Interview with Screenwriter Jerry Nield (CATCH!)

Matthew Toffolo: What is your screenplay about?

Jerry Nield: A historical madcap comedy drama depicting family values, romance, morals, religion, gambling, corruption and revenge.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Historical, biographical, drama, action, comedy.

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

Because it’s an entertaining, must see, four quadrant movie. That brings back to life a forgotten part of history.

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

Page turner.

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

Alien.

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

I started doing the research almost 10 years ago.

7. How many stories have you written?

This is my first screenplay.

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

Three Little Birds

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

Learning how to write a screenplay.

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

Growing fruit and veg, fishing, travel and local history, especially the local myths and legends that abound where I live in Wales.

Watch the Screenplay Reading: 

Genre: Biography, Comedy, Drama

Synopsis: Could David really defeat Goliath?

CAST LIST:

Narrator: Val Cole
Bertha: Elizxabeth Rose Morriis
Martha: Ali Chappell
Edison: Scott McCulloch
Ogre: Peter-Mark Raphael
Rufus: Gabriel Darku

 

 

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Interview with Screenwriter Mark Thiru (BLACK LIVES MATTER)

Matthew Toffolo: What is your screenplay about?

I’m not going to choose black nor will I choose white because I’m a human being and that’s all that matters and all lives matter. The love I have for human progress is more than the hate I have for human hatred. I fight for all and not for one and I’d fight for one to save all. I’m not concerned about life because I considered fighting for lives and I am. Human progress for black lives is progress for all lives. The human race depends on all to progress and not some. Those who hate are dead to themselves but those who love are alive to themselves and others because the room for racist behaviourism has evacuated the heart and others are respected as humans beings rather than colored beings. The script ‘BLACK LIVES MATTER’ is about human progress and that for all rather than some! I don’t believe in black power! I believe in human power! I believe in human progress! I believe in progress for all and all should!

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Thriller.

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

‘BLACK LIVES MATTER’ should be made into a movie because it is in support of human progress for all rather than some. That is the right human call. Kindness and gentleness for all and without such the human race is dead alive.

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

Human progress.

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

‘LONG WALK TO FREEDOM’.

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

About a year.

7. How many stories have you written?

One.

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

‘GOOD LIFE’

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

I haven’t finished yet and so far I have no obstacles but one I’m trying to solve being human progress for all.

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

Writing is a strength of mine linked to the passion I have for film making.

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

I love the site. I’ve had no problem whatsoever. I don’t imagine problems in the future because of it’s professionalism.

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

The festival was always conspicuous to me but the professionalism I heard about it from others influenced me more. I had no bad feelings about the feedback I received. I was glad because I knew its professionalism.

Watch the Screenplay Reading: 

Logline : “Los Angeles, 1992: An eminent police department commissioner resolves to purging his deputy commissioner after passion manifestation become inevitable between him and his deputy’s spouse.”

Genre : Thriller

CAST LIST:

Crystal King: Erica Levene
Daryl Gates: Isaiah Kolundzic
Narration: Esther Thibault
Dr. Ethan Harris: Charles Gordon
Rodney G. King: Gabriel Darku
Report Presenter: Julie Sheppard

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Interview with Poet Clay Witkofsky (SIMPLE TRUTH)

1) What is the theme of your poem?

Simplify

2) What motivated you to write this poem?

Unknown

3) How long have you been writing poetry?

This is the only thing I’ve ever wrote

4) If you could have dinner with one person (dead or alive), who would that be?

family

5) What influenced you to submit to have your poetry performed by a professional actor?

For fun

6) Do you write other works? scripts? Short Stories? Etc..?

no


7) What is your passion in life?

Mostly everything

Watch Poetry Reading: 

Performed by Anne McMaster

Interview with Screenwriter Daniel Fishbayn (Adventure Time)

Matthew Toffolo: What is your screenplay about?

Daniel Fishbayn: My screenplay is a spec script for the beloved Cartoon Network show, Adventure Time. I chose to spec Adventure Time as I was looking for an animated series I connected with not just creatively, but also on a more emotional/personal level. Plus, I’ve been a fan since the show began over a decade ago as an online YouTube short, and this felt like the ultimate tribute.

The story follows Finn and Jake as they are investigate a series of mysterious kidnappings in the Candy Kingdom, only to get kidnapped themselves. The captor turns out to be their old nemesis, the evil scientist Doctor Gross, who claims to have changed her ways and seems to be beloved by the kidnapped creatures. Dr. Gross tries to recruit Finn and Jake as “Creativitists” in her dream project of repopulating the Land of Oo with her own genetically engineered animals, using her gleaming Crystal Sword as a reward for Finn for helping her. Initially, Finn and Jake are skeptical at the notion of a “job,” but Finn quickly realizes that using his creativity for a higher purpose might not be such a bad thing.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Adventure Time is an animated series that appeals to a really wide age range. Lots of kids and teens love the show for its hilarious antics, but lots of adults enjoy it too for the same reasons. There are some pretty dark themes explored, particularly in the later seasons, that I think add a depth to the show not present in a lot of other cartoons.

