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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board  /  Short Thriller Scripts  /  Press 1 for ... - Sold! - Filmed!
Posted by: Don, May 6th, 2018, 9:44am
Press 1 for Ö by Anthony Cawood - Short, Thriller - A lonely telephone centre operator takes a call from a customer who is closer than she imagines. 2 pages - pdf format

Writer interested in feedback on this work

Posted by: Warren, May 6th, 2018, 6:09pm; Reply: 1
Hi Anthony,

This one didnít really grab me. It would be more effective if filmed. Also, this 'I'm on the phone but I can also see you or I'm in the room' thing has really been done to death.

One thing I would say as far as the format goes. I think it would be more effectively written if all the (O.S.) were written as (V.O.). This will cause us to think he is just on the phone and not in the room. The way it's written I assumed he was in the room from the first line he spoke. You also say that the last line of dialogue is heard through the phone and in the room. So if all the initial dialogue is heard through the phone it would be correct to write it as a voice over anyway.

Simple enough to make, so I can see this getting snapped up.

All the best.
Posted by: MichaelYu, May 14th, 2018, 5:34am; Reply: 2

I have a feeling that this 2 page script is a setup. If it is, the setup is good.
Posted by: AnthonyCawood, May 14th, 2018, 1:14pm; Reply: 3
Thanks both.
Posted by: Zombie Sean, May 14th, 2018, 1:23pm; Reply: 4
Hey Anthony,

A quick read, nicely well done. I will agree with Warren, the idea has been done quite a bit, but the setup and payoff would make for a fun micro short. I can see the lit computer screens turning off, and each one is closer and closer to her, until our antagonist reaches her cubicle. I'd say, just to give us a bit more of Carol, to have her answer a call or two beforehand with other customers, just to give her character a bit more oomph and development. Even in a short as short as this one, you still want to have your characters have some kind of fleshing out; a few more lines from Carol could give her character another layer or two. Make her a bitch, or someone who hates her job, or something. Otherwise, she's just a call center lady who has nothing. I dunno, just some ideas to help flesh this out a bit more. I like how short it is, but you could tack on an extra page or two if you wanted to. And like MichaelYu had stated, this seems like a good setup for something more. Play around with the idea!
Posted by: Forgive, May 15th, 2018, 5:52pm; Reply: 5
Hey Anthony - last line but one is 'behind her and the Carol's headset' so doesn't make sense ... couple of problems here for me, first being that the man dictates the questions first, so he's pushing the direction, but then it turns and Carol's questioning him; the direction of the conflict needs to be maintained from him to her and the pressure and tension build from there ... second, the boiler's really irrelevant, but could you bring in that she's lonely and build on that ... oh and the third of my two issues, I'd bring in the cardigan early on in the description if it's going to be key in any way at the end. Positives are that its potentially really simple to film, so worth working on
Posted by: SteveClark, May 15th, 2018, 10:04pm; Reply: 6

Seems like a little script written for an easy film project. And it would be easy to film. However, I think this needs a tad more background to it. I'd like to think it might make it creepier if Carol knew the caller. Perhaps he could be an obsessed ex or something, and play it up that way. At least that would give us a little something to grasp onto. At least it would me. I had a creepy stalker once. Scared the shit outta me!

Posted by: LC, May 15th, 2018, 11:22pm; Reply: 7

Quoted from SteveClark

Seems like a little script written for an easy film project. And it would be easy to film. However, I think this needs a tad more background to it. I'd like to think it might make it creepier if Carol knew the caller. Perhaps he could be an obsessed ex or something, and play it up that way. At least that would give us a little something to grasp onto. At least it would me. I had a creepy stalker once. Scared the shit outta me!


Really, Steve? That is creepy.

This is a good idea to inject into the script.

Anthony, I felt the story was just getting off the starter's block. I know it was a one page challenge and it's pretty good but does need ramping up imh. You've a great set up, turn the lights down low, minimal staff on night shift etc.

It could be great payback. We get telemarketers here who relentlessly call, and I've heard stories of them getting obsessed when people hang up on them. I know everyone's got to make a living but usually it's a case of they've got your number but you don't have theirs. It'd be good to tell a story where the tables are turned.
Posted by: Philostrate, July 16th, 2018, 2:05pm; Reply: 8
Hi Anthony,

It's quick to read, well-written, has good visuals and is simple to film. I wouldn't be surprised if it gets picked up.

