1st Scene Screenplay – THE GATE by Della Vance Greenawalt

Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy

The Gate is an action/adventure about two boat rental operators who go hunting for their missing boat and get sucked through a magical gate and must find their way out before the predators there eat them.

CAST LIST:

Narrator: Val Cole
Brian: Ryan Yusep
Hiram: Peter Mark Raphael
Officer Dees: Allan Michael Brunet

Get to know the writer:

What is your screenplay about?

Two regular guys get sucked under a sandstone arch that is actually a time gate. They land 150,000 years ago in Pleistocene North America where they must stop the maniac who rented their boat from wiping out our hominid ancestors.

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Fantasy and Action/Adventure.

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

It is such a fun movie, entertaining and funny, along the lines of Indiana Jones meets Jurassic Park (although it is after the dinosaur extinction when mammals became giants and man first appeared.)

How would you describe this script in two words?

Prehistoric safari!

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

Probably the Princess Bride.

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

About a year. Many revisions later…

How many stories have you written?

Lots. More than I can count.

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

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

It has changed directions with suggestions from the writers’ workshop I am in, 5150 at The Academy of Film Writing. Peer reviews have been invaluable.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I volunteer at an animal shelter rescuing dogs. I have three at home presently.

You entered your screenplay via FilmFreeway. What has been your experiences working with the submission platform site?

FilmFreeway is such a great way to enter contests, so easy and they let the writer know the status of each entry!

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

I had never heard of a first scenes festival and was immediately interested. I like the idea that you must hook your audience in the first 10 minutes.

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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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Winning 1st Scene Reading of AVES, by Daniel L Burke

Winning Screenplay – AVES
Written by Daniel L. Burke

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Julian Ford
ALFRED – Mandip Brar
GRAMPS – Allan Brunet
DR. BLACK – Sean Ballantyne
CHRISTINE – Amanda Quach
MARVIN – Zake O’Connor
DR. OHNO – Kayla Lakhani

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Thriller, Horror

Mankind fights birds for control of planet Earth in an Apocalyptic battle of Armageddon.

Get to know the writer:

What is your screenplay about?

In the year 1980 residents of an Ohio town are rounded up and executed for the takeover of their land.

Now.

From the deepest part of space, a lost space probe filled with lethal alien radiation returns to earth. The President orders a strike of nuclear missiles.

On vacation, a horrified family watches the missile attack. They stare haplessly as the radiation from the destroyed probe encircles the planet. Filled with anxiety; the family attempts to returns home with the mother and son carrying a deep secret.

The alien radiation encircling the earth transforms the planet’s billions of birds to instruments of death and destruction. They are stronger, and more intelligent, and realize that man must die. Soon the Aves of the world join forces and attack.

In multiple battles, the fleeing family fights the violent birds on their quest to safety. Of the six-member family only two survive, the mother and daughter. The two finally reach their destination; a military bunker sitting deep in the Ohio hillside. In the fortified structure, the mother reveals her plan for world domination with her lover, the President’s leading General. The daughter realizes that she is the only one who can stop the insanity. It’s a fight between daughter, mother, the General and birds for rule of the planet. In the supreme battle inside the bunker, only the daughter survives. The finger of God saves the world as a massive solar flare cleans the atmosphere of the alien radiation.

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Horror, Sci-fi, Drama, Suspense, Thriller, Action, Fantasy, Adventure

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

Two reasons. The world needs quality entertainment. Second, it opens the door to my world of films.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Surpassing splendor

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

That’s a good question and I really don’t think I can answer it. And that’s because I watch my new movies until I wear out the grooves. Then I don’t watch them for awhile. But if I was on a deserted island with one movie; it would be “West Side Story.”

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

To be perfectly honest, it only takes me about a month to write the raw draft, another half month for the refined script. The problem isn’t the script but the research. It consumes all the time and can take weeks.

How many stories have you written?

If you include manuscripts I will say about thirty-five. If you want to just want to know about my screenplays including musicals I would say, twenty.

What motivated you to write this screenplay?

Shooting photography I saw a chorus line of birds sitting on electrical wires and that was it.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

None really unless you count researching the subject, I wrote “Aves” and “Looking For Love” back to back and they both flowed like water. It took about three and a half months. I missed October, November, December and the first part of January.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Photography and music. Those are my two main passions after writing. I have photographs on my FaceBook page and Deviant Art. Also, I have pieces of music that I composed on some of the music sites.

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

I had entered your Logline Contest and figured I would give it a shot. Man I was mad because the mistakes were minor but major to the script.


