Anders Brendstrup

Biography

Anders Brendstrup is a screenwriter from Denmark who crafts tightly structured horror scripts to process the nightmares caused by the anti-consumerist, public service, “let’s dress an old hippie up as a child and have him sing softly to a man-sized puppet”-children’s TV he grew up with.

His first feature screenplay, DEAD METAL, is a horror comedy about metal music, ghost story cliches and deep family trauma. He is currently developing a series pilot focusing on modern witches and reality TV. He lives in North London with Anne Sofie who is a service designer and a boiler that sounds like an angry ghost. Or maybe it’s the other way around…

Synopsis

A teenager deals with the trauma of a mentally ill mother by singing heavy metal but when ghostly voices invade her recordings she must exorcise both real and imagined demons.

My cohort

Playwriting & Screenwriting 2020

Dead Metal

Screenplay Extract

FADE IN
EXT. SUBURBAN STREET ­ NIGHT
‘Early 2000s’
Perfect suburbia. Quiet and peaceful. Not even songbirds dare to disturb the peace. Or the quiet.
Well kept hedges, unlocked bikes, nice cars.
LILY (V.O.)
The movies always get it wrong. They make it way too easy to spot the haunted house.
The front of NR 67. A regular,inviting house like all its neighbors. Only difference is the large MOVING VAN outside
LILY (V.O.) (cont’d)
They are too big or dark or isolated. Usually all three. But hey there’s a collection of creepy dolls in the attic and our 5 year old has made an imaginary friend he calls Mr. Murderson. People in movies are basically asking for it.
The van come to life with a ROAR that sends birds flying from their trees. It speeds off.
LILY (V.O.) (cont’d)
Real ghosts don’t sit around waiting in creepy old houses. Because real people stay away from them.
The engine sound dies out in the distance. Peace restored.
Then, the light in NR 67 starts to flicker.
And go out.
LILY (V.O.) (cont’d)
If ghosts want to haunt us they have to come and find us. So that’s what they do…
A SCREAM from inside the house ­­–
INT. NR.67/BECKER HOUSE NR 1. ­ NIGHT
–­ revealed to be a 60’s ROCK SONG on a spinning LP.
The RECORD PLAYER sits on top of a few cardboard boxes next to a pair of homemade SPEAKERS.
It’s the first and only piece of ‘furniture’ in a new home.
ANNA MARIE BECKER (25) dances around in the dark, tip­toeing in and out between rows of boxes. She sings too. Good voice.
Meanwhile Morgan BECKER (28) backs out from behind the makeshift speaker set, screwdriver in hand.
He goes to inspect the dark, naked light bulb hanging from the ceiling.
MORGAN
Looks like we can’t both hear music and see what we’re doing.
ANNA MARIE
Minor detail.
MORGAN
-­ or get the fridge going, cook some dinner ­-
ANNA MARIE
The moment called for music. You know I can’t deny the moment.
Anna Marie stops to light a cigarette. She takes a long drag in her best impression of a French new wave icon.
ANNA MARIE (cont’d)
(french accent)
We have whole life to get old and die.
MORGAN
Is that what you’re expecting of our marriage.
ANNA MARIE
(Nods towards speakers)
I’m just in it for those. Obviously.
(Hands to her heart)
And he built them himself.
Morgan smiles and turns on his flashlight.
MORGAN
I want to have a look at the fuses. See if you can find where we put the sheets maybe?
ANNA MARIE
Moment didn’t call for sheets.
MORGAN
Start opening some boxes wife. Before we get to the old and dead part.
ANNA MARIE
Did I mention my undying love?
MORGAN
Too late.
He leaves for the hallway and is soon heard TESTING FUSES.
Anna Marie mock­sulks and flips open boxes with her cigarette­less hand, without really looking. Until ­
ANNA MARIE
OW!
The cigarette has burned all the way down to her finger. And she hasn’t packed out an ashtray yet.
She sneaks to the window and scouts for nosy neighbors before she pops the butt outside.
She stays for a moment in the cool calm breeze.
A gust of wind lifts the curtains over her face. As she moves to wrap herself out, she peeks through the fabric:
A SHADOWY FIGURE next to the record player.
ANNA MARIE (cont’d)
Gave up?
With a flash the light bulb comes back to life and lights up the room
The figure is gone.
Anna Marie removes the curtain and stares at the empty spot.
MORGAN
Never.
Morgan appears in the doorway.

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