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By

Lee Roy Kunz

Young artists struggling to succeed in their careers and in love. Beef it up...

The Lonely Crowd is an hour long Drama that revolves a group of Artist living in Los Angeles.  The artists are Actors, screenwriters, models, and photographers.  Each episode focuses on one of our five central figures as chronicled by the story’s narrator, Nola. Our characters problems are eternal: life, love, and poverty in a landscape vastly changed by social media. Wealth and fame might beckon at every turn for these young artists but that’s all a radical illusion.  finding love, friendships and the deep connections with the people who really matter.  

It is about navigating the labyrinth of modern dating. 

It's about sex and desire. And the deep need to connect with others. 

Overview Conclusion blah blah blah...

Setting

LA

The five hundred square miles of the City of Angels are home to dozens of little towns, neighborhoods, and enclaves that have spread up and sprawled out.  A transient city that forms not only the backdrop but is the beating heart of The Lonely Crowd. REWRITE... art world blah blah blah

Venice

Downtown

CHARACTERS

Our group of friends find each other and hold on tightly, because they’re all they’ve really got in this world.

These are artists, journalists, filmmakers and writers. 

They wear nice clothes. They eat good food. They are always invited to the best parties. 

They live in a bizarre in-between world of constantly being broke while simultaneously being offered access to the world's most insane luxuries.

They are from all over the country, with families that have conflicting ideologies, practices and beliefs.

NOLA- Half-Black. Young and beautiful. She is street smart and will survive by any means necessary. Distrusts authority and people in general. Conservative views about the world. She is a genuine Trump supporter. In the pilot episode, she drops out of high school and moves to Los Angeles with the plan to extort the mother she has never met before, Colton, for money. She is obsessed with Reality TV, The Kardashians, and becoming famous. When she shows up, it is a terrible mystery; she does not tell everyone who she really is and slowly inches her way into the group.

As season 1 progresses, Nola will be the catalyst for Colton’s artistic resurrection and her downfall. Indeed, Nola’s role will always be to start fires and foster chaos. No matter how much she tries to run from that reality, that’s what she’s built for. She leaves behind a trail of wreckage wherever she goes. 

JESS- Intellectual. A successful political cartoonist for a Vice-like online publication. The daughter of Cuban dissidents, she faces internal conflict from her right-wing Roman Catholic upbringing, set against the progressive values she picked up in college and perfected as a member of Liam’s peer group. Jess went to College with Liam at USC and they fell deeply in love. But she’s got major anxiety and depression issues stemming from a college rape that also ruined her relationship with Liam. As Jess struggles to keep her PTSD from dragging her down, she hides the secret that her attacker is still a member of their group.

Jess will continue to struggle with her intimacy issues until it becomes clear that she can’t keep running back to Liam every time things go wrong. After realizing that home is not always something you can go back to, Jess will have to figure out a way to face her fears, become strong again, and regain what was taken from her.

LIAM- Born and raised in Los Angeles. A writer and director who grew up poor on the streets of Venice until his dad hit it big in real estate and moved their family to Malibu. He’s the core of our group, the messenger and the caretaker. Liam is a lover who treats dating like a game where everyone knows the rules and nobody gets hurt. 

A romantic at heart, in season one, Liam's perspective about love and dating will get a little more cloudy after getting his heart broken in the pilot episode, only to fall harder for a girl named Taylor in later episodes, with similarly-disastrous results.

COLTON- A high-level fashion photographer on the verge of breaking into the world of mainstream art. With an abusive childhood and raised mostly by her hillbilly grandmother, Colton was married at the age of 16 when she got pregnant with the first boy she ever had sex with. After being forced to keep the kid and get married, Colton abandoned her child and husband and took off for Los Angeles. She is now walking the razor's edge between success and failure as she prepares for a make-or-break-it art show. For now, though, she’s  got the huge studio and the beautiful girlfriend, where every photo shoot turns into a party. 

