Private Project

No Time for Redemption

When her entire family is brutally murdered by a gang of outlaws, seventeen year old Julia disguises herself as a teenaged boy and spends the next twenty years exacting revenge.

  • Jen Sall
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    United States
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Writer Biography

Scott received his BFA in film and television from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, graduated from Columbia Law School, and attended the graduate screenwriting program at UCLA. He was an Executive Producer of Big Stone Gap.

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Writer Statement

Julia is a seventeen year old tomboy, raised by her father in the old American West to be a good and rugged outdoorsman. After her father and entire family is murdered in front of her by a treacherous gang of outlaws led by the psychopathic Clyde, Julia disguises herself as a boy to join the gang and spends the next twenty years exacting justice.

From the very beginning, Julia’s world is conflicted. Her parents compete between nurturing her male and female selves, creating a conflict between her childish, innocent side and the person she needs to become if she is going to survive in her society—a society that is both lawless yet strives to be law abiding; both unstructured yet bound by code; both open and limitless yet filled with restrictive roles and responsibilities. Later in life, her past conflicts with her future, and her desired to be civilized conflicts with her desire to do what she knows in her hear is right.

The visual style will emphasize these thematic contrasts by displaying the contrast between the free open spaces of the outdoors and the highly structured, cramped and tense quarters of civilization’s sacred intimate spaces—from saloons to bedrooms, offices, stagecoaches, and churches.

Stark images will echo the stark choices that Julia faces between her competing desires to avenge her family’s murder, particularly the gruesome death of her father in front of her, while also being true to her father’s final exhortation to her to live a righteous life; between her obligations to her husband and her children while being true to her innermost desire to do what she knows needs to be done; between her desire to be compassionate and her desire for vengeance; between her desire to be a woman and her desire to achieve the kind of justice that is typically reserved only for a man; and between her desire to balance the scales of right and wrong and her desire to be everything that Clyde is not.

We will see Julia when she is vulnerable and scared, and when she is fearless and resolute; when she is playful and childish, and when she is greedy for things that are hers for the taking. And most importantly we will see her as a hero, both of the Old West, standing over her vanquished antagonist, and of today, larger than life. We will see how life still hurts and humbles her, and that the scales within her, like those within ourselves, can never truly be balanced. And when we see the final image of her riding into the setting sun, we will see that she is both an image from the past and an image for the future, but that more importantly she is one of us—undergoing the never-ending struggle for a harmonizing balance that can never be achieved because the quest itself is what makes us human.