It’s the end of October, and you know what that means. Just in time for Halloween, literary manager and horror maven Kailey Marsh has unveiled the 2018 BloodList, which celebrates its 10th edition this year. Like the Black List, which features Hollywood’s best unproduced screenplays, the BloodList highlights the most-liked screenplays and pilots in the horror, thriller, sci-fi and dark comedy genres.
Marsh, who is currently a manager/producer at Brillstein Entertainment Partners and a co-EP on the Hulu series Light As a Feather, has had her finger on the pulse of horror for more than a decade, having founded the BloodList in 2009. Since then, the list has established a significant reputation among producers, studios and networks, as it has opened doors for numerous genre scribes and helped them launch their careers. Roughly a quarter of the scripts that have appeared on the BloodList have gone on to be produced, which is a strong indicator of the impact it has on decision makers. It doesn’t hurt that genre films are hotter than ever in the wake of big box office for Halloween and It as well as a Best Picture win for The Shape of Water, not to mention the pop culture phenomenon that was Get Out.
This year, 71 industry executives at the Story Editor level or above voted for their favorite genre screenplays and pilots of the year, which in this case is considered October to October. This year’s list also included the third annual Fresh Blood Selects — a collection of genre scripts from unrepresented writers that are filtered through a free submission system via BloodList.com. The selected screenplays & pilots are available to view on the BloodList website.
“It’s surreal to have this be the 10th edition of BloodList. I started the list as an assistant, and as someone who has always been a horror fan, and who works with writers on a daily basis, it’s exciting to be able to get these projects the exposure they deserve,” said Marsh.
“BloodList shines a light on exemplary genre writing, which is where some of the most innovative and challenging work is being done. But like comedy, horror and science fiction are often overlooked as categories for sublime writing. Without this curated list, buyers would miss [out] on writers who’ve built the rare breed of a well-crafted story wrapped in a commercial package. Each year’s top entries are like a masterclass in storytelling,” added Eric Heisserer, who wrote Arrival and Lights Out.
This year’s BloodList is dedicated to Rae Roberts, a former Blumhouse employee who supported the list and used her position to champion young voices in the horror genre before her tragic death this past summer. With her memory in mind, here are this year’s hottest genre scripts in both film and television. Happy Halloween, and stay safe out there!
Writer: Chris Thomas Devlin
Logline: Peter has always been told the voice he hears at night is only in his head, but when he suspects his parents have been lying, he conspires to free the girl within the walls of his house.
Reps: UTA & Bellevue Productions
Status: Set up at Lionsgate with Roy Lee, Andrew Childs & Jon Berg attached to produce.
THE DEVIL’S FLAME
Writer: Robert Zappia
Logline: Based on true events. In response to this “astonishing” increase in demand for exorcisms, the Vatican opens a secret exorcism training academy where a young, gifted nun defies the church leadership to join her colleagues in the battle of good versus ultimate evil.
Genre: Supernatural Horror
Writer: Michael Voyer
Logline: A man goes with his fiancé to right his wrongs at his ex girlfriends horse ranch, only to find sinister happenings.
Reps: Verve & Good Fear
Status: XYZ is attached to produce with Dark Castle & The Fyzz.
GET HOME SAFE
Writer: Christy Hall
Logline: On Halloween in NYC, a young woman is targeted and must attempt to flee her pursuers.
Reps: CAA & LBI
Status: Eric Heisserer, Lawrence Grey & Christy Hall are attached to produce.
THE WHITE ROOM
Writer: Bryce McGuire
Logline: Deep in the winter woods of upstate New York, a retiring public school teacher uncovers a carefully guarded secret in an abandoned house.
Status: Rod Blackhurst is attached to direct. Evan Hayes is attached to produce.
29 MOLE STREET
Writer: Skylar James
Logline: A victim of domestic violence herself, a dedicated social worker enters the peculiar home of an adoptive single father of six to check on a recently placed foster child. However she soon discovers that the family is keeping a deadly secret as the action crescendos into a demented game of hide-and-seek where the stakes are life and death. Based on actual events.
Reps: Paradigm & Grandview
Status: In development with Bazelevs.
THE WAKE (Pilot)
Writer: Holly Brix
Logline: A cop finds herself in an unexpected time warp, with unexpected ties to one of the most notorious missing persons case ever.
Writer: Alan van Dyke
Logline: In a future where our most important memories are backed up via cybernetic implants, a hard-luck “memory repo man” stumbles upon evidence of crimes in which he appears to have played a role – problem is, he doesn’t remember them.
Reps: Stacey Testro Int.
THE LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT OF CHARLES ABERNATHY
Writer: Chris LaMont & Joe Russo
Logline: On the eve of his 75th birthday, billionaire Charles Abernathy invites his four estranged children back home out of fear that tonight someone – or something – is coming to kill him. To ensure his family will help protect him from whatever’s coming, Abernathy puts each of their inheritances on the line – they’ll get nothing if he’s found dead by dawn.
Reps: Gersh & Fictional Entity
Writer: Steeve Léonard & Caroline Labrèche
Logline: After losing his wife Elise in a car accident, Lewis Markham stumbles upon a device that lets him travel to a parallel universe, seemingly similar to his own. There he finds living versions of himself and his beloved Elise. Fueled by grief, Lewis manages to kidnap his double and successfully take over his life… for a while at least.
Reps: Circle of Confusion