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American Gem Short Screenplay & Literary Festival
2011 Screenplay Contest

Enter your Short Screenplay, Short Story, Treatment in American Gem Short Screenplay Contest / Literary Festival. 

Winning Screenplay in the American Gem Short Screenplay Contest will be Produced.

Grand Prize Winner / Short Screenplay Gets to Pitch Screenplay to Producers, Studio Executives and Agents. Certificate of achievement awards to the Top 25 scripts and top 3 in each of the other categories.

from script to screen


FilmMakers International Screenwriting Awards
Screenplay Contest Interview

| Winners | Bio | Synopsis | Script Excerpt |


CATEGORY 3 / Comedy


Noga Pnueli for Dead City

Dead City
black Comedy

Noga Pnueli
Los Angeles, CA


Logline: In a small American town where the dead come up from hell to vacation, a local girl falls for a dead man and sacrifices her life to free his.



Noga Pnueli

Noga Pnueli was born and raised in Israel. She graduated from NYU with a BFA in Film and Television Production and later returned to NYU for a Masters in Media Studies. After completing her studies, Noga moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in screenwriting.

In 2012, Noga started working for award-winning indie filmmaker Alma Har'el and as a reader at CAA, providing coverage on novels, comic books and screenplays.

Currently, Noga, who is certainly not a crazy cat lady, lives in Eagle Rock with two cats named Bob and Golda. She recently optioned her first feature screenplay, "Find The One."


Part 1.


I knew I wanted to be screenwriter when.....

Movies were the number one leisure activity in my household growing up, whether it was a family trip to the movie theater for a triple feature, or staying in with a tall stack of VHS tapes. From a very young age I was heavily immersed in the world of cinema (including some titles not quite appropriate for my age group, thanks, Sis) and it quickly became clear to me that it's what I wanted to do when I grew up.

I know I've succeeded when...... 

When at least one person is positively moved while watching a movie based on a script I wrote.

My inspiration to write Dead City.....

I love stories about misfits who go on fantastical journeys that reveal to them their strength of character and purpose in the world. In this story in particular, I wanted to focus on coming of age, and the concept of "youth" as something which relates to one's personality and life experience - and not necessarily age.

Part 2.


FilmMakers Magazine: What inspired you to write?

Noga Pnueli
: I love stories about misfits who go on fantastical journeys that reveal to them their strength of character and purpose in this world. Most of the things I write tend to follow this pattern.

FilmMakers Magazine: Is this your first script and how long did it take you to complete?

Noga Pnueli: This was the second script I've ever written. It took a month to complete the first draft, then two more months, one for each revision. (Three months total)

FilmMakers Magazine: Do you have a set routine, place and time management for writing?

Noga Pnueli: In days when work allows it, I always write in the morning, at home or in a quiet place, for as many hours as I can. Then go for a run. Then write down ideas for the next morning's writing session.

FilmMakers Magazine: Do you believe screenplay contests are important for aspiring screenwriters and why?

Noga Pnueli: Absolutely. Beyond sheer validation, it's a fantastic way to get your work out there, and an achievement that can eventually open doors. If not through the "prize" itself, then just by having competition wins on your resume.

FilmMakers Magazine: What influenced you to enter the FilmMakers International Screenwriting Awards / Screenplay Contest?

Noga Pnueli:
I was subscribed to the newsletter and decided to give it a shot.

FilmMakers Magazine: What script would you urge aspiring writers to read and why?

Noga Pnueli: "The Spanish Prisoner" by David Mamet (or anything else by Mamet), because it's excellent, from the unique rhythm of the dialogue to the endless plot twists.

FilmMakers Magazine: Beside screenwriting what are you passionate about and why?

Noga Pnueli: Cooking, dancing, playing games and any other activity that helps one connect with their community in positive, playful ways.

FilmMakers Magazine: Who is your favorite Screenwriter and Why?

Noga Pnueli: Hal Hartley. I grew up watching his movies, and love the quirky way he writes dialogue and makes you feel deeply for characters even when you don't always understand them.

FilmMakers Magazine: Name the director you would love to work with and why?

Noga Pnueli: As an 80's-born Jewish woman, the obligatory answer is Steven Spielberg. I would add Tarsem Singh, for his crazy, bold visual style.

FilmMakers Magazine: Name the actor you would love to work with and why?

Noga Pnueli:
Rosamund Pike, because she's fantastic in everything she does. And Bruce Campbell, because Bruce Campbell.

FilmMakers Magazine: Any tips and things learned along the way to pass on to others?

Noga Pnueli:
Make friends, form artist communities and writers groups. Writing is a lonely profession and having a community of peers helps immensely, both for morale and sanity, and for getting your work out there.

FilmMakers Magazine: What's next for you?

Noga Pnueli: Writing a new feature and trying to sell my wares to the masses.

FilmMakers Magazine: Where will you be five years from now?

Noga Pnueli: Earthquakes, water shortages and other catastrophes permitting, right here in LA writing and, lord willing, making good movies.



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