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

Not sure if this one applies for my script since Adventure Time has now wrapped up, but it would be amazingly cool to see it as a real episode!

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

Ridiculous. Fun.

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

Probably The Matrix. Although Rat Race is up there too, since there was a DVD player in my mom’s car and my brothers and I all thought it was the funniest thing ever. So we watched it there on repeat for a good chunk of my childhood.

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

I started work on it around May or June of 2018. So it was about 6 months of working on it, on and off, to get to this polished draft.

7. How many stories have you written?

I lost count a long time ago! I’ve been writing short stories since I was a little kid. The fun fact I always tell people is that I actually wrote my own sequel to the Harry Potter series when I was eight years old. I’ve been making up stories ever since, in one medium or another.

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

In the past couple of years, it’s probably “Sleep Sound” by Jamie xx. It’s this low-key incredible piece of electronic music that just soothes my soul.


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

I definitely hit some writer’s block at a couple of points. This was actually one of the first pieces of writing I’ve done specifically with younger viewers in mind. I had been writing a lot of adult comedy at that point, so it was an interesting challenge to sort of adapt my voice for a different audience.

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

Lots of things! I’ve been quite active in the Toronto improv community for a few years now, and I’m definitely passionate about improv, especially narrative improv, as an artform. I also love playing guitar, and I used to play in bands many eons ago. I’m one of those people that has lots of hobbies, and can never pick just one.

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

I’ve had a good experience using FilmFreeway. It’s conveniently designed in a way that makes submitting to festivals very quick and easy. It’s also helpful for organizing the different pieces of promo material that make up a single project’s “package.”

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

I had heard about FEEDBACK many times, and knew that it was part of a wider network of festivals that have been showcasing filmmakers’ work for years. When I realized there was also a screenwriting component to the festival, I felt like it was a great opportunity to, at the very least, get some helpful feedback on my script. I felt unsure whether it was working as a whole, and whether it was ready to be sent out as a portfolio piece. When I found out that the programmers loved my piece and wished to arrange a professional cold read, I was thrilled and gained a lot of confidence in the script.

The coverage report was also very helpful as it addressed several aspects of my screenplay in a coherent, organized fashion. As constructive feedback, I would just say that while I was glad to hear the reader found very few issues with it, it would have been interesting to hear more about which specific aspects of the script the reader felt were working best and which could be improved. That said, to hear that the FEEDBACK team considered it to be one of the strongest spec scripts they had read was extremely validating and encouraging to say the least.

Watch the Screenplay Reading: 

When creatures begin disappearing from the Candy Kingdom overnight, Princess Bubblegum tasks Finn and Jake with solving the mystery.

CAST LIST:

Science Cat: Emily Weir
Starchy: Peter Nelson
Dr. Gross: Regan Brown
Narration: Laura Kyswaty
Finn: Kevin Gabel
Jake: Kevin Robinson
Toffee Girl: Patrice Henry

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Interview with Screenwriter Giselle DaMier (ASHPODEL)

Matthew Toffolo: What is your screenplay about?

Giselle DaMier: ASPHODEL explores moral conflict, and the extent to which humans will go to satisfy their theological beliefs. With the classically disarming energy of the Twilight Zone and the theme of two women falling in love, ASPHODEL creates an equally timeless and culturally relevant take on the thriller genre.

Log Line: After stepping off a train into a foggy grassland, Lyla meets a beguiling girl named Marie in an isolated town called Asphodel, where the residents believe they exist in a realm between life and death.

2. -What genres does your screenplay fall under?

ASPHODEL falls under the following genres: Thriller, Romance, LGBT, Mystery, Drama.

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

Although I think the LGBT struggle is a valid theme and something that absolutely needs to be represented in the media, I also think that it is important to tell stories that normalize homosexual romance, where the main characters are comfortable in their sexuality. Firstly, ASPHODEL is a dynamic, ethereal film that will captivate fans of the classic noir genre, and it also happens to star two girls in love.

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

Heaven & Hell.

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

Clue (1985)

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

Two years.

7. -How many stories have you written?

Countless, with about 20 that I actually like.

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

Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.

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

I was so focused on the relationship between the two leading women, it took time to develop the other characters that populate the town of Asphodel.

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

I am passionate about Greek mythology, French New Wave cinema, and the sea.

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

FilmFreeway has become my favorite submission website because it allows me to add specific details to each project, including a poster, a writer’s statement, and a list of awards.

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

Surprisingly, there aren’t yet many LGBT film festivals, especially for screenwriters. I am grateful that the Los Angeles LGBT Film Festival has provided this platform. I found the feedback to be valuable and applicable.

Watch the Screenplay Reading: 

After stepping off a train into a foggy grassland, Lyla meets a beguiling girl named Marie in an isolated town called Asphodel, where the residents believe they exist in a realm between life and death.

