THRILLER Best Scene Script Reading of THE BREAK IN, by Carole A. Parker

CAST LIST:

NARRATION: Elizabeth Rose Morriss
Danny: Scott McCulloch
Casey: Marisa King
Vin: Dan Cristofori
Angel: Sean Ballantyne
Mickey: Michael Sabet
Mia: Elizabeth Skidmore

Get to know the writer: 

 1. What is your screenplay about?

After a home invasion gone wrong, a charming but deadly rogue cop on the run holds a group of celebrities hostage in an after-hours club, each of whom has a secret that’s about to destroy their lives — but things take a surprising turn when the A-listers bond with their captor and try and help him escape. A psychological thriller with one location, told in real time

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Crime drama, black comedy.

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

Because it’s exciting, touching, funny and fascinating.

4. How would you describe this script in two words?

Dark, funny.

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

Pulp Fiction.

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

A little over a year.

7. How many stories have you written?

Two dozen features, nine drama pilots, six shorts.

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

A Shark In Jet’s Clothing – Blondie

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

None. I’ve been doing this for a few years. At first it was tricky writing something that took place in one location, but I got over it.

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

Music, art, books, my partner and my animals.

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

Given the glowing comments, very happy, humbled and honored.

***

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

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

Camera Operator: Mary Cox

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THRILLER Best Scene Script Reading of RETIRE WITH A VIEW, by Behzad Sedghi

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Family, Thriller,

Logline: An old rundown RV tarnishing the idyllic view from the window of a newly retired couple’s dream home becomes the focal point in developing a bumpy and slow relationship with their odd and reclusive neighbour who safeguards a past memory in the dilapidated vehicle.

CAST LIST:

NARRATION: Vanessa Quagliara
Ethan – – Sean Ballantyne
Officer Julie C. Sheppard
Peter – Peter Nelson
Geeve – Trevor Marlatt
Megrangiz – Fiona Mongilla

Get to know the writer: 

1. What is your screenplay about?

It is about testing people’s ability to overcome their rigid mindsets and try to see the world in new lights.

 

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Comedy and thriller

 

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

Because it embodies a myriad of topics that often engage us such as human relationship and bondage, love and sacrifice, being a fish out of water and social norms. In addition, given the humour and playfulness of the script the film could be a perfect combination of comedy and thriller where both could equally contribute to laughter.

 

4. How would you describe this script in two words?   

Playful and sharp.

 

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

Betty Blue.

 

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

A month or two (still not finished)

 

7. How many stories have you written?

Screenplays? 6 on my own and 4 co-written

 

8. What is your favourite song? 


most times in your life?) Bahar (Spring) by Radio Tehran

 

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

If you mean the ending, I had it early on and I think it works really nicely, so no obstacle there. But the second act requires more mini-stories that should tie in to the core story. Creating characters that would remain secondary is a bit of a challenge.

 

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

Directing.

***

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

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

Camera Operator: Mary Cox

THRILLER Best Scene Script Reading of SLAVE CHILDREN, by Michael Faunce-Brown

 

Genre: Action, Thriller

Logline: A relentless but impulsive ex S.A.S. mercenary hunts the predatory slave trader who has snatched his young nephews before they are sold on, disappearing for ever. (High Concept)

CAST LIST:

NARRATION – Vanessa Quagliara
Simon – Trevor Marlatt
Englishman – Peter Nelson
Baxter – Sean Ballantyne
Jenny – Katelyn Vanier

Get to know the writer: 

What is your screenplay about?

1.Tom,17, orphaned, has his huge, remote cattle property gradually taken from him by his “friend” Kit, and must endure abuse/torture before prevailing.

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Thriller

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

It has a wide audience, is unique, low budget and good analysis.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Page turning.

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

The Others

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

6 months.

How many stories have you written?

12 screenplays, 9 books.

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

Shenandoah.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Obstacles. Keeping re-writes fresh. Making dialogue suitable.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Passionate about travel. 48 countries so far.

***

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

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

Camera Operator: Mary Cox

Feature Horror Thriller Screenplay: THE BOO, by Scott McEntire

Watch the May 2016 Winning Feature Screenplay.

