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Review
Era:    1930s
Locations:    New York, Le Havre, Djibouti, Madrid, Paris, Barcelona
Budgets:    High
Genre:    Drama, Period Drama, War Epic
Logline:
A prequel to the 1942 American classic “Casablanca” that traces the globetrotting adventures that lead to Rick meeting Ilsa in Paris.
Strengths
A prequel to “Casablanca” is certainly an ambitious idea. Chronicling the adventures of Rick up to the point when he meets Ilsa in Paris, the script has an adventurous, globetrotting plot that involves both gun running for Haile Selassie and fighting in the Spanish Civil War. The script’s dialogue is its strongest aspect, deftly capturing Bogart’s portrayal of Rick with many deadpan one-liners. There’s also a very fun role for Antoine de Saint-Exupéry as Rick’s sidekick but it’s a shame when he drops out the plot half way through. Zumaya is the emotional heart of the movie but they definitely need more scenes together to justify the second act of the script.
Weaknesses
The formatting is unorthodox to say the least and the script proved a very challenging read. In particular, the lack of proper scene headings and character introductions made it very difficult to follow. Unfortunately, the formatting is so poor that if this was submitted to any major production company it would most likely be immediately dismissed. The 16 page initial flashback scene is very jarring and the information could be conveyed faster and later in the script once the audience has their bearings. Cutting this sequence would also bring the inciting incident on page 40 to around the 25 minute mark which would probably help improve the script’s pacing. The montages (e.g. on p.43) need to all be much more more detailed and on the bottom of page 47 there’s a description of a scene that seems to be missing. On page 58, the scripts describes the characters hearing dialogue from the Lorca play but it needs to be written out as dialogue. At about this stage the script becomes very, very confusing, bordering on unreadable and reads more like an initial sketching of half-finished ideas than a coherent, finalized screenplay.
Prospects
Warner Brothers television actually produced a short-lived television prequel series back in the 1980s so there’s a slight chance they may be interested in reviving this idea with an actor like Ryan Gosling in the Bogart role. However, this draft is nowhere near the standard required to justify the large budget required to shoot this script and the main focus in future rewrites should be turning these notes into a completed screenplay with proper formatting so that it is much more easily digested.
Pages
100

REVIEWS

« »

PROFESSIONAL EVALUATION #2

Overall Rating

3/10

Review Rating

–/5

Published

06-30-17

Premise

4/10

Plot

3/10

Character

3/10

Dialogue

5/10

Setting

3/10
MORE INFO

PROFESSIONAL EVALUATION #1

Overall Rating

6/10

Review Rating

–/5

Published

06-24-17

Premise

6/10

Plot

6/10

Character

7/10

Dialogue

6/10

Setting

7/10
MORE INFO

REVIEW

Era
1930s
Locations
New York, Le Havre, Djibouti, Madrid, Paris, Barcelona
Budgets
High
Genre
Drama, Period Drama, War Epic
Logline
A prequel to the 1942 American classic “Casablanca” that traces the globetrotting adventures that lead to Rick meeting Ilsa in Paris.
Strengths
A prequel to “Casablanca” is certainly an ambitious idea. Chronicling the adventures of Rick up to the point when he meets Ilsa in Paris, the script has an adventurous, globetrotting plot that involves both gun running for Haile Selassie and fighting in the Spanish Civil War. The script’s dialogue is its strongest aspect, deftly capturing Bogart’s portrayal of Rick with many deadpan one-liners. There’s also a very fun role for Antoine de Saint-Exupéry as Rick’s sidekick but it’s a shame when he drops out the plot half way through. Zumaya is the emotional heart of the movie but they definitely need more scenes together to justify the second act of the script.
Weaknesses
The formatting is unorthodox to say the least and the script proved a very challenging read. In particular, the lack of proper scene headings and character introductions made it very difficult to follow. Unfortunately, the formatting is so poor that if this was submitted to any major production company it would most likely be immediately dismissed. The 16 page initial flashback scene is very jarring and the information could be conveyed faster and later in the script once the audience has their bearings. Cutting this sequence would also bring the inciting incident on page 40 to around the 25 minute mark which would probably help improve the script’s pacing. The montages (e.g. on p.43) need to all be much more more detailed and on the bottom of page 47 there’s a description of a scene that seems to be missing. On page 58, the scripts describes the characters hearing dialogue from the Lorca play but it needs to be written out as dialogue. At about this stage the script becomes very, very confusing, bordering on unreadable and reads more like an initial sketching of half-finished ideas than a coherent, finalized screenplay.
Prospects:
Warner Brothers television actually produced a short-lived television prequel series back in the 1980s so there’s a slight chance they may be interested in reviving this idea with an actor like Ryan Gosling in the Bogart role. However, this draft is nowhere near the standard required to justify the large budget required to shoot this script and the main focus in future rewrites should be turning these notes into a completed screenplay with proper formatting so that it is much more easily digested.
Pages
100

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