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RETREAT (screenplay)

Zackarius Hart is a successful and gifted charlatan, a man whose words carry more confidence than credibility. His followers call him Z. Mia Tar is his confidant, occasional lover, and partner in crime. Together they operate Z-Bliss, a remote hillside spiritual center in Wyoming, which features meditation circles, spa and massage therapy, as well as a tennis court and a three-hole golf course. Z-Bliss is both Hart’s home and venue where he hosts seminars for those seeking enlightenment.

During a visit to San Francisco, Hart notices Natalie Brier, a lightning rod of beauty, looking distraught while seated on a bench in Golden Gate Park. He sees her as a delicious problem to surmount and approaches to offer his assistance. What follows is an emotionally- and sexually-charged encounter, ending with her abrupt departure, leaving Hart aroused and beguiled. In the aftermath, he realizes this woman not only mind-fucked him but stole his wallet. She becomes the catalyst for Hart experiencing a crisis in consciousness. He wants to prove he is not a fraud. What he wants is a miracle.

Hart conceives of a unique three-day retreat in which all attendees are promised to achieve nirvana. This preposterous claim is stated in a brochure mailed and targeted to an exclusive list of recipients who are in a position to believe that money is no obstacle. The offer comes with a money-back guarantee. He tells Mia the retreat is a tough love approach. Mia tells Hart no one in their right mind will sign up and pay a quarter of a million dollars. Twelve people register. Surprising results unfold.

 2018 Cannes Screenplay Contest Winner for Comedy

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