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Motion picture writer-director and video game narrative designer. Cofounder of Gardens. Co-creator of Blaseball at The Game Band.

2022 Nicholl Fellowship Semifinalist. 2021 American Zoetrope Finalist. 2021 Nebula Award and Hugo Award nominee. Named to The Tracking Board's Young and Hungry List 2015. Student Academy Award semifinalist, 2x Nicholl Quarterfinalist, Austin Screenplay Competition Semi-finalist. Previous credits include Blaseball, What Remains of Edith Finch, Where Cards Fall, Sky: Children of the Light, and more.

Known For
Blaseball, Holdout, What Remains of Edith Finch
Guild Membership


Stephen Bell & J Brett VanderMale
Drama Action & Adventure

2021 American Zoetrope Finalist. Based on the true story of Hiroo Onoda, the infamous Japanese guerrilla fighter who held out on a remote island in the Philippines and fought World War II for 30 YEARS after the war ended. Onoda’s war is a war of occupation, waged by a man-on-a-mission who became a man-out- of-time -- a modern myth.


Stephen Bell & J Brett VanderMale
Action & Adventure Mystery & Suspense

2022 Nicholl Fellowship Semifinalist. When a genius roboticist learns that he is nothing more than an android copy of his human self — one of countless single-serving, disposable duplicates — he plots to steal back “his” family and evade the corporation that created him — desperate to stay off the scrap heap and save the only life he's ever known. A scifi-action satire combining the speculative science and ultraviolence of Robocop and Westworld with the domestic focus of A History of Violence, exploring themes of narcissism, neoliberalism, and corporate exploitation.