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Screenplay Coverage Report
Title: President Kenny Author(s): Dean Mavrikis & Zack Van Eyck Form: Screenplay Page Length: 107 Genre(s): Comdey Location(s): Washington D.C. Princeton, NJ Excellent XXXX Date: 1/23/2011 Read By: Benjamin Day Submitted by: Zack Van Eyck Time Period(s): Present Day MPAA Rating: PG or PG-13 Budget: Good XXX XXX XXX XXX Fair Needs Work
Concept/Originality Plot/Storyline Characters Dialogue Structure Cinematic Value
Overall, President Kenny is a well-written script with a very commercial appeal. It flows very smoothly and moves very quickly. The screenplay is easy to follow and has very clear and definitive acts. As far as a pg-13, studio type broad comedy goes; I think you’ve nailed at least the overall story. I think it’s very rating appropriate and its appeal would extend to a large audience. It has a humorous feel to it without being over the top. It has all of the elements of a comedy, especially those of the last few years but it still has that twist that makes it interesting and relevant. There hasn’t really been a comedy about presidents after they don’t win as the incumbent and that’s interesting in and of itself and it’s a funny comedy still. There isn’t a lot I think you should do to this screenplay; as a rough draft, I think this is at a very good start. If the story line gets any more complex it will lose that broad studio-type comedy feel I think. Again, it flows so nicely right now; nothing is left unresolved, there aren’t any irrelevant or under developed characters, and the plot and storyline have a very original feel in my opinion. Strongest Elements: I think the plot and storyline are the strongest elements of this screenplay. It also has great structure, which just makes it very easy to follow. The characters are great, there’s nothing distracting, even Kenny’s sister Cecilia is a nice layer to the screenplay, this rock for Kenny, which he takes for granted. Angela is a great character as well, she’s like that attractive role in every comedy, and she fits perfectly into this screenplay. The only minor issue I have with Angela is that it kind of feels like Kenny starts the new coffee shop just to Page: 1
repay her for her losing her job, yet in some way, he’s able to win his daughter back because she’s upset that he chose the professor that gave her an F to run the store. We see in the last act that he was really trying to help Liz pass the class, but it’s kind of confussing how and why Liz finally let’s Kenny back into her life. It’s like Eldrick does all the work for Kenny, I feel like Kenny should be the one to really do the action that changes Liz’s opinion and Eldrick simply helps her see that. The timing of the screenplay I would keep pretty much the same, there aren’t scenes that dwell too long or aren’t explained well enough. If you’re looking to make major changes, I wouldn’t start here. It already feels like a major motion picture, honestly, I think as a base or skeleton for this screenplay, you’re already there. Weakest Elements: If I had to say there was a weakest element to this screenplay, it would be dialogue. However, I think the dialogue overall is very realistic, true to character and consistent. Liz’s dialogue is perfect, she sounds exactly how I would imagine her when I read her lines. Kenny, I would consider making his dialogue more esteemed, I guess I would say. I’m not suggesting any changes to his dialogue, but if you were playing around with anything I would try for a more dignified dialogue, I think then the reader would feel more for what Liz is feeling. I mean, her dialogue accomplishes letting the reader know where she is coming from, but as it is, Kenny does sound like a pretty loving, kind of typical dad, not the former President of the United States. Just in his dialogue though, of course, his actions speak louder than words, but I think the reader could get a better sense of where Liz is coming from through Kenny’s dialogue as well. Donna’s dialogue is good too, she reminds me of Julianna Margulies’s character, Alicia Florrick, in the show “The Good Wife”, not sure if you’ve seen that or not. Still dignified like Kenny as she does want to be senator, but I think at times, she sounds too much like Kenny, or another male Politian, I think if she had dialogue that also made her feel more woman/motherly like she was intelligent enough to be senator, but still needed to rely on her husband for her to be successful, at times she just seems like another male Politian Kenny is running against and you lose that connection that you long to see reunited throughout the screenplay, but again, just my opinion, as I realize much of that can be controlled by the actress. If you let the dialogue stand, it would still fit really well with this script. Act I: There isn’t a lot I would change with Act 1. This is a very strong section to the entire script. It sets up the characters very well. The first 20 or so pages read very quickly and although it’s not very clear where the story is going, the characters pull you in. The screenplay has a great opening scene. It starts off as any action adventure genre would; it brings in the audience very quickly. After the reader discovers the secret service agents are just doing their regular routine with their boss, President Kenneth Lincoln Jefferson, it’s easy to see that this is going to be a comedy but there’s still something intriguing that lures the reader to want to know more. The pace is very good through this act. The reader quickly gets a feel for who each character is. They are all familiar and relatable but unique at the same time. It’s easy to see Donna as ‘the Good Wife’ who stands by her man to represent the perfect family and Liz, the diligent private boarding school daughter who could totally be Page: 2
spoiled and rude but would prefer to work for everything she has in an effort to be defiant of her Politian father who in actuality wants what’s best for his daughter, but is too busy to understand what she really wants. Nate and Eldrick are perfect, they have just the right amount of lines to give rest to just the three main characters and they add some depth to the screenplay, but they are not distracting in the least bit. Act II: Again, this is a well thought out act. We see Kenny try to reconnect with his daughter even though he’s going about it all wrong. The middle part of the screenplay keeps everything moving right along. The only thing with this act that I would recommend is maybe making the final climax get a little more exciting. I believe the big climax of this screenplay is when Kenny finally buys the coffee shop that Liz works at and gives her a raise and cuts her hours and she get’s upset for the last time and quits. That moment could be bigger so the reader would get that sense that he’s never going to mend that relationship with his daughter. It needs that scene where you really feel Kenny is never going to get things together. He has mishap after mishap but that final blow where you think Donna and Liz will never speak to him again is kind of missing. This could fall into act III even, but I do like how he works at getting both Liz and Donna back into his life throughout the last act. Act III: Kenny’s character evolves at a very realistic rate. As the script plays out, the reader can see him realize that he has indeed lost everyone, besides his sister, in his life and that he truly does want to change. You did a really good job of painting the ‘who is President Kenny?” picture. Going back to his dialogue, I think more emotion could be pulled into this screenplay, even though it’s a comedy, but evolving his dialogue and his character a little more from the beginning to end. As it stands, I felt like I was supportive of Donna and Liz not wanting Kenny in their lives, but by act III I kind of wanted him to have everyone come back to his life, but I didn’t really care either way. The one thing here I would really work on would be to really make the reader want Kenny to win Liz and Donna back. I like the aspect that as Kenny is helping Donna with her campaign; it’s never clear whether Donna is going to take him back or not. However, again with the scene where Kenny punches Senator Gordon Goldsack in the face, there should be some element where it seems like he’s never going to get Donna back. Then when you tie in him really fighting hard to win her back, it’s a relief that she and Liz for that matter welcome him back into their lives. The agents play in very nicely in the last act as well. They really do help move the story along without being distracting or focusing solely on what Kenny, Donna and Liz are doing. I really liked the scene where Eldrick helps Liz overcome her angst against her father by sharing a relatable story of his mother with her, I would definitely keep that.
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