A Tip On Writing The Main Character Of A Comedy Screenplay by Steve Kaplan

Watch the video interview on Youtube here

Steve Kaplan: To go back to Connections, in SPY Movie we have Melissa McCarthy meeting all sorts of people that are going to come to help her. She meets Aldo who is this seemingly Italian spy who is working for the CIA but who is always on the make and seemingly is always trying to stick his tongue down Melissa McCarthy’s throat. Her friend Nancy who is there helping her from the basement in Langley (Virginia) shows up in Rome and is going to help her deal with all her missions as she’s trying to retrieve the nuclear bomb.

Even Rayna who is seemingly her nemesis (played brilliantly by Rose Byrne) turns out (in the end) in fact be another ally. So in Connections is the part of the movie in which your protagonist not only is moving outside their comfort zone, becoming a more actualized, more complete person. But they are able to reach out and create new relationships on a new basis.

Watch the video interview on Youtube here

One of the things that I do want to talk about in terms of the Normal World, one of the things I didn’t mention yet is that in the Normal World your protagonist has flawed or absent relationships.

Bill Murray (GROUNDHOG DAY) doesn’t have a girlfriend, he doesn’t really respect women. Ben Stiller in TROPIC THUNDER, his only relationship is his agent and even that is just kind of somebody to get him a tebow to be sent to this jungle where he’s shooting this movie. And of course, Melissa McCarthy (SPY) has no relationships. She pines for Jude Law and we can see from an earlier scene where Jude Law takes her out to dinner to thank her for being such a good helper back in the CIA basement that’s where he kind of gives her this terrible crazy cupcake piece of jewelry because we can see that he doesn’t really see her as an equal.

Watch the video interview on Youtube here

So in the Connections part of the Comic Hero’s Journey, because your character is transforming, your character is growing, and again, without them knowing it, we the audience can see it, but they’re still not aware of it. That is when these unexpected allies and also unexpected enemies can come out. That’s the part of the movie where Melissa McCarthy realizes that Karen Walker who she idolized, who was a star femme fatale spy at the CIA was really a double agent.


QUESTION: Think of any comedy movie, does the main character have any flawed or absent relationships in the beginning?


Check out Steve’s Book – THE HIDDEN TOOLS OF COMEDY:
The Serious Business Of Being Funny





Watch Problemski Hotel on Vimeo here

PROBLEMSKI HOTEL: For the inmates of the multinational residential center somewhere in Europe, the circular, black comedy that is the cross-frontier migrant’s life ‘within the system’ becomes even blacker in December. For we are in the European ‘season of gladness and joy.’ Bipul doesn’t want to admit it to himself, but the Russian girl’s arrival makes a difference: Lidia. Hope? Surely not! A future? Get real! December is also the ninth month of Martina’s pregnancy. Pregnancies don’t go round in circles; they end in eruptions. Because when the situation is hopeless, rescue is near.



Watch Surviving Skokie on Vimeo here

SURVIVING SKOKIE: They survived the horrors of the Holocaust and came to America to put the past behind. For decades they kept their awful memories secret, even from their children. But their silence ended when a band of neo-Nazi thugs threatened to march in their quiet village of Skokie, Illinois “because that is where the Jews are.”

Surviving Skokie is an intensely personal documentary by former Skokie resident Eli Adler about the provocative events of the 1970s, their aftermath, his family’s horrific experience of the Shoah, and a journey with his father to confront long-suppressed memories.




Hi, Mom!” Zooppa has partnered up with T-Mobile on a brand new project! T-Mobile gives its customers unlimited data and texting in over 140 countries and destinations—at no extra cost. T-Mobile wants to inspire those customers to travel and get off-the-beaten path—to be explorers, not tourists—and unlock adventures they can share when they take their phones. The ‘Hi, Mom’ project focuses on sharing the most extreme moments of adventure outside of the United States with family and friends back at home.

The project is open for submissions until February 21st, 2017 at 4:00 PM PST. There are $40,000 in total cash awards available that will be assigned to the top eight videos chosen by T-Mobile. In addition to the cash awards, all winning videos will also be featured on T-Mobile’s social and web platforms or as a part of a compilation celebrating adventurous moments from around the world.




Watch THE WEEKEND SAILOR on VOD January 10, 2017

THE WEEKEND SAILOR is a new feature documentary about the unexpected victory of the Mexican yacht Sayula II in the first crewed sailing race around the world in 1974. The most demanding sailing quest in history.

Sailor, Ramon Carlín visits his rebellious son, Enrique in the United Kingdom and comes across a magazine advertising a sailing race around the world. Although he had been sailing casually for two years, Ramon embarks on this race and brings his son along as an opportunity to not only teach him discipline but real life experiences as well.




Watch CATCH 22: based on the unwritten story by seanie sugrue – coming soon on January 17, 2017

Catch 22: based on the unwritten story by seanie sugrue: With Hurricane Sandy looming on the horizon, five hard-lived friends come to from a send-off celebration alongside an unexplained dead girl. What are friends for?






Find out more here!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (TMNT): Zooppa and Nickelodeon are inviting filmmakers and motion graphic artists from around the world to reimagine TMNT on a global scale through depicting what they are up to in various home towns or cities. The goal is to show how the Turtles would come to life in any given location, using local city or pop culture influences to help tell the story. Zooppa and Nickelodeon are looking for imagination and creativity, the videos made should be a fun way to share Turtle stories from across the globe––authenticity is key!

The project is open for submissions until February 23rd, 2017 at 4:00PM PST. There are $25,000 in cash awards available to the top 10 videos that will be chosen by Nickelodeon.