When a crew of mismatched oilfield workers stay late to finish a job in the middle of nowhere, they are attacked by bloodthirsty monsters. They’ll have to band together to fight through blood guts, and teeth if they want to live to see another sunrise.
The term ‘monsters’ is very generic? What kind of monsters?
(I just mean, Godzilla is a monster, a Gremlin is a monster, a werewolf is a monster, Big Foot is a monster, Hannibal Lector is a monster. There is such a wide variety of things that could be considered monsters that saying monster doesn’t really paint a picture in the readers head. What specific monsters attack them?)
Sounds like a great premise for a horror. Could the monsters have come out as a result of the drilling? Perhaps this would add an environmental metaphor. As suggested above, you need to specify a main character and define the story in the context of their experience instead of a group.
I’m not sure if this is still in development phase but for fun here’s how I’d write it thinking of it as a Liam Neeson/Gerard Butler etc vehicle.
“A suicidal oilrigger reluctantly takes one last shift to fix a malfunctioning sensor off the Coast of X, only to find there’s no malfunction. There are (X in the water/air/pipes/water ever). “
This is basically The Grey where the monsters are Wolves – one of my favorite man vs beast.
After (something other than plain) vampires attack their oilfield, a (protag) must…
Full disclosure: I hate vampires. Still, what is the purpose of using a common monster? Is it a metaphor, people sucking oil from the ground are like vampires sucking the life out of people? That may not be direct enough or sharp enough. The Nosferatu type is a minor twist. Creatures that need the oil to live seem more in sync with the idea or original creatures unearthed by the drilling. Bottomline, is ‘vampires in oilfield’ the best hook?
What is the purpose of the protag’s money troubles? If anything, it’s a detail for the script as the logline has enough with the predicament of the vampires. First day of work would add extra conflict in terms of her being unfamiliar with things, but is that enough? Is the oil drilling a collective “sin” that the protag is part of or is she, say, an environmental monitor who opposes some of the company’s practices? The latter creates new conflict, between the protag and the others, so, if not this, think of something else about her that would add significant conflict.
Clarify the size of the oilfield because some are small and some are massive. A location would help, the country or US state.
As above, fill in the blank of what she must do, aside from the assumed and even if the plan starts at the Midpoint. Get to a vehicle or phone? Gather everyone into a safe place while they await help that was summoned?
My two cents.
>>A park ranger turned
Backstory. Not necessary for the logline. “Rookie” might suffice.
>>>regrets her first day on the job
The logline needs to focus on the problem she faces, and what she must do about it How she feels about the situation is irrelevant in the logline.
Maybe slip “remote” into the logline to describe the location. That lays the foundation for why there is no cellphone communication. And anyway, it’s one of many complications she faces. Even if they had perfect 4G communication, they’re in a rugged, remote location — no one can get there fast enough to rescue them at night, right? They must rescue themselves.
If I understand your story, you seem to be striving to work out a dramatic process of antithesis in terms of her relationship with the crew. Something like:
After struggling all day in a rugged, remote oilfield to win the respect of her male crew, a rookie female roughneck must fight all night to save them from vampires.
Not sure if this works as a logline, but it works in my (demented) mind as a story hook. The “vamping” as a gimmick to work out the relationship — I can see possibilities.
And vampires is the generic, shorthand term for all blood-sucking monsters. I don’t see how you can,or need,to use another term in the logline, one that nobody will understand. Use other nomenclature in the story if you must, but stick with the shorthand in the logline.
Whatever. I would pitch this as a story about feminist empowerment story that happens to be of the horror genre. Just as “Get Out” is about about race told as a horror story.
This is all great advice! Thank you all so much for taking the time to offer your thoughts.
When a young woman with money troubles gets hired to work in the oilfield, she expects hard work, but when her crew stays late to finish a job and is hunted by bloodthirsty vampires, she will now have to work harder than ever if she wants to see the sunrise.
Eh…still not sure.
It gets rid of the “mismatched” crew and gives us a central character we also get a specific monster…
I don’t know, what do you folks think?
This is all really valuable info in helping me to clarify what the film is about and who the characters are in an economical way. There are answers to these inquiries which I will expand upon below as a way to pull the most interesting/necessary bits for a logline that works. I hope you’ll indulge me. I really am grateful for the help.
[The story itself takes place at a remote oilfield location in northeastern Colorado. There are locations there that get visited once or twice a year simply because they don’t produce on a regular basis. These locations also have unusable cell phone service and you could conceivably be hours from anything approaching civilization. This crew of oilfield workers (called roustabouts in the industry, but I omitted that from the logline because its a weird word and unnecessary) consist of five characters, four men and one woman. The lead character, Kate, is new to oilfield work and her presence is on the crew is a source of tension simply because she is a woman. It is very uncommon to see a woman roustabout in the industry. She has had a previous career working as a park ranger, but was laid off due to budget cuts and had to make a living wage. Working in oil and gas is the fastest/most reliable way to make a living in her part of the country. Because the job takes 3 hours to get to and from the location, the crew has to leave early in the morning if they plan on getting back before dark. There are numerous “warnings” before they arrive and while they are working which I won’t go into here. However, they end up staying late to finish the job because they don’t want to have to come back due to time and money. As soon as the sun sets, all hell breaks loose.]
Regarding the “vampires”: I appreciate Robb Ross’ statement which is essentially why I wanted to go for creatures that were more feral like real monsters instead of the latex clad models of Underworld or the aristocrats of Interview with a Vampire, which is why I put “creatures” instead of vampires. When you say vampires, folks have certain thing in their heads but specificity is key so “Blood-Beings?”…”Darklings?” Is there a way to describe a blood drinking creature that only hunts at night without being too general and without evoking popular imagery of the vampire?
Regarding the environmental message: I like there being a link but not an overt one. Are the creatures the result of drilling? Probably, but I think that is background in this case. That makes the story more of a Tremors and less of a The Grey I suppose.
Regarding Setting: I set this story in the Colorado oilfield because of the remoteness of the location. It goes without saying that in an ever-increasingly modern world, there are less and less places for protagonists to get genuinely separated from convenience and society. When people hear oil and gas they think of drilling rigs, but have no idea that there are thousands of small tank batteries that litter our landscape tucked away in remote areas without cell service or medical access. Shifts in the oilfield range from 8 to 15 hours sometimes. Workers wake up when it’s dark and still find themselves on location as the sun sets. If vampires were real, these workers would be dead.
What about this…
“A park ranger turned Colorado oilfield worker regrets her first day on the job as she must not only battle for respect from her coworkers but fight for her life against the bloodthirsty night-creatures that have descended on the remote oilfield battery to feed on them after the sun goes down.”
Okay, with such a remote location, the state isn’t necessary.
While it still doesn’t intrigue me, see if this helps to clarify the next attempt: After bloodsucking creatures attack an oilfield that is hours from the nearest town, the first female (worker or driller or x) must…
The respect part isn’t needed in the logline and would be implied by clarifying that she’s the first woman. First day is now a secondary detail.
Considering the angle that she’s the first woman, it’s natural that what she must do is save the men…in a specific way, as was mentioned. And yet, this ‘first woman’ angle feels less-than-natural within ‘vampires in oilfield.’ Consider being direct and exploring the oil sin or consider another setting or another protag.
What’s the main thing motivating you to write this? The idea can evolve in different ways if one focuses on ‘oilfield horror,’ or ‘old-school vampires’ or ‘first woman,’ While each is clear and has potential, and the first and third can work together, all three together feels fuzzy.