Franklin Leonard has released the 2018 version of The Black List – the annual list of Hollywood‘s best unproduced screenplays, as voted on by over 300 industry executives. This year’s edition is the 13th in its existence, and features heaps of biopics.
The script that garnered the most votes was Frat Boy Genius by Elissa Karasik, which chronicles the rise of Snapchat founder Evan Spiegel through the eyes of a disgruntled employee who was a student alongside him at Stanford University. In the logline, Spiegel is described as a “preeminent douchebag” so one assumes it is not a flattering portrayal.
One vote behind was King Richard by Zach Baylin, which tells the true story of Richard Williams, the hard-nosed, uncompromising father of Venus and Serena Williams, while another single vote behind that script was Get Home Safe by Christy Hall, in which a young woman must get home by herself on Halloween with no phone battery and a group of gamergate trolls hunting her.
There are also biopics revolving around embattled sports reporter A.J. Daulerio, astronaut Sally Ride, a chronicle of the Kobe Bryant sexual assault case in the early 2000s, and Tiger Woods‘ infamous public sex scandal.
Last year’s list was topped by Matthew and Ryan Firpo‘s Ruin, which follows two protagonists hunting down and killing the surviving members of a SS death squad in post-WWII Germany. It will head into production this summer with Margot Robbie and Matthias Schoenaerts in the lead roles.
The year prior, Elyse Hollander‘s Madonna biopic, Blond Ambition, topped the list, and prior to that, Isaac Adamson‘s script about Michael Jackson‘s chimpanzee Bubbles won the most votes, and is currently in production at Netflix as a stop-motion animated film from Taika Waititi.
To highlight the importance of the list, Black List scripts have won 10 of the last 20 screenwriting Oscars and 4 of the last 10 Best Picture wins. Recent titles have included I, Tonya, The Post, and All The Money In The World. This year, almost a third of the scripts were written by women, with more than 40% being female-driven.
Click here if you want to take a deeper dive into the list. Who knows, there’s a good chance you might come across a script that will win an Oscar in five years.