Answers to your questions and some more questions

Should this have gone in a reply?  Oh well…

So if Michael is at the lab before Ian and Oscar, what is he doing?  He was notified by the security system.  Or he went there to work on the leaf.  What time is it in the story?  If Oscar was pitching Brian, then it could be late at like 2am because it’s when the bar is closing.  So in the bar, we could see Desiree putting up chairs in the background.

Michael beats them there because he was going to work on the leaf.  Is there some sort of implication with Desiree?  What could be the implication with Desdemona and Michael?  Michael said that Desiree texted him since they were closing up and Oscar was at the bar talking to her dad.  She thought we might want to all hang out since we have been working so hard lately.

Then to show Oscar and Desdemona’s relationship, we can illustrate how they are at first with Michael explaining how he got the text from Desdemona.  Desiree did not text Oscar because she did not want to disturb him during the meeting plus, he was right there.   This could be the little opening that Ian uses to plant the seed of doubt.  Why didn’t she tell  you she wanted to hang out with you guys?  Why was she inviting Michael to hang out so late.

At first, Oscar and Desiree’s relationship is good.  It is trusting and healthy but it deteriorates when Ian makes the suggestions and plants the seeds of doubt.  Of course, Ian suggests this to Oscar in secret or on the side.

Oscar can find out about Cyprus through some sort of automatic patent search he has set up.  He reads the patents everyday.  So at this point he finds out there has been a persistent leak or theft of information?  Everyone is a suspect.  Ian, Emilia, Michael, Rod, and their security system.  He has to check on all of them and clear them.

Maybe the theft of the technology is too early?  Maybe it was ok for the Sundance application but not for the story.

Your Last Post

By the way, I like the ideas on your last post for the story. I think those sound good.

Also…what do you think about enabling comments here so that we can respond to each other on the same string?


I can do a call on Wednesday pretty much anytime after 11AM Central. Thursday I’m going out of town — so exctied! to a spa in Utah! — so that’s a travel day for me. I could do a call on Friday pretty much anytime before 5PM Pacific. Before noon would be preferable, if possible, but otherwise I’m open.

Re: Next Beats and Call

Hey Christina,

That sounds great.  I was shooting some tests of the first scene this weekend.  As I was working through the script and shots, I want to make a couple of changes.  Perhaps Oscar is pitching to Bruce/Brian in the bar downstairs.  Also, I was thinking about the security system.  Perhaps we can go with a more fictionalized form of security.  A system that Oscar designs himself.  Maybe like the home built computer in Pi.  I say this because he either has to have top notch, top of the line security or maybe his insane version.  Plus, I was trying to think of a different way to show the audience that it is Ian rather than putting the mask in the bag.

I was also thinking we move the Ian calling out to Oscar scene into the stairwell.  It has a more trapped feeling.

When are you available to do the call?  Thanks.


Next Beats

Hi Jeff!

I’ve been working on the next beats and ready to do a call on them when you are. Here’s where I am:


1) Oscar makes a presentation (already written)

2) Ian attempts to steal something (already written)

3) Interaction with Michael – When Oscar and Ian show up to the office, Michael’s at the scene of the crime, working with law enforcement to identify the security breach. We discussed this on one of our calls, but didn’t yet figure this out yet completely.

4) Oscar and Desdemona – We need to set-up their relationship at the start. Not sure what we want to say about it yet, but it does belong here. Considering Michael is in the beat before, we may want to include some sort of romantic tension here contrived by Ian.

5) Oscar finds out that Cyprus Petroleum has his technology, or a piece of it. Again, not exactly sure what we want to say here yet, but that’s where this element belongs. I’ve put in Block Two that Oscar confronts Luke at Cyprus. So in this rough draft, it would be that Oscar is passively receiving word that Cyprus has stolen some portion of Oscar’s technology. Maybe he hears it on the news? Or gets it by way of an email? In my mind, attaining the information is done by way of some sort of message that Oscar passively receives.


I’ve roughly sketched Block Two, but these are going to based upon the detail we come up with for Block One. The information here is only placeholders. The order can change, the beats themselves can change. This gives us a starting point on our discussion.


1) Oscar seeks to protect the “key” he holds.

2) Oscar suspects Desdemona (she looks guilty while also looking innocent)

3) Oscar suspects Michael (he looks guilty while also looking innocent)

4) Oscar confronts Luke at Cyprus to understand where Cyprus got the information.

5) Ian looks completely guilty – Oscar sets his sights on  catching Ian



Just so we keep track of them:

1) We have a loose end with Oscar abruptly leaving the meeting with a potential investor. What comes of that meeting? What happens with the investor?

2) We have a safe that seems to have nothing inside it. What’s in there?



I kind of like the outlining then writing idea. Because both of us has written some iteration of this screenplay at least once already, I think it’s okay to outline and write the script as we go.


Hi Jeff! (Aloha!),

How about this? You shoot our first few pages for the screen test. I’ll work on getting the outline for Block 1 going. Let’s finish the outline block by block. If there is something that I’m putting in there that seems off, we can catch it earlier instead of waiting for all of it to be outlined. (Case in point, the last time when I nixed Michael Cassio entirely.) Sound good?


Next Steps

Aloha Christina,

I am pretty much caught up from my absence.
What do you recommend are the next steps?
Do we need to adjust the beats to reflect the new opening scene?
I am itching to shoot something so I was thinking of shooting the new pages as a screen test.  Let me know what you think.