner

      Not specifically, but finished my draft around the same time. Only on the black list about 2 months when they chose me. Bought a review. Got a 7. Revised. Bought another review. Got an 8 (and another 8 off the free reads they gave me). Got short listed for the L.A. feature lab and I think maybe gave me the Featured slot as a consolation prize for not getting the lab. (Having been short listed for the chicago mini-lab last year with a diff script may also have helped in that regard)

  • Angie

    Hooray the end of 8 weeks! Congrats to all the writers and good luck. It has been fun (for me) participating again after so long.

    I too hoped I’d see some 13 week writers. Have no choice but to bow to Carson’s judgements. Am very pressed for time but managed to look at anywhere from 4 to 27 pages of each script. I’m truncating my comments this week.

    The Attackers by Jean Rousseau – 82 pages

    With the soccer game start, I had little hope that I’d like this but read through to page 17. Was engaged enough to not write notes.
    Skipped to last 10. Also no notes. Did not read the middle, so probably missed ways to add more necessary page count.

    Brick House by Jason Pruger – 90 pages.

    No title page was odd.
    Darn! The print was too light. Always discouraging to me.
    Page 1 Man and child playing a game, even preparing for an attack seemed low energy.
    Page 8. The accents made me lose interest. Didn’t recognize them until told where they were from. Could they have been done better, or played down a bit?
    Page 10. Should Bragg speech be Hyde? Confused about that.
    Skipped to page 80. Read to the end. Context better and a good ending but, just me maybe, still found the accents, as done in this draft, distracting.

    The Cheater by Evangelos Banks – 116 pages.

    Page 1 &2. Lots of long VO’s.
    Page 2. Ext. Hotel – Day. “Pullin in.” Do we get to see the outside of the hotel? I could not visualize your intent.
    Page 4. Now a Narrator, misspelled.
    Page 4: Gak! I think gross out humor works better for dudes than for me. Sorry, I bailed here.

    Antiheroes by Patrick G. Emralino – 117 pages

    Page 1. Do twenty-seven year old men and women discuss being a superhero? I would have expected these people to be younger. Could not visualize them. They felt disembodied.
    At first glance thought Carsen was male. Then I questioned a no smoking sign outdoors.

    Can they do that?
    Pages 3-4. Very interesting description of the hurt and havoc that two fighting superheroes can cause.
    Page 8. Can’t say exactly why but here is where my interest

    Felix by Casey Giltner – 99 pages

    Read to page 17. Excellent writing. Love a creepy doll story. Random thoughts: the 90s were not that blissful, lol.
    Skipped to
    Page 89 to the end. Brutal happening. Will be difficult to see on screen. Liked “slingshot
    momentum” on page 93. Could picture that
    Nice twist at the end. Did feel familiar, like some old TZ

    I’m splitting my vote between Felix and The Attacker.

    • JeanR

      Hi Angie,
      Thanks a lot for the nice things you said and for your vote !

    • jbird669

      Thanks for reading Brick House! I appreciate the feedback!

      • jbird669

        Also, I use screenforge as my writing software, because it’s free and works in MS Word. Title page is separate file (for printing purposes).

  • Randy Williams


    Congrats for making it on Round 1 of the Scriptshadow Tournament!

    Read to page 26. Why I stopped there, later. I’d read more. I like the concept to begin with. It’s easy to visualize how this action movie might play out and the action involved should entice. The writing is clear with plenty of arresting, energetic visuals that are very effective, I thought.

    It’s difficult to sympathize with Pete. I think for me because the illegal motion that contributed to winning the game wasn’t explored enough. I enjoy soccer but for a non-soccer fan perhaps it needed more explanation, more behind the scenes perhaps on some conflicted referees, and for Pete to really feel three-dimensional some inward conflict with him on taking advantage of that play. Will there be any consequences for his psyche for doing so?
    So, in a sense as I saw how this was shaping up, since I really never got to know his brother, I really didn’t care if Pete found himself in a gutter in Boshrobna or his brother.
    It doesn’t help that he comes on to the hotel staff and then doesn’t pay them. Or he foolishly goes into Boshrobna alone. Perhaps someone can come with him and be incapacitated?

    Another thing is there is no suspense. As soon as he steps into Boshrobna, all hell breaks loose. Ever see The Marathon Man? When that Nazi goes through the diamond district in New York? You are on pins and needles wondering if they will recognize him and someone does. In this story, they immediately recognize him. I think some build up would be suspenseful and also endear us more to Pete if he was somewhat smart in eluding them at first?

    Finally, it veers from playful to dark. I immediately sensed a better tone when Lina appears, page 27, more fun. I stopped here thinking this was a good place to put down my thoughts. I think for the subject matter, soccer, and the mindset of most soccer fans, a less dark tone is better?

    Clearly this feels like a movie and I can see this getting some votes.

    • JeanR

      Thanks a lot for your notes Randy. Penalty is indeed a great title !
      for the tone, I think you’re right, it’s a little bit too dark for the
      genre, it’s one of the things I need to change during the next rewrite.

  • Comma

    Hello you shoul check ‘lo chiamavano jeeg robot’, an italian superheromovie which is doing very well in festivals, a big hit in the local market and that will be distributedin france soon. It s the story of a young crooker who gains superstrenght and starts by using it for his personal ‘business’, then learn to care for the others.

  • Mayhem Jones


    I can’t wait to see everyone’s 13-week-challenge scripts on upcoming AOW’S!!!!! Don’t forget to pitch the hell outta Carson, people! We have enough amazing material to satiate our desire for unique, fun, interesting and inspiring scripts for MONTHS! As a manager once said: “Screenwriting is one of the last fields where you can become an overnight success”. It can happen for you TOMORROW! In a month! Next week! One year from THIS SECOND! Maybe in THREE DAYS! DON’T LOSE HOPE, EVER!!!!!!!

    OT: I saw a commenter with the name “salad_fingers” and am INSANELY intrigued.

    SHORT ON TIME THIS WKND, but here ya go:

    THE ATTACKER: Love the premise! You’ve set up plenty of conflict in the logline. The opening where the buzzing of bees gives way to a stadium of human voices is an awesome descriptor. Sports stuff makes me “Zzzzzzz” 11 times out of 10 (SORRY!) but I’ll be damned if you didn’t write the opening game in a way that totally caught my attention! Great writing style—sparse, lively, very visual. I felt things.

    BRICK HOUSE: Dang, love the premise for this, too! Your descriptions are great, they have voice. Because of the set-up, I was on edge thinking the teenager delivering groceries was at ANY SECOND gonna whip out a gun or start some kind of “trouble”! Bravo!! MADDY/BRAGG dynamic is believable and I sympathize with Maddy immediately.

    THE CHEATER: Mmmmm this script sounds like so much fun!! HAHA I love the ONE NAME thing on the title page! I once put just my LAST NAME on a script, and a manager called me up and went: “One name? Who do you think you are? CHER??”. I was like, “Whatever, man! MAYBE!!” As I think Erica pointed out this is really similar to Billie’s BAIT (in idea), and while she has an amazing, breezy quality to her writing, I’m also LOVING your frank dialogue in all the VO’s!! Stuff like “Guys, no selfies with the side chick” has me on the floor.

    FELIX: WOW–the timing for this is incredible seeing as it coincides with the blacklist “featured script” blast! I saw in the comments you received the ELUSIVE 8 SCORE…. several times… ah, one day I’ll get that… ONE DAY!!!!! Oh, please. Who am I kidding?? Anyway! Easy to see why—this is pro-level prose. The subject matter didn’t grab me like THE CHEATER did, but I would say hands down this is the most professional presentation of the bunch. GOOD LUCK with the blacklist stuff, hope you’re getting a crap load of industry downloads!

    ANTIHEROES: Of the bunch, THIS concept felt the most commercial for me. Fantastic writing, engaging dialogue. Really like how we get into the action by page 3. Which BTW: very clean action lines. Love Violetta! Sharp dialogue… she’s a bad ass chick! Am going to read more of this, if I can.

    As always, thanks for sharing your work guyz!!!!!!!

    • JeanR

      Thanks a lot for the compliments Mayhem !

    • jbird669

      Thanks for the compliments, Mayhem! (I wrote Brick House).

  • gazrow

    “Watch real football, the NFL”

    Ha! – As real as the synthetic testosterone many of the players inject themselves with!

    • Kirk Diggler

      Hand egg.

  • Poe_Serling

    My vote this week goes to:


    Even though I tend to shy away from films/scripts/etc. with abusive
    characters, I read most of the project and skimmed though the
    violent scenes toward the end.

    As horror projects go…

    The overall story seemed more than a bit familiar; however, it did
    feature strong, thoughtful writing from start to finish in my

    What I feel the screenwriter really nailed with this particular tale – the
    kid’s POV of the supernatural events unfolding around him.

    All kids get a bit spooked by something or other as they push
    toward adulthood.

    For me, it was the lonely stretch of road between the edge of
    town and my family’s house.

    And I thought the writer really captured that unique aspect of
    growing up and was able to incorporate it into the storyline
    in a truly meaningful way.

    As always, thanks to all the writers for sharing their work.

    • Scott Crawford

      Hey, Poe… I was watching SEVEN DAYS IN MAY the other day, which was written by your uncle, Rod Serling. Great film, great script. Great plotting. I’d always thought of Rod as just being as a writer of O Henry-like short stories but I guess /i should really watch more of his stuff. I mean, here he’s adapting a book, I’ve not read the book, but he’s got good material. And even if the speeches were written by other, uncredited writers, Rod does a really good job of selling not only how such a devious plan could come about, but it how it might realistically be uncovered and just as realistically thwarted.

      Any other non-Twilight Zoney stuff Rod did you would reccomend?

      • Poe_Serling

        Yeah, Seven Days in May is quite a memorable film. Great cast. Rock solid direction from Frankenheimer.

