screenwriter to watch
I’m from Milwaukee, Wisconsin which is also where I attended school. I moved to Los Angeles without much of a plan except to “make movies.” I jumped around from jobs and eventually began making short films and online content. When I felt like I found my groove with screenwriting, I never stopped.
How did you break in?
I think it was the moment when a producer asked to option one of my scripts (for no money). Although I had been screenwriting long before this, that moment was a major confidence boost and helped me take my writing more seriously.
Father-Daughter Day, Rent A White Guy, I F***ed James Bond
What are the biggest lessons you’ve learned?
1 – If you feel lost, do an emotional check-in. Ask yourself “why do I want to tell this story?” “What connects me to these characters?”
2 – Outline. It’s taken a while to admit this but outlining is security when I lose my way.
3 – Writing is sweat equity.
4- Procrastination (YouTube) is only one click away.
5 – Don’t procrastinate.
What has been your hardest scene to write?
The hardest project was/is a time travel feature I wrote about five years ago. I wanted it to be “Back To The Future” meets “Signs.” It’s safe to say the result was neither of those movies. By the way, this question is a crushing reminder that I’m still navigating and haven’t cracked the script. I will someday.
What do you feel was your turning point?
Winning the Fade To Black award at the Austin Film Festival. It was helpful in so many ways. I signed with an agent and manager during the festival and occasionally when I’m in meetings my Austin script will come up.
What are you working on right now?
An action-comedy and a passion project that’s much smaller than anything I’ve recently written.
What are your favorite movies?
Back To The Future, The Wizard (starring Fred Savage), all things Spielberg, all things Scorsese, Boogie Nights, Field Of Dreams, Bad Boys, Dumb & Dumber… So many more. I love movies.
Who are your favorite screenwriters?
In no particular order — Shane Black, John Hughes, Tony Gilroy, Simon Kinberg, Dave Levinson, Tasha Huo, Cameron Crowe, Edgar Wright…
What is your most Memorable AFF Moment?
Aside from the amazing experience of winning and meeting great people, one moment sticks out…
I needed to kill time and wandered out of the Driskill hotel. I stumbled upon a horse and carriage waiting at the curb, chatted with the coachman (they’re called coachmen, right?) and he offered to show me around. I hopped in the carriage and rode for over an hour. It’s the single most romantic moment of my life.