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The rights to Ugly Pretty are solely owned by the producer Hollis Sherman-Pepe. The shooting script is registered with WGA West and copyright resides with the producers.



A fish-out-of-water in "Small Town" Pennsylvania finds herself in over her head when she has an affair with a local married man and becomes the accessory to a murder. In the end she rises up and risks it all to save the lives of two innocent children Nothing ever happens in a small town... until it does. This is a contemporary Basic Instinct told from a woman’s perspective.

Writer's statement

Growing up in small town Pennsylvania is an amalgam of bucolic countryside with it's wholesome farmers, encroaching countryside, and healthy flavor of hillbilly.  A city girl returns to her roots and struggles to not only fit in but to reinvent herself.  The Pacing of the film escalates as time passes and our protagonist sets herself up for a hurricane in ACT III.

My aim is for the audience to find empathy for this scarred heroine. The more expected role of a sexually driven character has been flipped from male to female. The choices we make as humans come from complex thoughts, feelings, and past experience.  Here we have a character that sees herself in a righteous light where the social norm would be to call her a home-wrecker.

I want to push the audience’s comfort level, daring them to live out their fantasies through voyeurism.   UGLY PRETTY  feels nostalgic and self-reflecting while simultaneously building tension to the point of eruption.

look and tone

Ugly Pretty is a nostalgia story turned crime thriller. Young Adult turns into Fatal Attraction taking place in a town like Three Billboards. Slow paced and quiet, small town Pennsylvania is predictable. The script is filled with localisms that will transport the audience to this "Dutch Country" world.  The pacing amps up as we move forward unraveling the dark pasts for the characters and complicated emotional states of the characters. The third act hits like a freight train. Nothing happens in a small town... until it does.


Audiences are hungry for female driven content as seen in the success of WONDER WOMAN, BLACK SWAN, and THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT, and BLUE JASMIN.

Our target audience goes to see both indie thrillers and 30s coming-of-age films. The audience for indie thrillers with respect to 18+ content in both male and female demographics are ages 18-50.  Indie thrillers like LOOPER and BABY DRIVER grossed 177MM and 175MM respectively. Gen X disillusionment/Coming of age films have notoriously been very well received in festivals like Sundance and Toronto Film Fest, for example YOUNG ADULT, LOST IN TRANSLATION, and GARDEN STATE.

Female directed films of note include WONDER WOMAN, LADY BIRD, HURT LOCKER, THE TWILIGHT SERIES, MAMA MIA, WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN, and MUDBOUND. The producer of Ugly Pretty aims to join the collective of successful female directed films.


For further information, questions, script, or to make an investment offer please contact:


Ms Hollis Sherman-Pepe  / Producer




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