The Future Is Bright for Chicago Writer Eric Anderson’s Dark Screenplay ‘June’ [Exclusive]

Every great film begins with a superb screenplay, and Chicago writer Eric Anderson’s latest is earning accolades. Anderson’s horror thriller June was recently honored by The Grey List, a curated list of original, production-ready feature and pilot scripts from writers over the age of 40. And on top of that, Eric has attracted veteran producer and Chicago native Sonny Mallhi – whose credits include the Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock hit The Lake House and the Jennifer Lawrence thriller House at the End of the Street – to the project. Eric stopped by for an exclusive chat with SCREEN and a peek at what’s next for June.

June centers on June, a bright, clever 17 year old, and her father, John, a researcher whose area of expertise is in the translation of ancient texts written in dead languages. When June is killed in an accident, John’s character is consumed with grief and when he discovers a ritual in one of the texts he’s been given to translate, he goes on a journey down a dark path in the hopes that what he’s discovered will resurrect his daughter. Once his journey begins, June becomes a dark father/daughter road trip where nothing goes as planned.

“The story was inspired by my anxiety about my daughter leaving for college and my (unfounded) worries about sending her out into the world,” Anderson shared in an exclusive interview with SCREEN. “You spend so much time as a parent worrying about keeping your child safe that it’s hard to disengage those emotions when it’s time for them to strike out on their own. JUNE is an extreme example of the lengths a parent would go to to ‘protect’ their child.”

The Grey List accolades have offered welcome affirmation and attention for Anderson. “I appreciate The Grey List’s mission to highlight experienced writers with stories to tell,” Anderson declared to SCREEN. “I think when writers hit 40, their works often have a lot of depth and emotional resonance baked in simply by the writer having lived a life. It’s not necessarily that the industry ignores those writers, but the focus is often on the new and shiny writers, so it’s nice to have the spotlight turned back on those who have been doing the work for a while.”

What’s Next for June

So where will June be filming? Anderson shared with SCREEN, “The story was inspired by a trip to Portland, Oregon and a drive through the wilds of Oregon, but we’re looking into locations in Illinois that could give us the same vibe.”

As for a target date, Anderson offered that “the story takes place in the fall. It’s got a damp, gray vibe written all over it.” Now as for whether it will be this fall or next fall, Anderson and his producer Sonny Mallhi are identifying and talking with directors for the project, so check back here at SCREEN for updates in the months ahead.

Veteran producer and Chicago native Sonny Mallhi has joined the feature film June.

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