“Catherine the Great” by Kristina Lauren Anderson took the No. 1 spot on this year’s Black List of the 70 top unproduced screenplays.
The script centers on the upbringing and marriage of the woman who became the empress of Russia in the 18th Century.
The annual lineup consists of the year’s best unproduced scripts in Hollywood as voted on by more than 250 studio execs.
“The Black List is not a ‘best of’ list,” this year’s report said. “It is, at best, a ‘most liked’ list.”
“Catherine the Great” received 51 mentions, followed by 38 for Adam Morrison’s “Rockingham,” 35 for Randall Green’s “The Swimsuit Issue” and 34 for Brian Duffield’s “The Babysitter.” Screenplays needed at least six mentions to be included.
The list originated in 2004 with development executive Franklin Leonard.
This year’s announcement was made by tweets with a YouTube link to a video announcement. Participants included Reese Witherspoon, Elizabeth Banks, Daniel Radcliffe, David Oyelowo, Rashida Jones, Will McCormack, Rian Johnson, Ava Duvernay, Damien Chazelle, Phil Lord & Chris Miller, Matthew Weiner and Billy Ray.
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The first project announcement, presented by Nathan Fillion, was for “Professor Pasghetti” by Jeff Feuerstein. It centers on a famous children’s author with an affinity for drugs and hookers.
Elizabeth Banks announced that Brian Duffield’s “The Babysitter” had been selected. “I’m actually on a casting couch right now,” she said. “I love well-told well-written stories so I’m excited to announce that ‘The Babysitter’ is on the 2014 Black List. Congrats, Brian.”
CAA led the list of clients on the Black List with 19, followed by UTA with 12, WME with 11 and Verve with eight.
Full list of screenplays:
Catherine the Great by Kristina Lauren Anderson – Sophia Augusta takes control of her life, her marriage and her kingdom becoming Russia’s most celebrated and beloved monarch: Catherine the Great.
Rockingham by Adam Morrison – A look into the mania of the O.J. Simpson trial through the eyes of Simpson’s sports agent Mike Gilbert and Los Angeles Police
Department Detective Mark Fuhrman.
The Swimsuit Issue by Randall Green – A nerdy high schooler, who fancies himself an amateur photographer, attempts to create a “Swimsuit Issue” featuring his
high school classmates in hopes of raising enough money to go to summer camp.
The Babysitter by Brian Duffield – A lonely 12-year-old in love with his babysitter discovers some hard truths about life, love and murder.
Rothchild by John Patton Ford – A young, well-educated loner kills the members of his mother’s estranged family one-by-one in hopes that he will inherit the
family’s vast fortune.
The Wall by Dwain A Worrell – A sniper and his spotter must kill and avoid being killed, separated from an enemy sniper by only a 16×6 foot prayer wall.
Cascade by Kieran Fitzgerald – Based on the documentary-style film “The Day Britain Stopped” directed by Gabriel Range, an oil tanker collides with an Iranian
patrol boat in the Strait of Hormuz, triggering a chain of tragic disastrous events.
Aether by Krysty Wilson-Cairns – In near future London, a revolutionary technology has been invented that can record sounds hours after they were made.
Detective Harry Orwell, inventor of this technology, is part of a pilot program where investigators record and analyze past sound waves and finds himself the prime suspect while investigating a string of brutal murders.
Situation Comedy by Cat Vasko – A young woman, feeling directionless, stumbles upon a mysterious courtyard where she is transported into a sitcom-like
universe, becoming a major character on this “TV show.”
Tau by Noga Landau – A woman held captive in the futuristic smart house of a serial kidnapper realizes that her only hope of escape lies in turning the house’s sentient computer against its creator.
Echo by Chris MacBride – A CIA drone coordinator battles his own psychological health while trying to decipher whether his wife has been replaced.
Mena by Gary Spinelli – In the late 1970s to mid 1980s, Barry Seal, a TWA pilot recruited by the CIA to provide reconnaissance on the burgeoning communist threat in Central America finds himself in charge of one of the biggest covert CIA operations in the history of the United States, one that spawned the birth of the Medellin cartel
and eventually almost brought down the Reagan White House with the Iran Contra scandal.
Dodge by Scott Wascha – A genre-bending action comedy about a pill-popping thug who begins to develop superpowers.
North of Reno by Banipal Ablakhad, Benhur Ablakhad – A down and out prison guard attempts to murder a recently released inmate and steal a half million dollars in hidden heist money.
On the Basis of Sex by Daniel Stiepleman – The story of Ruth Bader Ginsberg, as she faced numerous obstacles to her fight for equal rights throughout her career.
Moonfall by David Weil – The investigation of a murder on a moon colony.
