Wednesday, May 22, 2019


My feature drama screenplay ABSOLUTION made the Top 25 Semifinalist in its first ever Top 25 Save the Cat! Screenplay Challenge.   So grateful!

Placing in the Save the Cat! Challenge holds special meaning for me.  

I had the pleasure of meeting Save the Cat! creator Blake Snyder in New York City many years ago.  He was teaching a writing workshop in Manhattan.  I was quick to sign up. It was a great one-day workshop focusing on various movie genres, themes and dialogue. 

Blake Snyder was a super kind, insightful and inspirational screenwriting instructor and consultant.  A class act.  I was deeply saddened when he passed away in 2009.  

But his instruction and brand continues at the Save the Cat! website , along with videos on YouTube and other media outlets.
Blake Snyder
Blake, thanks for all you taught me through your Save the Cat! series and your workshop.

My script ABSOLUTION falls into the genre of Rites of Passage and is a redemption story.  Here's to getting it into the right hands and produced for the big (or little screen).  And hey,  I'm just putting this out into the universe, but this script would be ideal for actor Chris Pine
Actor Chris Pine
Congratulations to ALL the writers who entered the Save the Cat! Screenplay Challenge... and especially to the Finalists!  

See the complete list below.  

Until next time.

Here is the complete list of Finalists and Semifinalist.

Blake Snyder's Bio

Thursday, May 09, 2019

The Margaret Herrick Library dedicated to Motion Pictures
The Margaret Herrick Library is an amazing library and non-circulating resource center for movie lovers and scholars located in Beverly Hills, CA.

Today was my first visit to the library.

Who was Margaret Florence Herrick?  She was the Executive Director of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The academy's library in 1971 was named the Margaret Herrick Library in her honor.

The outside building looks more like a church than a library.  Step inside and you're greeted by security (bring your ID).  You are then required to sign in and present a picture ID, which they will hold until you leave the library.
I browsed the lobby which has photos of famous movie actors on the walls, everyone from Al Pacino to Douglas Fairbanks to Cher.

After signing in, you can proceed upstairs to the reading room and collections/resource area.  Keep in mind that this isn't your usual public library -- here, you don't check out books or media materials to take home.  It's simply for research on their site.

While there, I read two movie scripts (The Godfather II and This Property is Condemned), both scripts written by Francis Ford Coppola.

The staff is polite and very helpful. Follow all the rules (they are posted as you enter the building and upstairs in the collection area).  Laptops are allowed (without covers), a pencil and paper are permitted (no pens) and you will be asked to store your purse, bags, etc. in a token locker.

The atmosphere is lovely. 

That rare quiet place these days to read.

No cell phones are allowed inside the library area.  That, too, goes in the locker.  But in all honesty, it was a delight to be detached from my phone for a few hours. 

There is parking nearby and metered parking on the street.

You can read books on every topic from directing to editing to screenwriting.  The shelves are stacked with autobiographies and biographies,  how-to guides about filmmaking and resource books. 

I spent hours perusing their materials.

This elegant, generously-supported facility is devoted to the history and development of the motion picture as an art form and an industry. Established in 1928 and now located in Beverly Hills, the library is open to the public and used year-round by students, scholars, historians and industry professionals.

I plan to return often.  This library is a must-visit if you're a movie lover.  It's a treasure especially for screenwriters.

Here is the library's website for more info:

Wednesday, May 01, 2019

IN HER WORDS:  Oscar-nominated Screenwriters Kristin Wigg and Annie Mumolo (Bridesmaid) talk about co-writing  Bridesmaids together.

Actress Kistin Wigg     photo:
Bridesmaids was a breakout hit at the box office eight years ago... and still holds up with some of the funniest moments ever on screen (it also helped launch Melissa McCarthy's movie career).  It's a great movie featuring a strong cast of women. The food poisoning scene alone is worth watching this movie again. 

Last night, Women in Entertainment and Writers Guild of America West co-presented their series In Her Words: Spotlight on Women Writers in Film & TV featuring Kristin Wigg and Annie Mumolo, the co-writers of Bridesmaids.

Q AND A with writers Kristin Wigg and Annie Mumolo
You'll recall Wigg starred in Bridesmaids and Mumolo made a cameo appearance as the terrified airline passenger sitting beside her in the movie.

Both actresses, producers and comedians discussed their writing process -- which included Wigg flying out to L.A. every weekend to work on the collaboration, while still working on Saturday Night Live in the mid-2000s. Wigg would stay at Mumolo's Burbank, CA apartment weekends where they would work on the film's outline, early drafts and improv scenes.

They wrote a pile of drafts before arriving at the one that eventually became the film.  It was their first screenplay.  One of their biggest writing disappointments was when a big chunk of the Bridesmaids script got scrapped -- it originally had an elaborate Las Vegas sequence that producer Judd Apatow cut after several other hit comedies used Vegas as their backdrop (namely, the Hangover).  Although Wigg said they were crushed to have to delete and reinvent something to replace the Vegas sequence, they brainstormed and came up with the "airplane sequence", where Wigg in an attempt to deal with her fear of flying, consumes pills and drinks scotch to disastrous (and hilarious) results -- ending with her and the other bridesmaids being taken off the plane by authorities.

Wigg and Mumolo noted they were surprised at their Oscar-nominated and box-office success since it was their first screenplay.  They knew each other prior only from sketch and improv work in L.A.

Wigg and Mumolo are currently at work on a new project together due out this summer called “Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar.”  Good news for us!

The In Her Words series celebrates female writers who have created inspiring work while also breaking through industry barriers.   #InHerWords