Screenwriter Spotlight: Finalist Questionnaire (Nick Larice)

What’s your name? Where were you born? Where do you live? And what’s your hobby?

My name is Nick Larice. I was born in San Jose, CA, and currently live in Los Angeles. I love playing with my dog and watching movies.

Where did you come up with the concept that just placed you as a finalist in the screenplay contest? How long did it take you to develop it into the screenplay it is now?

The idea came to me at a table read for someone else’s project. One of the final scenes included a small part of a therapist, just a 1 or 2 liner. A friend of mine reading the role was dressed and sitting in such a way that I could see the character of Travis so clearly in my head. I wrote the first script outline a couple of years ago and then began the process of editing. Every so often, I would stick it in a drawer for a while to get some distance and clear my head. I worked on other projects in the meantime and would periodically come back to Lucid when inspiration struck. Early in the pandemic days, I had nothing but time so I took the opportunity to tighten up the script to where it is today.

From concept to finished draft, can you take us through your screenwriting process?

Initially, I just spewed all the thoughts in my head onto the page. It was one big jumbled mess but I had clear images of scenes and moments and did my best to write it out. I consulted with a few colleagues, took some screenplay lessons, and workshopped the script for months until it was at a solid point. Once I reached that checkpoint, I went through each individual line with a fine-tooth comb and made more adjustments. Some were as large as changing entire scenes, some were as minute as changing a word in a line. Each change had a weighted significance attached to it and I felt that those changes brought a substantial amount of nuanced subtext alive in the story.

When did you realize that you wanted to become a screenwriter?

As an actor, like any job in this industry, I feel that you need to create your own work and opportunities. A few years ago, I started writing and focused on character development and stories that I wanted to see and bring to life.

Who are your biggest filmmaking/screenwriting influences? What about their style do you like or borrow?

Three people stand out in my mind. First, Aaron Sorkin. His dialogue and process of editing really connect with me. I took his online masterclass and seeing how he approaches writing was absolutely enlightening. Second, Taika Waititi’s method of screenwriting is exactly how I like to work. He says that if he knows the beginning, the end, and a few scenes in between, he’s able to find ways to weave the story along. I tend to see images and scenes in my head, rather than a timeline or storyboard. I’ll have three or four great ideas and write them out as best I can. Once I have a beginning and end, I try to weave together scenes that drive the story forward.

Lastly, Christopher Nolan. He is involved in all aspects of his projects. Without a doubt, I believe that being able to write, direct, and act in a project I’ve created allows me to bring my vision alive with a strong point of view.

Have you ever been obsessed with a movie or TV show? If so, which one? Why?

Too many! Ever since I could walk and talk, I’ve always loved watching great movies and TV shows so I can’t pinpoint anyone in particular. There are scenes and moments from numerous movies and shows that will always stick with me on an emotional level. Each time I watch them, I find something new that I have never noticed before. I love pulling inspiration from everything I see. It’s one big buffet of creativity and I intend to try it all!

What’s your favorite moment in cinema history? Why?

I have a special connection to the movie Field of Dreams. I lost my dad when I was a teenager. Every time I see James Earl Jones’s speech about baseball followed by Kevin Costner’s character having a catch with his dad, it brings me right back to being a kid and playing baseball with my dad. Furthermore, these simple moments make the strongest memories.

Who’s your favorite character in cinema history? Why?

Picking a favorite anything is so tough but I love spy movies so I’d have to say, James Bond. Beyond the life-threatening danger, being a spy would be so cool! Gadgets, thrills, suspense, action, adventure… not to mention a smashing tux and an Aston Martin.

If you could talk to anyone from any era, who would it be and what would you ask them?

I’d ask Hemingway if the whiskey was also a beard oil.