The Munchkin by Will Widger – A little person private eye investigates the disappearance of a young actress in 1930s Hollywood, leading him to uncover
conspiracies involving “The Wizard of Oz” and MGM brass.
Matriarch by Eric Koenig – A prison psychologist has 48 hours to convince a serial killer to tell her the location of her final victim before she is executed.
The Defection by Ken Nolan – After the Edward Snowden affair, an intelligence contractor defects
to North Korea, taking a mysterious bag with him, and the CIA hires
an expert trained during the Cold War to help with the case.
The Long Haul by Dan Stoller – A self-destructive trucker estranged from his son travels cross country with a problematic nephew whom he barely knows.
Berliner by F Scott Frazier – As the Berlin Wall is being constructed at the height of the Cold War, a veteran CIA agent searches for a Soviet mole who has already
killed several fellow agents, including a young agent he’s mentored.
One Fell Swoop by Greg Scharpf – A self-centered divorce attorney’s life takes an unexpected turn when he is guilted into spending time with the family of a one
night stand who dies in a freak accident.
Bird Box by Eric Heisserer – A woman tries to lead her children to safety after the world is invaded by monsters who turn you insane upon sight.
Huntsville by Anthony Ragnone – A girl tracks down the man responsible for her father’s death and avenges him.
In the Deep by Anthony Jaswinski – A lone surfer attacked by a shark and stranded on a reef must find a way back to shore before succumbing to her injuries.
The Founder by Rob Siegel – The origin story of McDonald’s and Raymond Albert “Ray” Kroc.
The Search by Spencer Mondshein – An expert tracker battles his demons while on a journey to rescue his estranged older brother, who has vanished in the uncharted wilderness of the Northwest.
Yellowstone Falls by Daniel Kunka – After an apocalyptic event, a mother wolf is separated from her mate and the rest of the pack, and has to protect her cubs from
swarms of mutated humans.
Syndrome (E) by Mark Heyman – A detective solving the case of a disturbing film with subliminal images that is killing people who come in contact with it discovers a greater evil.
Beef by Jeff Lock – The manager of a fast food chain in Muncie, Indiana, gets in over his head with some bookies.
Black Winter by Jonathan Stewart and Jake Crane – On the eve of a U.S.-Soviet disarmament treaty, a British scientist and a NATO medical investigator discover a secret Soviet plot to unleash a terrifying biological weapon.
Cartoon Girl by Randall Green – When a young boy finds out that the cartoon character he’s in love with is based on a real girl, he drags his single father on a
road trip to track her down.
Road to Oz by Josh Golden – The early days of brilliant, whimsical author L. Frank Baum, who gave the world “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.”
Big Time Adolescence by Jason Orley – A 16-year-old virgin with a growth deficiency slowly gets corrupted by his hero, an aimless college dropout.
LBJ by Joey Hartstone – Lyndon Johnson goes from powerful Senate majority leader, powerless vice president to president of the United States following the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
Possession: A Love Story by Jack Stanley – In a seemingly perfect marriage, a man discovers that he is actually wedded to a demon inhabiting another woman’s body.
The Secret Ingredients of Rockey Cola by Mike Vukadinovich – Twin brothers with opposite personalities are separated at a young age and go on to live drastically different lives, eventually being reunited in the effort to save the company Rocket Cola despite their love of the same woman.
The Shower by Jac Schaeffer – At a baby shower for their longtime friend, the attendees suddenly find themselves in the middle of a different type of shower: meteors that release a vapor turning men into blood-hungry aliens.
Celeritas by Kimberly Barrante – When a missing astronaut crash lands 40 years after he launched having not aged a day, his elderly twin brother helps him escape the NASA scientists hunting him. As the government closes in, neither brother is who he claims to be.
I Am Ryan Reynolds by Billy Goulston – An inside look at the marriage, career and mental state of 2010’s Sexiest Man Alive.
Jackpot by Dave Callaham – After a group of bumbling teachers win a large amount of money, their greed and incompetence put them on a hilarious path toward death and destruction.
Plus One by April Prosser – Just out of a long-term relationship and realizing that all her friends have married, Rachel discovers that her only remaining wingwoman is Summer, a loud and oversharing wildcard.
Wonka by Jason Micallef – A dark, reimagining of the Willy Wonka story beginning in World War II and culminating with his takeover of the chocolate factory.
Beauty Pageant by Shea Mirzai and Evan Mirzai – After they unwittingly get their daughters disqualified from the child beauty circuit, two warring stage mothers are forced to go head to head in an adult beauty pageant.
Bismarck by Jared Cowie – As Britain struggles through the darkest hours of World War II, a naval officer, raw from the loss of his ship during the evacuation
of Dunkirk, is thrust into the thick of the hunt for the Nazi super-battleship Bismarck. Based on a true story.
Morgan by Seth W. Owen – A corporate risk management consultant is summoned to a remote research lab to determine whether to terminate an at-risk artificial being.
Shadow Run by Joe Gazzam – A viral attack puts lives in danger, forcing a CIA agent to initiate a secret prisoner exchange of Russia’s most notorious spy for the
American scientist who can create a cure.
The Bringing by Brandon Murphey and Philip Murphey – A private investigator investigates a mysterious murder at a downtown Los Angeles hotel and uncovers its dark supernatural history. Based on true events.
The Takeway by Julia Cox – A young, play-it-safe art restorer is swept up in a whirlwind romance with her charming boss, who turns out to be a world-
Blink by Hernany Perla – Years after being fully paralyzed during an infamous bank robbery, a man is taken hostage for the secrets in his head. His only form of communicating with the outside world – and outsmarting his captors – is his ability to blink.
Boston Strangler by Chuck Maclean – In the 1960s, a determined detective puts his life and career on the line to solve the case of the Boston Strangler.
Erin’s Voice by Greg Sullivan – A deaf computer genius’ world is thrown into turmoil when he meets a troubled coffee shop waitress whose voice turns out to be the only thing he can, miraculously, hear.
Everybody Wants Everything by Abraham Higginbotham – As his life reaches its neurosis-inducing midpoint, a married man asks himself an eternal question with no real answer — “Am I living the life I want to be living, or do I need to start over before its too late?” Torn between two lives, he’s forced to do the one thing he doesn’t want to do — make a choice.
Gifted by Tom Flynn – A 30-year-old man attempts to continue raising his deceased sister’s 7-year-old daughter, a kid genius, while battling his own mother for custody.
Manchester by the Sea by Kenneth Lonergan – An uncle is forced to take care of his teenage nephew after the boy’s father dies.
Merc by Andrew Bozalis and Derek Mether – When a disgraced former soldier finds success by working for a private secuirity company, the illegal the company employs challenges his worldview.
An uncle is forced to take care of his teenage nephew after the boy’s father dies.
Professor Pasghetti by Jeff Feuerstein – A famous children’s author, with an affinity for drugs and hookers, finds himself on a journey of self-discovery with a dead stripper and her eight year old son.
Erin’s Voice by Greg Sullivan – A famous children’s author, with an affinity for drugs and hookers, finds himself on a journey of self-discovery with a dead
stripper and her 8-year-old son.
The Eden Project by Christina Hodson – When a race of genetically modified humans living secretly among us declare war on Man, the fate of the world is in the
hands of a rogue “Synthetic” named Eve and a young girl who is about to discover she’s not all human.
A Garden at the End of the World by Gary Graham – In a post-apocalyptic world, a recluse, trying to recreate trees to produce new life, takes in a young girl who is on the run from some bad men, including her father.
Uncle Shelby by Brian Brown and Elliott DiGuiseppi – The little-known personal, heartbreaking, and darker side of cartoonist-author Shel Silverstein.
Coffee & Kareem by Shane McCarthy – An overweight, foul-mouthed 9-year-old reluctantly teams with the straight-edge cop sleeping with his mom to take down Detroit’s most ruthless drug lord.
Forgive Me by Max Hurwitz – How Mike Wallace helped to create “60 Minutes” and how, years later, he confronted and dealt with his own depression.
In Real Time by Chai Hecht – A young man convinced that his mentally unstable sister needs to relive her high school prom from 10 years prior to overcome
her depression goes to great lengths to re-create that event.
In This, My Darkest Hour by Bryan McMullin – A man rises to power during the California Gold Rush, tearing his family apart.
Money Monster by Alan DiFiore, Alan Rauf and Jamie Linden – After a man loses all his money in the stock market by following the advice of a Wall Street TV host, he takes the money adviser hostage on live television.
My Friend Dahmer by Marc Meyers – Based on the acclaimed graphic novel by John Backderf, Jeffrey Dahmer struggles with a difficult family life as a young boy and during his teenage years he slowly transforms, edging closer to the serial killer he becomes.
Seducing Ingrid Bergman by Arash Amel – Based on Chris Greenhalgh’s eponymous novel. Ingrid Bergman and war photographer Robert Capa engage in a passionate, life-changing romance in post-World War II Paris.
The Beautiful Game by Zander Lehmann – A high school soccer star’s personal life becomes complicated leading up to his championship game as he develops a relationship with his soccer coach.
The Man in the Rockefeller Suit by David Bar Katz – The story of Clark Rockefeller, a con artist thought to be American royalty until he kidnapped his young daughter initiating a manhunt that revealed his true identity.
The Wilde Ones by Tyler Shields – In a corrupt Southern town, a dangerous sociopath runs bareknuckle boxing fights that pit its youths against each other.