The Pitch: Jerry Maguire in a wheelchair.
The Premise: "A hotshot sports agent parks in a handicapped spot and gets sentenced by a judge to spend a month in a wheelchair," recalls a creative exec at a major production house. "Which is fine, until he falls for a woman with a real disability, but doesn't explain that he isn't actually handicapped. How's that for a third-act complication, motherfucker?!"
Suggested Tagline: You had me at paraplegic.
The Pitch: Like Friends, except everyone's homeless.
The Premise: "The cast was supposed to be young and good-looking; they just happened to live on the streets," recalls a prominent TV agent. "The conceit was that everyone would hang out in Central Park instead of Central Perk. The guy really thought we could sell it to NBC."
Suggested Cast: Michael Pitt (Chandler), Courtney Love (Rachel), Gary Busey (Joey), Pete Doherty (Ross), Natasha Lyonne (Phoebe), Mary-Kate Olsen (Monica).
The Pitch: Empire Records meets Rendition.
The Premise: "A DJ who specializes in playing 'torture' music to extract information from detainees. A major producer took my partner and me out to China Grill to discuss his idea," says a screenwriter. "He said he had Jim Carrey on board for the title role. He described the first scene of the movie as, 'Jim Carrey hops into a limo after getting a page in the middle of a show he's performing. Cut to him walking, slow motion, into a dark room, where a tense interrogation of a drug dealer is taking place. He proceeds to break out two black bags that contain ... turntables.' That was the last we heard."
Suggested Tagline: Rockin' for the free world.
Spayed in Manhattan
The Pitch: Sex and the City meets Trading Places meets Homeward Bound meets The Emperor's New Groove.
The Premise: "An heiress party girl trades places with her dog in a freak accident and is forced to make it on the streets of Manhattan," says an agent at CAA. "If she doesn't change back before she gets spayed, she has to stay a dog forever."
Suggested Tagline: You'll howl, beg, and roll over as the summer's biggest little comedy warms its way into your heart.
Suggested Cast: Haylie Duff (the party girl), Nicollette Sheridan and Kevin Kline (the parents), Morgan Freeman (the dogcatcher with a heart of gold).
The Pitch: I Am Sam meets The Goonies.
The Premise: "A ragtag band of physically and mentally challenged vigilantes tries to take down McBeggar, an evil capitalist who has enslaved a group of handicapped folks to work in a panhandling scheme," recalls a development exec. "Presumably, their handicaps made them more likely to solicit donations. That's as far as I got."
Suggested Cast: Robin Williams, Tim Allen, Artie Lange, and Steve Buscemi (the vigilantes); Alan Cumming (the evil capitalist).
The Pitch: The Wizard of Oz meets Seabiscuit.
The Premise: "A down-on-his-luck racehorse is worried he may be off to the glue factory because he just can't seem to win the big one," remembers a development exec at an animation studio. "Until one day he stumbles upon a pair of magic tennis shoes to run in."
Suggested Tagline: The neighs have it!
From Project Redlight