Petition asks Sonja Bennett to read prison screenplay
More than 2000 women sign petition demanding a firm commitment from Sonja Bennett (film producer) to read screenplay addressing Texas judicial system
Sonja Bennett – Talent Agents
– Actress, Producer, Writer – Letterkenny (2016), Kim’s Convenience (2016), YPF (2007), Preggoland (2014) – The Jennifer Hollyer Agency, Jennifer Hollyer – Collingwood Management, Dylan Thomas Collingwood
Sonja Bennett & 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 Sonja Bennett 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 Sonja Bennett at The Jennifer Hollyer Agency, Jennifer Hollyer last week.
In the open letter to Sonja Bennett, 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 Sonja Bennett 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.”
Actress, Producer, Writer, Sonja Bennett, has not responded to the petition. Nor has The Jennifer Hollyer Agency, Jennifer Hollyer responded with a comment.
The screenplay “Dumbass” was penned by writer and retired professor of political science Alan Nafzger.
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.”
Sonja Bennett 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.
Adam Sandler of Happy Madison Productions has expressed interest in the screenplay.
Sonja Bennett is a Actress, Producer, Writer known for Letterkenny (2016), Kim’s Convenience (2016), YPF (2007), Preggoland (2014) and is represented by The Jennifer Hollyer Agency, Jennifer Hollyer.
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Roughly seven out of ten scripts submitted to Extreme Screenwriting for coverage list the wrong genre! I start out thinking Im reading a Suspense Thriller and I realize its a Crime Drama or the screenwriter indicated the genre is RomCom, but the script reads like a straightforward Comedy. This makes me wonder how the screenwriter could have written an entire script without knowing the genre! A producer will wonder this too and wonder if the writer truly understands the art of screenwriting.
More and more producers are seeking genre-specific screenplays, like a Horror with no comedic relief or perhaps an action or Action/Adventure that doesnt try to be a Suspense Thriller.
WRITE GENRE SPECIFIC
The screenwriter will have to decide what route is best, but the majority of screenwriters Ive worked with want to see their stuff up on the big screen and nothing else will do. Before getting started its imperative the writer knows one thing; the genre.
Personally, I think there are hundreds of story types and kinds.
(I also think its plainly lazy to use someone elses analysis of a story pattern instead of identifying your own. Relying on anyone elses analysis, and that for sure includes mine, is not going to make you the writer you want to be.)
I think those books on the subject are truly useful; as I say often, I think you should read everything. But I believe you also have to get much more specific than ten plots or even thirty-six.
The late and much-missed Blake Snyder said that all film stories break down into just ten patterns that he outlined in his Save The Cat! books. Dramatist Georges Polti claimed there are Thirty-Six Dramatic Situations and outlined those in his classic book.