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FREELANCE LOVE A TREATMENT FOR A FEATURE FILM SCREENPLAY By Timothy Peters

Copyright Pending U.S. Copyright Office WGA West Registration Number: 1486743

Logline: Veteran Ad Executive secretly turns to an online freelance worker to save his job and unexpectedly finds love. Character Setup: BRAD BANKS - A 40 something perennially single advertising executive who can no longer keep up with the technological advances taking over his industry. Fed up with his teams performance, and paralyzed by a fear of losing his #1 status on Madison Ave, Brad turns to a freelancing website that he reads about in AdAge in an attempt to meet his clients need for fresh ground breaking ideas. KATE SMITH - A late 20s something Pollyanna who believes the best about people and social justice. Unable to balance a traditional job, her volunteer work and her final year of grad school, she turns to the new phenomena of online freelance work to pay her mounting bills. Overview: FREELANCE LOVE is a modern day romantic comedy, situated in the age of Twitter and Facebook; a story where an alpha male man of the advertising establishment watches the walls of the world he once knew crumbles before his eyes. The lead male character Brad Banks is forced to break his own republicanised moral code in an attempt to stay relevant and keep his reputation by secretly going online and hiring a left leaning NYC Grad student to help him generate the killer ideas that once made him a legend on Madison avenue. Kate Smith, the lead female character is a Greenwich Village social activist, who, when the story begins, is spending most of her time rallying her neighbours against a massive development that is trying to get regulatory approval from New York City Council. In Kates personal life, the bills are starting to pile up, with rent, and grad school loans. Not wanting to take on a full time job that would prevent her from completing her final year of grad school and leading the protest movement, Kate turns to a newly launched website that connects freelance workers with jobs that can be done from home around your own schedule.

Kates first project that she is hired for is one posted by Brad Banks. Brad, impressed by her work and the positive feedback he is getting from his clients, continues to send Kate more and more assignments. Although the relationship starts off anonymously, a tight deadline on a major project forces the lead characters to finally meet in person, and to their surprise they both actually live in the same neighbourhood and frequent the same coffee house. From this point on they tend to meet up in person to work on assignments, and eventually as they are working all weekend together on a huge project that could make or break Brads career, these two polar opposites fall in love during this marathon of brain storming and creativity. The young Kate energizes Brad, who is entranced by her expertise with new technologies, and positive outlook towards life. Kate on the other hand, although initially frustrated by the older Brad and his somewhat I am better than everyone attitude, eventually gets past this rough exterior and sees a genuine caring person. Having kept many of the specific details of the work projects secret to make sure this grad student did not blow his cover as a major ad exec who was using her ideas on Madison Avenue, the female lead is shocked to find that the major project they have been working on over the weekend is actually for a new construction project in their neighbourhood that she had been fighting against. Horrified that she has inadvertently assisted in the marketing of this development that she has been rallying against for months, Kate pleads with her new found love to not submit what they have been working on, and to stop supporting the project outright. When Brad refuses, she storms out of his townhouse in tears. Eventually, having realized that the time he has been spending with Kate has made him the happiest he has been in years, and that he is tired of the alpha male rat race working for scummy clients, Brad reconciles with Kate and together they do battle to save their community and the park that is about to be ruined by the developer.

Story: The story opens on Madison Avenue. We are introduced to Brad Banks, the once uber confidant #1 ad man in New York city is being reamed out by the President of his company once again. What made Brad the best in the 1990s no longer applies. He is a man lost in a world being dominated by Gen Xers using all the new technologies like Twitter and Facebook, and Brad does not know what to do. He does not understand this new way of doing business and if he doesnt start delivering the relevant campaigns that his clients are demanding soon, his career is over. With his job and status on the line, Brad turns to an online website that connects companies with freelance workers. He uploads a job post related to some work for a client presentation he has due the next day, and ends up hiring Kate Smith, a 29 year old marketing grad student who is an expert at using all the new tools advertisers want to implement to reach their audience. Kate has just recently signed up on the website as a way to pay off her ever increasing student debt and regular bills like her rent. This work from home alternative is a perfect fit for the busy Kate, who along with competing her final year of grad school is also a community activist trying to prevent a large conglomerate from building a garbage facility on what is now a local park. Although he does not fully understand the work he gets back from Kate, desperate as he is, Brad uses Kates material in his presentation the next day and it receives universal praise. Brad is back people say as he leaves the successful meeting which has convinced a major client to stay with his firm. Because of this first success Brad continues to send additional work to Kate. They have what is an ideal relationship. Things have turned around for Brad at work, he has returned to the star status that he has been used to, and Kate is able to pay her bills without sacrificing the other parts of her life.

