Script File

For the Love of God - Leo


In the year 1487 the Church identifies a Protestant, dissident, yet peaceful movement in France as being heretical. Though it is in another country, Pope Innocent VIII orders them killed.

Lorenzo de’Medici, Lord of Florence, positions the family to win the Papacy, source of great power and wealth. He arranges for his daughter, Maddalena, to wed Innocent’s son and bribes Innocent with a sizeable donation to the Church so that son, Giovanni, might become cardinal at age 16.

Years later, Lorenzo’s nephew Giulio also becomes a Bishop. Giulio and Giovanni are appointed papal legates to papal forces at the Battle of Ravenna. The ferocious battle results in Giovanni’s capture by the French enemy.

Led by Giulio and Maddalena, the family organizes a dangerous but exciting rescue mission. The battle and rescue have a major impact on Giovanni’s life.

Martin Luther’s story begins at the same time as Giovanni’s. On his way to Erfurt University to study law, Martin survives a near-fatal lightning storm, fears the wrath of God, and gives his life in service to the Church to save his own skin.

He joins an Augustinian abbey headed by Abbott Johann von Staupitz, a father figure, and becomes a monk. Von Staupitz guides Martin’s spiritual growth though Martin continues to wage war for his soul against his conscience and God.

Sent to Wittenberg University by von Staupitz, Martin becomes a Doctor of Theology. Rather than resolving his guilt, advanced learning only results in more torture and self-punishment.

The paths of Giovanni and Martin providentially cross in Rome. Each will become leaders of opposing religious faiths. The chance encounter reveals the character of each man.

The episode ends as Giovanni survives a long, five-day vote in conclave to become the next pope. As Pope Leo X, he threatens James IV, King with Scots, with excommunication because James intends to invade England. This sets up the viewer for Episode Two – James IV, and the disastrous Battle of Flodden Field.

  • Project Type:
    Television Script
  • Genres:
    Historical, Drama, Biographical, true story, period, religious theme, Character driven
  • Number of Pages:
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Language:
  • First-time Screenwriter:
  • Student Project:
  • Page Turner Screenplays

    April 1, 2020
  • Wiki: The World’s Fastest Screenplay Contest

    December 7, 2020
  • Emerging Screenwriters Genre Screenwriting Competition

    August 17, 2021
Writer Statement

Writing screenplays from history is like time travel. Not only
do I get to write every scene I get to be every character.