Students' Comedy Script Optioned by Producer Eric Gitter

Courtesy of Nancy Goodman
Noah Goodman, Justin Zaager

Noah Goodman is still in high school while Justin Zaager is in university

Two students have started their Hollywood careers a little early.

Producer Eric Gitter has optioned Cold War, a comedy spec script written by Noah Goodman and Justin Zaager, two young men not only still in their teens, but one of them, Goodman, is still a senior in high school.

Gitter is the producing face of comic publisher Oni Press and its screen shingle, Closed on Mondays, with credits such as Scott Pilgrim vs. the World and The Sixth Gun. But in this case, since Cold War is not a comic book property, he is operating under his personal banner, Chickie the Cop, with his producing partner Peter Schwerin, who served as an exec producer on Scary Movie.

Gitter came across the two boys via his New York City-based attorney, who asked if the producer would mind reading a script that his son and his friend, who hail from Syosset, N.Y. (also the hometown of Judd Apatow and Natalie Portman), had written.

“When you’re in the business, you get a lot ‘My kid did this, can you check it out?’ questions,” Gitter said. “And you want to be nice, but in this case … they really were beyond their years.”

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Sixteen-year-old Goodman attends Long Island Lutheran High School, where the honor student is also a member of the school’s state champion basketball team. National AP Scholar Zaager, age 18, is a freshman at Northeastern University and is currently on exchange in London, studying theater and writing.

Described as being part inspirational culinary tale, a la Jon Favreau’s food truck hit Chef, and part broad comedy, the script centers on a professionally obsessed but personally unfulfilled attorney who gives up his legal practice for a simpler life of serving up frozen confections. He soon unwittingly finds himself in the midst of an ice cream truck turf war.

Gitter was won over the one simple thing: the script made him laugh.

“You can work on structure, you can learn craft, but you can’t teach funny,” says Gitter. “And these guys just had it. It’s a rare thing.”

The plan is to now to develop the script and then package it before taking it out to financiers.

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