Weird Haircuts and Bad Attitudes

Jessie is a young teen trying to figure out who they are at Bell Hood High. She’s nervous, awkward and not even sure if she’s a girl. Jessie is excited when a new teacher, Parker shows up to take over the failing video production class. Parker looks young, cool and fearless to Jessie. Parker challenges the students to make a documentary that delves deep into a topic that scares them.

Jessie chooses to do a documentary about gender and sexuality with a classmate, Amy, who seems to have a crush on Jessie. The two have to stand up to harassment at Bell hood High together while helping each other figure out who they are. Little does Jessie know that Parker has her own history with Bell Hood high, homophobia and gender confusion.

Parker desperately wants to do better by her queer students than her former basketball coach, Penny who is now the school’s assistant principal. Penny’s love for her job kept her from being able to stand up to Parker’s childhood bullies in the past.

Conflict between Parker and Penny rises when Jessie and Amy ask Penny to do an interview for their documentary and the two try to start a GSA group on campus.

Penny and Parker struggle with their traumatic past and each other’s difference of opinion on how to approach being a queer teacher. This leads both to the local gay bar where Jessie makes a video of Penny that accidentally goes viral at school. This causes even more conflict between the two teachers, when Penny thinks it’s Parker who took the video.

Jessie’s parents walk in on Jessie and Amy about to kiss causing a rift between the two. Jessie decides they must finish the documentary on their own, hoping the film will stand up to homophobia/transphobia. Jessie breaks in to the school in an attempt to get a hard drive they need for the project but gets stuck on the security gate. Jessie calls the only person they trust to help. Parker has to rescue Jessie from the school’s security fence.

While Jessie is being cut loose from the security fence they declare in frustration that they do not want to go by female pronouns but by they/them pronouns. Parker wants to be different than Penny and support Jessie but is scared because she struggles with her own gender dysphoria.

Support from a love interest whom Parker opens up to leads Parker to boldly let Jessie show their film.

In the end Penny, Parker and Jessie all get the opportunity to face their fears when Jessie presents their film to the whole school.

  • Alyson Titkemeyer
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Drama, LGBTQ, Coming of age
  • Number of Pages:
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Language:
  • First-time Screenwriter:
  • Student Project:
Writer Biography - Alyson Titkemeyer

Alyson Titkemeyer thought she’d seen it all working as a video journalist in New Orleans, after all she’s covered Mardi Gras, Voodoo Queens, swamp monsters and hurricanes. Little did she know the real trip was teaching TV Production and film to high school students. She’s here, she’s queer and she knows what the kids really think of you.

Alyson’s mother fears she’s writing the Titkemeyer family’s version of “Mommy Dearest.” While her mom is afraid of appearing in all of Alyson’s scripts (which she does), Alyson’s dad is afraid of not appearing in any of them.

For more information on Alyson’s work check out her website for more information.

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Writer Statement

Alyson Titkemeyer's work is an attempt to find balance, truth and hope in queer cinema. She believes too often an LGBTQ film paints too rose-y a picture or too grim a picture.

Alyson’s work examines the complexity of gender and sexuality and their intersection. As a queer person who loves her southern roots she knows that the relationship between a queer person and their family, friends and country can be complicated.

Alyson’s work is an attempt to tell the complex story of the queer communities relationship with themselves, their friends and their country in an honest and inspiring manner.