FAMILY Best Scene Reading of FAMILY TREE by Andrea N. Carr

“Family Tree” by novelist Andrea N. Carr with a family saga where an incarcerated woman gains a four-day release to attend the funeral after, her sister’s suicide while babysitting her 13 year old son. Story uncovers dark secrets with suspense and pacing that is in comparison to Raymond Carver. I conducted an interview with the author on the power of storytelling to create empathy and change. Cristina Deptula, Literary Publicist

CAST LIST:

Church Rep – 2 – PAOLA SCATTOLON
Secretary (m) – 4 – ADRIAN CARLOS CARTER
Narration – NICK DOLAN
Angel (f) – 20 – KYANA TERESA
Mary – 6 – KATELYN VARADI
Mr. Seinfeld – 3 – PETER NELSON

A FilmFreeway preferred festival:

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

Festival Moderators: Kierston Drier, Shepsut Wilson
Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne
Editor: Kimberly Villarruel

Festival Directors: Mary Cox, Rachel Elder, Natasha Levy

Camera Operators: Hugh Ritchie, Isabal Cupryn, Aser Santos Jr., Zack Arch

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Family Best Scene Reading – NO MORE GOODBYES, by Rebekah R Ganiere

January 2017 Winning FAMILY Best Scene Reading.

Best Scene from the screenplay NO MORE GOODBYES Screenplay
Written by Rebekah Ganiere

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Victoria Kucher
TRISTAN – Hugh Ritchie
BETTY – Julie Sheppard
STAN – David Occhipinti
SHERIFF – Robert Notman
ER NURSE – Olivia Jon

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Family, Drama

When two foster brothers lose their carer they find themselves in danger of being separated. They go on the run, finding new family along the way.

Get to know the writer:

What is your screenplay about?

After the death of his foster mother, sixteen-year-old Mark goes on the run- fulfilling his promise to keep him and his eight-year-old foster brother, Tristan, together. But when their car dies in a small town, Mark finds that hiding out and caring for a young child with PTSD isn’t as easy as he thought.

What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Family Film, Drama

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

It helps us to look at what it takes to consider someone family. With the country divided in so many ways right now this movie shows that people of any age, race, or religion can come together to form a family. And the sacrifices that family makes for each other.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Brotherly sacrifice

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

Star Wars and the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. I’ve been a nerd for a very long time.

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

Honestly, not long. I wrote it in one week last July. But I am a very quick writer. This was my first screenplay. I’ve edited it half a dozen times since then, but that’s about all. I’ve been a published author for three years and so when an idea hits me I bang it out quick.

How many stories have you written?

Stories? Man, I have no idea. I currently have 18 novels published. And sixty plus ideas still waiting to be written. I have four screenplays and a pilot I’ve written in the last six months. And several unfinished works as well.

What motivated you to write this screenplay?

My son. He is eight and he’s an actor and I have wanted to write something that would really showcase his funny, quirky, loving personality. And he has a friend who is also an actor who is sixteen. So I thought, realistically where would an eight year old and a sixteen year old meet and become best friends?

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Making sure if felt real and authentic. I wanted this to be a story that people could watch and see themselves in, or someone they know and relate to it with characters we cried with and rooted for. That takes some doing.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I am a homeschooling mom of 4 beautiful kids. Three daughters and a son. I spend a lot of time driving them around to auditions and dance classes and other classes. We as a family love Comic Cons. We go to about seven a year and cosplay. So sewing and prop making and crafting take a lot of my time as well.

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

I loved the title. Festival for Family. I felt that was exactly the kind of audience I wanted to appeal to. The initial feedback I have gotten is awesome. Some of the notes were ones I had already been thinking about myself and so they just confirmed the changes I already wanted to make.

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

Write what you are passionate about not what you think the market wants. The market is always changing and if you try to write to what you think people want to see by the time you are done, the market will have changed. But if you write what you are passionate about and what you love, at the end of the day, even if no one sees it, you will love what you did. And that’s the most important thing of all.

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

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson


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Best Scene TV PILOT Reading of FAMILY OF SPIES, by Susan Lambert Hatem

Best Scene from FAMILY OF SPIES Screenplay
Written by Susan Lambert Hatem

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Val Cole
BEN – Matthew Lawrence
SPENCER – Cory Bertrand
AMY – Cassandra Guthrie
GUARD – Peter-Mark Raphael
SEAN – Vince Jerad

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Family, Crime, Drama

Mom and former-police-officer-turned-lawyer Julia Molina is trying to have it all, but all she’s feeling is stuck in the middle of a boring job and chaotic home life. When an old friend with a mysterious past shows up to ask for her help, Julia suddenly finds herself drawn into a web of lies, spies and intrigue.


Get to know the writer:

What is your screenplay about?

