THRILLER BEST SCENE Screenplay Reading – BEDLAM ON THE RAILS by Wayne E Johnson

Watch the Winning Best Scene Screenplay Reading for February 2017.

Winning Screenplay – BEDLAM ON THE RAILS
Written by Wayne E. Johnson

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Geoff Mays
LUMAN – Philip Krusto
DUKE – Casey Estey
PORTER – John Lester Phillips

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Thriller, Crime, Action

Two armed, down-on-their-luck young hoods, a speeding streamliner, and a bad idea result in railway pandemonium not seen since the days of Butch Cassidy.

Get to know the writer:

What is your best scene screenplay about?

Bedlam on the Rails is the true story of the last two moving train robbers in America. In 1949, Luman Ramsdell, 23, and Duke Ashton, 20, made a snap decision to rob the B&O Ambassador, the streamliner taking them to Ohio from Florida.

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

True story, true crime

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

It is a unique, historical event. When asked, the average person and even historians will say that the last moving train robbery was performed by Butch Cassidy’s gang. Bedlam has two main characters that, even though they are on the wrong side of the law, the audience can relate to them. I would set the tone of this film somewhere between Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and Bonnie and Clyde.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Bad idea

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

Kelly’s Heroes

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

About a year ago I was contacted by Wilson Casey, the author of the book Bedlam on the West Virginia Rails, interested in the possibility of turning his book into a movie. I read his book and finished a draft in a couple of weeks. After sending it to a few producers, and making revisions, this final version was completed in November of 2016. I’d say I’ve worked on it for nine months.

How many stories have you written?

My novel, The Militarized Zone: What Did You Do in the Army, Grandpa? was published in November. Ive had eight or nine short stories published in print and online. In 2015, one of my screenplays won an award from Writer’s Digest. Others have been runners-up, semifinalists and quarter finalists in various screenwriting contests.

What motivated you to write this screenplay?

As I read the book, it seemed like a natural for the screen. It was an interesting story with colorful characters, and, for a true story, a good plot and resolution.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Along with his own research, author Wilson Casey interviewed Luman Ramsdell over a period of about three years and wrote his story in Luman’s words, which were great for the book. But in many instances the dialogue in conversations had to be modified to be acceptable for a screenplay. I’d say dialogue was the biggest challenge, since the events are written as they actually happened.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I’m a member of a veteran’s group and help our older vets when we go on field trips. We’re bringing the Moving Vietnam Wall to our area later this year. I volunteer in art classes at our local elementary school and I donate to animal protection charities.

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

You were open and willing to look at my material and your feedback was invaluable. I always wonder if my scripts hit the right points and by what you indicated in the feedback, I succeeded and I’m on the right track.

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Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo
Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne
Editor: John Johnson

July 2016 Thriller/Suspense Films/Screenplays/Stories

Submit your Thriller/Suspense Film & Screenplay to the Festival:http://thrillersuspensefestival.com

Watch the best of July 2016 Thriller/Suspense

ACTORFEATURE Screenplay – FIEND
July 2016 Reading
Written by Jeff York

ACTOR1st SCENE Screenplay – NINE SCARS
July 2016 Reading
Written by Kelly Crawford

ACTORSHORT Screenplay – MATERNAL FEAR
July 2016 Reading
Written by Stephen Milek

ACTORBEST SCENE Screenplay – ELAN VITAL
July 2016 Reading
Written by Maroun Rached

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Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo
Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne
Editor: John Johnson

Today’s Thriller/Suspense Screenplay Reading: UNLIKELY ANGELS by Anne Nemes

Submit your Thriller/Suspense Screenplay to the Festival: http://thrillersuspensefestival.com

Best Scene from UNLIKELY ANGELS Screenplay
Written by Anne Nemes
Read 10 Questions with the writers

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Charles Gordon
PETE – Rob Salerno
MIKE – Jerald Bezener
MARGOT – Julie Burris

GORE Stories from the Writing Festival

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Watch the best of GORE Stories, Screenplays, and Short Film Moderation videos from the festival.