Afraid of the scandal this would cause at work if anyone ever found out what he was doing, Brad had registered on the freelance website using a pseudonym, and continues to change some of the details of each assignment he gives Kate in an attempt to keep her somewhat in the dark as to the importance and size of the projects she is working on. Foreshadowing events to come, at one humorous point in the film Kate is walking outside and sees a billboard advertisement that is strikingly similar to work she has done for Brad, but passes it off as a coincidence. As this newly formed working relationship continues to develop, the story also peers into the personal lives of both main characters. Brad Banks is seen as the perennially single NYC bachelor. A workaholic, he has relished the lifestyle his success and rise to the top in the advertising world has provided him, enjoying the finest restaurants and invitations to the best parties on the NYC social circuit. What we discover though is that Brad does not have much of a family life. Throughout the film as Brad is seen losing his edge in the ad game he has also begins to have realizations about the superficiality of his life, that he is human, lonely, and that it might be time to start looking externally away from work for happiness. His personal armour and slick persona start to crack, as he gets tired of never ending demands from clients, especially those of somewhat unsavoury character. Kate on the other hand is the complete opposite of Brad Banks. Less concerned about social status and material goods, Kate has dedicated her life to non profit work, and helping her community. After completing her masters in marketing it is her goal to find a job working to raise awareness for one of the many charities she volunteers with. Her current passion project during the film is rallying members of her community against a huge multinational company that is in negotiations to purchase park land from the city for a new garbage facility. She commands a daily early morning meeting with neighbours at the local coffee shop to talk about the days strategy for attempting to stop the development. Her great marketing skills and use of technology (the same tools that make her of great value to Brad) are the only things stopping this company from moving in and setting up shop.

In an ironic twist, it is at this same local coffee shop where Brad and Kate unknowingly cross paths most mornings as Brad grabs a coffee before he heads in to the office. As it turns out this anonymous team unknowingly reside about a few blocks from each other. Being regular customers lead to some funny interactions at the beginning of the movie. Brad scoffs at Kates community volunteering efforts and sees them as a waste of time, and one morning even ends up calling Kate a hippy as she inadvertently knocks Brads coffee out of his hands while moving some of the protest signs she has been working on. As the movie progresses Brad and Kate continue to work on more and more projects together. Through emails about the different assignments the two eventually start revealing some personal details. When both comment that it is a rotten stormy day where they are, the two find out they both actually live in New York City. With the great working relationship both Brad and Kate become curious about just who this other anonymous person is that they are working with. Both do a great job of keeping each other in good spirits as they tend to find themselves working on these projects until the wee hours of the night. While completing one specific assignment, Brad is running behind and Kate being her generous self offers to print out copies of a presentation that he needs at a local copy shop and bring them to him. She is not doing this completely altruistically. Kate is quite curious to see this mystery man she has been working for. In this funny scene they end up deciding to meet at the local coffee shop that they both frequent, both unaware of the underlying significance the location holds. Both arrive and recognize each other as the somewhat unfriendly other coffee shop regular. As the clock ticks away both get antsy wondering when the other is going to arrive and the two sneer at each other in an effort to vent their frustrations. After 10-15 minutes has passed, and the coffee shop has emptied out except for Kate and Brad, both put two and two together and cant believe who they have been working with over the past month.

After a somewhat awkward start, both being as opposite as oil and water, the two find common ground, both having grown up in the neighbourhood, and with their common passion for their chosen field of advertising. Each leave the meeting not really sure what to think... and nothing was said as to whether they would continue their business relationship. With a few days having gone by Kate finds herself thinking about Brad, and continually checks her email to see if he has assigned her any new work. Brad cant seem to get Kate out of his head. They are completely different, but as is often the case, this is can also be very attractive. When Brad gets the details of the next few campaigns he has to develop for clients he initially tries to tackle them on his own, thinking he does not need a silly grad student to help him. Although he might be attracted to Kate, he is also somewhat embarrassed that he has needed her help over the past month. After a few hours of not being able to put anything decent together, he decides its not so bad working with Kate, and that he still needs her desperately. Their relationship develops and they continue to keep meeting in person to work on assignments. A true passion and connection starts to develop, and they continually find excuses to work late, or go for dinner, or spend as much extra time together as possible, yet they remain just colleagues, both uncertain of what the other is thinking, and both afraid to jeopardize a relation that is working out well for each of them. As the film reaches the climax, Brad is tasked with a huge new assignment. His recent successes in implementing new technology into his marketing campaigns has garnered a lot of buzz, and Barron Corporation an international waste management conglomerate has sought him out specifically to help with their PR campaign for a new development in New York City. Barron Corp is getting a lot of push back on their proposal and deal with the city to build on what is now park land because of a small group of local activists who are using their online presence and tools like Twitter and Facebook to drum up negative press for the project.

