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Logline: My Father’s Worst Nightmare
With his boyfriend in tow, a college sophomore takes a weekend trip home for the express purpose of “coming out” to his family and all hell breaks loose until a near tragedy triggers a father’s journey towards acceptance.
With his boyfriend, SHAWN ,in tow; college sophomore NINO CERUTTI pays a weekend visit home for the express purpose of "coming out" to his family. Additionally, he wants permission to move from his dormitory to an off-campus
apartment; to set up housekeeping with Shawn, whom he plans on introducing to the family during this visit.
Nino 's two older brother' s pick him up at the train station in Bridgeport Connecticut, and the trio head for a local
bar where Nino "comes out" to them. Both CARMINE and DOMINICK take the news in stride but are concerned how their parents will handle it. Upon arriving home, Nino and Dominick head straight for their room for Nino to unpack. In the meantime, Carmine gently breaks the news to their mother, CARMELLA , who is in the kitchen cooking dinner.
Surprisingly, she tells Carmine that she has always known and dreaded when this day would come. After dinner Nino breaks the news to his father TONY who blows a gasket as everyone expected.
The next day, Nino and Shawn take the ferry to Port Jefferson, New York. During the ride across Long Island Sound Nino tells Shawn of Tony's reaction to the news. He also informs Shawn that he is invited to the Cerutti home on Sunday for dinner. Needless to say, Shawn is not excited by the invitation and would rather "jump off the ferry with his pockets full of rocks", than meet Nino's father.
With his traditional views stretched to the limit, Tony suffers a heart attack after Sunday dinner, but survives due to the decisive action of Shawn who administers CPR. After recovering, Tony continues to grapple with the fact that his son is gay.
After returning to school, Nino convinces himself that he caused his father's heart attack by revealing that he is gay. He becomes forlorn and finds it difficult to concentrate.Shawn attempts to console him with limited success. Nino decides to return home, to check on his dad’s condition, and asks Shawn to accompany him. Upon their late night arrival, Nino and Shawn are mugged at the Bridgeport train station, leaving Nino in a coma clinging to life.
Tony is devastated by the news and blames himself for Nino's plight. Nino survives, however, and the near loss of his son proves to be a turning point in Tony 's journey toward acceptance.
My Father’s Worst Nightmare won Best Unproduced Screenplay in the 2017 Tea Dance Int’l Film Festival and was a top finalist in the 2018 LGBTQ screenwriting competition. It is an original, contemporary, character driven, coming of age dramedy that deals with the trials and tribulations of coming out to family members. The screenplay deals with the subject from a mature, serious, and comedic way. The project is low budget with limited locations and cast, and was written to appeal to a wide audience.