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Publicity Whore by Brian McCluskey - Comedy - Dumped by her football star boyfriend, a washed-up reality TV star will do anything to get herself back on the front pages again, even hiring a wannabe publicist who only wants to impress his celebrity-obsessed granddaughter. 95 pages - pdf, format
I think youre missing Lorenzos name over his dialog on the first page. Charlie kinda comes off as a one punchline joke pretty quick. Also violet goes from bored to asking "where do I sign" within a couple lines. Yea I know hes name dropping, but "still. Charlie deciding to be an agent is a little hard to buy. Julia stalking the paparazzi as they stalk violet is a little repetitive. We get the point already, Violets hot, shes not.
Read up to p45ish. Well written, not having any typos or issues like that. The problems I had were with the joke being a bit repetitive. We get it, Charlies a loser, Julia's desperate. But you show these things the same way a half dozen times before they meet. Need some new and creative ways to show they're desperate losers.
Also there's got to be a better way for Charlie to end up an Agent. I could see him just blurting it out to someone, maybe violets agent when he bumps into him, just to try to regain some dignity. Then he starts actually trying to do it, etc. Or he tells him joking, who then mentions it to julia, she believes it and charlie kinda goes along with it. Obviously thats a bit awkward, but hopefully you get what I mean. Him being like "oh I was born to work with celebrities!" totally randomly was a little hard to swallow.
Julias oblivious dialogue was pretty entertaining. Vegeterrier... That wouldnt be so funny if it wasnt sadly believable...
In any case I'm sure I'm just starting to get to the real action of the story, but its past my bedtime. Good luck with it.
Mine: HARD CASE (65 Pages) Stealing the case is just the beginning...
APU (80 pages) A city where superheroes are murderers and villains walk through walls...
The constant scenes where Julia gets upstaged by Violet got a little old. But the script itself was funny for the most part.
It would have been more funny if Julia had used a taser on the bouncer at the bar. A friend of mine who was a bouncer got tased, and the people stampeded their way into the club. He's now doing another job and was glad that he didn't get shot or stabbed. It took all my will power not to laugh at that story.
I didn't like the ending. Julia turning out to be a scumbag who didn't learn her lesson, and there is no way that Lloyd would have forgotten his blackberry.
Try rewriting this script and make it funnier. Don't do the Violet upstaging Julia bit so much. Have other celebrities upstage her instead in the wildest ways. Maybe have even D-list celebrities do that to her.
Thanks for reading! Good spot about the missing name above the dialogue. I must have deleted it by mistake in my last minute revision.
I love the idea of Charlie wanting to become a publicist a different way. It's something I thought about for a while but couldn't come up with anything. I like your suggestion, or I could come up with something like Lloyd running into Charlie again after the disaster in the restraunt, have him do something that makes Charlie want to get his own back on Lloyd, then becomes a publicist. It's something I'll definitely think about.
Thanks for reading. I will read Unpowered and Hard Case sometime this week, or if you have anything new, just send it my way and I'll return the read.
Thanks for reading. I like the idea of a stampede into the club but I'm not sure where Julia would get a taser.
As for the ending, I didn't think the typical Hollywood ending where Julia would learn that being famous isn't important would work here. I still wanted a happy ending for Charlie, but I thought Julia's actions would be pretty close to what would happen in real life. Most celebrity assistants would probably tell you that they only care about themselves.
I like the suggestion of D list celebrities upstaging Julia. Obviously, I can only afford to throw in one or two and make them very minor characters or I'll run the risk of having too many characters. I'll have a think about this.
Again, thanks for the read. Do you have anything up on this site that you want me to look over?
It took me awhile to read this but I have finished it. I liked it overall but there was something bothering me and I think I have figured it out. Charlie to me is not intresting enough, He seems boering at times. I know as A comedy depth of a charicter is not always needed but in this situation I think there are times that it makes the script, at least read a little slow. The ending also threw me off I didn't care for it. I think it is knd off anti-clamatic. I did injoy this script though, defently worth reading.
o I forgot to include what I liked, sorry. I SOUND like a downer. My favorte part of your script is the subtle humor. It dosn't attack you. Know a days a lot of the big commides are going this way. Good job
I've been reading a lot of comedy features for some reason and don't know why? It's not my forte. What I find funny, others don't. What they think is funny, I don't. Others who have commented thinks it's very funny, so fair enough.
