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D-VOLUTION action/horror feature film screenplay (currently seeking production partners)

Logline: When a military scientist’s wife is infected with a zombie virus bio-weapon that he created, he has to race her back to the cure across a third world city in chaos before a paranoid mob hunts them down and before she turns to feed on him.

It’s “Children of Men” meets “28 Days Later” but in an exotic foreign location. I’ve always loved the dynamic of a city of zombies chasing a few humans but I wondered, what if we reverse that and tell the story from the point of view of the zombie and have a bunch of humans chasing the zombie who just wants to survive and turn back to normal?

"What puts this movie on a different level than any other zombie movie is that it's really a couple-on-the-run love story set against the backdrop of a fast-paced genre action movie," said writer/director Walter Boholst. "It's the emotional equivalent of the panic of getting your pregnant wife to the hospital and during the journey all of your marital problems come out. A relationship piece amidst chaos."

THE STORY

THE SET UP

An old overcrowded bus rolls down a secluded dirt road in the Philippine jungles then rumbles to a stop. A truck full of venomous guerrilla soldiers halts their way. The guerrillas fire some kind of tear gas grenade launching weapon at the bus. It explodes with mist smothering the bus. Moments later the passengers on the bus emerge from the smoke as rabid rage mutants and attack the guerrillas!

In a remote African village, Alfred and his wife, Zoe, zip around a hospital tent treating people who are infected with some kind of disease. There's some marital tension between them but they're making it work. Soldiers barge in and tell Alfred that it's urgent he fly to the Philippines. In the Philippines, an American military officer named Hank, Alfred’s former best friend, tells Alfred that the bio-weapon he created 5 years ago has fallen into the hands of terrorists in the Philippines and it's been weaponized into a bio-weapon. He tells Alfred “You have to create a cure to this new strain of the virus before the terrorists unleash it.”

Alfred reluctantly agrees. Just as Alfred finally finds a cure to the virus, one of the test patients mutates into a cannibalistic mutant and rampages through the lab. Through a string of undetected infections, a lab worker is infected and makes her way back home. Zoe visits the worker at her house. The worker turns into a mutant and bites Zoe. The lab worker then jumps out of a 3rd story window to kill herself when her head explodes, spraying blood all over the street, infecting everyone. This starts the outbreak. After the a rash of mutants attack people a call is put out to avoid anyone looking sick and defend yourselves if needed. The mutants are labeled dangerous. Random people who look even slightly sick are attacked or killed by paranoid angry mobs.

Now that Zoe is infected she slowly shows signs of infection. They rush back towards the lab and the cure as paranoid cops and citizens chase them through the streets and over rooftops. A city gone crazy with rage and desperation is on the hunt. And they are the prey.

THE PROOF OF CONCEPT

Boholst had shot a short film inspired the emotional climax of the movie which went on to success at many film festivals. Ultimately this short film won him the job to write and direct the feature film "Voodoo Possession" starring Danny Trejo.

A World in Chaos

The story is set in a fictional near future that is ravaged by political strife across the globe. The Philippines is torn between rival factions; on one end are the hardliners supporting the president who endorses vigilantism, in the middle are his opponents who have sided with wealthy business people who control many of the local governments, and on the far end is an unseen violent muslim extremist warlord who vows to destroy them all. The secluded war-torn jungles of this vigilante wild west(east) are a perfect environment for clandestine U.S. operatives to test out their latest weapons against the muslim warlord without human rights oversight.

"I set this in an exotic location because these are Americans who look different than everyone else which makes it harder for a couple on the run to survive," said writer/director Walter Boholst. "How do you hide when you stick out like a sore thumb? But also as a genre movie it also gives it some spice and a different visual dynamic like “District 9” or “Slumdog Millionaire” had."

"We've seen The Walking Dead in southern US backroads. We've seen a million post-apocalyptic zombie hordes and even more zombies attacking warehouses. What we haven't seen is a zombie movie that focuses on the human character arc and set in a situation that mirrors things going on in the real world. The Philippines DOES have a president who encourages murdering criminals. There are violent extremist muslim Al Quaeda and ISIS cells there. If you take this already volatile soup and mix it with a break-neck infected chase movie you have an assault on the senses that's grounded in the real world which helps it rise above the normal genre movie."

