pride & president

Writers Guild of Canada Registered #S17-00136

Writers Guild of America Registered #I300347

© Copyright 2017 by John Pisano-Thomsen

4TH PLACE WINNER!

86TH ANNUAL WRITER'S DIGEST COMPETITION

finalist

2018 CAPE COD INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

2018 WEXFORD FILM FESTIVAL

2018 CINEQUEST SCREENWRITING COMPETITION (TOP 10)

2018 RICHMOND INT'L FILM FESTIVAL SCREENWRITING COMP.

2017 NATIONAL SCREENWRITERS DAY COMPETITION (TOP 10)

SEMIfinalist

2019 CORDILLERA INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

2017 WE SCREENPLAY FALL DIVERSE VOICES CONTEST

2017 NEW HAMPSHIRE FILM FESTIVAL

2ND ROUNDER (TOP 20%)

2017 AUSTIN FILM FESTIVAL SCREENPLAY COMPETITION

quarterfinalist

2019 CREATIVE SCREENWRITING SCREENPLAY COMPETITION 

2018 STORYPROS INTERNATIONAL SCREENPLAY COMPETITION

2017 STAGE 32 ANNUAL FEATURE SCREENPLAY COMPETITION

2017 SCREENCRAFT SCREENWRITING FELLOWSHIP

synopsis

On her deathbed, First Lady Molly Fitzpatrick confronts her husband J.J of his torrid love affair with former chief speechwriter and now well-known TV journalist, Lucky Vega, provoking J.J. to reflect on his true nature and to re-pursue Lucky again.  At the same time, Reverend Billy Ray Blanchard, a prominent evangelical congressman from Nashville, struggles to suppress and change the sexual leanings of his teenage son, Nolan, while railing against liberals and the LGBT community.  Once the leader of the free world and a Southern teenage boy come to  grips with their identity, comedy and tragedy ensue to bring their two worlds together.

There are roughly 80 countries in the world where homosexuality is illegal and punishment in 10 of those countries is death.  "Pride & President" is a bold, politically relevant, "what if" dramedy that exposes the expected homophobic bias for a world leader "coming out" and the tragic pains of coming to terms with your sexuality within a conservatively religious family.

NOTABLE CRITIQUES

2017 academy nicholl fellowship

"Polished, professional writing skills here. A great “What if?” premise. Highly imaginative and well crafted story that addresses many backlash scenarios with honesty and believability. So smoothly beat out with seamless cutting between scenes. Many imaginative situations and complications for the President, J.J., to overcome with unexpected results. Wonderful balance of drama and humor – often hilarious, witty banter... Outstanding cast of characters – all come to life with distinct personalities, even those with little screen time. Dialogue is so smart and snappy except, of course, the redneck, Billy Ray, but his dialogue perfectly suits his ignorant personality."

the blacklist (2018)

"PRIDE & PRESIDENT broaches a very relevant subject matter with delicacy and intimacy. There's inherent controversy and a dramatic premise within, given the sociopolitical weight of JJ's sexuality in his position of power. The screenplay is admirable for its slew of diverse roles in positions of power, including its LGBT president and African-American female vice president. The screenplay has very functional and efficient dialogue whose emotional expressions are raw and real, often expressing its characters' vulnerable emotional areas with ease and truth. Importantly, the premise tackles socially conscious messaging through humanizing its themes and issues in a sympathetic ensemble, especially given the tragedy of Nolan's home life. The third act takes on special clarity as JJ deals with the repercussions of his announcement; it's here where the writer's moral conversations have an opportunity to come to a head in a resounding message of love and acceptance, regardless of class or political status. Ultimately, the script is a timely answer to an age of social division and strife."

2017 screencraft fellowship

"An interesting script that explores the great premise of seeing what would happen if the President came out as gay.  With politics being so prominent in the public discussion and this social cause still needing attention, this is the kind of script that not only feels like it could find a wide audience, but also feels necessary in these times.  The writer does a good job of speaking directly to the audience and providing a number of scenarios to show the struggle of being gay in America and hypothesizing reasonably well what the reaction of the country would be in this situation."

2017 SLAMDANCE COMPETITION

"It’s an interesting idea and the way the plot is revealed is quite elegant and well done."

2018 bluecat competition

"The writer does a great job of highlighting social issues of homosexuality, discrimination, and religion, without implementing personal bias, so that the audience is able to formulate their own opinions.... The character relations are strong, where story lines eventually intersect."

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© 2018 by John Pisano-Thomsen.