Zero To Sixty

William Naumann

Book Cover

GENRE

DRAMA

    Core Theme

    HOPE. IT'S ABOUT MAKING THE CHOICE TO BELIEVE YOU CAN HAVE WHAT YOU WANT.

    TIME PERIOD

    Contemporary

    COMPARABLE TITLES

    CRAZY HEART, ROCKSTAR

    CHARACTER LIST

    JEFF OWENS. 56. LEAD. PRINCIPLED AND PRAGMATIC, BUT DOGGED BY RESPONSIBILITIES AND REGRET.

    TINA: 58, ENTERTAINMENT PRODUCER AND JEFF'S HIGH SCHOOL CRUSH.

    LAUREL: 35, JEFF'S SECOND WIFE, A CONSTANT, UNSYMPATHETIC ANTAGONIST.

    JJ: 30S, JEFF'S UNEMPLOYED SON, STRUGGLES WITH DRUG ADDICTION.

    MARK: 50, TINA'S CONTROLLING BOSS AND SOMETIMES LOVER.

    BARRY: 50S, A MEMBER OF THE BAND JEFF QUIT AND THE FIRST ONE HE RECONNECTS WITH.

    Logline

    Jeff (56) is a bar manager who gets a second chance at rock stardom when he reconnects with his old band at his high school reunion. Tina (58), Jeff's old flame is there too and they rekindle a relationship that gives them a glimpse of what their lives could have/ should have been.

    Genre

    Drama

    Target Audiences

    Age: 55+,35-54,18-34

    Target Gender: Universal

    Setting

    Santa Barbara, Malibu, Las Vegas

    Based on a True Story

    No

    Starting Description

    Jeff (16) and his band play a gig at their high school without permission and get busted, but not before making an impression on Student Body President Tina (18), who also happens to be Principal For the Day. Jeff is dragged into the principal's office where Tina gets o decide his fate.

    Ending Description

    Tina finds Jeff at his Malibu cottage to apologize for her part in Jeff's fall from grace and confess her love. Jeff, also smitten, asks Tina to manage his music career and the lovers seal their future together.

    Group Specific

    The author has not yet written this

    Pitch Adaptation

    Jeff (56), a club owner who has subjugated his own rock star dreams to make others happy, finds love with Tina (58), his old crush at their high school reunion. Jeff and Tina share a magical, musical moment and embark on a star-crossed affair that revisits the glory days of youth as well as the promise of a second chance to pursue his passion for music and become the man he was meant to be. Inspirational, original, plot-driven music is included, ala A Star Is Born. The author is a published songwriter and club owner.

    WGA Number

    The author has not yet written this

    Mature Audience Themes

    Language/Profanity

    Plot - Other Elements

    Happy Ending,Coming of Age,Meaningful Message

    Plot - Premise

    Internal Journey/Rebirth

    Main Character Details

    Name: Jeff

    Age: 56

    Gender: Male

    Role: Protagonist

    Key Traits: Charming,Selfless,Romantic,Empathetic

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Tina

    Age: 58

    Gender: Female

    Role: Emotional

    Key Traits: Funny,Adventurous,Decisive,Empathetic,Charming,Romantic,Heartthrob,Unapologetic

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Laurel

    Age: 35

    Gender: Female

    Role: antagonist

    Key Traits: Aggressive,Blunt,Greedy

    Additional Character Details

    The author has not yet written this

    Genre

    ROMANCE, MATURE AUDIENCE, DRAMA

    Brief

    Jeff Owens gets a second chance at his dream career and his dream girl. He wavers between his responsibilities and his passion but eventually decides to risk it all for music and love.

    Overall Rating

    FAIR

    Point of View

    SCRIPT

    Narrative Elements

    Authors Writing Style: FAIR

    Characterization: FAIR

    Commerciality: FAIR

    Franchise Potential: FAIR

    Pace: FAIR

    Premise: GOOD

    Structure: FAIR

    Theme: GOOD

    Accuracy of Book Profile

    No. The logline needs to convey what obstacles stand in the way of the protagonists. The short summary only describes the first scene and the last. It should be a brief recap of the entire story.

    Draw of Story

    Neither the chemistry between the band or between Jeff and Tina is nearly as strong in the opening as it is later in the 'present day'. His first chance doesn't come across as the painful missed opportunity it appears to be later on.

    Possible Drawbacks

    The scenes in general should be more concise, often points are repeatedly unnecessarily. The antagonists are unrealistically, over-the-top bad. They need to be more human for the story to be relatable. Enough good things happen for the protagonist that there's little doubt as to how things will turn out.

    Use of Special Effects

    THE STORY DOES NOT RELY ON SPECIAL EFFECTS

    Primary Hook of Story

    Neither the chemistry between the band or between Jeff and Tina is nearly as strong in the opening as it is later in the 'present day'. His first chance doesn't come across as the painful missed opportunity it appears to be later on.

    Fanbase Potential

    If done well the story could click with adults around the protagonist's age who feel they missed their chance. It has to walk a fine line of feel good fantasy while staying relatable.

    Awards Potential

    This type of feel good fare isn't usually up for awards. A fantastic original song could break out.

