I always like being able to support my friends' work and use whatever readership my blog has to bring extra attention to their work. However, when it comes to endeavors like submissions to the Black List 3.0, I set a ground rule early on - I wouldn't plug a script on here unless it met my own personal standards. In other words, if I'm not willing to back up a "Go read this" by giving the script a high rating myself, I'm not going to mention it here. I want to support my friends, but I also don't want to waste anyone's time.
This is why you can trust me when I say that my friend Matt Bolish has a great script that he's just uploaded to The Black List 3.0. I've actually been trying to push him to upload it pretty much since the site launched.
The script is called ALICE OF OZ, and as that title might suggest, it deals with the worlds of Oz and Wonderland colliding. More accurately, Wonderland has invaded Oz. The Queen of Hearts has declared all-out and her minions have overrun our favorite land over the rainbow. In a desperate act, the heroes of Oz bring back a now-adult Dorothy Gale in the hopes of turning the tide, but it may already be too late.
I know what you're thinking - another Oz project? Yes, I know that the public domain fairy tales have been exploited to all hell over the last few years. I haven't seen the forthcoming Oz: The Great and Powerful, but from what I know about it, I feel pretty safe in assuring you that ALICE OF OZ is quite different from it. I've also regularly watched Once Upon A Time and though that series also enjoys the conceit of different fairy tales intermingling, Matt takes a different approach.
This is a big budget action-adventure story. It's got epic battles and a lot of fun interaction among the more popular characters of the two stories. It also features not one, but two epic cat fights: the Cowardly Lion vs. the Cheshire Cat, and Dorothy vs. Alice!
Matt conceived this story a few years ago, just ahead of the wave of fairy tale remakes. I still remember the dinner where he started laying out the story. The idea of crossing over Oz and Wonderland intrigued me, and as he recounted the plot, I saw potential in several of the set pieces. As someone who was working on his own Oz story (take that lesson - avoid the public domain) I was mildly miffed that a friend was playing in the same sandbox, but even that was overtaken by my excitement at what he was planning.
Then he hit me with a plot development that left me with nothing to say but, "That's fucking brilliant!" That was quickly followed by annoyance that I wouldn't have the experience of being blindsided by this development when I read the script for myself. And so because of that, I won't spoil the more awesome moments in the latter parts of the story. Instead, I'll merely implore those of you with Black List access to check it out for yourselves.
Matt has another script up on the Black List - an action-thriller called ABERRANT INTELLIGENCE. It centers on the Information Control Officers of Aberrant Intelligence - the clean-up crew that deals with paranormal phenomena and makes it possible for the rest of us to live our lives in blissfull ignorance. When a scientific breakthrough activates an ancient power that could bring about the end of humanity, it's up to them to contain the threat, even as dark forces of a secret order threaten to exploit it.
As I write this, ABBERANT INTELLIGENCE is sitting in 6th place on the "Top Uploaded Scripts" list. So if you're a Black List member, take some time this week and check out Matt's work.