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The Black List 2008: The Full List


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The Black List 2008: The Full List

Today saw the release of the annual Black List, an index of the year's best-liked, not-yet-produced screenplays. To compile it, more than 250 film executives were polled and each script had to be mentioned four times to warrant inclusion. The one with the most mentions is Kyle Killen's The Beaver (see our exclusive review here!), and No. 2 is by Jay Reiss, the guy who played the word pronouncer in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. The full list (with synopses!) is after the jump. Special congratulations is due to Nick Confalone, former writer of Vulture's daily Industry post, whose Knights (co-written with Neal Dusedau) is included.

67 mentions:

THE BEAVER by Kyle Killen

“A depressed man finds hope in a beaver puppet that he wears on his hand.”

61 mentions:

THE ORANGES by Jay Reiss & Ian Helfer

“A man has a romantic relationship with the daughter of a family friend, which turns their lives upside down.”

44 mentions:

BUTTER by Jason Micallef

“A small town becomes a center for controversy and jealousy as its annual butter

carving contest begins.”

42 mentions:

BIG HOLE by Michael Gilio

“An old cowboy goes on a mission to recover his money after a million dollar

sweepstakes scam cleans out his entire bank account.”

40 mentions:

THE LOW DWELLER by Brad Ingelsby

“A man trying to assimilate into society after being released from jail discovers that someone from his past is out to settle a score.”

39 mentions:

****BUDDIES by Liz Meriwether

“A guy and a girl struggle to have an exclusively sexual relationship as they both come to realize they want much more.”

34 mentions:


“When Herb Winter’s wife of fifty years dies, the faithful but sexually frustrated widower moves into a retirement community to start living the swinging single life.”

29 mentions:

BROKEN CITY by Brian Tucker

“A New York private investigator gets sucked into a shady mayoral election.”

24 mentions:

I’M WITH CANCER by Will Reiser

“A autobiographical comic account of one man’s struggle to beat cancer.”

22 mentions:

OUR BRAND IS CRISIS by Peter Straughan

“Based on the eponymous documentary. James Carville and a team of U.S. political consultants travel to South America to help Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada (aka ‘Goni’) become President of Bolivia.”

21 mentions:

INGLORIOUS BASTERDS by Quentin Tarantino

“American soldiers, French peasants, French resistance, and Nazis collide in Hitler

occupied France.”

20 mentions:


“After thirty years of marriage, a middle-aged couple attends an intense counseling weekend to decide the fate of their marriage.”

16 mentions:

GALAHAD by Ryan Condal

“A revisionist twist on the King Arthur legend from the knight Galahad’s perspective.”

THE WEST IS DEAD by Andrew Baldwin

“During the Great Depression, a group of semi-outlaws go on the run from the law when forced to vacate a town as the Hoover dam is constructed.”

15 mentions:

MANUSCRIPT by Paul Grellong

“A contemporary thriller about three bright, young New Yorkers with boundless literary ambition who will stop at nothing to get what they want.”

THE TUTOR by Matthew Fogel

“A twenty three year old recent graduate decides, at his mother’s insistence, to tutor his ex-girlfriend’s younger sister for the SATs. When they begin a romantic relationship, his ex-girlfriend moves back home for the summer and begins to fall back in love with our anti-hero as well.”

14 mentions:

THE DESCENDANTS by Nat Faxon & Jim Rash

“A newly widowed father — also one of the richest men in Oahu, Hawaii — takes off with his two rebellious daughters to track down his Kauai.”

SUNFLOWER by Misha Green

“Two young women struggle to escape from and exact revenge on the deranged college professor who holds them hostage.”


“A couple tries to maintain a long-distance relationship.”

13 mentions:

THE AMERICAN WAY by Brian Kistler

“Two brothers are affected by their parents’ murder, leading one to the FBI and the other to a life of crime.”

NOWHERE BOY by Matt Greenhalgh

“The story of John Lennon’s rise from lonely, Liverpool teenager to iconic rock star.”

