Kapiti writer/director Linda Niccol’s short screenplay The Girl With A Little Bit Extra had a staged reading at Lady Filmmakers Festival in Beverly Hills. It was one of only two screenplays selected and played to a packed out audience.
The reading was directed by LA filmmaker Julia Camara. Kim Burns read the stage directions and Jessica Kishner Morgan played Poppy supported by Jeffrey Damnit as brother Dave.
The screenplay was also recognised as a quarter finalist in the US ScreenCraft contest this August.
The script tells the story of Poppy, a girl with a little bit extra – the chromosome that causes Down syndrome. This doesn’t stop her wanting to do the things other ‘normal’ people do – like driving a car but the person she trusts most has put her in the ‘disability’ box forcing her to take control of her destiny.
Linda Niccol’s screen career began in 2006 when she won Kaos Films British Short Screenplay Award for The Handkerchief. She went on to co-write New Zealand feature hit Second-Hand Wedding.
She then wrote and directed shorts Dangerous Ride and The Handkerchief. Both films were screened at festivals in New Zealand and in the US.
Linda is also a published author with two collections of short stories; The Geometry of Desire and The Temperature of Water.
Most recently Linda has collaborated with Canadian writer Vincent Thibault on Lorraine a film about a bereft grandmother who meets a parkour athlete that gives her a new lease on life.
Another short screenplay, The Book Lovers also reached LA’s HollyShorts finals this year.
Much of Linda’s work features strong women protagonists. The Girl With A Little Bit Extra is no exception. Linda hopes the story will engage and provoke audiences into thinking a little bit differently about those with a little bit extra.
Image: Writer Linda Niccol, Actors Kim Burns, Jessica Kishner Morgan and Jeffrey Damnit and Director Julia Camara at the staged reading of The Girl With A Little Bit Extra, October 2017