Over the course of season one, Colton will be forced to face change after the critical and commercial failure of her big art show and her golden image as a progressive LGBT activist starts to fall apart after the shocking truth about Nola is revealed. 

JOSHUA- Not just spiritual, but actually religious, Joshua brings a sense of peace to the group. Talented, an aspiring movie producer and actor. He struggles with being from two worlds. A good ol' southern boy from Arkansas living amongst LBGT bohemians. He’s in a long-term relationship with a woman he loves who desperately wants to get married; which he does not believe he is financially ready for. Joshua is guided by his beliefs and his loyalty to his friends. He’s always there with quick wit and good advice for anyone who needs it… and some who don’t. A hypochondriac with high anxiety, he always adds some comedic relief to any situation.

During Season 1, Joshua will find himself sliding into turmoil as he begins to question his relationship. He wonders if he will ever achieve the professional success he  believes he needs to gain his families respect and to have the financial stability to get married and start his own family . Meanwhile, when an important movie deal falls apart, his financial stability and prospects for marriage becomes even more shaky. 

MATT, the bitter right-wing liberal intellectual roommate of Liam. Matt grew up dirt poor in a small town in Oregon near an Indian reservation with a single father that never connected with him emotionally and faded away altogether when Matt’s sister killed herself. Beloved member of the group Matt suffers from extreme depression and anxiety, which his alcoholism just makes worse. Forced into living with Liam because he has no options, he is Liam's longtime writing partner and is slowly becoming more and more conservative and angry at the world.

During season one, Matt will alternate between hope and bitterness in his desire to find real and lasting love in the internet age when one can always keep swiping for something better. At the end of season one, Matt will find what he is looking for in the most unexpected of places. 

AND THE REST: There are always friends and new love interests on the scene to fill out the crowd and keep things lively. This show will be bolstered by a broadly diverse and universally appealing cast of secondary characters. 

DAVID - Liam’s older half-brother. Extremely conservative, intelligent and nihilistic. We come to find out the David is the one who raped Jess, although he doesn’t see it that way. 

ANNE -  the current "it girl" in fashion, TV and movies. Beautiful, young, and vapid, she is always leading the latest trend, the latest of which is sleeping with women and being Colton's girlfriend.

MARCUS- a young aspiring Muslim rapper. He lives with Nola and is the property manger of  the house in which they live. He will become a big brother-like figure, helping her see a more spiritual side of life.

TAYLOR - an aspiring actress, writer, and model. Taylor's mom and dad are two of the biggest movie stars in the world. Liam’s latest infatuation, she projects a completely different image to Liam than she does to the rest of the world, secretly two-timing him and falling into the Hollywood drug scene. 

BRIANNA - grew up in Malibu with Liam. Her dad is legendary T.V producer and is now a very successful TV actress herself on a cheesy network soap opera she hates. Brianna lives in the apartment above Liam and have consistently been friends with benefits since middle school. 

ALLY -  a secretly-broke, club promoter, socialite, and the jaded ex-girlfriend of Joshua. A dark and troubled soul, Ally lives with Brianna and has become her pseudo personal assistant and financial dependent. 

SEASON 1: The first season of The Lonely Crowd traces the early days of the group as they struggle with finding love and commitment in the big city. 

Episode 1: Pilot "A cry for something beautiful"

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"You can't ignore me."

