More than 2000 women sign petition demanding a firm commitment from Jack Wagner (film producer) to read screenplay addressing Texas judicial system
Jack Wagner – Talent Agents
– Actor, Soundtrack, Producer – The Bold and the Beautiful (1987), Melrose Place (1992), General Hospital (1963), Santa Barbara (1984) – Agency for the Performing Arts (APA), Jeff Witjas – Shelter Entertainment Group, Alan Iezman
Jack Wagner & Adam Sandler’s film company targeted by Texas petition
Will Hollywood just rollover and let prisoner’s suffer?
More than 2000 women have signed an open letter to Adam Sandler calling on Jack Wagner and Hollywood to take “movie action” to tackle injustice against men and women in the wake of revelations that Texas has more prisoners incarcerated than the Soviet Union’s gulag system had. Texas currently has over 290,000 inmates housed at 580 facilities.
The signatories, including state senators, professors of criminal justice, social workers, family, and inmates, call for a “firm commitment” to tackle the unjust prisons in Texas. The petition has also been signed by Beto O’Rourke, and Matthew McConaughey. These two signatories might face each other in the 2022 Texas governors election. Both have expressed interest in the job. The petitions arrived for Jack Wagner at Agency for the Performing Arts (APA), Jeff Witjas last week.
In the open letter to Jack Wagner, the 2080 women write that they are “heartbroken for first-time drug offenders many times addicts who have received extremely harsh sentences in Texas when rehabilitation has proven a cheaper and more effective solution.” The petition goes on to say their family and friends are often heartbroken for and looking for redemption and rehabilitation for the victimless drug crimes.”
The signatories, including attorneys, professors, politicians, family members, and inmates, call on Jack Wagner for a ‘firm film commitment’ to tackle the issue of operating the Texas prison system for profit.
The petition came to light when women discovered the screenplay, a copy which was dontated to all 580 of the state’s prison and jail libraries. The existence of the petition surfaced on International Women’s Day. Women in Texas face extreme prejudice in Texas and often receive extremely harsh penalties for even a small amount of drugs, including marijuana. Marijuana is legal now in 21 states.
Inside prisons, the women are faced with such horrendous conditions… the petition demands that “filmmakers begin to take the issue seriously.” Also, the petition reminds that “even here in the USA in the 21st century citizens are not safe from government oppression.”
Actor, Soundtrack, Producer, Jack Wagner, has not responded to the petition. Nor has Agency for the Performing Arts (APA), Jeff Witjas responded with a comment.
The premise of the story is that, “Adam Sandler writes letters and saves numerous women from the monotony of prison life, and later when he gets into trouble with a drug cartel they return the favor by rescuing him.”
The film would be set in contemporary, Gatesville Texas. There are four women’s prisons located in Gatesville. And of course, Texas is famous for putting everyone in prison for a long sentences for little or no reason. The number of women in Texas prisons has tripled in the last ten years, as mass incarcerations have proven profitable to not only the state but also profitable for an array of business interests.
Writer Alan Nafzger has called on Governor Greg Abbott to, “end the prison industry.”
Recently, “Wheel of Fortune” host Pat Sajak spoke out against the Texas system and put a good word in for mercy and forgiveness out on social media. “How nice for those who have lived such exemplary lives that they can express glee when others have their lives ruined by a mistake, real or perceived,” Sajak tweeted last month.
During the winter’s deep freeze, the The Marshall Project, exposed the horrible prison conditions, “Inside Frigid Texas Prisons: Broken Toilets, Disgusting Food, Few Blankets.”
The petition states, “Why don’t we have the ‘Adam Sandler’ character… sending letters to women in prison and being their friend and trying to help them adjust, giving them hope… and when they get out of prison he picks them up so they don’t have to ride the smelly bus back home… but his pickup truck is a junker, smoking and sputtering … worse than the bus. But his heart is in the right place… He’s the last “chivalrous” man on earth.”
Jack Wagner has not commented on the script, thus far. A statement is expected soon.
Professor Nafzger has made a short treatment of the project available online.
He has made the finished script available at for select filmmakers.
Jack Wagner is a Actor, Soundtrack, Producer known for The Bold and the Beautiful (1987), Melrose Place (1992), General Hospital (1963), Santa Barbara (1984) and is represented by Agency for the Performing Arts (APA), Jeff Witjas.
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In the Twilight saga the vampires are running around during the daytime. Arent vampires supposed to sleep during the day and only come out at night? In the first movie of the trilogy, the writer establishes how this story breaks the rules by establishing new rules; the vampires can be out in the daylight, but must refrain from direct sunlight. While direct sunlight wont kill them, it will expose what they really are. By knowing this, the audience accepts the daylight scenes and the vampires world.
In Cowboys and Aliens the rules are learned as the story progresses. We learn how Daniel Craigs character came to have the metallic bracelet on his arm, what happened to him and how he ties in with the aliens and why theyve come to earth. Learning the rules gradually is a necessity for this story to work because it helped build suspense. If the writer had laid out the circumstances of this unique world up front, the story would have lacked suspense.
Lets start by discussing stories that bend the rules, take us to foreign territories or allow us to explore alien worlds. If the writer takes us to a place that weve never seen before or bends established rules (like aliens in the old west in Cowboys and Aliens), then the writer MUST establish and/or clarify the rules of this unique situation or location. There is one catch; the rules of this world dont have to be established up front. In fact, they can be used as a big twist ending. For example, in the classic film Planet of the Apes from 1968, Hestons character believes hes crash landed on an alien world gone amuck with apes who talk. Thats the established world and we go with it, then in the end the world shifts in a devastating twist when he learns he never left planet earth. Instead, hed crash landed in the future.
Also, doing research will help writers avoid making stupid mistakes. I once read an entire story where the CIA was going around arresting US citizens on US soil for narcotics. The CIA doesnt handle narcotics and their jurisdiction is outside the USA. Knowing the rules and worlds of a story can make it believable, but only if the audience understands it too.
(This might not be the kind of story youre writing! Thats fine. Thats why I keep hammering the idea that you need to do your own analyses of films and books that you yourself respond to, and see whats really going on in the stories that particularly work for you.)
A story is very often a thematic argument between a hero/ine and an antagonist. (You may want to Google Hegels Thesis-Antithesis-Synthesis.) On a basic level, the hero/ine represents one vision of how to live, and the antagonist another. Very often the antagonist also presents a dark vision of what the hero/ine could become, or is on his way to becoming, and its through battle with the antagonist that the hero/ine is able to change.
Villains have a lot to do with theme. In fact you could say that they are an entire half of a storys theme. Again, I dont want to disrupt anyones magical unconscious process of creating character, but I dont think it hurts to think in meta-terms.
Last chapter I was trying to get you all to think specifically about the villains that have had a lasting impact on you, and to list those characters so you can start to see the patterns and themes there. For example, if you make a list that is 80% female sociopaths, then youve got a pretty good indication that thats one of your personal themes as a writer. Not as a person, of course (!), but as a writer. When youre able to identify these things in your work, and the work you aspire to do, its defining a personal theme that can become your brand as a writer, and a major selling point for your books or scripts not to mention that when youre writing about something that really pushes your buttons (for whatever reason) your stories tend to come alive.