This group of activists is of course being led by Kate under the guise of anonymous online screen names and accounts. Brad is brought in to quash the voice of these activists and to help devise a strategy to garner enough public support to get this project approved by city council. If Brad can help Barron Corp they promise to bring all of their advertising business to the firm which would save the company, make Brad a hero, and solidify his return as the #1 marketing mind in New York. Brad sets up a war room at his home to start working away on battling the anonymous activists. He implements his own counter attack using all of the strategies Kate has been teaching him. Initially things go well, and unbeknownst to both Kate and Brad, they are both working against each other in real time from their homes, spamming blogs and twitter with messages for and against the development. As Friday approaches Brad is called in to an urgent meeting with Barron Corp. They are not seeing the progress they had wanted, and the final city council vote is next week. If he does not come up with a new plan by Monday, Barron Corp is firing his firm. As Brad heads back to his house he calls Kate to see if she is available to help him all weekend. Kate is torn, she is desperately in need of the money she would be paid to work all weekend (Brad is offering her double her usual rate), and whether she admits it to herself or not she wants to spend time with Brad, but she is also trying to help out with the protests against the development. Kate speaks with some of her other activists and feels confident that things are running well enough to go help Brad. To keep things confidential, Brad again changes some of the details of the project. As they work late into night the two begin to fall in love and their true feelings are revealed. In one funny scene, when they are both taking a break from working, they both go online to see how their side of the campaign is going and end up trash talking each other in real time all without knowing the person they are fighting against is actually in the same room.

The next day, with the assignment complete after working late into the night, Kate is horrified to find out the real nature of the project as she sorts through some of Brads files while eating breakfast. Kate is speechless as she realizes she has been working for the company she has fought so hard against. Kate begs Brad not to submit the marketing plan they have just completed for Barron Corp. Brad feels horrible, he had no idea that Kate was a part of the protest group. During this scene there is a funny moment when both blurt out wait your @SayNoToBarron (screen name) on Twitter and wait your @SayYes2Barron on Twitter, both realizing simultaneously they have been battling each other online. Brad decides to put work first and tells Kate there is nothing he can do, this is his job and he does not want to get fired. Kate leaves in tears, telling Brad never to call her again. On Monday Brad goes ahead and pitches the new marketing plan to Barron Corp, and it receives great reviews. The entire company has now been assigned to work on this account, and employees scramble from the meeting to begin working on the project. Brad has just saved his company by keeping this major client happy. Afterwards, while enjoying a congratulatory cigar with his boss and the CEO of Barron Corp, Brad starts to have second thoughts about what he has done. Hearing the CEO tell them what he is really going to do to the land and how polluted everything is going to become makes him sick. Unable to listen to anymore comments like this he blurts out How can you say this stuff, this is going to be in our back yard, I grew up in that neighbourhood. Brad leaves the room followed quickly by his boss, who demands Brad apologize to the Barron Corp CEO or he will be fired. Brad refuses and quits on the spot. Brad spends the night drinking at local bars and trying to call Kate- who wont pick up. He slums around his townhouse the next few days not doing much of anything, he attempts to email and call Kate, but she wants nothing to do with him. She looks for her profile on the freelance website, and it has been removed.

In the final scene of the movie Brad decides to go down to the local coffee shop to drab a drink. While there he sees a lot of people with signs and asks where they are going. They tell him they are going to a rally at city hall to try and convince the councillors to vote no to the Barron Corp. proposal. Brad decides to go down to the rally to see if he can find Kate. At the rally he tries to talk with her but she still wants nothing to do with him. With the city councillors and Kate watching, Brad unexpectedly takes to the stage and delivers a compelling speech against the development: You know I used to work for this developer, and there are a lot of things he is not telling us.... The speech is compelling enough for councillors to announce they are putting the development on hold. In the final shot of the film as the crowd cheers Kate runs to Brad and they embrace. He has won her heart by turning his back on Barron Corp and helping her to block the development. THE END.