Watch THE BOO, by Scott McEntire

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Thriller, Suspense, Horror, Drama

Synopsis: Ronnie is a small-town sheriff in the South who still talks to his dead wife on a daily basis. His estranged sister-in-law, Brooke, is dealing with the sudden loss of her husband while still trying to conquer the mental demons of her past. Healing an old family rift becomes all the more difficult when those demons turn out to not merely be figments of her imagination.

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Kaufmann
BROOKE – Kelci Stephenson
RONNIE – Zack Amzallag
OLIVIA/ANGELA – Jennifer Ferris
LUCIEN – Moui Nene
RAYLAND – Sean Ballantyne

Get to know writer Scott McEntire:

1. What is your screenplay about?

“The Boo” is a Southern gothic thriller about a small-town, widowed sheriff who unexpectedly bonds with his estranged sister-in-law, now faced with having to overcome the sudden death of her American Marine husband, and their external struggle with The Boo Hag, who according to Gullah tradition in the SE United States, is the cousin of the vampire who steals the skin of a woman while she sleeps to find a way to attack men.

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

“The Boo” bridges the horror film genre to the Southern gothic thriller genre. Both genres have been terribly successful through too many horror films to name, and with Southern gothic stories like Mud, Slingblade, Smokey and the Bandit, etc. The budget for this movie would not have to be large, staying true to its horror film roots. And this is a story that has not yet been told. Originality is in short supply in today’s market, and this is worth the reach.

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

Mystical estrangement.

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

Snatch

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

Three and a half years.

6. How many stories have you written?

Half a dozen. Two are actual feature films now (“Anyone” and “With You”). The short films I’ve written are “TwinkleTown”, “Rent Party”, “Simple”, “Avarice”, and “Eye For An Eye”.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

This was a story pitched by a friend of mine, Brittany Sparkles, who knew the idea of The BooHag from a recent trip to South Carolina. This was during a 48-Hour film competition, and while her idea was passed over, she and I talked a lot that weekend so I could understand the story. From there, we altered it from a strict horror story to a multi-level Southern gothic thriller-horror film that strays into the world of the supernatural. Ultimately, I didn’t want to let a friend down who blessed me with this story to put into script form.

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

An ex-girlfriend to didn’t understand why I was spending so much time with my friend, Brittany. Ha! The obstacle for this story primarily time. In the beginning, I was frequently researching about The Boo Hag. Then it was finding time to track my outline before finally putting pen to paper and writing the actual script. Going over it tooth and nail over multiple versions, then having friends come in to read for me, then making adjustment based on what I was hearing, before finally saying it is “good enough” and put it into competition!

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

My kids, my beautiful girlfriend, filmmaking as a whole, acting, golf, and the happiness of the most rambunctious rescue dog for which I could have asked!

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

Not only do you get to hear/see your words comes to life by persons you don’t know, but it happening outside of where you can offer any direction, too. It’s up to the script! The videos of script reads and film screenings make the Thriller Festival one of a kind. The initial feedback I received led me to scout through my script with new eyes. Sure enough, every tip they have was a glaring weakness that needed fixing. I was more than happy to fix it!

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

Time spent planning early is probably three times less than fixing a screw up after you’ve completed it. Create your outline. Write as much story as you can (trigger phrases, trigger words, certain emotions that must happen), but not necessarily any dialogue. Story leads to plot, which leads to characters. Characters lead to interactions, which then lead to dialogue. Grow. Always grow.

***
Producer/Director: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson

 

 

Watch 1st Scene Thriller Table Reading: THE SHOT by Michael DeMattia

Deadline for Thriller/Suspense Film and Writing Festival (Save $15)
https://thrillersuspensefestival.com/

1st Scene: THE SHOT
by Michael DeMattia

SYNOPSIS:

Genres: Drama, Science Fiction, Thriller

One hunter, who never speaks, journeys through a unique forest to discover the mysteries of life

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Jarrid Terrell
HUNTER – Sasha Rajamani

***
Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson

Today’s Thriller Script Reading: COYOTE AND THE DUST DEVIL by Jonah Jones

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

Best Scene from COYOTE AND THE DUST DEVIL Screenplay
Written by Jonah Jones
Read 10 Questions with the writer

SYNOPSIS:

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

CAST LIST:

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

 

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.