February 2017 TV Pilot/Spec Screenplay Winners

Deadline for Television Pilot/Spec Screenplay Festival: https://tvfestival.org/

Watch the 3 TV Screenplay Winners for February 2017:

ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – ECHOES OF BONNIEVILLE
February 2017 Reading
Written by Simon Schneider

ACTORTV SPEC Screenplay – THE FLASH TV series
February 2017 Reading
Written by Nader Hobballah

ACTORFAN FICTION Screenplay – POPEYE “SPINACH RUN”
February 2017 Reading
Written by Neil Chase

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

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

January 2017 TV Pilot/Spec Screenplay Winners

Deadline for Television Pilot/Spec Screenplay Festival: https://tvfestival.org/

Watch the 2 TV Screenplay Winners for January 2017:

 

ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – DOWN WITH THE BUREAUCRACY
January 2017 Reading
Written by Dimitry Pompee

ACTORTV SPEC Screenplay – MODERN FAMILY “Relax, I Got This”
January 2017 Reading
Written by Edward Pronley

ACTORFAN FICTION Screenplay – UNIVERSAL SAINT BATMAN
January 2017 Reading
Written by Nathan Trumbull

 

 

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

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

2016 TV PILOT Winners (19)

Deadline for Television Pilot/Spec Screenplay Festival: https://tvfestival.org/

ACTORTV PILOT – MIDLIFE CRISIS
December 2016 Reading
Written by Erica Barfield Peterson
ACTORTV PILOT BEST Scene Screenplay – ARMS OF MORPHEUS
November 2016 Reading
Written by John Christopher Thomas
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay: WILLOWWOOD
October 2016 Reading
Written by Christopher Locke
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay: EMMETT IN PEOPLELAND
October 2016 Reading
Written by Larry Hankin
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay: THE VISA
October 2016 Reading
Written by Conrad Haynes
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – OYMPUS RISING
September 2016 Reading
Written by C M Landrus
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – DIGITAL NATIVES
August 2016 Reading
Written by Adam Preston
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – SURVEILLANCE
August 2016 Reading
Written by Chris Gebhardt & Jenn Russi
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – THE SPECTRAL CITY
July 2016 Reading
Written by Arthur Vincie
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – WILD MAGIC
June 2016 Reading
Written by Julie Nichols
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – CIVILIAN
June 2016 Reading
Written by Gina Scanlon
ACTORFAN FICTION Screenplay – SPACE 2099 (based on Space 1999)
June 2016 Reading
Written by Kevin D Story
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – THE REAPER: REBELLION “AFTERLIFE”
May 2016 Reading
Written by Mark S. MacDonald, Darsey Meredith
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – SMITHEREENS
May 2016 Reading
Written by Hershel D. Rephun
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – MAILROOMIES
April 2016 Reading
Written by Jacques Edeline
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – REC’D
March 2016 Reading
Written by Chris Courtney Martin
ACTORTV PILOT Screenplay – MINDWALKER
February 2016 Reading
Written by Thorsten Loos
ACTORTV PILOT – LACIE BIDWELL
January 2016 Reading
Written by Jameel Khan
ACTORTV PILOT – LIFE IN THE FAST LANE
January 2016 Reading
Written by Debi Calabro

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

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

July 2016 TV Pilot/Spec Screenplay Winners

Deadline for Television Pilot/Spec Screenplay Festival: https://tvfestival.org/

Watch the 2 TV Screenplay Winners for July 2016:

The Spectral City by Arthur Vincie

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Sci-Fi, War, Supernatural

Three refugees, thrown together by chance, flee a modern-day civil war set in an unspecified country. Evading the army, rebels, bandits, gods, and demons, they head to the one place no one dares go to the Haunted City at the heart of the country. There they seek out the White Witch, who rules the City and who’s either their ticket out or their worst nightmare.

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Susan Wilson
JULIET – Courtney Keir
ISHMAEL – Brandon Knox
THEO/MATTHEW – Julian Ford
STEVEN/ADJAI – Sean Ballantyne
JIM – David Guthrie
NURIYAH – Meghan Allen

*****

Star Trek Deep Space Nine: Power Loss by Jennifer Renner

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Sci-Fi, Adventure, Action, Fantasy

Synopsis: Episode 32.5 of the TV series Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. The station welcomes visitors from a planet in the Gamma Quadrant that allows only women to hold positions of authority.