Nola drops out of high school, abandoning her life in Ohio to move to L.A. to find her famous photographer mom to extort her for money so she can create a glossy, fabulous life for herself, the kind she has seen on reality TV, in L.A. That photographer is Colton, who is working on a Mapplethorpe-esque series with transgender models for an upcoming show. Nola is mistaken for an intern when she shows up to confront Colton and reluctantly accepts a paid internship, concealing her identity, when she realizes she does not have courage to confront Colton. Jess goes on a date with a nice guy named Sam, with the sole mission to have meaningless sex with a safe guy she can trust. However, a panic attack in the middle of accomplishing that goal nearly puts her in the hospital. Liam comes to her rescue with his model girlfriend Ivy, who Liam thinks might be the love of his life. He agrees to let Jess stay at his place that night and makes a bed for her on the pullout couch. The next morning, Ivy breaks up with Liam very unexpectedly, leaving him absolutely devastated and uncertain whether or not it's really over. Liam, Matt, and Joshua visit Colton’s and tell her what they really think of her new photo series for her upcoming make-it-or-break-it show. She is upset by their response and storms out. Liam despairs when Ivy refuses to meet with him for a proper breakup and realizes the breakup is real. Jess invites Liam into her shower to jerk him off, to fulfill her goal of achieving sexual conquest while also getting closer to Liam under the guise that she wants to help him move on and get his virility back. When the real intern shows up for the job Nola has been assuming, Nola is exposed as a fraud and must confess to Colton who she really is. She doesn’t have to, however. Colton immediately realizes she is the daughter she abandoned all those years ago, all grown up, and deserving of an explanation.

Episode 2: “The Kruetzer Sonata”

 

After a fiery sermon about celibacy, Joshua and his equally-Christian girlfriend, Alondra, decide get closer to God by giving up sex until marriage. Hearing Josh talk about it at dinner has a profound effect on the entire group of friends. Liam, Matt, Jess, Brianna and Ally go to a party where Liam hopes to run into Ivy, but instead meets a charming girl named Taylor, who he is immediately smitten with. Liam returns that night and shares a bed with Jess. David shows up to take Liam and Matt to lunch, and Jess is again upset. Liam assumes Jess is mad at him because of his casual treatment of their sexual encounters. Nola is shocked to learn that she is living with a Muslim, Marcus, her kind and supportive property manager. Colton shows up at her house unexpectedly, and offers her a permanent job to work for her. Nola reluctantly accepts the low-paying job and things remain tense as they agree to keep the true nature of their relationship secret. Liam and Taylor’s first date goes amazingly, and in order to keep it special, Liam also decides to keep sex out of it. Matt, on the other hand, has regrettable sex and becomes very depressed about it. After a couple of days, the lack of sex starts to frustrate Joshua, but his girlfriend doesn’t want to let the experiment go and now sees it as a bargaining chip to finally force Joshua to commit to marriage. 

Episode 3: “No more Facebook for you”

 

Nola can’t stand living in poverty, especially once she gets a look at how the rich of LA are living. She decides to upgrade her lifestyle by any means necessary. She meets a man at a party and, after sleeping with him, rifles through his wallet for cash. Tired of the failed dates, right-wing diatribes and endless virtual drama, Liam locks Matt out of Facebook. The two friends go to war over it, changing each other’s passwords and playing a variety of pranks on one another. In the end, they have a meaningful discussion on the value of information and how important it is to keep people’s real personas and internet personas separate, especially with online dating. Taylor wants Liam to meet her famous parents, but Liam doesn’t feel that he is ready for that and suspects Taylor is trying to use her famous parents to make Liam like her more. He knows how huge her parents’ help could be for his career and wants to make sure he likes her for her and not what she can give him. Meanwhile, when the man Nola robbed comes looking for her, Nola pulls a gun on him and the whole group begins to understand that they might have a loose cannon in their midst. 

Episode #4: “Ivy was my Rosalind, Taylor is my Juliet”

 

Liam and Taylor’s relationship continues to intensify as they get closer and closer. Taylor projects the image of the perfect girlfriend to Liam while secretly doing drugs and seeing other men behind his back. Joshua struggles with his ongoing celibacy and begins considering marriage for the first time. Nola takes an acting class with Anne and meets a kind, funny guy who asks Nola out on a date. Anne and Colton go to therapy and the source of Colton’s stress becomes clear. Colton is in serious money trouble and after Anne storms out of the session, the therapist adds her voice to the increasing number of people who don’t think Anne is a lesbian. Liam realizes that he’s falling in love with Taylor, especially when Ivy shows up, wanting to get back together, and Liam refuses. Jess tries to use Liam again to get over her sexual dysfunction, which causes Liam to get angry that Jess is not taking his feelings for Taylor seriously. Nola’s date with the guy from acting class is a disaster. He’s sweet, gentle and kind, and that’s a major turn off. When Nola goes to Colton’s looking for someone to talk to, she spots Anne sleeping with a man. Nola doesn’t tell anyone, however, choosing loyalty to her new friend Anne over Colton. 

