Disbelieving his addicted mother that he is fatherless, a faith-driven basketball star must jeopardize his championship hopes to uncover the heartrending truth about his long-lost dad.

    Logliner Posted on March 30, 2020 in Drama.
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    3 Review(s)

      How can any child be fatherless? Maybe the guy who our protagonist believed was his dad, isn’t. Maybe that’s the discovery. That would also explain the “why now?” question. Or does his mother claim that it was an immaculate conception? That could help with the faith bit.

      He’s faith-driven. What bearing does that have on the story? Why is that important enough as a defining characteristic to be in the logline?

      When you say he’s a basketball star? Like NBA level?

      His goal – “discover the heartrending truth about his long-lost dad” – why is his goal not “to find his father”? The truth might be that he’s actually passed away (or whatever the heartrending truth is), but that’s like an Act II break, and I believe a logline should stop before this point.

      I think the basic elements are there, I think they just need adjusting slightly to firm it up a little.

      Singularity Answered on March 30, 2020.

      Mike,

      I appreciate your comments. Is this logline better?

      Logline: A college basketball star, who was abducted as a child by his fugitive mother must jeopardize his championship hopes to find his long-lost dad.

       

      By the way the definition of “fatherless” is:

      adjective
      1. having no father because he is dead or absent from the home.
        “at thirty-eight, she was left with six fatherless children”
      on March 31, 2020.

      Then there’s no way he would not believe his mother if his father is not there? It’s pretty evident if he’s raised by his mother alone that he is fatherless. Does she tell him he’s dead? Is that what he doesn’t believe? I think the inciting incident needs clarification.

      The new logline is getting there. I kinda feel like, once all this came to light surely the basketball championship became pretty insignificant to him? His entire world has been thrown into disarray and I’m guessing he can’t find his dad (which I’m assuming means a journey) and continue playing basketball at the same time. I think this new version could do with the inciting incident back in so we understand what one event kicked off this journey.

      I assume his mother who abducted him is his actual mother. Or is she lying? Did she abduct him from the father?

      on March 31, 2020.
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        Hey Mike,

        Thank you for challenging me on this logline. Thankfully, a very established film producer has already read my screenplay and has expressed great interest in producing it. Of course nothing is guaranteed until the contract is signed.

        Unless you would like for me to send you my screenplay, here is a brief background.

        Our protagonist was abducted as a small child by his mother due to drug related charges. She changed his identity so the father could not easily find him. Her guilt turned into abuse towards her son, always telling him she was raped when he pressed her for information about where his father was? Disbelieving her, he began to formulate a plan to figure out the truth. Basketball and crying out to God for help are the two things in his life which helped him to cope. I will include a brief plot summary and a short, one page synopsis. If you have any other ideas, I will welcome your continued input. Thanks again.

        Screenplay: “A Shot At Faith”

        Genre: Inspirational/Sport/Faith-based

        Plot Summary: Mitchell Craig, a reverent and prized basketball recruit has three goals. One. Earn the love of his self-destructive mother, Betsy Craig. Two. Find his long-lost dad. Three. Win a championship. After Mitchell misses the game-winning shot in his high school’s regional final, little does he realize the journey to achieve at least one of his goals is about to begin.

        Synopsis:

        MITCHELL CRAIG (17), a reverent and prized basketball recruit has three goals. One. Earn the love of his self-destructive on the lam mother, BETSY CRAIG (36). Two. Uncover the truth about his long-lost father. Three. Win a championship. After Mitchell misses the game-winning shot in his high school’s regional final, little does he realize the journey to achieve at least one of his goals is about to begin.

        Mitchell learns he is sought by the “who’s who” of major-college coaches, but is torn accepting a college scholarship or staying at home in hopes of rescuing his self-destructive mother. Mitchell’s love for Betsy is unquestioned, but her demons of hatred and disdain peak during a pivotal jail scene when Mitchell visits her, furthering his confusion about leaving.

        Mitchell prayerfully considers his options for the future, then accepts a basketball scholarship to a major university, where he breaks into the starting lineup, bringing renewed hope to a team of noncontenders. Along the way, he meets fellow freshman, EMILY FRASER, a compassionate member of the women’s team. Becoming fast friends, he trusts Emily with his disturbing past while feeling something more as the season progresses.

        Upon seeing Mitchell play during a nationally televised game, a mysterious fan, MARK SANDERS (his estranged uncle), makes contact, requesting that they meet. Mitchell soon learns that his missing father, BOBBY, a former college-star himself, died five years earlier, but left Mitchell several mementos of their brief past along with an impassioned heartfelt message. Mark also reveals that Bobby had two goals: find his son and win a championship. Mitchell then learns that Betsy abducted him when he was two years old to avoid an outstanding arrest warrant for possession of drugs. Aware of her son’s discovery, vindictively, Betsy removes Mitchell from college as his team struggles to qualify for postseason play.