    Envisioned Budget

    LOW BUDGET

    Similar Films/TV Series

    CRAZY HEART, A STAR IS BORN (IN STORY, BUT NOT STYLE). THIS IS CLOSER TO A HALLMARK MOVIE IN TONE AND STYLE

    What’s New About the Story

    The most original aspect about this story is that he struggles with the choice of whether to go for it again. This could be improved if the decision was made harder because with everything the audience knows it appears to be a no-brainer.

    Lead Characters

    Their honesty with each other. That should be a defining reason why they end up together.

    Uniqueness of Story

    No. The main area for improvement is that there's a lack of struggle for the protagonist. The reunion falls into Jeff’s lap. His old crush throws herself at him repeatedly. The band begs him to come back and sing. There’s not much conflict in leaving a marriage with someone who is as bad as Laurel. Even JJ’s drug addiction gets resolved without Jeff changing who he is. An audience is going to envy Jeff when they need to identify with him. Even a feel good movie needs struggle to feel authentic. He has to earn the happy ending for this to be more than fantasy.

    Possible Formats

    Film - Studio, Film - Indie, Film - Streaming

    Analyst Recommendation

    WORK IN PROGRESS

    Justification

    This is a script that tells us everything instead of showing it to us. It's a lot of talk compared with little action. There are good moments in the dialogue, but in between exposition and repetition. Condense the talk and expand the emotion. Flesh out the other characters beyond just Jeff. Choose visuals over talk. Prime example: In the high school scene, Jeff needs to show us that he loves Tina, instead of just saying it as she walks away.

    Tips for Improvement

    More obstacles to overcome. Make Jeff's dilemma harder. Antagonists more nuanced and realistic. More storytelling through actions, less through dialogue. More depth to supporting characters.

    Brief

    Jeff and Tina are attracted by his music in High School but never get together. Their forty year reunion brings her and the band that succeeded without him back into his life. Both give him glimpses of the life and love he could have, but getting them will mean leaving their established lives for a chance at more.

    What We Liked

    Many people feel they deserve a second chance at their dreams, but few of us will ever get it. This film shows that even if that second chance comes around it still won't be easy to risk everything for it, but you can take the leap.

    Key points: It's got a feel good ending. Music can make it come alive. Everybody has a missed chance they want back. It stars actors in an underserved age group. Will resonate with adult caregivers.

    Synopsis

    Jeff Owens plays an illegal gig with his band on the high school grounds. After they're shut down, Tina, his crush and the principal for a day gets him off the hook. Forty years later Jeff is a music club owner and operator. An old friend asks if they could hold the year reunion at his club and could he get the band to play. The band went on to success but only after Jeff got his girlfriend pregnant and he dropped out. Now he's got two kids. One, JJ is addicted to drugs. He's married to Laurel, a materialistic, spiteful second wife he married long after his first wife died in childbirth. Meanwhile Tina is taking time off from her job as a entertainment producer and her controlling boss/lover.

    At the reunion the band invites Jeff up to sing one of their early songs, one he wrote about Tina, with her name in it. Then he looks into the crowd to see her staring at him. That night goes well. He even gets her number. Soon after the band gets booked to do an 80s concert in Las Vegas and they want to Jeff to guest for his signature song, but he won’t commit. Lauren kicks JJ out of the house after Jeff tries to give him a place to stay. They fight intensely about this but Jeff tries to compromise. Laurel refuses to go to Vegas with him and for him to go at all. At night Jeff works on a song on his porch and sees Laurel sneaking off with another man.

    The band invites Jeff to Vegas again and again he declines. Then he runs into Tina, she wants to know why he hasn’t called. He suggests coffee sometime. Then band presses Jeff again and this time he has a breakdown looking in the bathroom mirror. His life is a disaster, what is he going to do about it? He has coffee with Tina, which turns into an all day date with Jeff’s grand-daughter from his other child, Jenny. Even grand-daughter Nikki can see Tina and Jeff like each other. It’s even more obvious when they share a kiss on the beach.

    Jeff gives JJ the job of playing guitar at the club. For father and son it’s a show of support and trust, not just a financial lifeline. Jeff also decides to go to Vegas and takes Tina with him. The moment he gets to sing in front of a packed arena is a dream come true. So is the rest of the weekend at the hotel with Tina. He plays her a song he started writing when he was sixteen but didn’t know how to finish until now.

    They agree the weekend will be their little secret but Jeff comes back a new man. He’s even working on a new song, called Zero to Sixty. JJ, however, is back to old habits. Jeff and Tina have another weekend getaway to his Malibu cottage, but it’s interrupted by a call from work. JJ has overdosed and at the hospital Jeff can only watch and hope he hangs on. Tina wants to come but he pushes her away. He tries to take it back but she ignores his calls.

    Jeff takes JJ to a rehab center and they show each other support before he walks in the door. He knows this will be the end with Laurel, who sees JJ as a lost cause, and it is. Jeff then meets Tina and her boss/boyfriend Mark, who decides he needs to insult Jeff to mark his territory. Jeff leaves. Tina finds out that Jeff’s performance is going viral and wants to help him. Mark won’t let her so she quits. She finds him at the cottage. They both know what they’re doing is risky, but they won’t let this chance slip away. They are going to take another shot at their dreams, but this time together.

    About The Author

    William Naumann is a singer, songwriter and restaurant manager.