Film & Television Development, Production and Distribution
The principle characters are based on the real people and events: Lutheran flax farmer Adam Livingston, and his agnostic wife Mara; first U.S. bishop John Carroll; first U.S. ordained Catholic priest Fr. Augustine Gallitzin; pioneering priest Fr. Dennis Cahill; and retired sea captain and his American wife, Richard and Anastasia McSherry.
Disclosure: The notes below from a Black List Reader are notably absent the reader's noted "weaknesses." Clearly, I'm not posting those because I'm trying to promote how great this script is (smile), but also because the reader's perceived weaknesses are easily rectified, should I agree with them.
"This script is a smart blend of horror, human drama, the supernatural and a slight bit of humor, among other things. It’s written by a writer who has an impressive cinematic mind, an individual who inherently thinks like a filmmaker in all the right ways, as many of the scenes in this script demonstrate a keen sense of how auditory and visual stimuli can produce powerful moments. Whether it be the black smoke, or the sound of the sheers clipping, this script boasts the kind of small details that stay in a reader’s mind. The plotting starts to pick up once the stranger arrives. Once the Stranger dies, then the real excitement begins as the curse brings the demon. The description of Tom and Dick’s overalls on page 45 is a moment that serves to offer some comedic value. The scale and scope of the conflict in this script feels like it continues to escalate right into the third act, building to a dramatically exciting climax. The setting of this script is established with a clear sense of time, place and culture. Clearly this writer did a ton of research, and it shows, as this script feels true to its era... Adam, Mara and the rest of the family are all fleshed out with clarity.... The groundwork is already in place for something that could one day be truly special.... The true story angle, as well as the utterly strange behavior of the demon, as well as the creepy, unique period setting all work in this script’s favor in terms of drawing an audience. The production budget would be in the low spectrum, which is yet another virtue."
In 1795, Adam Livingston and his family were farmers in the Shenandoah Valley.
A visiting stranger became deathly ill and begged his host to find a Catholic priest to come and administer last rites. But the Livingston's, who despised Papists, refused.
As he died, the stranger cursed the Livingston homestead. Immediately after, a demonic presence came to haunt.
The poltergeist, among other things, made a name for itself by cutting crescent moons out of linens, silks and leather goods. Why crescent moons? They say, it was the moon god. And since no human would speak a demon's real name, the demon settled for a nickname—The Wizard Clip.
Over two years the Wizard destroyed the family’s homestead. Admitting that the Haunt had religious intents, Adam persuaded various preachers to come and exorcise his property.
But they could do nothing but run away.
Then, Adam discovered that to achieve his greatest desire, he had to embrace what he hated most.
GENRE: Period Drama, Dramaedy, Ghosts & Haunts,
TONE: A light-hearted, haunting thriller for broad audiences. (Not intended as traditional horror.)
ERA / SETTING: 1700's, 1800's / Pennsylvania, West Virginia
TARGET AUDIENCE: Male-Female (14-80)
HOOK: A Lutheran farmer angry with God is plagued with a persistent and pervasive demonic infestation.
LOG LINE: In the late 1700’s a farmer denies the last rites to a stranger who is dying in his house, leading to a curse that brings a demon and plenty of horror and trouble to go with it. Based on true events.
TAG LINE: A True Early American Haunting
CONFLICT OF VALUES: Prideful spite vs. Humble faith
MORAL PREMISE STATEMENT: Prideful spite leads to spiritual dysfunction, but Humble faith leads to freedom and peace.
BUDGET: $8-$15 M
The Wizard Clip Demon
Screenplay - $6.00
All Content Copyright © 2017, Stanley D. Williams.