I had so much fun brainstorming screenplay ideas for Twilight origin stories. Per the official rules, I submitted five 500-character outlines for consideration. Although I wasn't one of the 40 writers chosen, the experience was well worth the effort. Below are my screenplay pitches for Aro, Benjamin, Emmett, Garrett, and Huilen. If you would like to share your proposals that did not advance to the semi-finals, please leave a comment below with a link to your blog, or send me a tweet.
Thank you for reading. Enjoy!
The Alchemist's Son
The son of a Greek alchemist, eclipsed by his brother's achievements, finds the formula for success with the help of a mysterious traveler.
ARO, 25, thought by peers to be a demon for his accursed touch, devises plans to create the perfect society where man's power rivals that of the gods.
His sister and a passing stranger are the only ones to show Aro kindness. He vows, in their honor, to one day mete out justice and mercy according to his strict moral code.
The Business of Miracles
A magician and his protégé perform miracles in the streets for money, which intrigues an Italian aristocrat, as Cairo is pummeled by winter storms.
BENJAMIN, 15, is favored by the Egyptian god Shu, so his uncle believes. Benjamin's gifts feed his family, but they also attract those who chase after bigger spoils.
Two men race one another to claim the ultimate prize. They barely believe their crimson eyes as they watch a boy make sport of uncontrollable power.
The Heart of a Monster
A young man atones for his past, and breaks the law to do so, in order to show kindness to a family he has never met.
EMMETT, 20, after a close encounter in the frozen wilderness, embarks on a journey to pay his debts. This is his final act before he can fully embrace eternity. However, not everyone accepts the gift of forgiveness.
As Emmett finds strength to face his fears, he unwittingly sets into motion events that challenge the edicts of the vampire world.
I Will Follow
Andrew Jackson vanishes prior to the Battle of New Orleans as one seasoned soldier follows a trail of clues leading back to the Revolutionary War.
GARRETT, 25, a newborn, meets a 13 year old courier in 1780 on the road to Charleston. Garrett spares the boy after hearing of his torture by fiendish captors.
Choice, loyalty, fairness, life. A vampire has a unique perspective on all four. Add a mystery to the mix and Garrett can't help but fight for what's right.
The Promise of Angels
A menace resides in the forests of Brazil, while the fate of the Mapuche teeters between one girl's secret and another girl's quest for the truth.
HUILEN, 17, is puzzled by her sister Pire's angel stories. They are strange, like the elders' legends. Legends Huilen ignores until members of the village begin to disappear.
Italian attaché Joham oversees Brazilian ventures. He is clever, but unprepared for a showdown with Huilen over the families he has torn apart.
Some of the students' offerings were hasty sketches. A few of the pieces presented were formulaic; even worse, sentimental. But four artists found poetry in the suggestion, the tease, the pale outline held up to the light that could only be filled in by someone with nothing to lose. Of all the measures taken to assign significance to mindless repetition, the exercises that examined tone and tempo held all the promise of a generation.
Syd's Thursday morning lacked any distinguishing features from the day before. Same gloomy dawn, same bathrobe, same kitchen table, same flat expanse of brown grass and weeds that reached all the way to the horizon. Syd was in search of a better outlook on life, but she hadn't exerted a whole lot of effort of late in the undertaking. The day of the week didn't matter, the weather forecast didn't matter. The stains down the front of Syd's bathrobe weren't worthy of distress or contemplation. They looked almost paisley-like, the stains, in shades of red and brown. No coffee in the house meant no breakfast. Breakfast was caffeine. Syd stood in front of her open cupboards. A tin of salty little fish or a box of baking soda were her meal choices. She sighed at the toppled over tower of coffee filters. She'd take tea if she had any. Syd reached for the fish. She wondered if she'd feel different with a belly full of omegas. Would they ease the headaches? Syd pulled back the top of the tin and watched a trickle of golden oil make an exclamation point on a splotch-free patch of terry cloth.
A ripped jersey with the number six on the back, along with knee/elbow pads and a pair of wobbly skates, were bundled up in mothballs down in the basement. The incriminating evidence was tucked in among the Christmas decorations. Santa, Frosty, and Rudolph comprised the inner circle that knew all about Mrs. Henderson's past. Santa, Frosty, and Rudolph even conversed amongst themselves about the hush-hush-keep-it-secret aspiration Mrs. Henderson hid from her neighbors and kin. The holiday trio didn't need a lot of words to get the gist. They felt Mrs. Henderson's disillusionment every time she rummaged through the boxes.
"Patty's biggest dream?" Santa asked his mates when Mrs. Henderson trudged back upstairs.
"Roller derby stardom!" Frosty and Rudolph answered with a giggle and a snort.
Shirley stands sentry over old family plots and archived secrets. She is one in a long line of Truth Tamers, women in Shirley's family who write down the stories others work so very hard to bury. Truth Tamers do not seek vengeance or wish ill will on anyone. On the contrary, Shirley and her kin throw back the veil on indifference, neglect, and ignorance so we may all learn to move forward. People stop and stare at the wound that festers. Truth Tamers are at the ready to record the crowd's hushed and unguarded thoughts. People turn their heads toward the screams, and the Truth Tamers capture profiles in self-consciousness, impatience, pleasure. We tend to project our good side, but the Truth Tamers are drawn to the uncomeliness we think no one notices. In the shady places pearls and gold shine. Shirley has an eye for hard to find treasure. She walks through blood and fire for one tiny, precious drop of verity.
Dig in. Make the stuffy nose run like a tiger's at its heels. Singe the tip of that sickly thick tongue. Piquant peppers will get you to knock back the water you refuse to drink. It's cold and flu season and you rub up against, and kiss on the lips, every virus that crosses your path. What's up with that? Flirt with disaster all you want, but respect my six foot cushion front, back, up, down, and all the way around.
And about that darkness...it's needed to put into perspective exactly how illuminated my thinking, my philosophy really is. Can I reason out a clear path for my life by using logic and historical lessons and unbiased observations of the people I sit next to every day? I think I can...I think I can... Or maybe it's all a game of descending into my own little solipsistic pit with the belief my talking stick is the prettiest.
But it's so plush and comfy down here!
The truth is, when the darkness is preoccupied, I want to know: What kind of power has control over chaos? Now that's some action I wouldn't mind getting in on. Enlightened, indeed.
Sleep comes easier now. The voices, for the time being, are tired of listening to themselves. Even the most ardent fans of nightmares--Guilt, Shame, and Regret--have turned on the morning light and refuse to look into the shadows. Short-lived respite, this. A truce of sorts has been called between this world and the next. No unwelcome visitations from the grave for at least a few more days. Sometimes evil loses its touch. Evil takes a holiday to regroup and focus on the most efficient means of making mayhem. When the darkness is preoccupied we can go about our business like there is a tomorrow.