        Besides penning close to half the episodes for TZ and more than a few
        of the Night Gallery shows…

        Serling first made a name for himself in early TV with the live dramas
        such as Patterns and Requiem for a Heavyweight (later turned
        into a feature film).

        Of course, he was a credited co-writer of Planet of the Apes.

        Something you might enjoy from his writing resume:

        Assault on a Queen

        “Mercenaries salvage a sunken submarine to rob the Queen Mary at

    • C.J. Giltner

      Thanks for giving it a fair shake, Poe. Really glad the kid’s POV came through for you.

      • Poe_Serling

        You’re a talented writer – keep at it. Here’s hoping more success (Blacklist,
        etc.) comes your way.

  • smishsmosh22

    table read for Tony’s “Delta Dog” script now live here:

  • klmn

    There was a post that The First Daughter had been optioned. I don’t know if that affects anything or should affect anything.

    Maybe the writer should speak up, if only to take a victory lap.

    • Scott Crawford

      Writers have to resubmit their scripts. I would suggest MORE than just the eight “chosen ones” send in their script and, if one person doesn’t bother, then the next person down could take their place.

      As far as options are concerned, I don’t know, that’s up to Carson. An option might not mean anything. Felix is a Black List chosen script, right? Is that fair? Who knows.

      It is (maybe) the problem when “occasional visitors” submit their scripts to Scripthadow, they don’t always turn up when their script gets picked and they don’t always stick around when their script “loses.” And don’t expect an email reminder from Carson on resubmitting your script. That’s not how Hollywood works, baby.

  • Levres de Sang

    Not sure if I’ll have time to vote this week, but here are some notes on the script that caught my eye…

    FELIX [Read: 20 pages then skimmed to p.32]:

    Weird that I was only reading the glowing Black List evaluations for this script last night…! It’s also a tricky one to evaluate because it’s smoothly written for the most part. My problem is that nothing much happens. Of course, things DO happen: Felix plays outside; watches a girl who lives over the road; enjoys a family meal; goes to his great grandmother’s funeral; and even a has a weird interaction with a (perhaps creepy) priest… However, these things feel like domestic EPISODES rather than the unfolding of an organic narrative. A story, in other words.

    That being said, hundreds of American writer-director projects come and go in much the same way — and I can imagine FELIX being made exactly as it’s written here. Indeed, it feels like the author wants to go down this indie coming-of-age path because (aside from a creaking radiator or two) there’s no sense of horror in the opening 13 pages. In short, the nostalgia of a pre-internet 90s world is where his heart lies. However, if he does want to sell this script to a horror audience then maybe consider the following:

    1. They should find Charlie while going through the stuff at Grandma’s house. I’m sure you’ve got something up your sleeve with that civil war model soldier, but for now the scene feels anti-climatic. The basement scene doesn’t really work for me either, I’m afraid.

    2. Open with them driving to the funeral (Felix can spy Vanessa from the window of the funeral car) and then CUT straight to grandma’s house and them finding Charlie. (If the Priest is important, he can always visit the household in the few days after the funeral.) Also, if this is a HORROR film then your first obligation is to orientate that horror audience and establish Felix as the unwitting owner of a creepy ventriloquist’s dummy.

    Like I said, this is well-written, but I would market it as a purely coming-of-age tale. The horror element would be a nice twist for that audience; whereas at present things are probably too mild for a contemporary horror audience.

    • C.J. Giltner

      Thanks for checking it out Levres! I appreciate your detailed notes. :)

  • Jack madden

    The Title is the right title, it works on many levels. You’re script was cool. That dude above is smoking crack from a dead man’s arse.

  • Erica

    Too bad this script was finished before the 13 week challenge. Another spot gone to those of use who did do the 13 week challenge.

  • smishsmosh22

    Congratulations to today’s writers!!!!

    I’m kinda sad to see that many of the regulars who submitted didn’t get chosen. I know, them’s the breaks, and Carson probably got a shit ton of submissions… But I personally read quite a few of the scripts while doing notes exchanges / table reads, so I want to give a shout out to the following awesome scripts:

    Stacy Wentworth: The Last Boner Smasher
    This was one of the funniest table reads I’ve ever done. The first line of dialogue is TONIGHT WE FUCK! hahah. Eric, you better get this made, you chode! I want to watch it.

    Also Atlantis Waters by Randy Williams, Phobe by Erica, The Princess and the Janitor by Justin Cox, Antebellum by Daivon (I forget your last name right now sorry), Bend by Tony Dionisio, Searching for Justice by Frog, Shadows Beyond by Greg Mandarano, and Monster Investigations by Frankie Hollywood (even tho it turns out he didn’t submit it, haha).

    I probably missed a few people, my apologies… But I really enjoyed reading all of these scripts and I know these guys worked hard on it, specifically for this contest, so I hope you all keep going and don’t let this deter you.

    There’s lots of contests out there and ways to get your script noticed. :)

    • Erica

      Thank you for the shout out! I’ll have to get Phobe in on a read one of these days, just let me know when your ready for another long script. lol.

      Shout out to all those on the list! And the others. Sorry if I’m repeating, that’s the alcohol. After today’s post I had to do another Liquor store and Chocolate run, yes it’s that serious… well, not really, but it makes for a great excuse to buy more chocolate.

    • Eric Boyd

      Thanks Alison! It really was a great table read. You do such a great job setting all those up. Everybody should be sending you their scripts. Here’s the link to the Last Boner Smasher read if anybody is interested in checking it out.

    • Randy Williams

      Thanks Smish for the shout out. I loved The Princess and The Janitor. I’ll have to check out the others.

  • Linkthis83

    Congrats to all the writers over all the weeks who were chosen to participate in this SS contest. Well done to you.

    Major condolences to those who embraced the call to action but whose scripts did not get a chance to step onto the battlefield and wage war.

    For me, none of the scripts this weekend met, or exceeded, the bar to make it onto the list. FELIX was definitely the best written of the group, but I’m certain this one wasn’t written in the spirit of the competition (I have no way of truly knowing if all the others on the list were or were not).

    The list of 12 will be finalized by next Friday after I finish checking out the scripts I’ve been sent.

    I will send out an email to those 12 (assuming I have all of their emails) letting them know when the deadline is to send an updated draft – if they choose to do so.

    I also hope to have figured out how I will judge these scripts in the upcoming weeks.

    THE GRATEFUL EIGHT (so far – which is now a twelve player contest)


    (eliminated: COURAGEOUS MAN – SEEING RED [replaced by ODYSSEUS after re-reading the openings])


    p1 = EXT. STADIUM/SOCCER FIELD = Which stadium? Whose stadium. It’s going to matter.

    p1 = a DEFENDER = give us his jersey color. We need to know where loyalties are

    p1 = his jersey number is 10 is good. What color is his jersey? Don’t give us his whole name here. Maybe his last name. I prefer no name at all yet.

    p1 = Why not use a WHISTLE BLOW to bring us back to normal speed for issuing of the RED CARD? (you have no idea how much time I spent researching how whistles are used in soccer before feeling comfortable making this suggestion)

    –Don’t players get dismissed once they’ve received a RED CARD? why don’t you have a scene of that player leaving the field?–

    p2 = handsome bad-boy face = handsome, bad-boy face

    –and from his face we can tell he’s an AVID collector of sports cars, one-night stands and RED CARDS? — if you want this, this needs to come out in dialogue somewhere.

    –Also, it’s important to give jersey colors of the players because I thought Branson was the one who then got a red card because one was just issued and apparently he’s an avid collector — but then I didn’t think he got it because I was certain he was the one dribbling. Clarity is paramount.

    Oh…and this is where you COULD give us the PETE BRANSON character name intro…but you could even hold off still.

    p2 = you show us the 0-0 score and the event it’s taking place in. But this is why it’s important for us to know who has the home field. Or if this is a neutral site. It’ll add to the natural tension if #10 is on a visiting team in a hostile venue

    p2 = you introduce to BELIAL — THE FANS’ RINGLEADER = he should be described as the OZKANA FANS’ RINGLEADER

    –you also mention in his description WHY he wears a mask and that it is ALL the time. But we wouldn’t know that yet if we were watching the movie. You’ve just robbed yourself, and your reader, of an interesting story component that I’m certain comes later in your story since you are mentioning it here.

    p3 = The ball gets deflected into the CORNER. = this sentence confused me. I thought it deflected into the corner of the goal. Not that it got deflected THUS resulting in a CORNER KICK. Clarity.

    p3 = Pete signals his brother = How? be specific. Also, how would we know it’s his brother on-screen? How does the brother gesture back? Be specific.

    –and the brother is prematurely bald, but wearing a cap? how will we know?–

    p3 = you refer to Belial as the ringleader again…but we already know this based on his intro on page 2

    p9 = stopped

    I’m going to be blunt here: the first three pages frustrated the hell out of me. I read them probably 3 or 4 times to truly understand what I thought you were going for and to be clear about who was where and doing what and why.

    Based on your logline, you’ve got a great fucking concept here. Not only that, you upped it by making the goal an illegal goal. That’s excellent foundation building for a gritty story.

    I’m a firm believer in “action/consequences”, or “cause and effect”, storytelling. Which you do some in your opening but not enough, in my amateur opinion. You have the illegal and the soccer crazies going crazy…but that’s not all that surprising.

    However, since stories are relationships, and yours is built on the relationship of your brothers, I think you missed an opportunity. You have Pete acknowledge Jamie in the stands, and then later Jamie shows up in the locker room with an ID badge. Not very cinematic.