So page#42, Charlie and Julie finally get together. Almost half-way into the feature. Personally, I would brought them together sooner, maybe by page#30. But that's just me. This is your script, so fair enough.
I have to agree, is it feasible how Charlie decided to become a publicist, of course, will it work, absolutely, but... if it were me, I'd probably take a different route... and it would probably start at the restaurant... you know when Charlie meets Lloyd for the first time.
I'm thinking off the cuff here; During their inter-action, Lloyd showing his arrogance, looking down on Charlie the whole time and at some point, he says, " You don't have what it take to be a Publicist," or something along these lines. And of course Charlie he ends up getting firing or quitting still and go from there. Just something else to look at.
Charlie... he's likable enough charatcter but there's not too much too him IMO. I just didn't see it. I think he could be flushed out more. To be honest, I found him very boring.
Other then Taylor and Nikki, none of the other characters are very likable. Not Violet, Lloyd or Julia. Maybe that's the way you intended, fair enough. A lot of celebrities in hollywood are like that.
What I least liked about,"Publicity Whore," was the ending. I can't put my finger on it yet. But it played out like you wanted... so fair enough.
Like I said, there were a few lines that grabbed my attention; page#18, the conversation between Nikki and Charlie. "You need contacts... and I don't mean eye contacts" Funny, I thought.
page#34, His inter-action with the Gay Man too.
Just a few thoughts for what it's worth. It was a very quick read and flowed nicely. Clearly, you know how to tell a story. Very evident. This is not the type of movie I'd ever go see... but it doesn't have to be for me to read a particular script, I learn something new everytime.
Like a said, nothing made me laugh out loud but it was entertaining though.
"When I dive... I go deep, only to surface the hub when necessary."
Nice title. It goes well with the story on multiple levels. The writing was good, dialog okay but the plot and characters were in need of some pizzazz. A little up the ante type action. Read fairly quickly, no confusing parts.
Characters were one dimensional though that may fit with the Hollywood setting. Charlie acted like a dolt and came off as younger than his 49 years. Charlie didn’t convincingly change throughout and Julia’s transformation was short-lived. Though the brief transformation is probably okay given the success of celebrity rehabs.
Violet was too much like Julia. I disliked both. I never felt that Julia was likeable or capable of being human. I cannot think of a thing that was different about either character. There wasn’t an obvious point of crisis for either Charlie or Julia. Sure, it’s a comedy but they work best when you feel for the characters.
The character I found most interesting was Officer Williams complete with attitude and spitting lisp, though her comment about illegal aliens and Negros seemed a bit off key. I liked Nikki also. Her daughter was a little too sweet.
I liked how you put this together but the riffing on Julia and Violet got a bit overdone. And a more definite subplot might be helpful. The ending was cute and it tied back to the opening scene with the Blackberry but could have been more interesting – say an appearance by Lorenzo at the restaurant seeing Charlie in his orange suit on the phone? Or maybe Lloyd returning for his Blackberry? Maybe not.
The first scene for Rear Enders was very funny.
The story did read like a comedy. Just needs a push.
Thanks for reading. You're definitely not alone with your opinion of Charlie. I will have a look at his character for sure. I see your point about the ending and, again, some other readers feel the same way. I'm still not sure that going for the Hollywood style happy ending would work here. Still, it's something I'll look at again.
Do you have anything posted you'd like me to check out?
Thanks a lot for taking the time to read and post your comments. I can see the problem with Julia and Charlie meeting after page 40. I will try and bring this back to the page 30 mark or thereabouts.
I've had a think over how Charlie would decide to become a publicist and I agree, using Lloyd as Charlie's motivation would work much better. Right now, the Julia vs Violet scenes take up most of the pages and that is a problem. This could be what is hurting Charlie's character and making him appear boring. Giving him a clear goal to get his own back on Lloyd could go a long way to fixing that. It could also make the ending a little more satisfying. Thanks for pointing this out.
Small comment on the other characters. I did intend for Lloyd, Violet and her friends to be unlikeable. I think in Hollywood today, most celebrities or anyone with power would only care about themselves. Nikki and Taylor should be likeable enough, or I hope they are or I've failed miserably. I intended for Julia to go through a brief change then screw Charlie in the end. Again, another celebrity who only cares about herself.