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*****

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

Editor: John Johnson

Camera Operator: Kierston Drier

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Winning 1st Scene – Sandstorm by Neil Chase

Winning Screenplay – SANDSTORM
Written by Neil Chase

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Cora Matheson
MITCH – Daniel Chung
ROY – John Fray

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Action, Thriller

Sandstorm is a disaster film about a single mom and her deadbeat ex who race to save their daughter as a massive sandstorm devastates their hometown.


Get to know the writer:

What is your screenplay about?

Sandstorm is a disaster film about a single mom and her deadbeat ex who race to save their daughter as a massive sandstorm devastates their hometown.

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Action, thriller.

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

It’s unlike other disaster films in that it’s written with a smaller budget in mind, and centers around the relationships and dysfunctional family dynamics of our lead characters more than on the spectacle of the devastation. That said, there’s something here for everyone – action, comedy, drama, and most of all, heart.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Fun ride.

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

Star Wars.

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

The first draft took two weeks. Then a few months more for feedback and rewrites.

How many stories have you written?

I’ve been writing since I was a kid, so it’s hard to say how many short stories there have been. That said, I’ve written thirteen feature screenplays, numerous short screenplays, and my debut novel is about to get published.

What motivated you to write this screenplay?

I always wanted to write a disaster film. So I picked one that I haven’t seen before.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

None that I can think of. It was a fun experience from start to finish.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

My other passion is acting, which actually helps me to be a better screenwriter, as I’ve learned where to focus in terms of dialogue, action lines, and so on. I try to write the kinds of scripts I would want to read as an actor.

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

The First Scene Screenplay Festival seemed like a great way to test the waters with this script. I’m grateful for the win.

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*****

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

Camera Operator: Kierston Drier

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne


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1st Scene of SPARKS by Jon Freda

Winning Screenplay – SPARKS
Written by Jon Freda

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Ballantyne
FRANK – Devin Upham
MONICA – Amaka Umeh
NICHOLS – David Straus
GUARD – Mark Sparks

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Thriller, Crime, Mystery

A sheriff hunts a killer targeting both innocents and other criminals alike, but soon finds himself tangled in a conspiracy tied to the gruesome, deliberately botched execution of a former death row inmate as well the mysterious, four-legged witness that seems to connect them all.

Get to know the writer:

What is your screenplay about?

The marketing calls we all receive over the phone – the cold calls – and which we all hate. Yet the results of this particular one have far reaching effects.

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Drama.

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

It is a drama about human relationships – and murder.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Human drama.

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

Same Time Next Year

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

It started as a short story – which has been published – and evolved into the screenplay.

How many stories have you written?

Over 200.

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

Slightly All The Time by Soft Machine

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Time, family commitments.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Family, reading and gardening.

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

*****

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

Camera Operator: Kierston Drier

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne


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Submit the first stages of your film and get full feedback!

 

Winning 1st SCENE Screenplay – THE COURIER, by Michael D’Ambrosio

Winning Screenplay – THE COURIER
Written by Michael D’Ambrosio

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Val Cole
VICTOR – Dan Cristofori
FIONA – Cassandra Guthrie
CHARISSE – Jane Hailes

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Action, Sci-Fi

A (female) black market courier is hunted by a powerful militia commander and his mercenary lover over her true identity. One wants her alive; the other wants her dead.

 Get to know the writer:

What is your screenplay about?

Marina, a violent courier in the black market with a drug addiction is the last of a royal bloodline. Believing her parents abandoned her as a child, she despises them and anything they represented. When a delivery goes bad, she keeps a valuable data chip that has everyone hunting her – both good and bad. Reluctantly she takes on two friends who help her to overcome her addiction. One becomes her lover; the other becomes a mentor urging her to assume her true title as princess and lead her people. She has no intention of doing so until she learns that her parents were murdered and plots to avenge their deaths. Realizing that her life as a reclusive courier was based on a lie, she accepts her role as princess with a lot of help from her friends.

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

sci-fi/thriller

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

Lead character Marina is a flawed Lara Croft character with a John Wick attitude. I believe the actions, emotions and plot revolving around Marina make this an exciting, edge-of-your-seat thriller.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Bad ass

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

Underworld

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

A little over two years

How many stories have you written?

I’ve written eleven sci-fi/fantasy/horror novels through small presses. I’ve adapted five of them to scripts and one to a TV series. None have been sold yet but are represented.

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

If you could read my mind by Gordon Lightfoot

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

I wasn’t sure whether or not Marina should take the throne or go her own way with a new take on life.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Space travel. Many of my stories are based on this topic including my new script Space Truckers. I know one day, we’ll inhabit the cosmos.

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

I had faith that, if read, the first scene would hook the reader.

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

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson

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1st Scene Screenplay – SHE DRIVES ME CRAZY by Elisha Barnes

Watch the December 2016 Winning 1st Scene Screenplay.

