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About this Screenplay

SPIRITS OF THE WESTERN WILD  evolved over time as a labor-of-love for myself and story partner Roger Vizard.  Both of us have been working in animation for years, first connecting on the production of "Stuart Little 2" back in 2001.  Since that time we've been banging ideas around for stories we'd love to tackle, and this is one of them... all buttoned up.

During the production of "Surf's Up," Roger pitched me the idea of a buddy film about a young cowboy and a crotchety old ghost who refused to believe he was dead.  The "Spaghetti Western" genre is near and dear to both of us, but it's really just a backdrop for a story that takes place in simpler times -- in the age of discovery.  There was the additional consideration that (as a film) an empty desert would be cheaper to produce than something inside a lush environment, or elaborate cityscape.

Roger had some character sketches and a handful of drawings that I loved.  We started riffing on where this story could go, and decided to join forces to see if we could make something of it.  From there, a great partnership evolved.

We've been chipping away at this story over time, with each of us taking on new film projects along the way -- but always coming back to this one when inspiration struck.  I always felt something intriguing was roiling around under the surface, yearning to burst through at any moment.  So we continued stoking the fire to see what might emerge. 


Then it finally came -- a series of epiphanies that tied everything together and gave this story the purpose and substance it needed.  A reason for being.  In a final intensive push, all the loose ends were tied up, and here we are now.  Ready to make this thing.

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Copyright © 2019 David Schaub and Roger Vizard

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