Mona Lisa Bella is a quiet, special girl who changes the lives of her tollbooth customers by writing them new life stories and filing them away in the magical bookcase that takes up nearly the entire tiny trailer she calls home.
Mona has a fondness for small things, and shies away from big things. So how will she get to across a big ocean to see the famous painting after which she was named? And will she let the big Cowboy in the big Cadillac into her heart?

  • Pamela Smitham Luther
  • Project Type:
    Screenplay, Short Script
  • Genres:
    magical realism, drama, romantic comedy
  • Number of Pages:
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • First-time Screenwriter:
  • Student Project:
Writer Biography - Pamela Smitham Luther

Born and raised in Texas, and the mother of 7 grown kids. I've morphed from a yoga teacher to a criminal defense trial attorney (remarkably similar professions), but have always been a writer and photographer along the way.
It's an understatement to say that I'm drawn to Texas scenery and people. Texas is the love of my camera, my pen, and my heart.

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Writer Statement

Mona Lisa Bella's story in Change Made has lived in my head for many years as a short story. At the encouragement of a director friend, I turned it into a short screenplay. The characters and places were so real to me that I was able to turn it into a screenplay in a single day. It gives me a tearful smile every time I read it. And it's one of those simple, charmed creations that is loved by everyone who reads it.
I love the short version because it is so lighthearted, but with a little more attention on Mona's struggle with facing "big" things, and a little more detail about the magical changes she brings about in the lives of her tollbooth customers, it easily becomes a feature film.
I'm also very excited about a musical stage production based on the story.
The writing style has been described as "magical realism". I definitely didn't want my first screenplay and film to dwell on dramatic relationship angst. Everything connected with the story of Change Made is a joy. I have a clear vision for the locations and wardrobe and look forward to all the projects and work involved in bringing Change Made to fruition.