Lists

The 8 Most Interesting Scripts On The 2015 Black List

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The best of the black.

Okay, I’ll be outright about this: the 2015 Black List? Yeah, it’s kind of weak. Even compared to the last few years it doesnt look all that great, with only a few loglines really getting me excited. That said,me writing a list like this around the time the list comes out is something of a tradition around these parts, and so I feel obligated to keep it going. Unlike last year though, I’m only going to be listing eight because, honestly, I couldn’t find more than that on the Black List that truly fascinated me.

But hey, don’t take my pessimism to mean the whole Black List sucked this year: I liked the below eight, for instance, and I’m sure you’ll find some that sound intriguing on the full list, as located here. As always, I’ll preface by saying that The Black List by definition is a list of the most liked scripts in Hollywood by over 250 top executives, and not a litmus test for best scripts or, hell, even favorite scripts. Still though, I’m a sucker for this kind of stuff, so its always of interest to me. And as always, I haven’t read a single script on this list: I’m basing my entire ranking simply on the logline, and nothing more. So all that said, without further ado, let’s begin with:

8. Bubbles by Issac Adamson

A baby chimp is adopted by the pop star Michael Jackson. Narrating his own story, Bubbles the Chimp details his life within The King of Pop’s inner circle through the scandals that later rocked Jackson’s life and eventually led to Bubbles’ release.

Okay, look, this is one of those loglines that in most hands would make for an absolutely TERRIBLE movie. But in terms of sounding interesting, can you get better than a Michael Jackson biopic from the point of view of his freaking chimpanzee? It’s a bold premise, but I’m doubtful it would actually make a good movie. Then again, Bubbles topped the ENTIRE Black List with 44 votes, so maybe the script is incredible…or Mr. Adamson has a fantastic agent behind him.

7. Reagan by Mike Rosolio

When Ronald Reagan falls into dementia at the start of his second term, an ambitious intern is tasked with convincing the commander-in-chief that he is an actor playing the president in a movie.

I have absolutely no faith that this movie will ever see the light of day, at least not as a true story take on the second term of President Reagan. But once again, a ballsy premise makes for an instantly interesting logline.

6. Crater by John J. Griffin

On the moon, five teens take an unauthorized and adventure-filled road trip just before one of them is to be sent away on a seventy-five year journey to another planet, leaving behind his best.

Those youngsters came from the moon. But on a more serious note, this is like the fourth Black List script I can remember that heavily features a moon setting, and I say keep em coming. Sounds like this could make for a fun, quirky coming of age story.

5. Boomtown by Matt King

A slick corporate investigator with a closely guarded secret discovers a sinister criminal conspiracy in North Dakota oil boom country.

A simple premise, but an effective one. Sounds like it could have shades of Fargo, which is the best kinds of shade. It doesnt swing for the high concept fences like other scripts on this list, but hey, seems like it could make for the best movie.

4. Morningstar by David Burke

The war is over. A bitter and uneasy truce has been reached with an invading alien race, and a new cold war has begun. Fueled by suspicions of an alien spy in their ranks, the United Nations Intelligence Division entrusts their top agent, Martin Webber, with finding the mole.

Okay, here comes the good stuff (like I said before, it was a tough year for the Black List.) This is the kind of cool sci-fi concept I can really get behind, and I love post-alien invasion stories. The whole espionage angle is an interesting take on the subject for sure.

3. Battle of New Orleans by Dan Kunka

In one of the greatest untold stories in American history, General and future President Andrew Jackson reluctantly partners with world-renowned pirate Jean Lafitte to lead a rag-tag team of soldiers against the indomitable British Army in the climactic battle of the War of 1812.

Im a big history fan, and the Battle of New Orleans is like SUPER cool. It would be awesome to see some good old fashioned War of 1812 war action on the big screen.

2. Pandemonium, Splendidly Managed by Brett Conrad

A local Phoenix newscaster at the pinnacle of local celebrity slowly descends into the depths of madness while trying to become a game show host in Los Angeles.

Like Nightcrawler, but with Bob Barker? Consider me on board, despite a pretty terrible title.

1. The Wretched Emily Derringer by Chris Thomas Devlin

Gleefully terrifying her small town as a serial killer known as “The Misfit Butcher,” 13-year-old Emily Derringer becomes annoyed when a new killer comes to town and residents begin attributing his sloppy murders to the Misfit Butcher. In a macabre coming of age story, Emily must deal with her competition while also taking on the other trials and tribulations of junior high school life.

This is another script that I don’t think can get made (not unless it’s an indie release that costs peanuts, of course), but I’ll be damned if I dont want to get a copy of this script ASAP. A dark coming of age story about a FREAKING SERIAL KILLER? That’s one hell of a concept there, marketability aside.

And that’s that, the eight loglines I found to be the most interesting on this year’s Black List. Now we must wait for the ultimate test: to see if any of these films actually get produced. If the last few years have been any indication, well, they were cool loglines at least.

-Matthew