festival posterFAMILIAR
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK


Horror, Canada

ACTORWATCH – HANNIBAL TV Show Spec
April 2014 Reading
by Ibba Armancas

ACTORSHORT STORY READING – THE BABYSITTER
July 2014 Reading
Written by Sean Hood


festival poster1500 NINOS
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK

2015
6min, Horror/Mystery, Canada

SCREENPLAYChapter 1 Novel: WHAT IF ITS ALL BEEN A LIE
August 2015 Reading
by Nancy Arant Williams


festival posterMINOTAUR
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK

2015
5min, Greece, Experimental/Fantasy

SCREENPLAYChapter 6 Novel: STAY AWHILE
June 2015 Reading
Written by Anthony Vecchiarello

ACTORTV PILOT Reading of HAUNTED HEART
August 2015 Reading
Written by Robert Herold

ACTOR1st Chapter: THE SZGANY CHRONICLES
May 2015 Reading
Written by David John Roberts III

Watch THRILLER/SUSPENSE Stories from the Writing and Film Festival:

CHASE Scene Stories from the Writing Festival

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Watch the best of CHASE Scene Stories, Screenplays, and Short Film Moderation videos from the festival.


festival posterCADAVER
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK


Animation / Adventure, USA


festival posterMERKUR
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK

2015
2min., France, Animation/Experimental

ACTORFeature Screenplay Reading – SHOOTING STAR
September 2014 Reading
Written by Richard Harrison

ACTOR1ST SCENE SCRIPT – 66 WEST
December 2013 Reading
Written by Christopher Willis


festival posterBUSTED
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK


7min, Australia, Comedy/Romance

ACTOR1ST SCENE SCRIPT – THE OTHER SIDE
March 2014 Reading
Written by Barb Markusa


festival posterSNAIL TRAIL
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK Video


Experimental / Animation, Germany

Watch THRILLER/SUSPENSE Stories from the Writing and Film Festival:

2015 Thriller Screenplay Winners

Watch the 2015 Winning Thriller/Suspense Screenplay Winners performed by professional actors.

Submit your Thriller/Suspense Screenplay to the Festival: https://thrillersuspensefestival.com/

ACTORClimactic Scene – DIETRICH DANZIG
February 2015 Reading
Written by John Pisano-Thomsen
ACTOR1st Scene SCRIPT – LEGRAND
February 2015 Reading
Written by Angelina Carkic
ACTOR1st Scene SCRIPT – HELLCAT
February 2015 Reading
Written by J. Alan Hostetter
ACTORTV PILOT – ERASER
February 2015 Reading
Written by Kim Godfrey
ACTOR1st Scene – THE CURSE OF SAM HAIN
February 2015 Reading
Written by Jacob F. Keller
ACTORBEST SCENE READING – I’M STILL HERE
January 2015 Reading
Written by Sean Elwood
ACTORFIRST SCENE: MY LAST DUCHESS
January 2015 Reading
Written by Grant Reid
ACTOR1st Scene SCRIPT – MEMOIRS OF A DOCKET

June 2015 Reading
Written by Damien Michael Aulsberry
ACTOR1st Scene: LITTLE PROFESSOR
May 2015 Reading
Written by Monte Light & Cooper Holmes
SCREENPLAYShort Screenplay: GRAVEL HEART
April 2015 Reading
Written by Michael Curtis
ACTORFeature Script – BESA
March 2015 Reading
Written by Michael Miceli
ACTORBest Scene – LONELY HEROES
March 2015 Reading
Written by Eddie Upnick
ACTORTV PILOT – RUST
July 2015 Reading
Written by Cody Carson
ACTORTV PILOT Reading of HAUNTED HEART
August 2015 Reading
Written by Robert Herold
ACTORFEATURE SCRIPT Reading of LEGACY
September 2015 Reading
Written by Marc W. Johnson
ACTORFEATURE SCRIPT – Yellow Touch Red, You’re Dead
November 2015 Reading
Written by Lauren Hoekstra
ACTORFeature SCRIPT – I’M STILL HERE
June 2015 Reading
Written by Sean Elwood

