Dan Gross: 'Sneaker' script scores screenwriting win

Slice owner Jason Dilks with actor Bradley Cooper.
Slice owner Jason Dilks with actor Bradley Cooper.
Posted: October 24, 2011

"THE FIGHTER" director David O. Russell, in town shooting "The Silver Linings Playbook," and Chestnut Hill-native actress Melissa Fitzgerald announced the winners of the Greater Philadelphia Film Office's Shoot in Philadelphia Screenwriting Competition yesterday afternoon at Vie (600 N. Broad).

They joined film-office executive director Sharon Pinkenson and Joan Bressler, director of Greater Philadelphia Filmmakers, in awarding the $10,000 grand prize to Anthony Stitt for his screenplay "The Sneaker Man," about a one-legged stolen-sneaker salesman who gets a prosthetic leg and attempts to pursue his boxing dreams.

The $2,500 Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce Regional Award went to Jerry L. Jennings for "Faceworld," a futuristic drama about people who spurn human contact in favor of abstract digital communication. The $5,000 Derek Freese Film Foundation Prime Time TV Pilot Award went to Bruce Graham for "The Darbarians," about an undercover FBI agent seeking to expose corruption in his old neighborhood. Graham is a playwright and screenwriter.

Fitzgerald, best known from "The West Wing," screens her documentary "Staging Hope," on Nov. 1 and 2 during the Philadelphia Film Festival. The movie follows Fitzgerald's program bringing theater to teenagers in the war-torn African nation of Uganda. Russell, whose films also include "Three Kings," is adapting "Silver Linings" from La Salle grad Matthew Quick's novel. It stars Bradley Cooper, Robert De Niro, Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Tucker.

Speaking of Cooper . . .

Bradley Cooper has become a regular at Slice (1740 Sansom) while in town shooting "The Silver Linings Playbook." Cooper was in Saturday evening and ordered a large margherita pizza with prosciutto and an arugula salad. The Rydal-raised actor had the same order in May 2010 when he and then-girlfriend Renee Zellweger got takeout from the Rittenhouse Square pizza shop.

Media moves * 

94WIP will move its studios and staff from Bala Cynwyd to the Center City headquarters of the former 94WYSP and CBS Radio sister station KYW NewsRadio 1060. For many years, WIP broadcast from 4th and Callowhill but moved to Bala about eight years ago. Some employees are upset about having to pay for parking and city wage tax, but others, possibly thinking of colleagues from WYSP who were laid off, are happy to have a job.

* Longtime 6ABC news director Carla Carpenter is off to Los Angeles to serve as senior VP of digital media for the entire ABC-owned station group, as "Action News" anchor Jim Gardner reported during the 11 p.m. news Friday.

James Franco speaks at Penn

Actor James Franco, Oscar-nominated for "127 Hours," will speak at Penn's Irvine Auditorium Nov. 6 as part of the school's Social Planning and Event's Committee's fall Connaissance speaker series. It's open only to Penn students and faculty.

Charitably minded

Local author/historian Celeste Morello and the family of Tom Foglietta are working to establish a scholarship fund at St. Malachy Church in North Pin the name of the late congressman and U.S. ambassador to Italy. Attorney Angelo Foglietta said he had been contacted by Morello about the campaign to honor his uncle, whom he considered "a mentor and someone I strive to emulate."

Former Eagles coach Dick Vermeil presented Ed Rendell the first Brookie Award, in honor of Tom Brookshier, the former Eagles cornerback who died of cancer last year, at Friday night's Eagles Fly for Leukemia gala at the Union League. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Tom Brookshier Memorial Symposium Room for cancer research at Children's Hospital. Children's oncologist and Penn med professor Dr. Richard Womer was also honored at the affair.

NBC 10's Terry Ruggles, 6ABC's Katherine Scott and Fox 29's John Bolaris turned up at the Prince Music Theater (1412 Chestnut) the other night for bandleader Eddie Bruce's Kids with Heart Talent Show.

The show benefits Variety, the Children's Charity.


Visit PhillyGossip.com for Dan's latest updates or follow PhillyGossip on Twitter. Have a tip? Call 215-854-5963, or email grossd@phillynews.com. For recent columns, visit www.philly.com/DanGross.

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