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Man(ny) Versus Machine

When an awkward ad exec named Manny beats up a coffee maker, every mechanical device goes after him thwarting his chances of winning a CLIO advertising award and destroying his relationship with the woman he loves.

MANNY DECKARD has never been what you might call "mechanically inclined." In fact, since day one, if a machine could break, go haywire, stop working, or outright attack Manny (often in the most embarrassing way possible), it would.

Manny has spent his entire life at war with the machines everyone else takes for granted. But that hasn't stopped him from pursuing his dream of following in his father's footsteps as a creative advertising exec, and one day win the CLIO that eluded dad.

Ironically, Manny is able to turn his struggles with technology into a hot ad pitch for an office equipment company. Despite the machines' best efforts, it seems like Manny's star is on the rise.

Even better, Manny meets the lovely LENNON, hippy-ish musician whose father had a run of hits back in the '60s. Manny and Lennon bond over their shared love of the music of that time.

Though Manny's frequent misadventures with machines make him seem like a weirdo, that's oddly what Lennon likes about him. Manny is definitely different from other guys, and his inherent sweetness draws her to him.

Manny is right on the cusp of closing the office equipment account. But Manny's anti-machine antics have led the unctuous CEO to believe Manny is a dangerous lunatic. After a big presentation goes completely awry, he demands that Manny be fired, or he walks and Manny loses.

Manny is so caught up in his work and machine woes that he barely notices when Lennon tells him she has been offered a cable show in New York. Tired of playing second or third string in Manny's life, she takes the gig.

But Manny has noticed that the machines tend to leave him alone when Lennon is around. Now all he has to do is patch up his relationship with Lennon, save his career, and just maybe call a truce with the machines...

RATING: PG

Script Excerpt Interview
Written by:
Format:
Screenplay
In the Vein Of:
The Hangover
What Women Want
The Nutty Professor
Posted:
04/06/2013
Updated:
07/08/2020
Author Bio:
Writing samples available on www.mtolbert.com

Short stories published in: "Puppy Pushers," non-fiction, published in Inkwell Journal, Spring 2012 "Everything Known," fantasy, published in parABnormal Digest #2 "Forever Fallen," fantasy, in Worlds Apart #1. "Soul of Invinco." science fiction, in Hadrosaur Tales #14. "Creator," fantasy, in Dreams & Visions #31.

Comic books for Marvel, Malibu, Valiant, New Visions, and Power Station.

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Contest Results:
Screenplay Festival (Semifinalist) [2012]