    Instead, why not have the Ozkana fans see the exchange between Pete and Jamie – which puts Jamie in trouble – and the Ozkana crazies start making their way to him – maybe Pete signals him to come towards the field – and then Pete jumps into the stands to go get him – gets him to the field and safely to the locker room. It makes for more organic tension, informs how anybody would know who Jamie is, it shows that Pete would go after his brother, etc…

    Oh, and I think you should reveal Pete’s name after he scores the goal. Whether it’s on a scoreboard, someone’s radio, or by Jamie wearing a shirt that says “Pete Branson’s my brother!” Lol…okay, don’t use that one.


    p8 = “When someone shows ya a courtesy, its polite to say thanks.” = it’s

    –I fucking loved this line of dialogue in the place it is used. Bravo!–

    p9 = “Best lead we had in weeks.” = I groaned

    p10 = BRAGG (cont’d) = should be HYDE (cont’d)

    p10 = stopped

    This set up just wasn’t compelling nor did it get me invested. There were some logice issues for me mainly:

    1) A man this careful is back in town, living at a house where I think he receives mail, and orders out for groceries?

    2) A man who has ordered groceries, and knows they are on their way, breaks a drinking glass in order to give himself a weapon when someone knocks on the door. He’s in danger and has no other weapons at the ready? (I did like him drinking the milk in order to smash the glass – but they seem to be so low on supplies that he shouldn’t be smashing drinking glasses…I kid I kid.)

    3) There is a store across the street from Bragg??? It better not be a grocery store!

    4) Bragg is discovered by total random chance – I dislike this as a story choice

    I do appreciate your effort though. Sincerely. Hopefully others really got into your script.


    p3 = ludus?

    p4 = INT. APARTMENT??? = it was INT. HOTEL a page ago

    p10 = stopped

    There were moments where BUSSY and BUSEY were on the page.

    This one wasn’t effective for me. I honestly couldn’t figure out how the opening VO helped to set up the opening scene. I thought the VO was going to be for some sort of conference she was giving at a hotel, and when the scene INT was for a hotel, I thought I was right, until I quickly realized I was wrong.

    I did enjoy the line when the NARRORATOR states that “she fucked up.” I immediately pictured Elizabeth Banks possibly being the one who fucked up. Gave me kind of a WALK OF SHAME vibe. Just didn’t work for me as it is set up though.


    p1 = We hear the innocent, yet very loaded question: = there’s no need for this. Just start your story.

    p2 = “Very inspired Mike” = Very inspired, Mike

    p9 = What’s her name calling her boss an asshole under her breath is where I’m out

    Concept-wise, a lot more of these types of stories are surfacing. And for good reason.

    The place you had me invested in your script:

    What would you do if you had superpowers?

    Where I started to lose faith:

    Really, babe? That’s your topic changer?

    –And then the conversation that ensues.

    Here’s why: Based on what you are setting up, I feel like the conversation that should follow would be one of greater significance. Whether it be with subtext or their own philosophies about the existence of superheroes in their world.

    Not saying the topic is relevant. Don’t say that, we will learn it is relevant momentarily. Based on whatever their personalities are for the overall story, have them shine here in this moment (assuming the rest of them play a role later). and if not, doesn’t matter, they should still have a POV, or paradigm regarding the subject matter that’s going to take place in the remaining 100 pages.

    This is just one opinion though. I feel boldly about this but it is up to you how to handle this script going forward based on other feedback you get as well :)


    p9 = a magnanimous bother at the best of times = don’t understand this description

    p25 = stopped

    Congrats, CJ, on having a good week for your script. For me, it was the best script of the weekend, but still didn’t work for me.

    Here are the two biggest issues for me:

    1) The stuff I get in the first 25 I feel I’ve gotten elsewhere before, and none of it feels “new” or “fresh” or “unique” regarding the familiar.

    2) The scenes feel disjointed. Very little connectivity. This happens, then this happens, then this happens. Things are highlighted but not used effectively (the limp).

    In regards to #2, I know they are leading somewhere, but I still feel you need better cause-and-effect storytelling. Not simply “dad’s out of ketchup go back to the basement.”

    When they are at the church this is when we get to see that the dad has a serious limp. But that’s all and not much regarding it in the first 25. If you want to give us the limp, I think it should be sooner than this and in a more effective scene/moment.

    And while at the church, when father and son are kneeling in front of the casket, his father leans over and says “Your great grandmother was a great woman.”

    This is a moment to do something effective. What I want here, which probably doesn’t fit with your story, would be to have the father lean over and say:

    “You’re great grandmother was an awful woman.” And have him mean it. Maybe even be terrified when he says it. 10 year-olds don’t know how to process that. And it’s a big moment and private one where fathers normally provide guidance and understanding.

    Felix is the emotional compass of your story and I don’t feel him, thus I don’t feel your story. Felix has zero reaction to the loss of his great grandmother. What was his relationship with her? Did he even have one? What was the relationship with his father before this even occurred?

    Speaking of the father-son relationship, I think another key moment that’s an opportunity to get a reader invested is when the father gives Charlie to Felix. To be blunt, it’s boring. Felix should want Charlie and the father should be reluctant. Or better yet, from my perspective, Felix shouldn’t want Charlie. At all. Because he’s scared. But if his father insists and is in the beginning stages of his unraveling, then Felix will reluctantly accept it because he feels he is helping his father. Perhaps the mother could urge Felix to take it as well.

    It just feels like the relationships to be be explored more and emphasized early. Especially if you want to use Charlie as the haunted heirloom.

    Anyway, hopefully something in here is useful. It’s good writing, just not effective storytelling, for me and the experience I want from this premise.

    • JeanR

      Hi Linkthis83,
      Thank you very much for reading the script and for the (very pertinent) notes !

    • jbird669

      Hi, thanks for reading my script Brick house and for the feedback.

  • Jaco

    What about this as a good screenwriting rule: The fact you finished a script does not entitle you to anything.

    Couple that with: The fact you lost a contest doesn’t mean you suck.

    So what? You didn’t win a contest – this contest. Enter another one. Write another script. Find people who actually want to read what you wrote. Can’t find anyone to read what you wrote? Write something better.

    All this contest really showed is that more time needs to be spent on concept. But we knew that going in, right? Some of these scripts showed passable to pretty good execution skills – which is hard to do in 13 weeks – hell even 13 months. Hardly any hit on the right concept.

    So, is getting a pat on the back from other amateur writers for doing something a monkey with a typewriter could do really that rewarding? Come on. Do more. Do better.

    Don’t let this contest invalidate you. All it shows is how subjective all this is. If you stop writing, the Grendel’s of this world will have won.

    • Scott Serradell

      Well. I don’t know about monkeys and typewriters…But give those little bastards a guitar…

  • ScriptChick

    MY VOTE: The Attacker
    Runner-Up: Felix

    FELIX – (read to pg. 33 and last 10. The pace is even and prose makes me very confident in the writer. Even though the dummy’s not that original, well-written creepy tension made me not write it off as a concept for a movie. The ending though along with resting on nostalgia too much kept me from voting this the winner)

    Pg. 3 – In the NEIGHBOR’S upstairs window.
    Pg. 3 – Felix hits the floor – haha
    Pg. 4 – I got the sense of 90s happy and wholesome in Felix’s bedroom. Not sure if I need it pointed out so soon again here at the kitchen in favor of getting on with the story, but still, good description.
    Pg. 4 – “nut-megged” – haha
    Pg. 6 – Felix going down to the basement could be considered creepy, but nothing much is introduced to the scene. No conflict in the sense that he’s scared to be down there (at least I saw no indication he was afraid). Without that, it’s just setup, when I feel it could potentially be pulling double duty.
    Pg. 16 – Like the creepy dummy (and ketchup bottle bit after)! But did this doll only appear allegedly because Dad brought it back from his grandma’s house? Think that needs to be more clear. It technically didn’t exist/live in the basement until Dad brought it home? Needed context. (and we kind of get it next scene…but are there boxes now in the basement that Felix didn’t notice before? All filled with items from grandma’s?)
    Pg. 17 – “Your great-grandma gave him to me…” There is a lot of family title thrown around in this dialogue chunk and it gets confusing. I would try to fight a way to pare it down or break it up so you’re not saying great-grandma, husband, grandpa, great-grandpa – all in one go.
    Pg. 20 – We already saw Felix is an active kid. I didn’t feel I needed to see that again with blink and you miss them scenes of skateboarding and lightsaber duel. The baseball game is the meaty scene. I think for what seems to be a slow burn story you need to cut as much fat as possible.
    Pg. 23 – Like Jimmy’s fake out.
    Pg. 25 – …Felix LIES in bed…
    Pg. 26 – Is that his parent’s room? And is the man his Dad? If not, fine, but if it is Felix’s Dad, I’d be clear about it vs. saying “a man’s naked backside”.
    The Indiana Jones thing was long for another scene of friends playing. We don’t even realize Felix is behind the camera until Vanessa comes in. So I was left wondering why I, along with Felix was watching minor characters (his friends) reenact Indiana Jones when we’ve just been given a new potential solution to Felix’s problem – make friends with the creepy dummy. While another great 90s nostalgia bit showing boys at play, I think it’s becoming more filler now than I’d like.
    And hormones know no bounds, but I preferred it when Felix seemed to have only these new feelings for Vanessa (and not also for Jimmy’s sister). Minor quibble.
    Last 10 –
    Pg. 90 – Beats, at least as stand alones in action lines read too much like a play to me. Style choice.
    So I like that Indiana Jones stuff did come into play later (later scene, boys playing in basement) and in a different way, but note above still applies for me though, paring down the boys’ play if you’re not adding much new to it.
    Great creepy images leading to the end but for the most part story seems unresolved, to be continued, with Felix being in kind of a downer situation. There didn’t seem to be a moment after the gripping climax in the basement where Felix was in a “all is right with the world” situation, before being thrown for a loop. Instead, the story seemed to stay in this gray, drab place. It’s a choice and I just prefer more glimmers of hope than despair after having survived so much.