CAST LIST:

Diane: Regan Brown
Marie: Patrice Henry
Narration: Laura Kyswaty
Lyla: Emily Weir
Engineer: Peter Nelson

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Interview with Screenwriter Renee Rubio (VIVA!!)

Matthew Toffolo: What is your screenplay about?

Renee Rubio: Freedom

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Action / Adventure, Drama, Dramedy

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

The vision is a television series to send a message of awareness in an entertaining way.

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

Rollercoaster Ride

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

Braveheart, Gladiator and Everafter

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

Three Years

7. How many stories have you written?

Ten to Fifteen at least

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

Panama by Van Halen, Iris by The GooGoo Dolls, Dark Horse by Katie Perry

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

My husband’s debilitating stroke and my computer’s constant overheating. I’ve learn to type very fast 😉

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

Roses and Skin Care

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

I love it! Sending my work out there is so exciting. And to be able to appreciate the thoughts and artful expressions from others is fun!

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

It seemed like a festival that VIVA!! would be well received. The feedback was so spot- on and much needed. Sometimes you can’t see the forest for the trees.
I thank you all again and again cause you’re awesome!

Watch the Screenplay Reading: 

A young, ambitious woman takes on the world of human trafficking to find her friend. Fearless and focused she infiltrates a global menagerie of evil. Her crusade against slavery becomes a fight for her own freedom and her life.

CAST LIST:

Dixie – JESSICA BOWMER
NARRATION – STEPHEN SANDQUIST
Jack – SARAH-HAZEN BASK
Gladys – JULIE SHEPPARD

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Interview with Screenwriter Grace Nguyen (MESSS)

Matthew Toffolo: What is your screenplay about?

Grace Nguyen: Ultimatus is about a powerful, elemental weapon that splits into different weapons; each with one element, after its wielder passed away. One teenage girl goes on a fetch quest of one of those weapons, after it was stolen, with an unlikely partner. Together, the pair overcomes tribulations whether it be the girl’s traumatic past or her partner seeking retribution.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Action, Adventure, Medieval-fantasy.

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

It would mean the world to me to have “Ultimatus” become a movie. Because bringing my screenplay(s) to life has been a huge dream of mine ever since I took screenwriting seriously a couple years ago. At the time I’m writing this, I haven’t come close to that yet. But I’m hoping to achieve that with this screenplay. After all, compared to the other screenplays I’ve written, this one, I feel like I’ve really put all my heart and soul in to.

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

Hakuoki inspired.

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

I don’t usually watch the same movie multiple times. It varies, but most movies are watch are animated. Though, occasionally, there will be a small number of movies I have a “phase” about. Last one being Disney Pixar’s “Coco.”

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

I started on this screenplay about Christmas 2017. So more than 2 years at this point.

7. How many stories have you written?

At the time I’ve taken screenwriting seriously, I’ve written about 3 screenplays at the very least. I’ve written 2 others but those are incomplete.

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

Similar to question 5, my song choices also varies. Though I mostly listen to the Japanese kinds (whether it be JRock or JPop)

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

My mind not being able to focus on writing this for very long. I would work on it for about 30 seconds or so, then do something else. In addition to that, I’ve been going back to change some parts numerous times. There’s also been days when I wasn’t working on this screenplay either.

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

I’m passionate about anime (Japanese animation) since I was a child. It has helped get through the rough patches in my life; from keeping my spirits up to making me temporarily forget I had any friends. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without anime. Speaking of which, back on question 4, I stated “Ultimatus” is Hakuoki inspired. Hakuoki is another anime; and the only one that I’ve been in love with for more than 6 years. Therefore, I want to emphasize that onto “Ultimatus.”

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

Despite me not having been on FilmFreeway for very long at the moment, I found it to be very trustworthy. I also hope to enter more of my screenplays through here.

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

Ever since I took screenwriting seriously, I decided I want to bring my screenplay to life. Problem was, I wasn’t sure the right pathway to achieve that. So I’ve been exploring many options. One such options was one of my connections in Linkedin sent me a link to the storypitches site. I gave that a shot and it’s been going well so far.

My feelings on the feedback I received for “Messs” were well received. Since I believe I garnered more screenwriting experience when working on “Ultimatus,” of course, I’ve put more what I’ve learned into that more than any other.

Watch the Screenplay Reading: 

Logline: “Messs” is a action, supernatural in which Anika Takano gets more than what she bargained for despite being a “Messs,” a rare type of exorcist who can’t see demons during a certain time-range of day.

Genre: Action, Animated, Supernatural

CAST LIST:

Masaki – SARAH-HAZEN BASK
Demon Takeshi – STEPHEN SANDQUIST
NARRATION – KAT SMILEY
Anika – JESSICA BOWMER
Sayuri – JULIE SHEPPARD
Daisuke – STEVE SWITZMAN

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