PFP Announces “Boys In Summer” by Dennis Shinners the winner of the 2013 Great Gay Screenplay Contest

Dennis ShinnersPride Films and Plays is delighted to announce the winner of our 2013 Great Gay Screenplay contest is Boys In Summer by Dennis Shinners. The award was presented Sunday, November 17 at the conclusion of PFP’s Gay Film Weekend in the Hoover-Leppen Theatre of Center on Halsted.

The weekend included ‘enhanced staged readings’ of the top five scripts, including The Starfish Scream by Brent Hartinger, The Passion Child by Amir Sade, Buddy Booth by Edward J. Yaeger Jr., and Saguaro by Brandon Yarns. The weekend also included screenings of the short films The Wait by Mary Guzmán, Scotty Works OUT by Dan Pal, Coffee Talk: Episodes 3 and 4 by Skyrider Films, and Hypocrites + Strippers by Kim Yaged, all having their Chicago premieres.

After the contest, Dennis sent us the following note:

“Holy crap!” I blurted out when it was announced that I won this year’s Pride Films and Plays’ Great Gay Screenplay contest. Not my preferred choice of words, but I hold the martini that was in hand at the time responsible. Not only was I surprised but very happy I chose to take part in this year’s tough competition amongst talented writers.

 Truth be told I had an excellent advantage to have the piece elevated by the gifted PF&P company member Nelson Rodriguez, whose work with a very talented and brave cast brought to life revelations, successes and areas that need development that I was too close to the work to realize.

 It was a really great and rare experience to participate as an audience member for one’s own work by an authentic and professional organization that brings stories from LGBT life to the world.

 If you’re a writer out there with a story to tell, I say get on board. They’re also great to drink martinis with.

About Boys In Summer

[toggle type=”white” title=”Synopsis” active=””]A shy American college boy travels to Paris to reconnect with a French exchange student from his high school years and finds himself in battle for his affections with a bold, brash and aggressive Jersey girl.[/toggle]

About the Author

[toggle type=”white” title=”Dennis Shinners” active=””]Dennis Shinners grew up in New Jersey, attended NYU’s film school and has called the city of New York home ever since. He is a writer, producer and director of high profile award-winning on-air campaigns for Nickelodeon, Nick @ Nite, Spike TV, Discovery Channel, Disney Channel, TV Land and the Oxygen Network. His two short films, “Area X” and GO-GO have enjoyed both domestic and international festival runs and distribution deals. His latest short Barrio Boy, based on a 2012 Pride Films & Plays screenplay finalist, hits the road this winter.[/toggle]

Congratulations to Dennis and all our finalists!

About Pride Films and Plays

[toggle type=”white” title=”About Pride Films and Plays” active=””] Utilizing stories with gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender characters or themes, Pride Films and Plays develops powerful theatrics that speak for the community and are essential viewing for all audiences.

Pride Films and Plays fosters excellence in writing for the stage and screen by connecting our Writers Network with our Artistic Ensemble and accelerating the process of moving important scripts from development to full production. When ready, these excellent works are then offered to theaters across the country.

Our season consists of three full productions – a world premiere, a Chicago premiere, and a reinvigorated classic – along with three weekend festivals of new ‘enhanced staged readings.’

Writers are invited to join our Writers Network when they are named a finalist in our contests – the Great Gay Play Contest, Women’s Work (for plays and screenplays with lesbian characters or themes, written by women), and the Great Gay Screenplay Contest.  The finalists earn cash prizes, and their plays performed as “enhanced staged readings” which include movement, blocking, and technical elements in the 150 Hoover-Leppen Theater in Center on Halsted.

The 2011 Great Gay Play Contest winner, Learn To Be Latina by Enrique Urueta, has had multiple regional productions, and the 2012 winner At The Flash by Sean Chandler and David Leeper was Jeff-recommended in Chicago, a hit in LA, and will be seen in Dublin next spring. Under A Rainbow Flag by Leo Schwartz, a finalist in last year’s contest, had its world premiere in Chicago this spring and won the Jeff Award for Best New Work and Best Musical Production. It has undergone a further revision and – now called Honor – will be remounted in Chicago in 2014.  And the 2013 contest winner Directions for Restoring the Apparently Dead by Martin Casella had a successful run in the 150 seat thrust stage at Stage 773.

In addition to our forward thinking play development, we feel strongly that we without knowledge of our past, we cannot truly know our way. Thus we have produced 20th Anniversary productions of The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me by David Drake and Beautiful Thing by Jonathan Harvey and in 2014 will present Lillian Hellman’s great drama The Children’s Hour.[/toggle]

For more information on contests or productions, visit