    BRICK HOUSE – (Read to pg. 30. Problems with the setup and Bragg staying in the house kept me from wanting to read more. Bad guys in beginning also very generic)
    90 pages seems a little thin for an action. Just initial impression (especially since the writing on the page seems fairly light)

    Pg. 3 – The brick of the home is old, but power washed and clean enough to look rustic. – This kind of detail feels more like it belongs in a novel than a screenplay, but the title is Brick House so maybe it’s serving as a metaphor? Still though, this would be just a look in the movie, so I don’t think I’d understand any deep meaning about it unless it’s explored/talked about in a different way later.
    Pg. 3 – “…and no extra tip.” – this is directed at the teen, who really is just the delivery guy? The mistake seems to be out of his control but Bragg is sorta punishing him for it? Don’t think the character is a douche, but this isn’t winning any favors either.
    Pg. 5 – The stuff about the potato salad seems like a mundane thing to argue about. And if Bragg had a really strict schedule about taking out the trash at night, I don’t believe he’d break it to throw out rotten potato salad, which probably came with a lid he could just as easily shut and put in the garbage before he takes it out at night. Why not have this throwing away salad bit after the delivery boy comes?
    Pg. 6 – These bad guys come off a little cartoony/not smart. Counting money outside, their bickering, creeping up to the house. The Hyde/Anton scene also reader too generic to me.
    Pg. 8 – “IT’S polite to say tanks.”
    Pg. 9 – The cocaine is being hidden by home goods on top? This doesn’t come off as crafty, someone could just remove the goods on top and the cocaine is right there? Wouldn’t it be smarter to hide the cocaine within the goods? So harder to get it past the cops?
    Pg. 9 – It’s the (extra words, cut) He’s not vain…
    Pg. 9 – “Best lead we had in weeks.” – so they were looking for Bragg, yet found him by coincidence? This doesn’t sit well for me. What if they had a hunch where Bragg was, then utilized the teen somehow? Finding him by coincidence doesn’t make the antagonists smart and by that extension, harder for the hero to beat them. At this point, I have no doubt Bragg will win based on how these antagonists have been acting.
    Pg. 7 & 10 – (cont’d) as parenthetical line when it shouldn’t be.
    Pg. 10 – Hyde has a pink jail I imagine for Maddy. But this means that Hyde is in no danger of his warehouse being discovered? This and the cocaine – it all seems too lax and confident that no police would discover these blatant red flags? If he was to be discovered, the jail is not something that could be deconstructed quickly so it was very odd to me that Hyde would have such deep roots in a place that hasn’t been established to me as all that secretive or protected (by his goons and/or corrupt police).
    Pg. 10 – Bragg slams the door shut. – Bragg not in scene.
    Pg. 11 – When she’s out of sight, Bragg unlocks… – Bragg is a man.
    Pg. 11 – So the “no tip” line earlier is a setup for here when Bragg says he’s getting a tip – but don’t think you need it – it’s obvious to me that Bragg knows this guy is anything but a delivery guy. And if he went through the trouble of throwing his voice, why say the line to clue Courier in where he’s hiding?
    Pg. 13 – “Are you decent?” – weird line to say given what’s just happened. He expects his daughter to be in a state of undress/going to the bathroom when he told her to go hide?
    Pg. 15 – “Now why don’t we go watch some American Girl on Netflix (question mark)
    Pg. 17 – I think it’s an odd choice for Bragg to stay at home with Maddy. Why doesn’t he leave with her? Another option – why doesn’t Bragg go to the bad guys? By staying home and waiting for them to come, he’s needlessly putting his daughter at risk. This does not seem like the best choice, for Bragg to go on the defensive.
    Pg. 19/20 – Two doughnut jokes?
    Like the turn of events with Mel.
    Pg. 24/25 – Bragg hides the weapons around the room. Again, this is irksome to me (pg. 17 note above). Unless something is forcing Maddy and Bragg to stay in the house? What if she’d bedridden? Too sick to move her? I need some explanation because for all this time Bragg has to prep and defend his house, he could be going out and getting the jump on the bad guys vs. them trying to sneak one on him.
    Pg. 27 – Most of the adult coloring books I’ve seen are non-IP images. I know they exist, but why burden the story with an IP character not really related to, and frankly distracts from your story?
    Pg. 27 – It’s good that his pants are brown. — ?
    Didn’t believe Bragg would let the Meter Reader go so easily.
    Pg. 29 – Maddy steps in and walks to the CLOSET.
    Pg. 30 – MADDY removes the panel from the closet and… — also, why did she get out? She says “secret knock” but what about that would make her leave the safe spot? …went and reread it. She thinks the beating sound of the head against the wall equals the secret knock? I don’t buy this in a straight forward action movie. In a comedy, I think it’s great, but not here. For one, it’s not directly on the closet door and also, doesn’t she hear sounds of a fight still going on?

    THE ATTACKER – (Read to page 30 and last 10. I like the unique set and atmosphere once Pete is in the district. These fans could almost be zombies in a horror movie – which I think is great opposition to Pete, but at some point I think they may be too demonized. But I love Pete becoming more concerned for those around him and the ending from the last 10 was satisfying and good death to the villain)

    Damn, and I thought Brick House was short! 81 pages? I worry that there won’t be enough character development or juicy action scenes with this page count. Just letting you know my prejudice going in… and not a fan of the title.
    Pg. 1 – Like the buzzing leading into the excited soccer crowd.
    Pg. 1 – …as ITS being kicked.
    Pg. 2 – fan’sFURY (missing space?)
    Pg. 2 – Like his description here but would say distinguishing features – and then follow that up with avid sports car collector. Physical didn’t connect with hobby for me.
    Pg. 2 – Like addition of Belial
    Pg. 3 – Is it common to miss this type of hand foul? And not be recanted?
    Pg. 4 – Caps Television Crew since Journalist speaks?
    Pg. 8 – They say they traded in their four star hotel for something way less, but outside the city – wish I could have seen the Ozkana fans around the hotel, so I could see there too the sense of them stalking the players, waiting to strike at any chance.
    Pg. 9 – “…buy you a washing machine…dishwasher” – I like Nassir here, trying to get in with the maid of honor. But I’d suggest to Jamie more baby related stuff so I can see a direct connection to Jamie situation of his woman about to give birth, and Nassir would help if just this one favor is done for him.
    Pg. 13 – “That’s 100 Euros.” – haha
    Pg. 14 – Pete shut off the replay before the hand foul. I wish he had it on to see that so I would know if he felt guilty (which I think he does?). Shutting it off before that moment is leaving me to come up with filling in his emotional state. Or did the camera never get a good angle of it (which kinda seems hard to believe)
    Pg. 16 – Wondering if the concierge recognizes Pete and knows that district has all the fans from the other team? If that becomes another thing that the concierge warns Pete?
    Pg. 18 – passenger seat RIDDLED with cigarette holes?
    Pg. 19 – Playing soccer with Dobrov’s head – uh, what? This seemed to be like a straight up action but now suddenly fans are kicking around a man’s head like a soccer ball? Um…definitely creepy but this seems more fitting for horror. Dobrov didn’t seem to do anything so bad to warrant this. Just makes these people so evil like more demon than human. Maybe you want that but it takes away some of the realism to me in what so far I could imagine happening in real life.
    Pg. 20 – Pete lets them take off his hood without doing anything? Feel this could be reworked to create more tension.
    Pg. 20 – The fans whistle to get other fans to follow – but why not shout Branson’s name so they know what they’re chasing and get even more incensed?
    Pg. 23 – Love Pete himself into even more trouble – his pit of snakes is a drunken pit of sleeping fans.
    Pg. 26 – “Photoshop” – haha
    Pitch: Would it up the stakes if as Belial is inciting the crowd, he puts out an order to block the entrance to their district? I’d imagine he’d want no chance of Pete escaping. This ends with him dead, Pete’s blood on their hands.
    Pg. 29 – “Looks like soccer was the right choice for you!” – haha
    Pg. 29 – “You can run (comma) Branson.”
    Last 10 –
    Pg. 73 – Was a bit surprised to see we were back on the field for the climax. Focus seems to be here on Pete learning to pass to the teammates, but I liked the other story of Pete valuing family and saving Jamie. Family seemed to be the stronger theme than Teamwork. I’m just wondering since it’s a short script how much we stay in the district before this soccer game because I was hooked. The district is a great atmosphere and great problems for Pete. This final soccer moment seems like it could be in any sports movie but since I haven’t read the whole script, those are my surface thoughts.
    …and somehow the game involves Belial and his war buddies. They determine the fate based on a soccer match? This seems a little larger than life than what the script had setup.
    Pg. 76-78 – Fight between Lina, Pete and Belial was cool and good adrenaline for an action movie.
    Pg. 79 – I like that Nassir coming to the wedding was paid off here.

    THE CHEATER – (Read to page 33 and last 5. Funniest of the bunch and maybe the tournament for me. But the story is taking too long to get going and I have a problem with the logline – I think it’s delicious irony that a cheating woman has a job of catching cheaters while trying to hide her own infidelity, but what are the stakes? I’m not won over by the guys because I haven’t gotten to know Arthur’s opponent – Tyson — enough yet. I stopped at page 33, I’m past Act One and haven’t seen Peggy juggle two lovers yet. A phone call on pg. 40 does not a relationship make. It’s only until pg. 57 do we get the promise of your premise. It’s also not clear to me that her business will go under if she’s exposed unless she’s playing it up to all her clients how honest she is and what a good example she sets. And the plot point of wanting to buy some property seems so far removed from the rest of the story – feels random, could be anything. I guess that’s the goal – but I’m not onboard with it.)

    Needs a proofread.
    Pg1 – eye-fucks her ass – You don’t mention a bride so I wonder whose ass? Put the bride in there, problem solved.
    Pg. 2 – “…IT’S a lie.”
    Pg. 3 – Steps on a small glass from the television. – small glass what? Shard, bit, piece…
    Pg. 4 – Narrorator – misspelled each time
    Pg. 4 – Not the first script I’ve read (red hehe) with period blood on a guy’s mouth sight gag….not the biggest fan of that visual gag but then she covers saying she was a virgin. I have just met Peggy so I wasn’t sure if she was for real or not, then I remember the calendar. Maybe make it super clear with maybe X’s or upset faces on the calendar that that’s her period – otherwise I may miss it and then be asking myself question about why at 27 she decides to lose her virginity to two guys…and it’s all because I took the note too literally.
    Pg. 5 – When the fan breaks and Peggy tumbles on the bed – wouldn’t the guy’s wake? I think putting Peggy into more direct conflict with the guys who realize their nether regions are coated in Carried-level amounts of blood would make for more laughs – and then Peggy can come up with that lame excuse.
    Pg. 7 – Character name Bussy (Busey) misspelled.
    Pg. 7 – “…like a RAT’S ass.”
    Pg. 8 – “YOUR mother accepts favors..”
    Pg. 9 – Kinda wish there was more conflict with the boot her or that it actually got put on Peggy’s tire.
    Pg. 11 – “You cunt” – lol
    Pg. 12 – I like the style choice of making Tim’s lines smaller.
    Pg. 13 – I think this scene needs to have another function. I like Tiny Voice Tim but what else can help the story here involving Peggy and her problems. We’ve only heard via VO that Peggy is a private detective, so why not Peggy point out to her friend all the people she’s helped. People that are taking that class now that she either exposed as cheaters or helped them find out if their significant other was cheating. You have Peggy with an interesting job – flaunt it. The other stuff is broad comedy right now.
    Pg. 13 – “THEY’RE still ongoing.”
    Pg. 13 – Does Tricia work the cheating business with her? She does have a business like set up in the voiceover, right? She just wants to now make it a TV show? But this idea isn’t new and not because of the recent money issue because she’s already shot a commercial to pitch it to stations? There is a lot of info going on behind the scenes, and it doesn’t even seem brought about by the recent problem Peggy now has. And I still haven’t seen Peggy do her job. It’s a little frustrating and hard to keep track of, especially if I don’t have a logline to go off of.
    Pg. 16 – Joel turns to Peggy while using the urinal – so did he just piss on her shoes or something?
    So far my thought it I love how unrestrained Peggy is. Maybe her no filter dialogue can get to be a little too much sometimes but overall, I really like her character and how vivid she is. I can imagine a comedy actress wanting to play this role just to add some of her own improv – because the character allows that to naturally happen in the scenes. So main character’s voice, check, story no so much for me yet…
    Pg. 20 – I think it clutters up Peggy’s job by having her tempt men outside of her work? Because I think it is part of her job to tempt men? To see if they’re down for cheating or not? Maybe I’m thinking too much of THE BAIT concept from week one of the SS tournament…
    Pg. 21 – “dove candles” – haha
    Pg. 22 – “If I’m the only one then why WON’T you make it official? Why WON’T you be mine? You’re gonna have to choose. Me or YOUR beliefs.”
    Pg. 23 – Peggy doesn’t seem to care that much about Arthur. I don’t really care that much about Arthur either. Maybe it’s good that I don’t like Arthur because then I would dislike Peggy more? I think I’m just antsy waiting for the story because I feel like there hasn’t been a definitive launching point yet. (ditto to the walmart scene afterwards)
    Pg. 23 – ….young couple in an AISLE…
    Pg. 25 – IT’S been five whole seconds now.
    Pg. 28 – “…guy YOU’RE greasing.” – like word “greasing”. Vivid and funny.
    Pg. 29 – Arthur was randomly at the same gas station as Peggy?
    I think this is the script I’ve laughed the most from in the whole tournament (mostly to do with Peggy’s character) – but the stuff with Tyson I’m not so sure about. Questions like…
    Was Peggy doing her cheaters business before she met Tyson? Wouldn’t she know that he wasn’t showing any of the cheater tip-offs – OR – he was but she could never find the woman and because she’s prideful/afraid of commitment she’s sure he has cheated. And if that’s the case, did Tyson resent not being trusted? As it is now, my understanding is she mistrusts men in general and knows he’s going to cheat on her eventually when in fact Peggy has the commitment issue because she won’t have a boyfriend. I guess that’s fine, but it was a bummer to me that this relationship she had with Tyson didn’t really have anything to do with her business (didn’t seem to be a causation of it). Currently too many blanks I’m trying to fill in to better understand Peggy and what she does.
    Last 5 – Interesting to see Tyson’s ending and the property seller come back into play. And that Arthur has a way bigger role in Peggy’s life. I think I need to know a little bit more about Arthur in the beginning, because I had kind of written him off for Tyson. Maybe that’s more Second Act stuff but he could be more amorous of Peggy in the beginning and because of her commitment issues, she’s just glazing over the attention.

    ANTIHEROES – (Read to page 30 and last 10. Honestly the idea intrigues me the least because it didn’t take a superhero story and make it unique enough – plot or genre wise – than what I’ve already read before or see every summer from Marvel or DC. And even on the non-IP side, I’ve already seen Chronicle and that is a similar concept of people abusing their newfound powers to get their way.)

    Needs a proofread, mostly for punctuation.
    Pg. 2 – “Okay, LET’S say super strength.”
    Pg. 2 – “Very inspired (comma) Mike.”
    Pg. 3 – “…what would you use super strength for (comma) Carsen?”
    Pg. 3 – It was a blink and you miss it line about there already being superheroes/powers existing in this world. I think to drive this concept home you shouldn’t have them be so confused when the rumbling starts. My suggestion is to have dialogue that either is annoyed to show this is a common occurrence or angry “not again” or to have them guess which superhero/villain is causing it – anything to get us into the world faster.
    Pg. 4 – “THERE ARE others trapped in there!”
    Pg. 4 – Gets pretty serious by the end of the superhero fight, people dying – so this is definitely not a comedy, but the setup of the scene was very lax. Still relates to my pg. 3 note – if they know this kind of thing exists, is there a curfew or building extra fortifications, etc. anything to prepare for attacks which don’t seem that out of place in this world where superpowers are a thing?
    Pg. 12 – “I mean, obviously, IT’S the SDA. … but IT’S worth it.”
    Pg. 14 – Violetta didn’t need the ID to see her brother at the SDA, right? It seems like he was expecting her and I didn’t see her use it. So I am curious what she actually does need the ID for… … and by pg. 30 I still don’t’ know what Project Phoenix is or what Violetta and her crew need from it.
    Pg. 20 – SonicGirl = Black Canary?
    Pg. 23 – Wait, did I miss something? What did Violetta do once she got into the room via the ID card?
    Pg. 24 – This purple fluid – does it give him superpowers? Of super healing? Not sure of either…
    Pg. 30 – Get other feedback on this, but this other accident to the crew is just that – another accident. It feels like a double beat. They were casualties of a destruction and Mike got put into a coma. Here they are victims of a second destruction – and they get powers. Do you really need two? Why not they have powers from that first attack? Because what did they really accomplish in the in between? Obtaining blood and gloves doing something but not clear what. It’s all very quick too, after the attack, very non chalant about having powers. What if the powers developed after the initial attack, as they are grappling with all the hard emotion of Mike in a coma? I don’t think then it would feels quite as rushed (while at the same time drawn out) as it does now.
    Last 10 –
    Like Hyperion coming into play somehow.
    Violetta vs. Carsen – Chronicle-esque, but with female friends fighting vs. male friends?
    Interesting that protagonist shifts from predominantly Violetta in beginning to Carsen. I don’t quite understand why the government/people of Earth have to have villains (Luke becoming one to keep it going). Maybe this idea of the people always needing someone to root for and against is explored more, but I can’t see how the world NEEDS villains/heroes causing billions of dollars in damage and both sides killing people. It would appear you took a philosophical statement and made it an actual plot point.

    • JeanR

      Hi Scriptchick,
      Thanks a lot for your vote and for the notes, they will be very precious for the next rewrite ! And I agree with you, cutting Drobov’s head was a little bit too extreme :)

      • scottdow01

        No way! Keep the beheading! I thought that was a really gritty moment that set the tone for how dangerous this area was. In fact, and maybe you know about this maybe you don’t, but in 2013 and angry fan-mob in Brazil actually beheaded a referee after a soccer match because they disagreed with his call. So you’re right on the money in this world, it’s crazy! Link to article:

        • ScriptChick

          That’s awful! Crazy world. BUT, I will say that you are talking about a referee who had a direct impact on the game. Drobov, from what I remember was a security guy who wanted to score weed. It wasn’t clear that he was killed because he had ties to being security for Pete and if that was actually the case, well, then, that’s giving away the surprise in an anti-climatic way as opposed to Pete being discovered in person. I would definitely buy Dobrev’s death in that way if his role was more tied to the fans’ angst (like the referee) but currently not so much…

    • C.J. Giltner

      Thanks for reading and for the detailed notes, Scriptchick.

    • Linkthis83

      As Dave Grohl would say: “There goes my hero”

    • Evangelos

      Thanks for reading and the lovely notes Scriptchick. ;)

    • jbird669

      Thanks for reading and the detailed notes. I wrote Brick House.

  • Evangelos

    Hey guys.

    Writer of The Cheater here. Sorry for the last name thing. I’m not pretentious.

    Thanks Carson and everyone who votes for The Cheater. Good luck and congratulations to the other four contestants.

    • Joe Marino

      Don’t feel discouraged, Evangelos — there is no need for you to feel like you need to “crawl into a dark hole.” Be proud you made it here. It’s a rough feat to stand out amid hundreds/thousands of others with the same passion/ambition as you. So any time you can, it’s a success. Even when it doesn’t go fully according to plan. Learn from this experience, take what you can from the critiques, and stand even taller than when you got here. We’re all learning. We’re all on a journey. :)

      • Evangelos

        Thanks Joe! :)

    • jbird669

      Congrats on being selected!

  • Kirk Diggler

    The Attacker – Read 17 pages. Thought it was just okay. Feels like it’s written in hyper-reality. Some of the stuff with the Ozkana fans was a little cartoon-ish.

    Some of the language is a little too American, and since it takes place in Europe and I assume Chesterton is an English team, why not nail the euphemisms?

    “The ball goes RIGHT INTO THE SOCCER NET!” This made me laugh. It sounds like something an American would say if he was trolling English football fans.

    “Do you have rocks in your shoes?” It would be “boots”.

    My main question is, why does Chesterton stay in the war torn Republic of Bragovia after winning the big match? Normally, teams don’t stick around, they fly chartered jets, and there doesn’t seem to be any reason given for why Chesterton decides to not only stay in Bragovia, but move from their cozy 5-star hotel to an out of the way decrepit one.

    It feels like a writer’s set up. I also think the writer has erred by opening with the hero scoring the winning goal (albeit not without controversy). Yes, the ‘handball’ goal is what spurs the opposing fans hatred of Pete…. however, this robs the script of the classic ‘ticking clock’ scenario. What if Pete has to find his ne’er do well brother in the toughest neighborhood in Bragovia AND accomplish this in time to play in the big match the following day. This would add urgency,

    In the current scenario, Pete has to find his brother and get out of the country. If you change it, Pete has to find his brother (after much violence and conflict) and THEN play in the big match AND THEN get the fuck out of Dodge. I understand that Pete’s illegal goal serves at an inciting incident for the opposing team’s rage, but his mere presence in enemy territory would be all the impetus that Belial and his thugs would need to do him harm. The bonus for them is, if they can harm Pete, he can’t play in the big match! But in the present form, the big match has already been won, so the overall stakes have been lowered.

    Consider changing the title. Maybe something equally simple like “Striker”. Good luck.

  • C.J. Giltner

    Thanks for reading, Citizen M! And, yes, deliberate.

  • Kirk Diggler

    The Cheater – read to pg 15 – My eyes started to glaze over real fast. By 15 pages I should know a lot more than I do at the moment. I know very little about Peggy, what she wants, how she’s gonna get it, what’s in her way etc. Take away the V.O. and I’m completely lost.

    There were a few funny moments, this script gets credit for trying real hard to make me laugh. But I need more than the broad strokes of humor I get here. I need clarity within the story. This feels very inefficient to me, and the 114 page length seems to bear that out.

  • Kirk Diggler

    Read a bit less than 20 pages of Antiheroes.

    This script puts action before character (opening scene) which leads to a lack of context. Who am i following and why? What are they doing? The opening conversation wants to hit on theme but then it’s quickly forgotten. The dialogue is rather banal, full of passing pleasantries between characters but not enhancing my understanding of what’s happening.

    It all seems disconnected and I don’t have enough information to fill in the story blanks or enough care for the characters to continue following them. I think I get what the overall story is going for (with help from re-reading the logline), but you have to draw me in with a big dramatic question or at least one story and character through-line that links it all together. At the moment, the story is opaque and inaccessible to me.

  • Scott Crawford

    This has been happening for a while now, M. No one’s but it seems like ALL scripts have to start like this, even though very, very few movies start that way (a recent film did, I think it might have been INFERNO, and it struck me because it was the first time I’d seen/heard it in a long time.

    Back to why… it’s magical thinking, really, and playing the odds, which is something I always encourage other people to do. But when you’re conforming to other people’s ideas of what is right because you want to WIN, then you end up with this:

    A beauty contest where everyone looks the same!

    • -n8-

      Eek! … I think that’s the first time I’ve ever said “eek” to photos of very pretty clones…er um I mean women.

      • Scott Crawford

        It’s what a lot of scripts look like to readers, a little TOO polished. Three acts, Eight sequences. Pay-offs well and truly set up, and vice versa. All very well, but can result in very formulaic stories.

        Move the obvious scenes forward (or backward). What if your story is about a man hunting a giant rat and instead of him killing the rat at the END he kills it in the MIDDLE? Now you’ve got to think of something to fill up the rest of the script – and surprise the reader.

        What if the hero joins force with the villains when he learns of their cause? What if the love interest dies halfway through a romantic comedy?

        In many cases these may be the WRONG decisions, we’ve all seen films where the writer makes an odd choice that we might not have wanted them to make, but which ultimately helps to define the story that is being told, that gives it its unqiueness.

  • Poe_Serling

    WEEK 8

    Interesting tournament weekend so far…

    Over 200+ comments and yet only a handful of votes for the five

    Perhaps it is the Halloween factor.

    I’m glad I got my vote in early. Now I’m just kicking back and
    enjoying a few scary flicks. ;-)

    • Kirk Diggler

      My theory is that without some recognizable SS regulars to vote for, some people who have been voting consistently decided to stay away. Which oddly enough makes this week’s selections a much more level playing field for the writers, it’s not as much a popularity contest this time.

      • Poe_Serling

        You could be right – it’s easy to cast a vote for a script(s) that you might’ve
        already read for someone as a favor behind the scenes.

        And don’t get me wrong – getting feedback on your work from other writers
        is a great way to take your script to the next level.

        • Kirk Diggler

          “getting feedback on your work from other writers is a great way to take your script to the next level.”

          It’s imperative.

      • London_Gent

        “My theory is that without some recognizable SS regulars to vote for,
        some people who have been voting consistently decided to stay away.”

        Can’t help but feel that is definitely the case. Perhaps a number of the SS regulars who often vote/ provide feedback also feel a little disilusioned at not having their own work chosen and/ or feel it unfair that a number of non 13 week challenge scripts seem to have made the cut instead.

      • Scott Crawford

        I’d go with that, I might go further… some regulars were voting early on, but as it started to look as if they weren’t going to make the list, they stopped voting. I mean, we only had 37 votes last week, we’ll be lucky if we get half that this week. These are essentially still AOWs and I’ve not known AOWs to get THIS FEW votes.

        I know there may be other reasons, other factors, and there are people who don’t vote who contribute in OTHER WAYS (like myself or link or yourself if you don’t end up voting) but there’s less excuse for other people to not turn up.

        • Wijnand Krabman

          For me this contest lost its value the moment Carson changed the rules, but it’s his contest so he may do that, just as I may not vote. I just made an exception for the untitled script about the boy who wants his parents to divorce, which was exceptional good in my opinion.

      • klmn

        I don’t think popularity has much effect. Paul won week four – the week my script competed. It’s no coincidence that he’s been kicking ass in bigger contests.

    • klmn

      Earlier today the history channel was running episodes of Haunted History – I caught one about H.H. Holmes and his murder castle. People who are into horror should check it out. They may be running this stuff all weekend.

      • Poe_Serling

        Shows with a supernatural angle (ghosts in particular), aliens, bigfoot
        and their kin, etc. are scattered across quite a few channels nowadays.

      • jbird669

        Devil in the White City by Erik Larson is a great book that delves deeper into this.

        • klmn

          Is Larson the descendant of Holmes? (geat grandson I think). The program did have the author of a book on, the descendant as I described.

          While the murder castle has been destroyed, a post office now stands in it’s place – and the original basement is still there, as are some tunnels that were used to transport the victims.

  • Linkthis83

    I like openings over black…if they are done well. I didn’t find the scripts this weekend to use it effectively.

    I didn’t put it in my notes to the writer, but reacted to The Attacker’s opening of darkness immediately followed by “in the distance” – I liked it’s usage best, for what that’s worth.

  • Deaf Ears

    My vote goes to THE ATTACKER, after reading roughly the first 20 pages of each. This was the script I was most curious to keep reading, the premise was clear and put a new twist on a familiar set up. FELIX was my runner-up, the writing overall was better but I felt pretty sure where the story was going.

  • Kirk Diggler

    Read 23 pages of Felix – the writing itself is quite nice, the story slow to develop. I’ve written a coming of age story myself so i know how easy it is to get caught up in the details of youthful games and nostalgia for a particular time period. Certain things are teased, like the the girl next door, but nothing else is done with this beat in the first act. Which leaves us with the drawn out games of childhood and the slow burn reveal of the ventriloquist dummy.

    A few more story beats would be nice, and yes, I’m going to kick the dead horse, but an accompanying goal for Felix would liven things up and move the story along quicker. The dummy is the hook for the story, but that alone can’t carry a script because it just leaves the reader waiting for the next tease of what creepy thing the dummy will do next, and this can create a wash, rinse, repeat effect, particular in horror-type scripts.

    So because of this, I’m hesitant to vote for Felix. It’s feels tonally correct for what it’s attempting, a split between nostalgia and light horror, but there is little urgency and the stakes haven’t been clearly delineated. Even the logline doesn’t tell me much about that.

    So Felix is well written but needs a good kick in the pants.

    • C.J. Giltner

      Thanks for reading, Kirk. Tough contest for slow burn. I focused on setting a tone/mood more than hurrying to the story. I think it works well in the long run for the script as a whole but certainly is a tough sell. I think you’d enjoy the rest. :)

    • Linkthis83

      great observations.

  • Malibo Jackk

    Once again I cast my vote; and once again it doesn’t seem to count.
    And simply because the script was never submitted.
    (Yeah, that old, very tired — excuse.)

    And then there are those who say: You didn’t read the script.
    Didn’t read the script? Really? Didn’t read the…
    Look —
    Do I need to know what was in those 33,000 deleted e-mails to cast my vote for President?
    Do I?
    Do I need to know what was in those 13 mobile devises that were smashed with a hammer? Just to cast a simple vote?
    Do I need to know what was in the laptop computers of Hillary’s aides?
    Or what about the server? The one that was bleached before being turned over to the FBI? Do I need to know that before casting my vote for the highest position in the land?
    Of course not.

    People, please… Let’s get with the program.
    We’re trying to elect a lady for President.

    • Kirk Diggler

      Malibu Rum & Jack Daniels don’t mix well. ;-)

      • HRV

        Don’t you love that medicinal marijuana?

    • HRV


      • Scott Crawford

        Just vote for her. Then you’ve got four years to come up with a decent replacement. She can stand down before 2020 for “health reasons.”

        • klmn

          You really think she’ll make it to 2020?

        • HRV

          I’ve resigned myself to vote for the person I believe will do this great country the least damage in the next four years.

        • Dan J Caslaw

          Is that ‘I AM TELLING YOU TO JUST VOTE FOR HER, GODDAMMIT!’ or ‘(weary sigh) look, just vote for her, alright?’, Scott?

          I mean, Malibo could be playing the ‘not sure if serious’ card, but you

  • Cal

    My vote this week goes to…


    I read the first 10 of all and this was the one I was most interested in reading after reading. Interesting choice to start with such a long voice over, but it was well-written, and I found this script flowed the best overall. Based on the logline I would have gone with ANTIHEROES, but I thought the best work was with ‘The Cheater’ and that’s the one I’m most interested in reading til the end. Congrats Evangelos I’ll drop you some full feedback sometime this week.

    My runner up goes to ANTIHEROES.

    Congrats to all that were chosen.

  • scriptfeels

    Cracked open Felix and was really digging what I read.

    I didn’t get to any horror scenes, just the funeral and the priest and the family setup, so I’m voting for the script based on the writing and the setup of the characters alone. You understand the family dynamic. I also really enjoyed the first scene on the opening page, set the tone as horror in a way to establish the brother’s playing together. This is great because if a script escalates then this would be the bottom of the totem pole of horror in the script which makes complete sense since all we see is a shrowded figure tackle a boy, then the scene twist that its his brother and they are playing, good writing.

    vote for FELIX

    • C.J. Giltner

      Appreciate the kind words. Thanks for checking it out.

  • Wijnand Krabman

    As I said before I will not spoil this game for this weeks writers. The complaints I have were sufficiently mentioned by others. It’s just sad that the 13 week contest wasn’t a 13 week contest. Sad for me and sad for those others who did write a script in that amount of time. this fact makes us winners, sad winners, but that’s how it is. For those who like to read: killer killer I included a link.

    • Levres de Sang

      How about Haunted Hospital as well…? I love that title!

      • Scott Crawford

        Maybe you just like alliteration, Lev.

        Creepy Clinic?
        Phantom Pharmacy?

        • brenkilco

          Mutant Maternity Ward. Actually that one does sort of scare me.

          • Wijnand Krabman

            That would be a nice title for the sequel! Although everybody knows this hospital is bad news it will be reopened again producing mutant infants like there is no tomorrow.

        • Levres de Sang

          Actually, there was the decidedly oddball Horror Hospital that came out of Britain in the mid-70s. (Starred Robin Askwyth, too.)

          • Scott Crawford

            As well as the “classy” Hammer movies, there were in the 70s – according to Kim Newman, who should know – a lot of rather bad, much more violent British horror movies, usually revolving around lighthouses and hospitals – I guess a precursor of the later slasher movies. Largely forgotten now I think.

        • Citizen M

          Demonic Dispensary
          Weird Women’s Ward

    • Zack Snide Err

      Hey Wijnard, I gave it a go. Only read through page 12 though, cause it was a bit of a chore to read (for reasons I detail). And also cause I thought that was the point in the script where what the gist of it would be going forward was established.

      Loads of errors ( grammatical, spelling, formatting etc.), hurt what is otherwise a pretty interesting story with a fresh spin. It feels like it was rushed to meet deadline.

      The dialogue for the American characters is too droning and stilted (though it worked well for the baddies). It features globe trotting but does not make any effort to establish location. To its detriment.

      I like the concept and I like the direction it’s headed. It’s mix of family melodrama and dark humor reminded me of True Lies, but without the undercover angle.

      I think it needs a lot of work but it’s got potential. Some notes follow.

      P. 3. I really liked the chopper scene.

      P.4. It’s ‘SON of a bitch’

      P.4. Barek is his name. But the leader says Barak on page 1.

      P.5. ‘Don’t do THAT no more’

      P.5. The last exchange between Barek and Ignazio, after the description of him, was confusing. It only made sense until the remainder of their chat on the next page.

      P.6. Best page so far. I liked the sandwich bit, and the pyramid jibe.

      P.6. GARAGE BAREK..? If it’s in his home then make that clear in the scene heading.

      P.7. It’s PLAIN clothed (though I could be wrong ;))

      P.7. The washing machine IS MAKING or machines making.

      P.7. I like your description of Kim as… ‘An adolescent who can’t believe that nobody sees the world just as she does.’

      P.7. The kitchen scene over dinner. Weird. Very weird. I liked it!

      P.8. Cool scene. Very creative and amusing way to deliver exposition.

      P.9. HAVING dinner

      P.11. THIS footage. Or watch this footage.

      P.11. No A between satellite and footage in… ‘It’s satellite footage.’

      P.11. Mustapha (comma),

      P.11. A struggle. Not struggling.

      P.11. Just write that he’s thrusting the soldiers head up in the air. We can then assume he’s also holding it I his hand

      P.11. Crawl-ing. Not crawled.

      P.12. The Facebook friends line was very amusing and put a great image in my head.

      P.12. I officially like where the story is going. All and all its well set-up.

      Best of luck going forward with it.

      • Wijnand Krabman

        Thanks man for reading this, I had a lot of fun writing it. It was somehow rushed because I did it in just four weeks, but I spend a lot of time correcting spelling errors and making the story better. I know I have to hire a proofreader to make it more readable for you all. In the heat of this contest I just wanted to see if i was capable to just write a compelling story and I was, in fact I did two!

        • Zack Snide Err

          No problem. 4 weeks, wow, that’s pretty darn impressive. Im only just wrapping up my first script right now… 12 weeks to write, another 4 to edit and polish.

          Can’t wait to see what Killer Killer looks like with some more time.

          • Wijnand Krabman

            A lot of crazy shit is in there I guess you’ll like it.

          • Zack Snide Err

            Crazy is fun, and it’s likely I’ll dig it, but what’ll keep me hooked or not is the conflict. That is if it’s good.

            I have a little down time the next couple of days so I’ll probably read ahead. But only this time focus on story rather than nitpick the grammar.

          • Wijnand Krabman

            Great! fuck grammar! No, I myself hate it aswel if I have to read something in Dutch which is poorly written.

  • lonestarr357

    As I’ve been trying like hell to get my own superhero script featured here* (and I’m gonna beat this drum like it owes me money), I just had to read ANTIHEROES. A few notes:

    – the time skip confused me
    – a few too many characters
    – nice touch with the relationship between Paula and Carsen (but you’re BS’ing me with that name, right? Women don’t really have that name, do they?)
    – with the progressively darker tone and violence, this felt like a DC movie
    – didn’t care much for the ending

    * …and given that the site has just concluded round one of this little dog and pony show, I get the sense it’s gonna take even longer.

    • Scott Crawford

      Thanks for taking the time to read other people’s scripts, and take courage, there’ll be plenty of AOWs to enter when this “dog and pony” show is done!

  • BoSoxBoy

    So speaking of Steve Bartman and the Cubs curse….

    Bartman is from Northbrook, IL, which is where he still lived in 2003 when – you know.

    Last night, the Indians put the game out of reach and took a 3 games to 1 lead in the World Series on Jason Kipnis’ 3-run homer. I wonder where Kipnis is from….No. Really? Seriously? North-f’n-brook, IL.

    As that kid with a round head with a prominent curl always says, “We’re doomed.”

  • Jarrean

    My vote: The Attacker

    My suggestion would be to move up the character intros to lend clarity to the opening.

  • smishsmosh22

    My Vote: The Attacker

    This script sucked me in immediately and the premise has GSU up the wazoo!

  • BoSoxBoy

    Started with reading THE ATTACKER.

    Good writing, but only made it 5 pages in, and here’s why:

    The story is based on a player “cheating”, but that’s not really at all what happened. A referee missed a call on something that happened in plain sight. That’s not cheating. Cheating would be if PETE secretly hid something in his shoe to make the ball fly faster and further, or something devious with the intent to deceive. PETE did something that happens all the time in every sporting event if you watch closely enough – in the heat of the battle, he did something by reflex that happened to be outside the rules, and he got away with it. Is that cheating? IMO, no. It’s worthy of a penalty, but it’s not “cheating”.

    So, to really stay with the cheater theme and make PETE more worthy of being in peril, I would have liked to see him really cheat – a premeditated act designed to gain an advantage outside the rules, and then have that act somehow exposed after-the-fact, even if just by rumor.

    • London_Gent

      I agree the ‘cheating’ act itself could be made to be more deliberate – as it stands I feel the fans anger would be mostly directed at the referee for missing the call, rather than the player for controlling the ball with his hand. The writer could always make the ref the protag, I guess? Noone likes referees.

      However, I believe the concept is still valid. Never underestimate the passion or reaction football fans might have to an event like this – from Maradona’s hand of God, hooliganism in the U.K in the 1980’s, the hanging of effigies of David Beckham after he was sent off in the 1998 World Cup and, worst ever, the shooting of Andres Escobar in Columbia after he scored an accidental own goal – I could totally see this scenario playing out, especially in more extreme parts of the football-supporting world.

      • UPB13

        Definitely don’t underestimate the passion. When I read the description of the stands before the game, this is what I imagined:

        • London_Gent

          It got me thinking about this longshot scene from The Secret In Their Eyes. Great movie.

    • UPB13

      I don’t know. I read it pretty much in the same vein as Maradona’s Hand of God goal. Pete batted the ball down so he could kick it. And he got away with it.

  • Poe_Serling

    In the past…

    Carson would have Halloween Week on SS, which he reviewed both
    pro and amateur horror scripts.

    Due to the tournament, it probably won’t happen this year.

    If by chance CR is still planning some ‘H’ week festivities, it would be
    fun to see some of the horror-related projects that didn’t get picked
    for the tournament be in the mix for a possible review or two.

    • Scott Crawford

      There hasn’t bee a whole lotta new scripts lately, what with everyone waiting for new Black List to come out, hence I guess, the larger number of OLD Black List scripts reviewed lately. However, there are the NEW Blood List scripts, conveniently released (unlike last year!) BEFORE Halloween:

      I wasn’t blown away by what I read of MAXIMUM KING, but I’m sure there’s a couple of reviews in there.

      Weird B.O. weekend… as I mentioned before, I enjoyed INFERNO and to Hell with everyone else! Still, I was surprised that it would be released on Halloween weekend. And not many major spooky movies released this weekend either. It’s an odd weekend, Halloween, it’s not really a good place for new movie releases. I don’t even know if GHOSTBUSTERS (the new one) is available for Halloween parties (for the youngsters, that is).

      I guess everyone has look through their old DVD collection and find something appropriate… Me, I like Halloween III: Season of the Witch. Man, creepy crawlies scare the crap out of me!

      • Nick Morris

        I watched HALLOWEEN III last night. Criminally underappreciated. It’s a Halloween staple in my house.

    • klmn

      Last week I re-watched Them. My neighbor had it on DVD, so we watched it on his big-screen and drank beer.

      Man, what a fun movie. James Whitmore in a cave with a flame thrower fighting giant ants! It doesn’t get any better than that.

      EDIT. Actually, it wasn’t a cave. It was in the drainage system under LA. So, if you were wondering what’s lurking down there… hehhehe

      If Carson hasn’t seen it, he should.

      • Scott Crawford

        Or THE NAKED JUNGLE, which shows that the little ones can be just as scary when they all come at once.

        I know Spielberg used the ants for for Indy 4, but also remember an episode of MacGuyver paying homage to TNJ. Also pretty scary.

        • Poe_Serling

          And don’t forget…

          PHASE IV

          “Scientists at a remote desert base discover that ants are preparing to conquer the world.”

          Directed by Saul Bass.

      • Poe_Serling


        Easily one of my top 10 creature features of all-time. I’ve
        talked about its merits here on SS more than a few times.

        The scene with the police officer at the destroyed general
        store … the eerie sounds, the lighting. everything… just really

        A true must-see for sci-fi/horror fans.

        • klmn

          And James Arness. Gunsmoke!

          • Scott Crawford

            At 6′ 7″, probably the tallest man to achieve success as a leading man. James Cromwell is the same height and Brad Garrett is an inch and a half taller, but neither ever really got romantic lead roles or played the lead in a long-running series.

          • klmn

            The movie also has Fess Parker (Davy Crockett and Daniel Boone) as well as Edmund Gwenn (Santa Claus in Miracle on 34’th Street).

  • Zack Snide Err

    THE ATTACKER (16 pages)

    Get’s my vote (if it’s not too late). Ultra cool premise, well written, and enjoyable. What I liked about the read most was how much fun it was despite its darkness.

    PG 2: The writer saying, – we still haven’t seen his face –, was jarring and took me out of the action description.

    PG 3: Belial STARES (or is STARING) at Pete. That’s like a trailer shot. It should be capped to convey tension on the page.

    PG 4: I don’t think both ‘punching him’, and ‘meant for him’ are needed when it’s made clear Pete dodges the punch.

    THE CHEATER (12 pages)

    It feels a little too similar, but I like the script, and I like the writing even more. Why? Cause it was funny. I really like Peggy too, though I don’t see what the heart of her story is yet.

    PG 1: ‘something sublime plays’… As in music? If yes, specify the sublime genre of music.

    PG 2: Didn’t like Peggy using the word BITCH. It just feels like that’s the only way the word would come out her mouth is inside “air quotes”.

    PG 2: Before the series of pictures begins, maybe their should be a FADE IN and/or opening image of Peggy’s tip page.

    PG 3: Hear me… Cut directly to the sound of her snoring.

    BRICK HOUSE (12 pages)

    PG 5: My, Bragg, and Maddy’s senses all cast doubt over the reason he has to take out the rotten garbage that very instant.

    PG 7: The ‘heart of the city’ being next to a shipping port feels out of place in a western metropolis.

    PG 10: I guess Hyde belongs in place of Bragg at the top of the page.

    PG 11: I think that the asides at the bottom of the page kill he flow of the action sequence.

    FELIX (12 pages)

    This is very well written and I could’ve read further… but I didn’t feel the entertainment value or story urgency to keep me glued. It does feel like it has the makings of a terrific coming of age story.

    PG 1: The opening scene is good, and effective, but I think it’s over formatted.

    ANTIHEROES (11 pages)

    I really wanted to like this, and I did, a little. There’s like a brand new character with dialogue introduced on every page. Not counting the two fighting capes.
    Otherwise, it’s an interesting concept. A found footage angle might be cool. Sorta like Chronicle meets Cloverfield.

    • JeanR

      Thanks for your vote Zack Snide Err ! Happy to hear you had fun reading it :)

      • Zack Snide Err

        Your welcome Jean. Much congrats on the win.

  • jeaux

    My vote is for The Attacker. I read some of The Cheater, Felix and The Attacker kept my interest most. It gets to the action quickly and I like the vibe of Belial. Also like the idea of the govt giving the city to the war heroes making it like a prison city. Still reading but stopped to vote. On about p 30 so far and really no issues for me. Good stuff!

    • JeanR

      Thanks jeaux !

  • Kosta K

    My vote goes to THE ATTACKER.

    Liked this one a lot. I was with the action the entire time and the dialogue flowed nicely. Before I knew it, I was twenty pages in! I can definitely see myself going back to this one later for sure. Good stuff.

    This one was a quick and easy read, too. The only thing I stumbled on, and it’s just a personal thing, is dialogue written phonetically so we can get the accent. Once I passed that point I stopped after the attack at his home when Braggs decides it’s a good time to watch TV and make some calls. If you’re hiding from bad people and they find you, you gotta get out of there quick. No time for Netflix. Good stuff though, too.

    I liked the setup, I knew what was going on, but didn’t know “why” it was going on :/ The monologue made it sound like Peggy really knew her shit and then the hotel room cuts in and I’m not sure if it’s the same person. Maybe show her on a “case” after the monologue? I liked the writing, though. Another speedy read.

    I couldn’t get into this one. I liked the opening, but the mundane setup left me anticipating some scares that never materialized, especially in the basement :/ The writing itself was pretty good, though – clear, concise – just didn’t pop enough for a horror.

    Great opening, but then loses steam after the hotel room. A lot of characters getting setup here. From the logline, I would keep reading just to see how all this plays out, but at page ten and I’m really fighting the urge to skim. Still another solid entry, though.

    • JeanR

      Thanks for your vote Kosta K !

      • Kosta K

        No problem and good luck! ;)

    • jbird669

      Thanks for reading Brick House! I appreciate the comments!

      • Kosta K

        I had a good time with what I read. A very close second!

        • jbird669

          That’s great to hear! Thank you!

  • Wijnand Krabman

    In my opinion there is no difference between a story telling POV and a director’s POV, everything you write is important for the story and should be translated by a director as good as possible. Just a POV for the sake of POV is meaningless. I had this debate with a director who said there are 20 ways for a director to film that scene. I replied ’19 of them are wrong!’ He said: ‘writers are just as stubborn as directors’ :-)

  • Citizen M

    Insightful notes. I learned a lot reading them. Thanks for commenting.

  • JeanR

    Thanks a lot scottdow01 !

  • JeanR

    I would like to say a big THANK YOU to everyone who read The Attacker.
    Every comment, positive or not, will be very precious to improve the next draft.
    been reading Scriptshadow for the last 6 or 7 years and I’m
    really honored to be part of this tournament, thanks a lot Carson !

    • jbird669

      Congratulations on your win!

  • jbird669

    Holy crap! I made the list. (I’m the writer of Brick House)! This is great! Thanks for those that read and voted! I was sick all weekend, and didn’t even see this.

  • jbird669

    Thanks for reading, Citizen M. I appreciate the feedback on Brick House.

  • jbird669

    Thanks for reading Brick House. I appreciate the feedback!

  • jbird669

    Thanks for the kind words man! I trust you got my notes, as you were so kind to read mine (and I look forward to the rest, whenever you get to them!).

  • ocattorney

    Because I wasn’t one of the original 40, I am actually feeling more freedom to offer re-write advice. Attended my workshop, you can get some of it at the Corey Mandell site but it wasn’t his official workshop, we were talking about professional-level conflict and why readers pass on most scripts. Our assignment was to watch the pilot for Homeland and read the script, and identify lines of conflict.
    1. Carrie is arrested trying to get information from a condemned prisoner and almost loses her job at the CIA
    2. Brody tortured
    3. Brody lies to CIA about knowing Abu Nazir
    4. Carrie lies about her bi-polar condition
    5. David Estes CIA asst director says his wife divorced him because of unspecified relationship with Carrie and now he only sees his kids twice a year
    6. Dana learns Brody converted to Islam
    7. Saul threatens to have Carrie arrested for surveillance inside Brody home
    8. Brody hits a reporter in throat…
    9. lots more….
    This is a 47 page script, and the conflict compels the reader along. That’s how you rewrite. You add new lines of conflict. OK, how? In James Bond movies, Bond has a few complaints about his boss, M. In Homeland, Carrie was the reason for her boss losing his family. They raise the level of conflict to the point of being unbelievable – and that’s why readers toss your script after a few pages. One or two lines of conflict, just not enuf any more.. rewrite your script according to our workshop standards and you will not recognize it, I promise – Bill Hays

  • jbird669

    Thanks for reading Brick House and for your comments!

  • jbird669

    JBPope, thanks for reading what you did of Brick House. if you have any additional feedback, I am all ears!