Helen on 86th St. has been adapted into an award-winning feature screenplay.
An imaginative and precocious New York City tween must accept her father's absence after going to extreme measures to bring him back home.
2018 Inroads Screenwriting Fellowship: Finalist
2018 ISA Fast Track Fellowship: Top 50 List
2018 Berlinale/European Film Market: mentorship with Stowe Story Labs
2017 Stowe Story Labs: NewEnglandFilm.com Fellowship
Check out a feature interview with Nicole Kempskie about the project, fellowship, and labs here.
2017 TTP Screenplay Competition: Official selection
2016 International Family Film Festival Screenplay Competition: Winner
2016 Final Draft Big Break Screenwriting Contest: Quarter Finalist
2016 Marble House Project artist residency to write the screenplay
Vita Sanford’s first college writing assignment is to write a personal story inspired by Homer’s epic poem, The Odyssey. As she stands in front of her class reading her essay about the year her school put on a play about the Trojan Horse, the story moves from the college classroom to 12-year-old Vita’s bedroom where she is prepping for auditions.
Despite her braces, glasses, and bushy hair, Vita is determined to get the role of Helen of Troy. Vita is certain that she is best actor for the part, and convinced that if she gets the role it will bring her absent father, who left three years earlier, back home.
Unfortunately, things don't go Vita's way and she must call upon her tenacity, resourcefulness, and relentless hope to turn things around. After burning sacrificial offerings at an altar to Goddess Athena—the letters she’s been writing her father every night since he left—her luck begins to change. The role of Helen of Troy becomes hers after the beautiful Helen Mc.Guire gets the chicken pox. Next, her mother breaks it off with her boyfriend. All that’s left is for her father to come home.
As Vita stands onstage searching for him in the audience, she learns the limitations of wishes and the value of inner strength.