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Writer Scripts


John A. Valenti 3rd
Drama Action & Adventure

Almost 200 high-altitude U.S. heavy bombers raid Nazi-held oil fields in Rumania. Based on one of the most-daring -- and, most-controversial -- missions of World War II. Told through the story of a fictional set of brothers, the eldest haunted by a line from Dracula as he shoulders the burdens of war and brotherhood, as well as real key and ancillary participants. [Real brothers flew on the mission, by the way. And, note: In 1943, the country was spelled Rumania NOT Romania.] By a national-award winning writer and first-time script-writer who used first-hand reporting, exclusive interviews of raid participants and access to a once-SECRET U.S. post-mission report, as the basis for the telling. THE MOST-RECENT EVALUATION / REVIEW SAID OF THE SCRIPT'S STRENGTHS: "The premise likely has broad, mainstream, international appeal. This script features some truly spectacular aerial action, that is wrought with suspense, rendered with unimpeachable authenticity, offers prospective directors heaps of dazzling cinematic material to work with, and is sure to leave moviegoers breathless in more than a few scenes. That the bombers are flying so low makes the spectacle even more visually striking and unique. The dialogue crackles with life, is solidly characterized, finely tuned to the period setting, and is at times very funny. The globetrotting setting adds appropriately epic scale and scope to the war adventure. The ending is cathartic and moving." THE FIRST EVALUATION of this REVISED FIRST DRAFT gave it a 9/10 for DIALOGUE and stated: "With a bit of further development, could become a truly special project in the vein of SAVING PRIVATE RYAN."] The Black List evaluators wrote in reviews of both the original draft and the revised draft: 1. "The scale of the wartime aerial sequences are designed to rock a theater . . . The script's realism is further enhanced by great dialogue that rings true to the brotherhood -- and sometimes naiveté -- of military men thrust into war. The script is highly aware of how to leverage its high stakes against a compelling ensemble of heroes." 2. "The story is epic and both the mission's victories and tragedies are told compassionately and truthfully . . . Succeeds as a war epic, humanizing a gigantic event [in] history and honoring the men who were a part of it." 3. "The utter chaos and 360-degree violence seen in [the] prolonged climactic battle is the stuff war film dreams are made of." 4. "Doesn't neglect the human side of war: how the characters respond to it, how they endure it (or don't), and how it challenges their own ideals." 5. "Ploesti is indicative of a writer who cares deeply and is personally invested in the history of this event." 6. "This is a potentially compelling, true story about duty, courage, and brotherhood, much like SAVING PRIVATE RYAN."