Genre: Comedy, Family
It’s Marie vs Debra in a cat & mouse game for control of who’s cleaning the house.
Get to know the writer:
What is your screenplay based on the TV SERIES “Everybody Loves Raymond” about?
It’s about seeing what we all figured would happen eventually; that Marie’s constant meddling and being a nuisance in general, would lead to Debra’s insanity.
How does this episode fit into the context of the series?
I actually thought this plot line was a no-brainer for Debra. I would have done this myself given the same situation.
How would you describe this script in two words?
What TV show do you keep watching over and over again?
How long have you been working on this screenplay?
Initially, it took a few days but I’ve tweaked it several times over the past several years.
How many stories have you written?
Three sit coms and one film.
What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)
That’s a tough one. Sometimes I’ll be in a certain mood and one song fits it perfectly so I just keep playing it for hours. Once, during a late, dark night on a long and empty stretch of I99 in California, I listened to Chris Isack’s, Wicked Game for 6 hours.
What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?
Still not happy with a couple lines.
Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?
Animals, justice, cooking and dining out, creating fun and innovative entertainment, growth, experiencing unforgettable moments (CORRR-ny)
What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?
I wanted to get some feedback on it and I thought people would enjoy it. Great feedback, thanks.
Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?
In the words of Rodney Dangerfield as Thorton Melon, “Don’t go. It’s rough out there. Move back in with your parents. Let them worry about it.”
But if you insist, get your work out there, everywhere. Listen to criticism and learn what you can from it but don’t let it get to you. Remember, your writing is YOUR view on the subject so don’t compromise that. Go back to your earliest stuff and make it better. If you can’t do that, you either have the rare early masterpiece, or maybe you should consider another dream job. I’m sure every writer has heard to write what you know and what you care about. When you do, your writing becomes interesting, and for me, this is the the most important thing about a script. You can follow all the formulas you want but if it isn’t interesting then what’s the point. Conversely, if you have a very interesting story, you can break many, if not most formula rules–as long as you keep it interesting. Oh, and a very good agent wouldn’t hurt, either. The reality is you can be the best unknown writer since Shakespeare, but to be successful at this gig you will also need some luck and there’s a decent chance that some of your success will come from the old “who you know” variety. The fact that every year sharp, really well written shows get dropped while 2 Broke Girls remains on the air (I’m still convinced there’s serious network blackmail going on there) proves this point.
Lastly, A famous script doctor–who’s services I wasted $6,000 on–said that most writers better be prepared to stick it out for 10 years before they can make a living from writing. This Debby Downer also told the auditorium of almost 900 wanna-be writers that only a handful present would probably be successful and that many would lose friends and family because of their failures. In retrospect, I guess I should have waited until AFTER the 3 day seminar to quit my day job. The good news is that with webtv and all the new platforms, there are more opportunities than ever for writers. Just keep looking for these different avenues to showcase your work.
Producer/Director: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com
Editor: John Johnson
Camera Operator: Kierston Drier
Casting: Sean Ballantyne