Saturday, November 7, 2009

Jillted Update #1

After finishing up the skeleton for Lupus Moon, I figured that would be the script I focused on, since I'm wanting to get it out to capitalize on what I think will be a boom in werewolf movies. But a funny thing happened before I could start - Jillted kept speaking to me. The biggest problem I'd had with the script was figuring out exactly what story I wanted to tell. Was it going to be about a nerdy girl pushed too far until she starts fighting back with murderous results? Or was it going to be a teenage version of Fatal Attraction?

In Valentine's Day, the original script that Jillted is based on, a nerdy boy named Dexter who continually strikes out with the ladies and is the target of a few male bullies finally snaps and targets his tormentors for revenge, killing them off one by one (a serial killer named Dexter? And get this, the script was written WELL before Showtime's hit show, of which I'm a major fan). The idea was close to my heart; Dexter was basically me, and although I didn't really have male bullies bothering me, I was (and guess, still am) a nerd, and wasn't popular with the girls in my class, a few of whom were less than civil when they found out I had a crush on them. So Valentine's Day was my catharsis, even mixing up the real-life names of girls who'd dissed me to come up with the victims. But when Warner Brothers released Valentine with David Boreanaz, which had essentially - no, make that exactly - the same premise, I was forced to re-think things.

So Valentine's Day became Jillted, and Dexter Lewis became Jillian Krazinski (get it - Krazinski... crazy... I know, I know). I figured the change in sex alone would make the movie stand out, so I was off to the races. But in the course of putting together the story, I ran into one blockage after another, one new idea after the next and little by little, the story continued to change until I had gotten so far away from what the script was supposed to be that it no longer felt like Jillted. It was... something else. I eventually cobbled together a skeleton for the script that I convinced myself I was happy with, but after taking some time away and thinking about it, the story wasn't quite where it should've been.

So after some major brainstorming and good old-fashioned decision-making, I determined what the narrative core of the story was and built out from that. Funny thing is, the final result is much closer to the original outline I laid out, but with the best from other versions. I'm very happy with it and it just feels right. I was able to reconfigure and infuse this outline with my new ideas (and re-ordered kill list) in just a couple of days which, to me, is a very welcome change from the nagging, dragging attempts of days past. I'm really looking forward to the scripting stage. Hopefully it'll show in the quality of writing.


Lupus Moon Update #4

I haven't touched the script in several days. Sometimes I get a bit complacent after a major victory (in this case, plotting the skeleton of the story) and instead of taking a day off like I say I will, it winds up being a week or more. But it doesn't help that I've been feeling like tinkering with Jillted.

But tonight I opened the script and looked over what I had and I'm happy to say that it still held up. No "what in the hell was I thinking?" moments. As for when I'll get back to work on the script - I'm not sure. I'm just going where the creative winds take me right now. But with both Lupus Moon and Jillted plotted and ready for scripting, I'm hoping to turn out some major product soon.