RAINDROPS ALL AROUND ME by Reed Agnew & Eli Jorne

“A socially awkward high school teacher learns to ‘dumb it down’ in order to fit in with those around him.”


“The outlandish journey of a young man in search of love and what he’s meant to do with his life.”

12 mentions:

A COUPLE OF DICKS by Mark Cullen & Robb Cullen

“Two veteran LAPD detectives attempt to track down a stolen, mint-condition, 1952 baseball card that one of the detectives hopes to sell in order to pay for his

daughter’s upcoming wedding.”


“A teenage apprentice in a macabre circus for the dead yearns to bring his true love back to life, but not before encountering the many dangerous and mysterious gothic characters that stand in his way.”

GAY DUDE by Alan Yang

“A comedy about the friendship of two high school seniors that’s torn apart after one comes out of the closet.”

UNDERAGE by Scott Neustadter & Michael Weber

“A seventeen-year-old seduces a twentysomething man and then blackmails him into being her boyfriend in order to exact revenge on her high school aged ex.”

11 mentions:

CODE NAME VEIL by Matt Billingsley

“Based on actual events. A young CIA agent struggles to maintain his morality while navigating dangerous and absurd conditions in 1980s Beirut.”

THE FOURTH KIND by Olatunde Osunsanmi

“A woman investigates an extraordinary number of unexplained disappearances from one small town in Alaska.”


“A relapsed alcoholic loses his job and his wife and decides to live on his front lawn while selling all of his belongings in a yard sale.”

FOXCATCHER by E Max Frye & Dan Futterman

“Based on the true story of John du Pont, a paranoid schizophrenic who was heir to the du Pont fortune. After building a wrestling training facility named Team Foxcatcher on his Pennsylvania estate, Du Pont shot and killed Olympic gold medal-winning grappler David Schulz.”

THE PHANTOM LIMB by Kevin Koehler

“A troubled private detective uncovers a blackmail scam involving a gangster who runs a brothel that caters to amputee fetishes (and other taboo sexual interests) and the

doctor who performs the body modifications.”

10 mentions:


“When an upper class dysfunctional New York family learn their youngest daughter has joined a cult in the midwest, they recruit a cult deprogrammer and go on the road to save her while both parents and siblings confront their issues with one another.”

THE F-WORD by Elan Mastai

“Two best friends struggle with falling in love without ruining the bond between them.”

UP IN THE AIR by Jason Reitman

“A ruthless human resources executive, whose job is to fire people, looks forward to the only joy he has in life, his millionth frequent flyer mile, a goal he pursues with

zeal as the rest of his life falls apart around him because he is constantly on the


9 mentions:

BACHELORETTE by Leslye Headland

“Ten years out of high school, three unhappy single friends come together as

bridesmaids at a classmate's wedding, get drunk, get high, and trash the wedding dress

while romancing new and old loves and settling old business.”

KNIGHTS by Nick Confalone & Neal Dusedau

“A kickass British adventure where knighted celebrities (an entrepreneur, a soccer player, a musician, and an actor) are called upon to defend their country.”

JONNY QUEST by Dan Mazeau

“Young Jonny Quest travels the world with his scientist father, adopted brother from India, Bandit the bulldog, and a government agent assigned to protect them while they investigate scientific mysteries.”

THE KARMA COALITION by Shawn Christensen

“A professor embarks on a quest to uncover the truth behind his wife's death before the world ends.”

KEIKO by Elizabeth Wright Shapiro

“A white teenage girl, who was adopted and raised in Japan by Japanese parents, travels to America to find her long lost father, comedian Dana Carvey.”

TWENTY TIMES A LADY by Gabrielle Allan & Jennifer Crittenden

“Based on the book by Karyn Bosnak. After realizing that she has had twice as many sexual partners as the national average, Ally swears off new guys and decides to go back and visit the previous twenty guys and find out if she overlooked anyone.”

Click on the link for the full list

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