Episode #5: “Lost Illusions”

Jess goes back to Miami for her cousin’s funeral and stays with her racist grandmother who watches FOX News all day, every day. Jess tries to change her grandmother’s mind, but realizes there is nothing she can do. Meanwhile in L.A., Liam ambushes Matt with a double date and tricks Matt into buying him new clothes and getting a new haircut. On discovering Liam’s plans, Matt leaves before his date can show up and meets up with a girl from Tinder instead. That night, Liam, Taylor and the girl Matt was supposed to go on the double date with, go to a warehouse party downtown. Taylor and Liam have a blowup when Taylor uses her sexuality to score free drugs. Liam threatens to break up with her and is about to leave, when Taylor proclaims her love to him while she is on ecstasy. Liam and Taylor reconcile that night, but Liam still goes home in a fit of defiance. Ally and Brianna have a huge falling out over Ally failing to live up to her professional duties. Ally slowly fades into the background of the group as Brianna cuts her off completely. Taylor texts Liam the next day and they reconcile after she gives a shallow but genuine excuse to why she acted that way. They go see a movie together and have dinner. Liam is feeling very vulnerable and gets drunk in front of her for the first time. When Taylor asks Liam if he’s ever been in love, Liam responds callously. They have sex that night, but it is angry and disconnected, leaving both of them with a bad feeling about each other. Liam gets a call from Jess in the middle of the night, calling to apologize for not respecting his relationship with Taylor. Liam takes it outside under a sky of stars, in a state of romantic turmoil.

SEASON 1 - continues into the holidays and one by one, the relationships fall apart due to neglect or self-destructiveness. Colton’s art show is a disaster but a one-off nude photo of Anne and Nola together becomes a political sensation and the fame she was waiting for comes knocking. Underneath that fame, however, is a waiting disaster. Liam falls deeply in love with Taylor, only to find that she never took the relationship with him seriously and was secretly two-timing him with other men all along. A string of bad dates and financial woes leaves Matt more bitter than ever, until unexpected happiness finds him at his lowest point. Joshua fails to commit to his girlfriend, refusing to marry her until he has financial success, potentially losing the love of his life in the process. And Jess continues to deny that she has a sexual dysfunction problem she can't fix on her own, alienating herself more and more. In the end, our characters wind up mostly alone, with varying levels of financial and artistic success, swiping impotently at their dating apps, looking for instant and easy connections that do not exist.  Our characters are not hopeless, however, they are idealists. They are lost, striving, boats against the current, for a life in which they believe they can have it all. 

Future seasons of The Lonely Crowd will follow the characters as they continue toward spiritual growth and begin to find more meaningful and mature relationships. Colton and Nola reach an accord and eventual understanding of what it means to be family under such impossible circumstances. Liam goes on a self-destructive rampage after getting his heart broken by Taylor, only to pick himself up again and rededicate himself to finding real love. Matt falls in love, moves out of Liam’s house and starts to change back into the mellow and lovable guy he truly is. Jess moves into Liam’s house and the sexual tension between them grows. They try to have sex, which ends up traumatizing them both. After David dies unexpectedly from heart failure, the eventual truth of Jess’s attacker surfaces, but it’s far too late for Liam to do anything about it. Fame and fortune come and go for these characters and they all slowly begin realize that if they want something real, they will have to give up their illusions of having it all or forever find themselves in the lonely crowd, chasing vanities, gaining the world and yet losing their soul. 

Thank you for taking the time to look at my pitchdeck.

Lee Roy Kunz

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