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Brandon Knox
BENNI – Susan Wilson
SORYA/KIRA – Meghan Allen
DAX/LELA – Courtney Keir
ODO – Julian Ford
BASHIR/QUARK – David Guthrie
SISKO/RISHTA – Sean Ballantyne

TV PILOT Reading – CIVILIAN by Gina Scanlon

Watch the June 2016 Winning TV PILOT.

CIVILIAN  by Gina Scanlon

Genre: Drama, Crime

Synopsis: A young marine returns to her small Texas town after a recent tour in the South Sudan to complete police academy.

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Val Cole
BRANDI – Laura Darby
AMOS/STOKER – Christopher Huron
DR. BURNS – Tracey Beltrano
SHANE – Deney Forrest
MARCUS – Jeff Sinasic
MARCEL – John Lester Phillips

Get to know the winning writer:

1. What is your TV PILOT about?

A young marine returns home to Texas after a traumatizing tour to reclaim her life as a rookie cop. Unfortunately more than a few unwelcome complications await her.

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

Female assault in the military, the challenges of combating PTSD, and the way these two issues trickle down and weave into American society I feel warrants more attention, and are topics I believe people are interested in. Plus, TV could use a few more badass, imperfect female protagonists!

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

questionable redemption

4. What TV show do you watch over and over again?

I can’t get enough of The Twilight Zone! I’ve also re-watched the first season of Jessica Jones a couple times.

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

For a couple of years now. I went through a near Page 1 rewrite about a year ago. I knew I loved the main character and topic, but needed to tackle it from a different angle and make it more exciting.

6. How many stories have you written?

Tons! I started writing fiction when I was in middle school, and plays towards the end of high school and never stopped. But as all writers know, most of them don’t stand out as very good.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

A documentary called “The Invisible War,” which is about how so many people (women in particular) have suffered sexual assault and find no justice in the US military made me so angry, I started writing this script. Though the pilot of “Civilian” doesn’t tackle that specific issue, its main character goes through similar turmoils and challenges, and that theme would continue to resonate throughout the series, should it ever get to that point!

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

I originally saw it as a feature, so I had to restructure it. I added characters and storylines in order to give it more of a setup for a potential series, and to give it more longevity in general. I definitely had people I trust read drafts along the way, which helped in turning it into a believable pilot format.

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

Kurt Vonnegut and his weird ideas. I’m obsessed with history, particularly the War of the Roses and both American and French Revolutions. International, and national women’s rights are up there, and so is supporting the preservation of journalism. I find it scary that the majority of people get their news from Twitter, celebrities, or websites like Buzzzfeed these days, and meanwhile reputable news sources are going bankrupt. On a lighter note, I’m also really into stand-up comedy and air hockey. haha

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

I wanted to start receiving professional feedback on the script, and heard positive things about the festival. The initial feedback was extremely helpful in improving my next draft, and brought to light certain things I hadn’t even thought could effect the salability of the script.

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

Trust your instincts, and never write something for superficial reasons (the current market trends, etc.). Do it because you really care about what you’re writing about, and I believe people will gravitate towards that authenticity.

****

Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo

Editor: John Johnson

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

TV PILOT Reading: SMITHEREENS by Hershel D. Rephun

May 2016 Winning TV Pilot

SMITHEREENS by Hershel D. Rephun

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Becky Shrimpton
HARRY – Abraham Asto
NAN – Aisha Evelyna
REG – Benjamin Harris
REB JOEY – Paul Falkowski
CARMEN/SARAH – Meggie McKinnon

Genre: Comedy, Drama

Synopsis: 

The story of a man, in pieces: This one-hour episodic dramedy series chronicles the journey of a man fished out of Miami’s Biscayne Bay. He remembers only his first name (Harry) and his mother tongue (Cockney). Flashbacks paint a complicated picture of a man battling alcoholism and engaged in some dark pursuits.

Get to know writer Hershel D. Rephun:

1. What is your TV screenplay about?

SMITHEREENS is about freedom of choice and the fact that sometimes we have to reboot and consider another path. In the case of Harry Doe, the reboot comes in the form of amnesia. Faced with pieces of a troubling past, and an uncertain future, he gets to choose the kind of man he wants to be.

2. How should this Pilot be made into a TV show?

With so much content out there, even greater respect must be paid to the viewer in order to win their time and attention. SMITHEREENS is fresh, thoughtful, funny and poignant. It challenges the creators, performers and the viewers, which is the best way to start that relationship.

