Greg Gertmenian has the herculean task of training, managing and supervising our reader corps, which includes responsibility for maintaining the quality of our coverage and delivering it to our clients. Independently, he produces both features and digital content. His short BALROG: BEHIND THE GLORY, debuted at EVO 2011 and was one of the most-favorited films on YouTube the week of its release. Other projects include the thriller NOSTALGIA, which received funding from New Filmmakers LA, THE AUDITION ROOM, which featured guest stars like Kyle Mooney (SNL, Hello Ladies), Brandon Jay McLaren (Graceland, The Killing), and Kathy Baker (Edward Scissorhands, Picket Fences) and THE HAIRCUT (Bailey Noble, Molly Quinn), which debuted at AFI Fest in 2014.
Jason Scoggins brings well over a decade of entertainment industry entrepreneurship to Spec Scout. In addition to boots-on-the-ground experience as a TV Lit agent (at Gersh and Writers & Artists) and feature lit manager (at Protocol and Eureka Canyon), he founded ItsontheGrid.com, the feature film database company he sold to TheWrap.com in 2011. His weekly film development newsletter, the Scoggins Report, has been a spec market staple since early 2009 and currently goes out to over 6,000 industry executives and creatives.
A small boy, young KEVIN PAX (7), chases a LITTLE GIRL (6) through a field of Indian burial markings at the edge of a farm. Years later, Kevin, now in his thirties, fastens bells to his ankles and waives a feathered stick in dazzling motions before a skeptical audience of 6,000 townsfolk. The crowd grumbles in anticipation
Flash back a few weeks earlier. At Crop Town, the family farm, Kevin's twin brother JOSH PAX (31) works diligently at the farm, uprooting weeds and trying to salvage a line of withering crops while he listens to an agricultural guru spell out the path to a healthy outcrop via podcast. Later, he and his sister JAMIE (32), the town's meteorologist and an employee of the family business, are called into an office by owner and patriarch JAKE PAX (57), where he informs them of Kevin's insane plan to charge townsfolk to watch a live performance wherein he solves the town's draught via rain dance onstage.
Kevin's act is set up at the Braithwaite Convention Center's Orchestra Shell, where shady owner MR. MENSCHE (53) has everything riding on the attraction. Beautiful MAGGIE (26) works at the convention center, and catches Kevin's eye.
Jake confronts Kevin about his crazy act, and begs him not to do it; tensions that the town are too high to withstand antics that poke fun at people's misfortune. He offers him ownership of the farm, which Kevin refuses. Maggie and Jamie also try to talk him out of it, but Kevin still refuses.
Mensche comes to Jake and pitches him an idea to sell merchandise during Kevin's act, which Jake accepts. As the first night of the act gets underway, Mensche takes the role of M.C., narrating Kevin's feat as he prepares to perform his first dance - a dress rehearsal- which will saturate the atmosphere in preparation for the storm.
Upon his first movement, Kevin experiences an intense flashback to his childhood, with his mother teaching him how to two-step. When a light drizzle falls onto the park, the audience is impressed, and the "Dry-Run" is declared a hit. Kevin admits to Maggie that rain dancing is a wonderful experience, and it lets him remember everything he’s forgotten.
After being pressured by Mensche, Jake promotes the show despite the dangers to Kevin's well being regarding skeptic members of the town who want to publicly shame him at the next performance. Having seen the revenue from the last performance, Jake would like to get Crop Town out of debt. As the months of preparation for the event drag on, Kevin develops pneumonia from having rehearsed so many cold nights in a row with such little clothing. He is warned by a DOCTOR PERSPY (72) to stop, but refuses. Word of mouth continues spreading about Kevin's upcoming main performance, in which he promises a complete storm.
Kevin experiences more flashbacks, remembering more of his mother, and a little girl he used to play with at Crop Town. Maggie worries, but Kevin insists there’s no other option for him; he's committed to the show, taken thousands of dollars in pre-sales.
Jamie finds out that Mensche is spending all of the money they’re making on the show, and Jake overhears. Jake is angry, blames Kevin, and beats Maggie while demanding that Kevin recoup the money.
As rehearsals wear on, Kevin remembers the Crop Town and that the little girl was his first love. He admits to Maggie that rain-dancing is taking him back to things he’d rather forget, and that it’s not the freedom he intended to experience.
On the night of the main event, thousands of townsfolk show up. In the convention center locker room, Kevin has flashbacks, remembering finding his mother’s corpse on burial site that day, and rushes prematurely on stage, proclaiming that he can’t do the act anymore. Mensche threatens him, but Jake stands up for Kevin, offering to take his place. Jake attempts the dance, but is very quickly booed off stage by people who've paid to see Kevin summon rain.
Leaving Mensche to deal with the audience, Kevin takes Maggie away and tells her he doesn’t care that she’s a prostitute, and admits that he’s a virgin. He takes her to the Indian burial site, where he confronts his most painful memories. He remembers his mother’s unhappiness, and her desire to leave. He realizes that his life has been stunted since her death, and as he symbolically crawls through the yard to the scene where he found her body, he realizes it’s time to move on with his life.
Back at the orchestra shell, the crowd has disbanded and Mensche picks up trash muttering to himself. Kevin apologizes to Josh for failing to understand his warnings, and thanks Jake for letting him be himself. Kevin admits to Maggie that he’s never danced with a girl before. Aas they step out onto the empty stage together, she teaches him as a proud Jake Pax looks on.