Nick R. Murphy: Odyssey of an
Written by Barry Bridgeway
It was nearing the end of sophomore year when Nick R. Murphy put pen to paper and wrote his first feature-length screenplay. The juvenile tale of two hopeless drug addicts who found themselves in a series of comedic misadventures involving the police and sadistic criminals. The end result was a profanity leaden and violence soaked parable entitled The Last Temptation of Crack.
It was from this point forward that Nick's artistic sensibilities evolved.
At the end of junior year during the summer of 2001, Nick began writing in another notebook. This time at the behest of his newfound friend, Cesar Lazcano, who was wrestling with a concept that had nowhere to go. The story of a high school kid, a college football player, and a hotshot lawyer who find themselves in a psychological rut due to a severe deficit of confidence. They find their salvation at the hands of a pill given to them by a charismatic motivational speaker. The working title of the project was Drive. Nick ran with
the idea and spent the better part of a year scribbling the first draft. He brought his notebook everywhere he went in case inspiration unexpectedly took hold. Some of his fellow classmates took notice of Nick's obsessive writing in class and asked to read what he had. Nick reluctantly agreed to let them see the unfinished project and found that his readers were immediately hooked into it. His audience was rabid and eager for more pages until the grandiose screenplay was complete. It was around this time that Nick realized he had a knack for this whole writing thing and big dreams soon followed. Over time, the longhand draft was rewritten on a desktop computer and the title was inevitably changed to The Drive Effect. But alas, this ambitious, darkly comic, character-driven epic never got off the ground, and to this day remains unproduced.
But Nick didn't know the fate of The Drive Effect back then. He had a plan. He had a vision. Upon graduating high school in 2002, he hit the ground running and wrote the serial killer thriller, Risk Without Reason, the futuristic action saga, Pemento/Waltz, the film noir parody, Scattering Leaves, the ensemble drama, Neighborhood Wasteland, and the modern art satire, Composition of Madness. Count them up and that's six feature screenplays all written in the year 2002.
And if you're not familiar with any of those titles that's because those scripts were never produced either.
But Nick didn't know the fate of those scripts back then. He had a plan. He had a vision. And he jumped into 2003 with even more movies in his mind. He started the year writing the Tarantinoesque vampire/werewolf hybrid, Moon Monstrosities (one of his personal favorites), the two part gangland epic Pike & Tequila, and the wildly violent Mordecai trilogy, about an Iraq war veteran turned vengeful samurai. And if you're not familiar with any of those, then-- you guessed it. They still remain unproduced!
But Nick didn't know the fate of those scripts back then. He still had a plan. He still had a vision. And it seemed to start coming together in the summer of 2004 when he collaborated with Cesar Lazcano and Patrick Miceli for a no-budget buddy film entitled Inside Tito's Trunk, the timeless story of two best friends who must work together to get rid of a dead body. The filmmakers worked tirelessly day and night for over six months to finalize the film. The end product was everything Nick had hoped for, and he was excited to get the film out there so they could move on to bigger and better things. This was their ticket in. Nick had his next few films already lined up in his mind. First, he was going to make Composition of Madness, then move on to Moon Monstrosities, and then get The Drive Effect off the ground. After that, the sky would be the limit!
Except nothing happened with Inside Tito's Trunk. It never found an audience and it was never accepted into any film festivals. Nick had thought the film's minimalist, Dogme '95 inspired visual style would be considered charming, but instead it was interpreted as amateurish by viewers who misunderstood the intent. Fifteen years later, Inside Tito's Trunk remains in obscurity. The full movie is on YouTube, where it's gained a whopping 600 views since being uploaded in 2011.
The failure of Inside Tito's Trunk was Nick R. Murphy's first big taste of humble pie, and there were plenty more servings coming his way in the future. But Nick didn't know that. He had a revised plan. An adjusted vision. He was going to make another movie. The problem was he had no time. He was working two jobs, he was burned out, and had no energy to write. Between 2005 and 2007 he couldn't finish a single script. It wasn't until he was able to get a better job with a regular schedule that he was able to realign his focus and plan his next film, Dewy Carson's Debt, a modern fable about an awkward loser who owes a bad man a lot of money. Nick spent the first half of 2008 planning the whole thing out. He was cool with the script and he knew who he wanted to cast. Patrick Miceli helped him scout locations and initiate crew members. Nick wrote out a shot list and planned a production schedule. He was going to be professional about this. He was going to get this movie done right. But of course, life had other plans. After three disastrous days of shooting, nothing came out the way it was supposed to and the project was subsequently abandoned. So much for that.
In 2009, Nick co-wrote and co-starred in dual roles in Cesar Lazcano's Love Zombie Reject. It was around this time when life began to transition for Nick. He floated through the Love Zombie production in total despondence, not knowing where he was going in life. He took things as theycame back then. He didn't feel like he had any other choice. His confidence was shot to hell. His artistic vision was fading. All hope was close to being lost.
However, Nick had a project brewing in his mind. Something that would change everything. He started doing copious amounts of notes in a five subject notebook. He spent two years building the screenplay for this thing. This was the movie. Finally, a follow up to Inside Tito's Trunk was at long last going to happen. The script was called Hackjob Productions. It centered on four friends who were aspiring filmmakers, and find nothing but dead ends whenever they attempt to make a movie. It was inspired by Nick's own experiences on no budget movie sets. All his frustration over his lack of success was concentrated and filtered out of his imagination and on to the page. What resulted was the funniest script he had written up until that point. This movie had to be made and he was going to dedicate the year 2011 to make it. He planned to self-finance the project. He shopped around for cameras, considered his options, and started saving up.
Unfortunately, while he accumulated those funds, his mother ran into some money trouble and Nick had to break the bank to get her out of the hole. After that, all his extra cash went towards semi-regular plane trips from his home in Las Vegas to central Arkansas in order to maintain a long-distance relationship with his girlfriend who was going through a nasty divorce and custody battle. Plus, a lot of people who Nick talked to about Hackjob Productions just didn't seem interested in helping him out. So the project couldn't get off the ground and once again, Nick was left with yet another unproduced script for what most certainly would've been a kick-ass movie. What a bum deal.
But 2011 wasn't a total bust. That was the year Nick connected with Sharry Flaherty of Samera Entertainment. And through the opportunities she provided, Nick was blessed with a new lease on his creative life. He started out writing shorts for actors in Sharry's acting studio then inevitably moved on to writing numerous feature scripts that are currently in various stages of development. Projects like the psychological thriller, Unbound, the dark crime drama, Hot Car Angel, the insane horror comedy, Shoestring, and the sexy neo-noir, Slade. And if you're not familiar with any of those titles, don't worry, you will be one day.
Because Nick R. Murphy has a plan. He has a vision. He's spent the last five years fine-tuning his style, perfecting his process, reading books, taking notes, and studying storytelling. Nick R. Murphy has screenwriting down to a science. He's grateful for the failures of his past because without them he wouldn't have gained his mastery of the craft. Thanks to the struggle he's endured, he now knows how to write in any genre and break the mechanics of any story down to its core elements.
A meticulous perfectionist, a consummate professional, and a brilliant collaborator, Nick R. Murphy is destined to be a premier voice of the 2020s, and is one screenwriter you'll always want on your side.
With Samera Entertainment, Nick R. Murphy has developed over a dozen scripts made up of multiple genres, and he's always on the lookout for the next great story. Anyone interested in hiring Nick to develop your movie idea into a feature script can contact his manager Sharry Flaherty of Samera Entertainment at: