Into the Mystic Dramedy based on a memoir, The Last Goodnights, (Counterpoint Books 2009) about an estranged son whose terminally ill parents summon him home to assist in their suicides, still a felony in the State of California.
Forsaken Country Action/Thriller based on historical events and a book, set in the lawless post-American Revolution frontier, a chilling chronicle of a young woman’s horrific ordeal as she runs from the law with the notorious Harpe Brothers, America’s first serial killers.
Enemyway True crime drama about a forensic psychiatrist hired by the state prosecutors to evaluate a mentally ill young Navajo man after he murders a deputy and eludes capture during a massive three-day manhunt.
Max the Ax Family comedy about a precocious 11-year-old boy, whose business of getting rid of his pal’s single parents’ significant others doesn’t work on his mom’s new boyfriend. (Also a TV pilot.)
Waikiki Detective drama inspired by true events, set in Honolulu 1959, about a Beachboy who investigates the murder of his true love and uncovers a land development scandal that dooms his sacred Paradise. (TV Proposal available.)
Chico’s Line True crime drama about a Boston-based sports bookie and his relationship with famed mobster Whitey Bulger. Producers: Martin Scorsese, Harry and Mary Jane Ufland for Touchstone Pictures. Executive Producer.
Legion Arms A fact-based action drama about a young man who served in and survived the French Foreign Legion. Producers: Robert DeNiro’s Tribeca Productions and New Line Cinema.
Big Bucks True crime dramedy about a young woman and her father who embezzle $38 million from their own armored trucking business. Producers: Martin Scorsese & Harry Ufland for Touchstone Pictures/Walt Disney Studios.
Jackpot Original comedy about the Publishers Clearinghouse Prize Patrol who deliver $10 million to the wrong people.
Producers: Brillstein/Grey and Fox Family Films.
Knockout Drama adaptation about acclaimed Dallas Malloy, the young female boxer who fought her first round in Federal Court and earned the right for all women to compete in USA Amateur Boxing. Producers: Nides/McCormick Productions for Paramount.
The Blue Brigade Tragic-comedy based on the true story of a modern day Oliver Twist-like crime family. Producer: Barbara DeFina.
In Case of Emergency Father-daughter tragic-comedy about a charismatic baseball champ who reappears in the life of his injured 30-year-old daughter to teach her to walk again – since he wasn’t there the first time around. Inspired the short, “The List” (See below). Producer: Jerry Weintraub Productions/Warner Bros.
TELEVISION SERIES: (One-Hour Drama Series)
Fatal Flaw Based on the true crime investigation of Janelle Patton’s murder on the unusual Norfolk Island, 1,000 miles east of Sydney, Australia. Told from the point of view of a tormented female AFP detective whose own daughter befell a similar fate; this time she vows that justice will be served. Limited series.
Fisheye Based on a memoir, chronicling the dark double life of a beautiful, addicted teen, growing up in tumultuous mid-1970’s LA, who goes on a perilous journey through California’s sex, drugs, and rock’n’roll scene in search of her teen girl lover who has vanished.
Waikiki At the dawn of Hawaii's statehood, in 1959, when Oahu was a playground of elite tourists, bronzed surfer gods and oversexed bathing beauties, a Waikiki beachboy investigates the brutal murder of his life-long love and uncovers a cesspool of corruption, hell-bent on scourging his Paradise.
Big Bucks A family-owned armored trucking business turns corrupt when its matriarch runs off with five million dollars and they must cross the ethical line to stay afloat, while dodging one suspicious FBI agent.
Fight Inspired by pioneering female boxer Dallas Malloy who returns to her hometown of Bellingham, Washington only to face her worst nightmare: her former coach has left her the old boxing gym and the cops are forcing her to train teens in trouble and other lost souls, while she battles her own demons.
TELEVISION: (Half-Hour Comedy)
The Wasband A financially strapped long-divorced couple move in together after their son leaves for college and navigate the rough seas of their reunion.
Max the Ax A precocious 11-year-old crusader runs a thriving underground business helping single parents and kids get rid of those pesky significant others. ""You deserve better!"" is his motto, which this little James Bond raps about in his videos.
Nail Me A hot, straight male manicurist, who truly “puts the man in manicure,” rises from his mother’s humble Garden Grove shop and takes elite L.A. by storm, facing threats from his past and present.
TELEPLAYS (Writer for Hire)
Sharehouse Pitched and sold one-hour drama series pilot to CBS. Creator/Executive Producer with Exec. Producer: Jonathan Levin.
The Elevator Lifetime Network. (2-Hour Movie) Sold and adapted novel by Angela Hunt. Executive Producers: Craig Anderson & Beth Grossbard.
Learning Joy From Dogs Without Collars NBC Movie-of-the-Week adaptation of memoir. Executive Producers: Mary Jane and Harry Ufland Productions for Hearst Entertainment and NBC.
Looking for Leo Four-Hour Miniseries adaptation of Gloria Nagy’s novel. Producers: Nancy Bein, Judith Leight, Herb Hamsher, Daphna Edwards for CBS Entertainment/CBS.
Home Song Movie-of-the-Week adaptation of Lavyrle Spencer’s best-selling novel. Dove International. Aired on CBS.
PRODUCER (Motion Pictures & Television)
This Is My Life Executive Producer. Optioned and sold Meg Wolitzer’s novel. Twentieth Century Fox. Nora Ephron’s directorial debut. Cast: Julie Kavner, Samantha Mathis, and Dan Aykroyd.
The Women Of Brewster Place Producer. Emmy-nomination for Outstanding Miniseries. Optioned novel. Sold/Produced with Harpo Productions and Hearst Entertainment for ABC. Cast: Oprah Winfrey, Cicely Tyson.
Murder At The P.T.A. Luncheon Producer. Movie-of-the-Week. CBS. Cast: Julia Duffy, Cindy Williams, Ed Marinaro, Morgan Fairchild. Patricia K. Meyer Productions in association with von Zerneck/Sertner Films.
Beyond Suspicion Executive Producer. Movie-of-the-Week. NBC. Cast: Kelsey Grammer, Corbin Bernsen, and Markie Post. In association with von Zerneck/Sertner Films
Take Me Home Again Executive Producer. Movie-of-the-Week. NBC. Adaptation by Ernest Thompson (Academy Award for On Golden Pond). Cast: Kirk Douglas, Craig T. Nelson. In association with von Zerneck/Sertner Films.
The Other Woman Executive Producer. Movie-of-the-Week. CBS. Humanitas Award-nominee. Cast: Jill Eikenberry and Laura Leighton. In association with von Zerneck/Sertner Films.
Unspoken Writer, 16 minute short, based on Sandy Gartner’s true story. Film Festival Selection: Pasadena; “Best of Fest”: Philadelphia’s First Glance; ITVA Fest, Middlebury, Flagler, Milledgeville, Attic.
The List Writer, Director, Producer. 28 min short. Cast: Corbin Bernsen & Ashley Williams.
• Palm Beach International Film Festival-- Official Selection.
• Beverly Hills Film Festival--Official Selection.
• (Won Best Performance/Female Lead for Ashley Williams).
• Boston International Film Festival--Official Selection.
• Indiefest, Chicago--Official Selection.
• Cannes Film Festival 2004. Screened at Short Film Corner..
• Reel Women International Film Festival--Official Selection.
Turnaround A full-length tragicomedy based on actual events. Pasadena Playhouse Hothouse Series selection.
HARVARD UNIVERSITY. B.A. History & Literature, cum laude.
BOSTON UNIVERSITY. M.F.A., Creative Writing.
TEACHING & LEADERSHIP
*Graduate Director of Screenwriting and Clinical Professor. Loyola Marymount University. School of Film & Television. MFA Programs: Writing for the Screen and Writing & Producing for Television.
*Senior Lecturer, Screenwriting. American Film Institute Conservatory. MFA Program.
*Tenure-Track Assistant Professor, Screenwriting. Chapman University/Dodge College.
* Special Adaptation Instructor/Consultant: Squaw Valley Community of Writers.
AFFILIATIONS Writers Guild of America, West. Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.