THE CHARACTERS

ALFRED (male lead) - proposed actors

Alfred, 40, is a brilliant bio-engineering scientist who believed his top-secret military inventions would help end wars. After a horrible accident in his lab at Area 51 that left several mutated he was banished. He then made a living developing vaccines and treatments to bio-weapons for some unsavory characters in the darker corners of 3rd world skirmishes. He carries around a tremendous amount of guilt for what he's done and for dragging his wife through war zones to cure the sick in an effort to clear his conscience.

Potential actors (top left to right clockwise: John Krasinski("A Quiet Place"), Ewan McGregor("The Impossible"), Jake Gyllenhall ("End of Watch"), James Franco ("Rise of the Planet of the Apes"), Adrien Brody ("Predators")

ZOE (female lead) - proposed actors

Zoe, mid 30's, is the picture of a loyal wife. Longing for a "normal" life someday with kids and the white picket fence, she's a bit bitter that's she's had to endure this life traipsing through some of the worst places in the world with her husband. But her love for him is greater than her regret and she knows they're helping people that can't help themselves. She just wonders if she's reached the point where she's the one who needs help before she breaks.

Potential Actors (top left to right clockwise): Maggie Q("Mission Impossible"), Emily Blunt("A Quiet Place"), Elizabeth Olsen ("Godzilla," "Avengers: Infinity War"), Zoe Saldana("Guardians of the Galaxy") Grace Park("Hawaii Five-O")
THE LOVE STORY

Writer Boholst expounds, "The emotional crux of the film is the love story between Alfred and Zoe. This is a marriage crumbling. They both think the other one is selfish. She says he’s too obsessed with his work and he says she’s withdrawn from him. Over the course of the movie they express these things to each other while hurt, chased, and running for their lives. Zoe knows she’ll eventually turn into a zombie and attack Alfred so she wants him to go on without her and get back to the lab to produce the cure for the rest of the city. Of course the whole time Alfred desperately wants to save Zoe’s life."

"He’s driven by the guilt that it’s partly his fault she got infected. So there are some relationship issues we may have experienced ourselves where one person knows that if they stay together someone will get even more hurt, while the other person knows in their heart of hearts that if they can just get through this rough patch they can save the relationship. This emotional spine is the same tragic stuff of high drama but the stakes and situation are different because it’s a life and death situation, because it’s a zombie virus, because people are chasing them and trying to bash their heads in."

"But they learn to overcome their selfishness by sacrificing for each other. By the climax they are both forced to choose between their life and their spouse’s life. This progression of a marriage is what grounds the fast-paced sci-fi horror genre tale."

HANK (supporting) - proposed actors

Hank, 50's, is a high-ranking US military officer who ran the Area 51 lab where Alfred's accident happened. They used to be best friends but the finger-pointing that ensued splintered them. Hank participates in some military activities that Alfred deems "questionable." But Hank is unblinded by his patriotism and sense of justice. Despite their differences, Hank knows that the only person that can save the planet from the weaponized bio-weapon is the person that created it, his former best friend.

Potential actors (top left to right clockwise): Nic Cage ("Ghost Rider"), Jeffrey Dean Morgan ("The Walking Dead"), Michael Shannon ("Man of Steel"), Sharlto Copley ("District 9"), Paul Giamatti ("Straight Outta Compton")
THE CREATIVE APPROACH

THE COLOR PALLETTE

The Dark Knight

This is an urban movie. Philippine cities are dominated by concrete and rusted aluminum roofs. The cooler shades symbolize the hard, cold, unfeeling mob that pursues the couple. Green permeates the film that gives a sense of sickliness and unease.

Complimentary colors of blue and orange

The complementary color scheme of orange and blue will create a contrast between the warmth and the coolness in the film. This symbolizes the conflict our characters are going through both inside and out. The coolness of the harsh concrete of an angry city contrasts the warmth of our characters but also the heat of the tropical climate, the fires of a city in chaos and the tension that's built by people going out of their minds.

THE LOCATION

The location is a character unto itself. Philippines a rich and diverse landscape. Its cities are a maze of modern high rises, concrete alleys and plywood slums. It's a perfect setting for an A to B chase movie. Many Philippine films have captured the rich texture of Manila in the action genre. "Metro Manila" and "On The Job" are two of the best.

COMPARISON FILMS

This movie has 2 sides to it. Yes, it's a fun romp in the world of zombies and the infected. But it's also a genre couple-on-the-run movie.

ZOMBIE/INFECTED MOVIES

Movies about the infected are a staple genre unto themselves. There will always be a loyal audience for them and if done right with a new twist, they can cross over and find new audiences for great financial rewards.