However, I feel like the others: it needs a little more background (to grab our attention) or character development (to empathize). Steve and Sean's ideas are both good starting points in that direction...  

If you don't have the time but want to give it a little more background maybe you can try make Carol find an article in the paper about a series of mysterious disappearances in call centers while she fills the Sudoku. Just thinking out loud...

Posted by: AnthonyCawood, July 16th, 2018, 3:39pm; Reply: 9
Oops - just noticed that this has garnered a few comments that I've not responded to, apols one and all!

This one was written as a one-page challenge, so intentionally quick and to the point.

I'm planning a re-write of this and a few of my other one pages, written for same challenge, in the not too distant future. So many thanks for all your thoughts and suggestions.
Posted by: Anon, August 3rd, 2018, 2:41pm; Reply: 10
This isn't a critique - just an observation - this one totally reminded me of this Rick and Morty clip. -

Posted by: jayrex, August 3rd, 2018, 4:46pm; Reply: 11
I liked this one.  Nice flow.  And a good ending too.  I can see this one being made.  And quite possibly lengthened to maybe 5-10 pages.
Posted by: AnthonyCawood, November 29th, 2018, 2:13pm; Reply: 12
Press 1 for... Has been sold, should shoot early in 2019.
Posted by: jayrex, November 29th, 2018, 3:43pm; Reply: 13
Posted by: AnthonyCawood, December 2nd, 2018, 4:12pm; Reply: 14
Thanks Jayrex
Posted by: MichaelYu, January 5th, 2019, 5:04am; Reply: 15

Look forward to watching it. If my guess is right, the running time will be more than 2 minutes.

Posted by: HyperMatt, January 5th, 2019, 8:47am; Reply: 16
Congrats Anthony!

Couldn't happen to a nicer bloke.
Posted by: Pale Yellow, January 5th, 2019, 9:46am; Reply: 17
OH super duper congrats Anthony!!
Posted by: eldave1, January 5th, 2019, 11:19am; Reply: 18
Great news, Anthony - much congrats
Posted by: Philostrate, January 5th, 2019, 5:55pm; Reply: 19
Congrats, Anthony!
Posted by: AnthonyCawood, June 17th, 2019, 7:05pm; Reply: 20
Posted by: Warren, June 17th, 2019, 7:13pm; Reply: 21
Nice looking little production. Congrats Anthony!
Posted by: ghost and_ghostie gal, June 17th, 2019, 8:06pm; Reply: 22
Congratulations!  Is in order for you as well, Anthony. -Andrea
Posted by: eldave1, June 17th, 2019, 8:15pm; Reply: 23
Nicely done!
Posted by: AnthonyCawood, June 18th, 2019, 3:59pm; Reply: 24
Thanks all, and thanks Don for adding a banner and getting it on the links.
Posted by: Philostrate, June 18th, 2019, 4:52pm; Reply: 25
Just finished watching it. Nice work!
Posted by: Kevin_L, June 21st, 2019, 10:13am; Reply: 26
I just watched your movie on the main page and then read your script. I could listen to them talk all day. Those accents are awesome.  Good little short.  I noticed they changed from cubicles to home office . Was the location change done for the ease of not having to secure an office building or a creative decision?

I think the home office worked well because someoneís home is their sanctuary, whether they work out of it or not. Being stalked at your home seems to me ,added more suspense, cause your guard is gonna be down more.  I think everyone showcased their talent on this piece really well.  

Well done!
Posted by: AnthonyCawood, June 21st, 2019, 10:43am; Reply: 27
Hey David/Kevin - thanks for taking a watch.

Kevin, yes wasn't easy for the filmmaker to secure an office so he improvised, agree with you - works well!
Posted by: AnthonyCawood, July 10th, 2021, 4:22pm; Reply: 28
The same filmmaker has created a second version of this short, which seems accidentally prescient given the amount of call centre workers now at home... anyway here's the new version.
Posted by: LC, July 10th, 2021, 4:54pm; Reply: 29
Nice work!

Went back to look at the original version too, but it's gone.  :-/
Posted by: Warren, July 12th, 2021, 11:58pm; Reply: 30
Double congrats, Anthony!
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