Friday, October 08, 2004

Mark Loeffelholz and his Bottle of Death

Wait a second there -- this isn't just a snazzy title for a hit new horror film, nor is it the name of a pageturning novel, though it certainly should be.

Actually, it's the name of a great new screenplay by Mark I've recently done "coverage" on -- industry-speak for a formal review.

Bottle of Death tells the story of L'Esquadrille Americaine, in the early years of the Great War (WWI) -- a gang of brash young American flyboys who choose to toss their lot in with the rest of the French fliers against the Germans, or Boche, as the French were fond of calling them. This was before the Americans had formally entered the official exchange of fire. Their intentions stemmed from very altruistic motives, as they'd heeded the call of the Free World to battle against the Kaiser's tyranny. Men flocked to the French side in direct opposition to their government's orders, and when challenged to return back home -- many refused.

Mark sets up an excellent romance between the protagonist Johnathan Rimmon and a young French debutante, Sophie -- attracted to him for more than just his purported inherited wealth and good looks. In the leadup to the US' involvement in the War, the boys of the esquadrille pull increasingly dangerous feats of daring as they're sent on ever-daring missions across No Man's Land.

Mark's my kind of screenwriter -- someone I aspire to be like in many ways. I've read all of his projects: he's penned three so far: Retail (which if it doesn't get green-lighted in the next month, I'm almost tempted to produce part of it myself), The Disappearance of Wiley Hood, and now Bottle of Death.

I've been amazed with the speed with which this man is able to produce snappy tight dialogue, key to a screenplay's success on screen. Mark's got a knack for this sort of thing, the kind of guy I'd like to have in my own script review group that will be meeting weekly up here soon in Toronto. I've made a point of referring to him in my private correspondence as the Dialogue Doctor. He knows why. Also, if you can beleive this -- Mark's got a sequel in the works -- but I'll let him tell you about it.

And the amazing thing about this dude is he doesn't even do this FULL-TIME! He's a salesman in 'real life.'

So, if ever there were reason enough to give a guy a Hollywood break, Mark's provided all the necessary details. I look forward to reading more from this truly inspiring writer. The industry needs more players like this.

Ask him if he'll let you read some of his stuff. He's pretty good about that sort of thing. But you should definitely be keeping your eye out for this man. His name's going to be adorning all manner of movie marquees and title credits soon.

And maybe we can coax him into contributing a word from the wise on our little blog here?

Mark can be reached at


Post a Comment

<< Home