TRAIN TO BUSAN (budget: $9M, box office: $99M) A man (Gong Yoo), his estranged daughter and other passengers become trapped on a speeding train during a zombie outbreak in South Korea.

Sept. 25, 2018: New Line Wins Bidding War for 'Train to Busan' Remake From James Wan, Gary Dauberman

QUARANTINE (budget: $12M, box office: $41.3M) Reporter Angela (Jennifer Carpenter) and her cameraman Scott (Steve Harris) are doing a story on night-shift firefighters for a reality-TV program. A late-night distress call takes them to a Los Angeles apartment building, where the police are investigating a report of horrific screams. The TV team and emergency workers find an old woman, who suddenly attacks with teeth bared. What's more, Angela and company find that the building has been sealed by CDC workers. Then the attacks really begin.
CHERNOBYL DIARIES (budget: $1M , box office: $38.4M) A group of young tourists (Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, Jonathan Sadowski, Devin Kelley), hoping for an adventure off the beaten path, hires an extreme-tour guide. In spite of warnings, the tour guide takes the sightseers to the town of Pripyat, Ukraine, once home to workers at the nearby Chernobyl nuclear power plant but abandoned after the 1986 nuclear disaster. After briefly exploring the ghost town, the tourists find themselves stranded -- and worse, they are not alone.

COUPLE-ON-THE-RUN GENRE MOVIES

Couple-on-the-run movies had always drawn audiences in. These are some of the more similar movies from a character journey standpoint.

Perhaps the closest couple-on-the-run comp movie would be "No Escape" where Owen Wilson must lead his family to safety amidst a violent uprising in a South East Asian country. "D-Volution" would be "No Escape" meets "28 Days Later."

CHILDREN OF MEN. When infertility threatens mankind with extinction and the last child born has perished, a disillusioned bureaucrat (Clive Owen) becomes the unlikely champion in the fight for the survival of Earth's population; He must face down his own demons and protect the planet's last remaining hope from danger.
MONSTERS (budget: $500,000, boxoffice: $2M) NASA discovered a few years ago the real possibility of alien life and consequently a probe was set up and launched in order to collect sample. After crashing during the re-entry over Central America, new life forms began to appear and spread rapidly. Half of Mexico is quarantined as an infected zone. In this context we follow the story of a US journalist escorting his bosses's daughter through this area to the United States.
THE ADJUSTMENT BUREAU. Just as he is on the brink of winning a Senate seat, politician David Norris (Matt Damon) meets a ballerina named Elise Sellas (Emily Blunt). Though David is instantly smitten, mysterious men conspire to keep him away from the beautiful dancer. David learns that he is facing the powerful agents of Fate itself, and glimpsing the future laid out for him, must either accept a predetermined path that does not include Elise or else defy Fate to be with her.
THE ZOMBIE KING

THE FILMMAKER

Walter Boholst will be the writer, director and producer of D-VOLUTION. Walter is an experienced creative who wrote/directed/co-produced the horror feature film "Voodoo Possession" with Danny Trejo that was distributed in the US by RLJ Entertainment and is available worldwide including territories in Europe, all of the Middle East and all of Latin America. He is also an entertainment attorney of almost 20 years with a specialization in film/TV distribution and foreign sales. His business consulting clients and employers have included RLJ Entertainment (distributor), Dean Devlin's Electric Entertainment (production, distribution, foreign sales) and XYZ Films (foreign sales). His previous industry stints include Assistant Story Editor for MGM Pictures, as a reader for John Davis' Davis Entertainment (Predator, The Man from U.N.C.L.E.) and in foreign sales at Initial Entertainment Group founded by Graham King (The Aviator, The Departed)

Walter also has extensive contacts in the Philippine film industry. He's visited there 4 times since 2013, has participated in numerous film festivals and film conferences there, and has built solid relationships with most of the major studios and the top genre film producers there. He also has an ongoing business affairs consulting relationship with the largest media company in the Philippines, ABS-CBN. He is currently in the process of applying for dual citizenship with the U.S. and the Philippines.

Last but not least, Walter is one of the leaders of the Filipino-American film scene. He is the co-founder and on the board of the directors for the largest and longest running Filipino American entertainment organization, FilAm Creative, Inc. Walter's mission is to bring the American and Philippine film industries together and expose their beauty to the world through his English-language genre films.

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Contact: Walter Boholst - gowalterb@gmail.com

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