The official synopsis is this:

Mom and former-police-officer-turned-lawyer Celeste Harper is stuck in the middle of a boring job and chaotic home life. When an old friend with a mysterious past shows up to ask for her help, Celeste suddenly finds herself drawn into a web of lies, spies and intrigue. Soon, her husband, Ben, who has a hidden past of his own, and her precocious kids, Sean and Darby are called into action as well. In the process of saving the world, they may also wind up saving their family.

But for me, this story is really about:

The desire to make a difference with your work and how that may clash with the responsibilities of raising a family. It’s been my challenge as a writer, a producer and mom. This story is a fun and intriguing metaphor for every parent’s challenge in the world: Can you raise a family and save the world*?

*aka – Get your very important work done before it’s time to pick up your kids from school.

What genres does your screenplay under?

Family, Action-Thriller

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

I haven’t seen anything quite like my version. There is of course Spy Kids and Mr and Mrs. Smith and The Incredibles, all of which were inspirations, as was the 80s TV show, Scarecrow and Mrs. King and the TV show Chuck (basically the reverse Scarecrow and Mrs. King). I wanted to create a live-action action thriller that I can watch with my kids and I would enjoy as much as them. I think we’re clamoring as audiences for something that is exciting, but not too dark. Adventurous, but aspirational and that has heart. I know I am.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Fun. Intriguing.

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

I was always interested in the arts, music, theatre. But it was seeing the original Star Wars at a young age that took my creative breath away. I just had never seen anything like it. I saw it 32 times in a theatre the first year it came out (and it stayed in theaters for a year!).

As an adult, it’s probably a three-way tie between Jaws, Die Hard and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, mostly because if they show up on TV/in my que, I just can’t stop watching them. I produced the website for Finding Nemo, so I saw that a lot when I was at Disney and then on top of that, my son was obsessed with it as a 4-yr old. I may have seen that movie 40 times!

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

I had the shape of the idea almost 3 years ago. Because of other projects, it took a two years before I could even begin to write it. Then it took about 5 months to write the first draft. Various revisions and feedback took about six months, getting me to the version I submitted to Festival for Family. I have since revised it more based on feedback from Festival for Family and friends. And that I now think it’s better as a TV pilot.

How many stories have you written?

A lot. I have been writing most of my life: short stories, screenplays, plays. I went to USC Film School and have been an independent filmmaker, theatre maker and producer. I like wearing many hats. I like to make most of my stuff independently. Since I also direct, produce, consult in digital marketing and have a family, I go in spurts with my writing. I was doing a lot of producing and directing for a number of years, so I didn’t write screenplays for about five years. Then this last two years, I’ve been writing a plethora of material. I’ve never written like this before. It’s like planes circling an airport, trying to come in for a landing. Much of my stuff, I produce independently. But some ideas, like Family of Spies, I feel have more commercial potential and I’m interested in getting them out to a wider audience.

What motivated you to write this screenplay?

The first spark came one Christmas Eve with my husband, putting a trampoline together in our backyard. In the dark. Right outside our kids’ window. I loved the idea of the secret, quiet conversations/arguments parents have together in the dark of the night when they’re trying to make the world happen for their kids.

I also love action thrillers and spy movies and television. As my youngest kid moved away from watching animated and “children’s” films, there was a lack of what I felt was appropriate movies and television to watch together. Those transition films. I wanted that. So I wrote it. I was fascinated by the challenge I personally feel trying to balance work with family. It’s a pull that I feel (mostly) women have, but in this work-constantly, fear-driven culture, I think everyone feels that pull to come together and connect with each other in a scary world.

I’m interested how women and men, parents and families, can try to affect real change. This story is a metaphor for acting on that instinct to step up: to volunteer, become an activist, get outside your comfort zone and do something real to help people. To change the world. And I want us to bring our kids along. Let them see us be leaders and heroes and they will be leaders and heroes.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Time. And structure. It started as a screenplay and then I realized pretty much around the draft I submitted to Festival for Family, I really want it to be a TV show. I think the world and the characters became bigger to me. I want them to go on and on. So the structure changed a lot. Also, world events and changing times made me try to be very careful about what I was saying about violence and about power structures. That is an ongoing challenge.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I love my family and friends. I am passionate about diversity, science, technology, music, justice and protecting the environment. I like to walk, hike and ride my bike. I love good stories and good, independent entertainment. In addition to writing, I produce (and write and sometimes direct) plays, musicals, web shows, music albums. I am passionate about responsible digital marketing for entertainment and worked with Disney (for years) and Dreamworks (as a consultant).

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

Keep writing. And make stuff. Work together. Find your people and make stuff with them. Technology gives us exciting tools we need to put stories we love out into the world. Don’t rely on gatekeepers.

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!

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

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson