Interview with Screenplay Writer Dan Hass (THE UPSIDE OF OVER TV Pilot)

Winning LGBT TV PILOT Screenplay for October 2017.

1. What is your TV Pilot screenplay about?

The Upside of Over is about a gay (possibly alcoholic?) twenty-something named Adam—whose fresh start is interrupted when the ex he ran away from forces his way back into his life.

2. Why should this screenplay be made into a TV show?

For me, Upside scratched an itch—it’s the kind of show I’m desperate to see more of on TV. Fast paced wit of Happy Endings, overt sexuality and honesty of Broad City, and all framed within a young gay narrative that’s still struggling to find a place on mainstream television. It’s a fun, gay ride with a cast of crazies. What’s not to like?

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

Hot mess

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

Right now, I’m all about Fleabag and Gravity Falls. Is that weird? Feels weird.

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

All in all, it took about 6 months to write (and 26 years to live).

6. How many stories have you written?

It’s hard to count the notches on my writer belt. But so far, I’ve written a handful pilots, a few commercials, a bunch of specs, a huge collection of half-finished (mostly illegible) short stories, and one original comedy musical—so let’s round up to 20?

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

Billy Joel’s “Vienna.”

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

It was a long rewrite process—because as much as I want this to be a hoot, I want it to have some real heart, too. So here’s hoping that comes across in the read!

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

Into the gay usuals like gymming and brunching—but also love a good long camping trip away from the city. With brunch still, though. Because I mean, come on, we’re not animals.

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

I saw a real opportunity to connect with like-minded creators who were passionate about getting more gay stuff out there—and I’m blown away that they responded so strongly to this (sometimes verging on trashy) comedy. Honestly, the whole process has been pretty inspiring.

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

Only good things! It’s packed with opportunities and it’s really easy to use (which, thank god, because keeping track of submissions is impossible otherwise).

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

Work with your friends. That’s helped me more than anything. You’ve got an amazing system of support, ideas, feedback—whatever you need—at your disposal. And if you’re lucky, they want to make it as writers or directors or artists or actors just as badly as you do. So reach out and get working.

Watch the Winning TV Reading: 

Genre: Comedy, Romance

A gay (possibly alcoholic?) twenty-something’s fresh start is interrupted when the ex he ran away from forces his way back into his life.

CAST LIST:

Narrator: Carina Cojeen
Adam: Fabio Abreu
Blake: Dennis Barham
Nathan: Nick Baillie
Jason: David Occhipinti
Megan: Norma Dunphy
Zoey: Lindsay Gerro

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