        Mitchell, devastated, struggles to forgive his mother, but eventually accepts the fact that God’s ways are higher than his. As he continues to pray for Betsy, an unusual event jolts her into facing the reality that maybe she needs God in her life. Guilt-ridden, Betsy begins searching for answers while having Mitchell reinstated back to the team just before the regular-season ends.

        Mitchell breathes new life into his undermanned teammates, helping his university storm through the national tournament and into the championship finals. After being seriously injured in the title game, Mitchell makes a dramatic recovery, inspiring his teammates to come back from an insurmountable deficit. Mitchell then hits the go-ahead shot with no time left, winning the national championship in honor of his late father’s memory.

        Mitchell realizes his final goal, and an even greater victory when Betsy, who has accepted Christ, asks for him to baptize her at a moving, down-by-the-river church service. The years of deception and hostility between Betsy and Mitchell are amazingly washed anew, demonstrating that true confession and forgiveness can repair even the most broken of relationships.

        Tagline: Basketball was just a game; finding out the truth became his goal.

        www.carllord.com

        Logliner Answered on March 31, 2020.
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          >>>Betsy removes Mitchell from college as his team struggles to qualify for postseason play

          How can she legally do that?  He’s attending on a basketball scholarship  — which she has no control over.

          And the coach and college stand by and do nothing?

          Singularity Answered on April 1, 2020.

          A student athlete on a college scholarship can be removed if they are under 18 years of age, which Mitchell was. I researched this angle before putting it into my screenplay. In my screenplay, Betsy stormed into the college president’s office and demanded his release or she would bring about a lawsuit. The president reluctantly agreed. The coaches were then told.

          By the way, I would be glad to email my screenplay to you if you would like to read it?

          Thanks,

          Carl

          on April 1, 2020.

          I beg to differ.

          An athletic student on scholarship represents a significant financial investment for a college.  Further a winning basketball team represents an huge money-maker for a college and its conference.   According to the Washington Post, in 2014, by merely making the “Sweet 16” a college conference could reap US$5,000,00. And making the Final Four was worth over US$8,000,000 million.

          I find it hard to believe that a college or conference would put that amount of money at risk by not putting up a legal fight for a star player.

          Which they can certainly afford.

          And it’s a legal fight which the basketball player can win.  He has a legal remedy.  Because he’s on the cusp of 18, he can ask for a writ of emancipation from her parental custody. Her self-destructive behavior gives the him the grounds to have his mother declared an unfit  parent.  The lawyers for the college or conference can at least slap an injunction on her while any and all lawsuits drag through courts –which will takes months.  By then his participation in the tournament a fait accompli,  And he will be 18, which makes her action moot.

          And is it credible to believe that any court or any jury would decide in a favor of a mother who out of sheer spite seeks to deny her son a shot at his hoop dream?

          And certainly the college president would not want to face the avalanche of criticism and negative publicity that would descend upon him for not fighting for the player’s chance to realize his hoop dream. His failure to man up could cost him his job.

          Of course, his mother’s antics could  present a serious complication to his hoop dream by distracting him from focusing on his game.

          on April 1, 2020.

          I won’t argue that in the legal system a player can potentially contest a parent removing he or she from a college scholarship. The problem is, this scenario in real life could take a long-time to play out the courts. I didn’t have that kind of time in my screenplay to deal with that. Sure, I could have had the college president and the head basketball coach push back, but again if this happened, and Mitchell continue to play and possibly lead his team to the championship, there would still be that dark cloud of legal allowance at the end of the movie, which I believe would have taken away from the actual outcome, and could have dimmed the light of forgiveness between Mitchell and Betsy at the end.  Don’t movies often-times bend the rules of reality at times?

          Again, without you having read my screenplay to see how I set all of this up, I will condense and hopefully give you a clearer perspective.

          1. The unknown uncle provides proof of Mitchell’s true identity and information about his father.

          2. Mitchell tells Betsy (mother) that he met with his uncle and knows all about her drug charges and abducting him.

          3. Betsy, in her anger removes Mitchell from college and the team.

          4. Mitchell and his uncle approach the NCAA to reveal that Mitchell might be ineligible anyway due to his false identity that Betsy raised him under.

          5. Betsy, as miserable a person that she is, finally realizes that she needs to forgive herself and allow God to enter her life. As a result, she has Mitchell reinstated back onto the team.

          6. The NCAA finally rules that Mitchell is eligible, and will complete the season and playoffs under his birth name.

          Kind regards,

          Carl

          on April 1, 2020.
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