The Black list – the year’s list of the best unproduced scripts in Hollywood – should be out later in the day. This year’s theme is questioning the validity of the list itself, as some suggest that as it’s become more high-profile, it’s being exploited as a marketing tool by agents. In short: everyone is nominating their own clients’ scripts. But cynicism aside, some rumoured titles follow.
ScriptShadow has an early (pre-list) list suggesting titles that are likely to be on the actual list. So here is that pre-list list, with loglines and as much info as we could rootle out.
Snatched by Lee Patterson. Repped by UTA. Brit Petterson won a $30,000 screenwriting fellowship award in 2008 for this one. Here’s the logline: “In this psychological thriller, the father of a murdered child kidnaps and tortures her male school teacher on suspicion that he is the killer, igniting a chain of events that end in tragedy for both men.” So, it’s all going to end well, then?
Looters by Ian Shorr. Repped by CAA/Benderspink. No info. Apologies.
One Night Stan by Joshua Friedlander. Repped by ICM/Principato/Young. A man, on the verge of getting married, is told by his girlfriend that he can have one night to sow his wild oats. Of course, things don’t go to plan and the man ends up having some weird encounters with some even weirder women . You can read the script here.
The Oestrich Incident by Glenn Gers. In the author’s own words, it’s “about an elevator inspector whose efforts to reunite with his ex-wife get complicated when he becomes a pawn in a struggle between the U.S. intelligence community and some domestic terrorists. “ An elevator inspector? Is that a thing? We don’t believe you.
The Low Self-Esteem of Lizzie Gillespie by Mindy Kahling and Brent Forrester. Forrester and Kahling are writers on the American version of The Office. Kahling also plays office PR Kelly Kapoor. According to Variety, the script is about “a woman whose lack of self-worth has limited her choice in men to losers. Just as she is about to hit the bottom of the barrel, her life takes an unexpected turn when she is pursued by the hottest guy ever.”
Burlesque by Susannah Grant. It seems as though this flick was/is in production. It is apparently to be directed by Steve Antin and will apparently star a bunch of famous types, including Kristen Bell, Stanley Tucci, Cher, Christina Aguilera, Dita Von Teese, Alan Cumming and Eric Dane. It’s about (Showgirls) a small-town girl who (Showgirls) moves to LA and gets a job in a burlesque (Showgirls) club. Does this remind you of an existing, terrible movie? (Showgirls.)
Big Swinging Dick by Shashwata Chatterjee. Can’t find much info on this one but it could be about city traders, judging from the title. Or about penises.
The Sitter by Gatewood & Tanaka. Adventures in Babysitting meets Superbad. 'Nuff said.
The Voices by Michael R. Perry. Nothing on this.
Salmon Fishing In The Yemen by Simon Beaufoy. From Paul Torday’s novel, adapted by the writer of Slumdog Millionaire. Expect a story about a cuckolded civil servant in the Middle East. Do not expect poo-covered Dickensian children.
Lady Scarface by Tony Puryear. A young Columbian woman rises to power and falls from grace in a rough Miami drug gang. We suggest Al Pacino for the lead.
The Details by Jacob Estes. They are talking about Elizabeth Banks and Tobey Maguire to star in this comedy. “A married couple who, already struggling with issues like infidelity and whether they should stay married, see their lives further complicated by ravenous raccoons burrowing under the sod in their back yard. A disagreement over how to dispatch the pests creates a chain reaction of mishaps that include a murder by bow and arrow.” We say: Caddyshack meets rom-com. All wrong.
Pryor by Bill Condon. Richard Pryor biopic. But who can possible do a convincing Pryor?
A Happening of Monumental Proportions by Gary Lundy. No noos.
By Way of Helena by Matt Cook. Zip.
Symmetry of Broken Things by Matthew Hoge. Nada.
Emergency Contact by Bear Aderhold and Thomas F.X. Sullivan. Here’s the logline: “A straight laced guy finds his life thrown into turmoil after he agrees to become the "emergency contact" for a guy he barely knows.” I can picture scenes from this movie, and I don’t want to see it: a sure sign it will be a barnstorming hit.
LA Rex by Will Beall. An LA crime thriller, adapted from Beall’s novel of the same name. Described as Elmore Leonard-like. But then, they would say that.
Enron by Lucy Prebble, a bitter black comic fable about the Texan oil giant, adapted from her play of the same name.
Air Conditioning by Tommy Smith. Nuttin’.
Cedar Rapids by Phil Johnston. A small town insurance salesman heads off to the “big city” of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to try and save his company. Apparently to be directed by Miguel Arteta (Chuck & Buck, Youth In Revolt) and to star The Hangover’s Ed Helms, Sigourney Weaver, Anne Heche and John C Reilly.
Archangel by Andrew Will. Are angels the new vampires? With Legion and the upcoming adaptation of two-angels-in-love-with-one-(ordinary)-girl novel, Fallen, they could well be. Not much info on this script. It could be using 'Archangel' figuratively, perhaps to describe a new flavor of ice-cream or sex act.
Arizona by Sheldon Turner. Ben Affleck’s name seems to be linked to this one, though we can’t find out much more than that.
Year 12 by Edward Ricourt. “Aliens invaded 12 years ago, and they’re occupying the planet. Tyler is a uranium miner who lives in Manhattan and works underwater and he’s recruited by the resistance to smuggle out uranium in his blood so the resistance can use it to blow up the alien mothership.” This synopsis originally included the film’s climax and denouement, which we won’t spoil in case you’re in the cinema in a few years and suddenly think: “I know how this stupid movie ends.”
Headhunters Calling by Bill Dubuque. It’s a drama. Presumably about a headhunter. We think that’s the human resources kind, not the Ed Gein kind.
Tokarev by Jim Agnew and Sean Keller. “A visceral, tough-guy crime drama”. Sean Keller wrote Giallo. You do the maths.
Fair Trade by Matt Aldrich. No info.
Dream On by Jason Ubaldi. A teen-dance-drama-story. Next!
Cochran & Lafarge: The Epic Story of the Greatest Fucking Mimes the World Has Ever Known by Michael Colton and John Aboud. I know not what to say on this.
Change Up by Jon Lucas & Scott Moore. They wrote The Hangover, so their words might as well be coated in delicious diamonds and topped with a sweet, sweet money sauce. Which is good because the logline makes it sound like a movie made for Chevy Chase in the ‘80s, which Chevy Chase refused to do, deciding instead to do Fletch VII. It’s a body-swap comedy, in which a responsible married man and his lazy man-boy best friend switch bodies and lives and – wake up! Did I not say this is by The Hangover guys?
My Sister Is Marrying a Douchebag by Wendy and Lizzie Molyneux. No details but what I can say is that Wendy Molyneaux is very, very funny. Check out her McSweeney’s humour pieces. Here is one.
Balls Out by The Robotard 8000. Do you know what? Life is short. But if you want, you can read the screenplay here. Personally, I do not want to.
Brave Internet Warrior by Josh Olson. It’s a good title. Except that it’s reminding me of Kevin Costner. It’s all gone a bit Dances With Wolves in my brain. Too many scripts. Signing off here.