You're not alone with the ending. I am noting everyone's comments on this because it appears to be a major problem. I'm still not convinced a happy Hollywood ending, where Julia doesn't screw Charlie, would work. I don't believe celebrities like her and Violet are capable of changing into better people. Maybe they are, I'm not sure. If I change it, I fear people would complain it's too predictable. I will be interested to hear what others have to say about it.
I'm glad you found it a quick read. I do realise this may not be everyone's cup of tea but if it reads quickly and is entertaining enough... that will do me.
Thanks again for your thoughts. Do you have anything posted so I can return the read?
Huge thanks for reading and posting your thoughts. I'm glad you liked the title. It's something I agonized over for hours. I went for this as it's easy to tell what the story is about before you even read the logline.
Charlie looks to be a HUGE problem here. I will work on his part more. While Violet is intended to be a complete bitch, I think I've missed the mark with Julia. For the ending to work, I need to convince the reader that Julia is capable of changing. Having her act exactly like Violet would not be good at all. Thanks for pointing this out.
The Julia vs Violet scenes will be cut back. I'm going to explore the option of another subplot. Nice suggestions for the ending. I will have a think over these.
Again, thanks for your thoughts. If you post anything new you want me to look at, just give me a PM.
Okay, so I hope I don't do you a disservice in commenting after I read this in multiple sittings, but unfortunately this is the only way I can get features done nowadays.
First off, I loved the ending! More on that later - just wanted you to know it up front in case you're caving to the consensus.
So your writing style has improved dramatically, and it was pretty good to start with, so big kudos on that. A lot of white space and a rythym and a pace to everything, which was good.
There were some genuinely funny moments as well - my favorite was when the one photog knocked the camera out of the other guy's hand just before Violet appeared.
I agree with everyone that Taylor and Nikki are the best drawn characters, and I think you should mine the Charlie/Taylor relationship for more emotion.
A few suggestions:
Agree with everyone as well about Charlie. He's given to us as a bumbling waiter and that's the only setup - we don't have any other information about him. We know he's a young grandpa and he loves his daughter and worships his granddaugther - but I think we "know" it more than we feel it?
Since Julia is the unlikeable one, and I believe she should stay that way, we must really get behind Charlie and root for him. Maybe he's a failed actor himself? Maybe he moved to LA years ago after doing serious theater and the biz ate him up. So he waits tables, but buried somewhere deep he has a yearn to be around the business and the smallest of talents for schmoozing people, just waiting to be awoken.
I think becoming a publicist to impress his granddaughter is fine, although it does feel like too much of an "aha" moment and not enough like something that has built up or sprouted from a former seed planted.
I also agree that Julia and Charlie get together too late. Probably should happen 10 pages sooner.
Also, it seems at times like Julia and Violet were the only two celebrities in town. Wherever Julia was, Violet was there to take the spotlight. I think this caused the script to sag a bit at the end of the second act and in the beginning of the third.
Maybe introduce the fight scene earlier? Maybe the second act could end with this, and we can see Julia gradually re-ascend while Violet battles her and tries to maintain control of her top spot. Someone mentioned earlier that this could benefit from a subplot and I think that's a good idea as well.
As for the ending, I think you made a wise choice, since it's obviously not a rom-com, nor would we want Julia and Charlie to end up together. Her actions are true to her character. And you made a great choice with Charlie getting the last laugh.
As for tone, I think you were maybe a bit in the middle here on whether you wanted to make this a commentary about celebrity status, or make it Charlie's movie. I know you're talented enough to go either way with this, so I would just be cognizant about theme in future drafts.
The last thing I'll say is this - I'm not sure you really defined the true 'celebrity power couple' in a quarterback and a non-winner of a reality show. I'd be curious to know who you modeled Julia and James after - my guess would be David Beckham and Victoria (something - I know her as Posh). Only a few sports stars in America would be deemed half of a power couple - A-Rod and Tony Romo are two of them - and that's only because they dated Madonna and Jessica Simpson, respectively. So I'm not sure an American audience would buy into the hype over this pairing, since it's James that's providing the celebrity juice.
Nice writing job, very professionally done, with some genuine humor and good prospects for being a really nice departure from the usual formula comedy.
Good luck with it!
p.s. the whole "azzbook" thing and getting "spidermanned", though funny, is a departure in tone and might singlehandly get this an "R" rating?