Winning THRILLER Fest SHORT Script: INKWELL, by Dante Mathias (writer interview)
SHORT SCREENPLAY READINGS • Thriller
An unskilled artist discovers a pen that will draw whatever he wants at the cost of his talented friend.
Narrator: Val Cole
Rose: Kyana Teresa
Foster: Allan Michael Brunet
Get to know the screenwriter:
1. What is your screenplay about?
Inkwell is about an amateur artist that discovers a pen that draws whatever he writes at the cost of his talented friend's health. It's a story about A.I. art, the arguments around it, and the people it affects.
2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?
The script fits right in with the suspense genre as the characters up the ante in their competition. There's a sense of dread that builds throughout the story and isn't let go of until the final page. With two character's stuck together, drama plays as big a role in keeping things interesting and emotional. You can think of Inkwell as a mini-episode of The Twilight Zone.
3. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?
This is a story that couldn't have been written a few years ago, and if it was, the meaning would be entirely different. Now is the perfect time for this story to be told with where the world is technologically and with the questions we're just now beginning to take seriously.
4. How would you describe this script in two words?
5. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?
Batman: Mask of the Phantasm
6. How long have you been working on this screenplay?
I began this project at the beginning of 2023, when news of A.I. art was hitting its peak and the movement against it was picking up steam. Since January there has been a steady stream of drafts and changes with each festival's feedback.
7. How many stories have you written?
I've written a couple feature scripts and a few shorts. My previous short film #1 focused on a broke comic shop owner and an obsessive collector fighting over a rare comic book issue. Inkwell began as a spin-off to the short but quickly grew an identity of its own.
8. What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)
Dream Sweet in Sea Major
9. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?
One of the most difficult parts of finishing the script has been realizing it's never finished. Even when I go to shoot the film, planned for later in 2023, I'm sure that I'll find some changes necessary on set and in post. The constant adaptation to what feels right is always a necessary challenge when writing.
10. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?
I spend most of my free time watching movies. There's nothing else in the world I would rather be doing.
11. You entered your screenplay via FilmFreeway. What has been your experiences working with the submission platform site?
FilmFreeway has been a terrific service for streamlining the festival submission processes and finding festivals like this to share my work.
12. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?
After my short film #1 was awarded at the Thriller/Suspense Film Festival, I knew I had to submit the project that would act as its spiritual successor. The festival's feedback to the script was fantastic. It's clear that the reviewers understood my goal and gave some fantastic advice that has already led to adjustments.
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