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

Distinctive and entertaining.

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

Mad Men. I’m on my third viewing of the complete series now. Even with so much stuff to watch, I always come back to quality and depth.

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

In one form or another, I’ve been working on SMITHEREENS for three years at least. And the influences that have brought me to the project have been working on me since birth.

6. How many stories have you written?

I really don’t know. At least twenty screenplays, three of which have been produced as features. And I write stories every day in one form or another.

7. What motivated you to write this screenplay?

I was moved to explore my own personality, and my ability to convincingly mimic virtually any person or dialect. I don’t just do impressions or voices, I create and inhabit characters. I wanted to figure out why I use that in real life and not just onstage. Is it an escape mechanism? Do I not like who I am? What’s the line between talent and self-deception and fantasy?

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

The challenge was to set up the story so that it could play out over several seasons. With a feature, you need three solid acts. A TV series needs much more.

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

My children and fighting climate change, which are related issues.

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

I loved the idea of the story being brought to life. I thought the feedback was wonderful. Very insightful and constructive!

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

Finish what you start, even if it doesn’t meet your expectations. Writing fiction is not about setting and meeting goals, other than to start and finish a story. The story comes from your muse…and if you don’t respect it and follow through, the muse will move on to someone else.

****
Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson

POWER – Watch TV Pilot Reading by Hisonni Johnson (Green Lantern Pilot)

Watch the May 2016 WInning TV Pilot Reading. 

Watch POWER TV PILOT: 

SYNOPSIS:

Genre: Comic book, Drama, Sci Fi, Action, Superhero

Synopsis: A tragic turns of events leaves one of the world’s greatest heroes injured, without his powers and public enemy number one.

CAST LIST:

NARRATOR – Sean Ballantyne
JOHN – Mark Sparks
SANDRA – Lavinia Latham
SHIERA – Isabella Bontorin
DENNIS – Neil Kulin
LAWTON – Dan Cristofori

Get to know writer Hisonni Johnson: 

What is your screenplay about?

This screenplay is based on DC comic’s character John Stewart AKA The Green Lantern. It’s an original take on the character within a story that very cleverly introduces John Stewart to an audience that may not be familiar with him (Without doing a traditional origin story). This script was a great way for me to explore some relationship dynamics and themes that I do not feel have been explored enough in comic books or comic book films.

Why should this screenplay be made into a TV Show?

The drama and mystery is pretty appealing. The characters are well developed. Our main character has lost something that could take several season for him to regain. A major theme of this show is trust. Who can I trust and who can I not. There is a lot of stuff to play with in there.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Suspenseful and Exciting.

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

Batman Begins. It’s the only film I’ve ever seen that just never gets old.

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

A week.

How much research did you do to write within the world of “Green Lantern”? Did you take any liberties from the original content?

Comic book are in my blood. My mother introduced me to comic books and was arguably a bigger DC fan than I am. So the research part was kind of built in. My strength as a writer is my sense of empathy. When I write, I am genuinely in the shoes of the main character and when I’m in those shoes… I focus on being as emotionally authentic as I can. because of this, I’m often times sad to finish a script. Because, in my mind… It wasn’t a script. I was there! Life afterward can’t compare to the adventures I experience when I write stuff like this. I know that becoming sad at the end of the script means that I’ve written something decent.

What motivated you to write this screenplay?

I want to be a talented filmmaker across the board. So, I cycle between directing films, shooting films, editing films and writing films. During each phase I put tremendous pressure on myself to get better than the year before. This script is the result of wanting to put a sci fi/fantasy story out there that felt emotionally grounded and plausible.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

I didn’t really. This was a fun process.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?
Directing, cinematography, editing, VFX and pitching projects.

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

I’ve been on the festival circuit nonstop for the past 5 years competiting my films and web series. But, I want to prove to myself that I can be well rounded. So the next logical step is to try and gain recognition for my screenplays. And here I am. In the future, nothing will make me feel better about directing my films than knowing that I’m a stand out writer and that the story i’m about to shoot is good to go.

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

Be authentic. Write stories that mean so much to you that you’re sad when you’re done writing them. Have goals for your scripts once you’ve finished them. I wrote this script intending to shoot a trailer for it and luckily I was able to. Since then, the trailer has won me many accolades and gotten the attention of people I hope will help me get some of my work made.

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Producer/Director: Matthew Toffolo
Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne
Editor: John Johnson