I did it! Recap #100Screenplays2021

By Laura Crisp Davis - December 30, 2021
I did it! Recap #100Screenplays2021

I made it!

Thank you to all who joined me for #100screenplays2021! I hope you're having a great time in person with friends, family, and chosen family for whatever holidays you might celebrate. I hope you're at least celebrating being able to celebrate again! 

On this day, 21 years ago, I was a young bride. I can't believe all we've been through, and never dreamt it might include a global pandemic. By this time next year, we may have an empty nest with two young adults out in the world and I've set my own goal to hopefully be writing this blog from Los Angeles (at least during the winter months).

If you read along with me this year, please feel free to share this list on your social platforms with the hashtag #100screenplays2021.

Here's a recap of what I read in 2021:

1. Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
2. Soul
3. Bill & Ted Face the Music
4. Judas & the Black Messiah
5. Promising Young Woman
6. Emma
7. The Little Things
8. I'm Thinking of Ending Things
9. The King of Staten Island
10. Never Rarely Sometimes Always
11. One Night in Miami
12. Bliss
13. Prom
14. Palm Springs
15. The Personal History of David Copperfield
16. Tenet
17. The Trial of the Chicago 7
18. The White Tiger
19. Always Be My Maybe
20. Date Night
21. Ghost
22. Groundhog Day
23. The Addams Family
24. Ace Ventura: Pet Detective
25. Benny & Joon
26. The Big Sick
27. Bridesmaids
28. High Fidelity
29. It's Complicated
30. Juno
31. Kate & Leopold
32. The Lovebirds
33. Gross Pointe Blank
34. My Big Fat Greek Wedding
35. My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2
36. Sleepless in Seattle
37. Pretty Woman
38. There's Something About Mary
39. Shakespeare in Love
40. The Princess Bride
41. This is 40
42. She's Out of My League
43. Silver Linings Playbook
44. Crazy Stupid Love
45. My Best Friend's Wedding

46. Ten Things I Hate About You

47. Ed TV
48. Never Been Kissed

49. Notting Hill
50. Easy A
51. Yes Man
52. Peggy Sue Got Married
53. What About Bob?
54. When Harry Met Sally
55. You've Got Mail
56. Elizabethtown
57. Erin Brockovich
58. The Family Man
59. 48 Hours
60. Field of Dreams
61. Forrest Gump
62. The Fifth Element
63. Funny People
64. Fight Club
65. Good Will Hunting
66. Finding Nemo
67. Jerry Maguire
68. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
69. Horrible Bosses

70. The Incredibles

71. Casablanca
72. Men in Black

73. The Proposal
74. Innerspace
75. Runaway Bride
76. Knives Out
77. My Cousin Vinny
78. The Blues Brothers
79. Blast From the Past
80. Kung Fu Panda
81. La La Land
82. Dead Poets Society
83. Do the Right Thing
84. The Devil Wears Prada
85.The Distinguished Gentleman
86. Dolemite is My Name 

87. Dumb & Dumber
88. Last Action Hero
89. Legally Blonde
90. Liar Liar
91. Titanic
92. The Breakfast Club

93. Adaptation

94. Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

95. My Girl

96. Napoleon Dynamite

97. Fargo

98. The Wizard of Oz

99. Clueless

100. Ferris Bueller's Day Off

101. Fast Times at Ridgemont High

102. Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid

103. Back to the Future 

104. Back to the Future 2

105. Back to the Future 3

106. Edward Scissorhands

107. Ghostbusters

108. Ghostbusters 2

109. The Nightmare Before Christmas

110. So I Married an Axe Murderer

111. The Mask

112. Moonstruck

113. E.T.

114. Mystery Men

115. Something's Gotta Give

116. Raising Arizona

117. St. Elmo's Fire

118. Shrek

119. Sister Act

120. Rush Hour

121. Sideways

122. Spanglish

123. Stepmom

124. The Sting

125. Sneakers

126. Big

127. The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

128. The Long Kiss Goodnight

129. Three Men and a Baby

130. The Truman Show

131. The Big Lebowski

132. 12 Years a Slave

133. Gremlins

134. Diehard

135. Toy Story

136. True Lies

137. Twins

I read scripts as a juror for two international competitions, as well as for screenwriting colleagues and private clients. I only share the produced titles publicly (obviously), but I still topped my previous totals by a landslide. 

Total yet-to be produced scripts: 82

Total produced scripts: 137

Grand total: 219

What I learned in 2021: 

Reading produced scripts continues to help me discover the "IT" factors that make decisionmakers say yes and audiences to invest their time, money, and emotions into a story. You can see how a suspense writer weaves in the clue trail, a comedy writer builds in hilarious incongruency, or a horror writer causes utter emotional distress for the audience. 

Reading contest entries showed me (again this year) that many newer writers have difficulty being objective of their own work, and sadly forego editing or even basic formatting conventions--which is a surefire way to turn off decisionmakers. I know screenwriting twitter will collectively advise that formatting is BS, and to some extent the smaller things are, however, basic formatting is a must. A parallel would be to show up to every work meeting late and then wonder why the meetings don't go well or even cost you business relationships. If you follow certain rules like being on time to a meeting, then the person you're meeting with is more open to hearing what you're pitching. Same goes for turning in a script that looks as professional as possible so that the reader can get lost in the story rather than simply lost.

I learned that performing standup comedy is a great way to test out potential punchlines for scripts, and definitely improves script dialogue. It's also a fun stress reliever when life is kicking my ass. Thanks again to my dear friend James Moorer (Roadmap Writers) for the reminder to stop kicking my own ass. 

I learned that "industry adjacent" bill-paying jobs can be inspiring too. Before the pandemic, I used to work part-time for a company that set up the movie theater displays, surveyed moviegoers, and observed audience responses to movie trailers. I gained insight into how to pitch a concept so that the audience is clear on genre, hook, and expected ending without spoilers. This year's warehouse job got me thinking about how 99% of Halloween merchandise is connected to a movie, TV show, book, or comic book--which means writers are JOB CREATORS for literally thousands of people worldwide--and that inspires me to KEEP WRITING.

A couple of months ago I realized that a respected screenwriting colleague, Ann Kimbrough (instagram @everythingann), published "The 100 Script Challenge Journal" (2016), which I highly recommend. That said, I'll be shifting my 2022 focus from counting the scripts I read to selecting scripts we can read AND watch together, and I plan to add my perspective on critical "IT" factors that make the stories stand out as contest entries, make them marketable as a movie or TV show, create hundreds of jobs, and secure potential residual income for the writer. I'll continue my special focus on comedy and underdog stories, because that's what I write.

I've got a couple of projects that will hopefully move forward next year, so cross your fingers that there will be an occasional behind-the-scenes blog post from a filming location.

Thanks for reading along and I hope you'll join me in 2022.

Happy New Year my friends,

Where to find scripts:



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Sometimes I'm serious, sometimes I'm silly. Any scripts referenced are for educational purposes only. (My lawyer made me say that part.)