SHE DRIVES ME CRAZY
Written by Elisha Barnes

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Ballantyne
MAN – Christopher Huron
JOAN – Rachel Salsberg
TERRI – Georgia Grant
PETE – Rais Moui

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Drama, Comedy, Romance

Sexy lesbian Danni Montgomery is living with her ex in abstinence – an ex who still carries a torch for her. Meanwhile Danni is eyeing up a bisexual movie star and attempts to woo her by building her the hottest fan site on the web.

Get to know the winning writer:

1. What is your screenplay about?

It’s about a woman who works in a doctor’s office who finds herself in a boring marriage – until she meets a handsome stranger at a supermarket. Now this woman – who is a maniacal driver – soon falls in love with the stranger and finds herself plotting her husband’s death. And it isn’t the first time she sought this solution to an unsatisfactory marriage.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Dark Comedy and Rom-Com.

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

Because it’s a very timely subject with all the road rage out there and it’s very funny, too. Memorable characters.

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

Darkly funny

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

Wizard of Oz – can’t get enough of those munchkins.

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

One year

6. How many stories have you written?

I’ve completed five screenplays, 14 short stories and two novels.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

Some jerk cut me off and I found myself fantasizing about all the ways I could get back at him.

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

Periods of writer’s block.

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

Garage sales, flea markets, the jersey shore, and, most of all, going to the movies.

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

Someone told me about it and I thought “Hmmmm, that sounds interesting.”


TV CONTESTSUBMIT your Best Scene Screenplay or TV SPEC Script
Voted #1 TV Contest in North America.
SCREENPLAY CONTESTSUBMIT your Best Scene Screenplay or FEATURE Script
FULL FEEDBACK on all entries. Get your script performed
SCREENPLAY CONTESTFIRST SCENE (first 10pgs) SCREENPLAY CONTEST
Submit the first stages of your film and get full feedback!

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

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

1st Scene Screenplay – UNSPOKEN, by Amber Epling

Watch the December 2016 Winning 1st Scene Screenplay.

UNSPOKEN
Written by Amber Epling

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Ballantyne
GABRIEL – Craig Estrella
CELESTE – Rachel Salsberg
DOCTOR WATERS – Georgia Grant
RUSS – Charles Gordon

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Drama, Mystery

Celeste Grey, a mentally-challenged 20-something girl, who has no ability to speak escapes from an institution after being raped by an associate of the institute. By fate, she ends up on a ranch with 50-something RUSS, whose wife had been institutionalized before committing suicide, and his handsome, self-centered adult son (GABE).

Get to know the winning writer:

1. What is your screenplay about?

Unspoken is about a young woman who is mentally disabled and she finds her way to a ranch, where a man and his son take her in and care for her and her soon to be unborn child. While they are trying to hang onto their ranch, they come to realize that, while they thought they were helping her, she actually winds up helping them.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

The genre is a drama.

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

This movie is very inspiring to a lot of people in this world. This woman who is lost, alone, deaf and is pregnant has no hope in the world. The hope she finds is in two people who would be the most unlikely candidates to take care of her. It goes to show that just because people have disabilities and can’t speak for themselves doesn’t mean that they are voiceless and that they don’t have a heart. They just might be the ones to save you, not the other way around.

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

Dramatic and Uplifting

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

The Man In The Iron Mask and The American President

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

This film has been completed for several years now, just waiting for the right opportunity.

6. How many stories have you written?

Over the course of 15 years I have written 20 films.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

This story came about in regards to a family member who suffered a tragedy that resulted in her having extreme handicaps after giving birth to her second daughter. She can’t speak, she can’t feed herself or walk, but she is bright and very intelligent. She still has her mind and uses it to communicate to her family by using a letter board. Much like the main character, she suffers deafness and has to be treated much like a child. That is kind of what brought the story to a head.

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

The only obstacles that I faced while writing this, was the obstacles that I have faced with all of my films. I have been trying my best to get my work publicized and at times I felt like I was in a stalemate and that my films could never make it, but I realized that I was good enough and I knew this was a film that had a great message and it needed to be told, so I finished it. Along with the personal story that comes along with this story, I knew I had to do this, so I gathered all my courage and strength and told myself that this was one that will mean the most.

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

Photography

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

I was on Twitter and the account for the festival came up and I checked it out and decided to give it a try.


TV CONTESTSUBMIT your Best Scene Screenplay or TV SPEC Script
Voted #1 TV Contest in North America.
SCREENPLAY CONTESTSUBMIT your Best Scene Screenplay or FEATURE Script
FULL FEEDBACK on all entries. Get your script performed
SCREENPLAY CONTESTFIRST SCENE (first 10pgs) SCREENPLAY CONTEST
Submit the first stages of your film and get full feedback!

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

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne