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Fun Joel's Screenwriting Blog

(OR EL DUDERINO IF YOU'RE NOT INTO THE WHOLE BREVITY THING)

-- On Screenwriting and Related Topics

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Location: Los Angeles, CA

I moved from NYC to LA in October, 2003. And though I still think NYC is the greatest city in the world, I'm truly loving life here in the City of Angels. I'm a writer, reader, and occasional picture-taker.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

FFFJ: Venus Kincaid

As promised, my second FFFJ post of the day.

I saw this one on the script sales board a few days ago, and was honestly surprised. I read this script (by Lori Lakin, based on an animated series by the Love Brothers) back in March, off a draft dated 1/3/05. And I have to be honest. I thought the script was pretty bad. But first, so we're on the same page, the logline:

"Secret Agent foils plot against the world while fighting disorder that shifts her age from 30 to 13 and back."

Now, I definitely saw the commercial potential in a 13-year old, black female, kick-ass heroine. Unfortunately, that was the only thing this script had going for it, and unless they completely overhauled the screenplay, I'd be surprised if the film does well. Then again, maybe they did/will completely overhaul it, and/or maybe the heroine's potential will be enough.

Still, let's examine some of the details. First of all, let's examine the heroine herself. While she'll be played (for most of the film) by a 13-year old, she will be acting like a 30-year old trapped in that body. And while 13 Going on 30 is a cute enough concept, it plays into an adolescent fantasy; teens want to be adults. 30 going on 13 might just annoy that audience.

More importantly, however, the script itself was terrible. It was long and rambling, with an overly repetitive and drawn out second act. There were numerous irrelevant sequences as well. Dialogue mixed some decently hip slang with some spot-on obvious statements. And the bulk of the other (non-Venus) characters were completely unimaginative. Finally, most plot points were telegraphed and/or overly familiar as well, making for a boring storyline.

The comedy also fails. While there might be a few decent slapstick-style laughs, more often then not, the comedy was just plain silly, rather than witty. And the premise itself seemed much better suited to comic book (not surprising, seeing its origins) or TV type humor. As a feature, however, it seemed more akin to a Tank Girl type bomb than a Men in Black style super-hit.

But who knows? I could be wrong. Or, they could overhaul that darned script.

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