July 2015 Reading
Written by Claire Wasmund
ACTOR1st Scene SCRIPT – SOMBRA
SCREENPLAY1st Scene Script: THE MANTLE
August 2015 Reading
by Frank Edward Kelly
ACTOR1st Scene Reading of FACSIMILE
September 2015 Reading
Written by Gary Makin
ACTOR1st Scene SCRIPT – AVALON
November 2015 Reading
Written by Ed Vaughan
ACTORBest Scene Reading of CHILDREN WANT WHAT THEY WANT WHEN THEY WANT IT
September 2015 Reading
Written by Carolyn Reese
ACTORBEST SCENE – Unlikely Angels
October 2015 Reading
Written by Anne Nemes
ACTORBEST SCENE- Coyote and the Dust Devil
November 2015 Reading
Written by Jonah Jones
ACTORSHORT SCRIPT – On Three
December 2015 Reading
Written by Ed Vassie
ACTORShort Screenplay Reading of THE DEAD END
August 2015 Reading
Written by Piotr Jamroz

ACTORSHORT SCRIPT – Batman: Patient Zero
December 2015 Reading
Written by Andrew Akler

 

Best Scene Reading of COYOTE AND THE DUST DEVIL by Jonah Jones

Watch the Best Scene Reading of COYOTE AND THE DUST DEVIL:

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Ballantyne
JO – Aidan Black Allen
KRAMER- Steve Shand
CRANE – Brett Kelly

Get to know writer Jonah Jones:

1. What is your screenplay about?

How we connect with our inner selves and what happens when we fail to do so.

2. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

It’s an original idea with plenty of room for visual indulgence. The landscape in which it’s set is one of the most stunning in terms of starkness and contrast. The ways in which the Mescalero Apache express themselves are at once simple and stunning and so the contrast between their way of thinking and our technology-based violence provides a great background conflict.

3. This story has a lot going for it. How would you describe this story in two words?

God inside.

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

Not sure – Oh What a Lovely War, Ben Hur (1959 version), 2001, North by North-west and most of Laurel and Hardy.

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

The first set of notes on the subject were made in 2013. Other projects got in the way and then I really got down to it about a year ago.

6. How many stories have you written?

Probably in the hundreds – I’m pretty old.
I’ve written about ten short films and this is my third feature-length script.
Eight stage plays produced, two radio plays transmitted, several short stories published or broadcast and five or six novels that didn’t work.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

A sense of wonder that came from research for a failed novel, based on a successful radio play (The Triumph of the Cunning Man) in which I looked at aspects of the Mescalero Apache mysticism, their ways of perceiving this world and the way that their history is entangled with that of the atom bomb.

8. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Several negative reviews – mainly along the lines that mysticism doesn’t sell or that I had too many main characters.

There were a couple of criticisms (numbers of characters and confusion as to which of them were meant to be significant) that meant I had to make fairly big changes to address them.

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

I’m in process of directing my first film – a short, written by someone else – and I’m enjoying it.

Music – I’m an old rocker, have eight guitars and jam with any other old rockers in the neighbourhood.

I also love graphic art. Have had some cartoons published.

I’m a recorder for this part of Wales – i.e. I record whatever wild-life I see when I’m wandering around and send it to a central database.

10. What influenced you to enter the Thriller/Suspense Festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

The atmosphere that I gleaned from the web-page seemed like the sort of place I’d feel at home.

In the past, I’ve had good experiences with Canadian-based film-makers. I came third in the Canadian Short Screenplay Competition a few years back with a film called Planning Meeting. In a past life I was an animator and we always rated what was going on in Canada during the Seventies.

The first feedback was one of the most positive and kindest I’ve had. The second one didn’t seem as kind but it was still positive. I’ve revised the script to suit both. I’ve also revised the script after reviews I’ve had from other sources – some positive, some not so.

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

Get as many critiques as you can afford – and not from people who know you. I must have fifteen to twenty of them on this script. You can then see what issues come up most frequently and therefore need addressing. You can also see more clearly the weaknesses in the script that you knew to be there but didn’t want to admit.
Listen to everything everyone says and try to understand why they said it. I spoke to someone about the fact that one of my critics said that Anna killed people throughout the film. She doesn’t and so I was dismissive about the criticism. The other person said “But why did the critic think it might be true?” Make sure they can’t get it wrong.

Criticism is more use to you than praise but learn to judge the judges.