The Trade

In the Northern Thailand, AMY, a dedicated Canadian rescue agent, risks her life to extract underage sex trafficking victims. Amy guides them from a dangerous world into a new life at “Compassion House.” When her boyfriend, RUSS, is killed during a rescue, Amy's ever-increasing burnout spirals. Her mentor, PIM, an ex-trafficking victim herself, and TAYLOR, an American doctor, encourage Amy to move forward.

In Cambodia, KANDA, a thirteen year old girl, sold by her parents, starts her journey down the road of human trafficking. She has been consumed by a Russian-backed organization that holds its victims in remote camps tucked away in the mountains. Local corruption helps to conceal their operations. Kanda arrives in a camp housing a few hundred people destined for work in multiple industries. She meets RUTHAI, a dangerously ill teenager. Of little use to the traffickers, Ruthai is beaten and left for dead, but she doesn't die. She drags herself to a nearby mountain road and is found by a friend of Amy's.

When Amy's team comes to help, they are confronted by two traffickers. Amy’s quick thinking saves them and the traffickers die in a fiery car crash. Afraid for their safety, Taylor calls her ex, an international extraction agent, JULIA, and her partner, PHAN. They begin an under the radar investigation to find Kanda and the camp. Feelings are tense as Amy and Julia clash over leadership and an alliance with anti-trafficking officials. Pim and Phan are immediately drawn to one another while Taylor and Julia rekindle their relationship.

When Amy, Julia and Phan search for the camp, they run into trouble with the local police. Meanwhile, the traffickers have located “Compassion House” and force their way in to find Ruthai. Taylor conceals her. Ruthai eagerly helps them locate Kanda, now in a local karaoke club. Posing as a customer, Phan builds a friendship with Kanda which ends in tragedy. Phan's intentions are discovered. Kanda is killed accidentally and Phan is taken to the camp. With Ruthai's help, Amy and Julia track down the camp. It is empty except for Phan's tortured body with Kanda by his side. Phan's association with Amy was his death warrant. Julia and Pim are devastated.

Amy and Julia confront SENNIAM, senior immigration official. He spills critical information about the trafficking operation. Pim urges Amy to abandon her obsessive quest to prosecute the traffickers. Amy sees no other option. Pim’s mentorship is fading and Amy aligns more and more with Julia. Julia forces Amy to confront her feelings about Russ and her brimming frustration in the fight against trafficking. Amy begins to reconsider her future. Utilizing a tracking device, they find a second camp. The camp is raided and hundreds of people are rescued. Local police, Senniam, and the traffickers are arrested. Amy accepts an offer to work with Julia. Amy leaves her friends behind to start her new life.

  • Sheila Warren
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    Drama Action
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  • Student Project:
  • Pasadena International Film Festival
    March 8, 2017
    Official Selection, Screenplay Finalist
  • Depth of Field Internation Film Festival
    Nassau, Deleware
    March 18, 2017
    Bronze Medallist
  • Artemis Women in Action Film Festival
    Los Angeles, USA
    March 1, 2017
    Official Selection
  • Female Eye Film Festival
    Toronto, ON, Canada
    June 26, 2017
    Official Selection, Script Development Program
  • 2018 ScreenCraft Screenwriting Fellowship Quarterfinalist
    United States
    April 4, 2018
Writer - Sheila Warren