Russian Sonia | Skillshare Projects

Catherine Hubert

Technically, the glass is always full.



Russian Sonia

Step 1: Selecting Your Text

I chose Russian Sonia from The Spoon River Anthology simply because I think her life is one I can work with. She was an orphan, a dancer,  and a mistress... all interesting starting points. My adaptation will be set in the present day with her life spanning from 1975 to 2075.

By setting the story in modern times, I took a few liberties with Sonia’s life. My logic was: If a child from a white collar background became an orphan, she wouldn’t be out on the streets; she’d have an inheritance and options.


Step 2: Drafting Your Screenplay

Russian Sonia | Final  |  July 24, 2014  |  I made some minor edits and changed the ending slightly.

Remember Russian Sonia | Draft 3.3  |  July 21, 2014  |  I used Adobe Story and fixed the formatting. I don't know if it would pass the flip test, but I tried to add more action and break up the dialogue. I whittled the flashbacks down to one and the voice over now only bookends the script. 

Russian Sonia Screen Play  |  Draft 2  |  July 2, 2014  |  With my 2nd draft I added in flashbacks and narration. I changed the story line considerably and I added an extra twist at the end.

Russian Sonia Screen Play | Draft 1  |  June 18, 2014  |  I realized that such lofty questions can't be answered in 8 minutes. With my first draft I tried to stay on the topic of memories. I've veered fairly far from the original text, but this seams to be the direction my story is taking.


Step 3: Writing Your Logline

Teenage lovers and a thumb-tack adorned wallet start a chain of events that will lead to a future with talking cats and memories that transcend death.


It's kind of like Before Midnight meets Her but with a talking cat instead of a sentient computer.



My Treatment

I created a website to organize all of the elements of the project:

The motifs center around chance, celebrity, love, and memories; along with our desire to be known and not forgotten. I've always enjoyed thinking about the future and what technology will develop. What will tombstones and cemeteries be like? How will we remember people when they pass? With an archive  of all of our Facebook posts? Maybe a website dedicated to our memory?  Or will we one day understand our brains well enough to read and store our own memories? What if all of your memories and experiences could be archived and your essence could transcend death?


I created a pinterest board for my research on neuroscience with the hope of creating a plausable storyline. It is fun to think about what things will be like 50 years from now. 



Sonia Azhikelyamov

IQ 142 | Ht 5’6” | Wt 125 lbs | DOB February 21, 1975

Sonia is a graphic designer who lives in Seattle.  Her father was a Soviet scientist who crafted a hot air balloon and sailed over the East German boarder to gain his freedom in 1968.  Her mother was French. Her parents perished in a car crash when Sonia was 14. It was 4 days before the Berlin wall fell in 1989. She inherited a trust fund and attended boarding school until her 18th birthday.  She then traveled through Europe, and met Patrick on her last stop in Copenhagen. She is the mother of a child prodigy named Zoe.


Patrick Hummer

IQ 145 | Ht 6’1” | Wt: 180 lbs | DOB September 15, 1977  

Patrick is a recognized neurobiologist and lives in New York. His life long research in biological computing pioneered the understanding of neural networks and memory.  He has been in love with Sonia  (or at least the idea of Sonia) since he was 16. He lost the paper she wrote her address and phone number on and couldn’t remember her last name. This spawned his interest in memory and brain functions. 


Mr. Boots

IQ 210 or 40  | Ht: 10 inches | Wt: 24 lbs | DOB June 25, 2050

Mr Boots is a genetically engineered cat with human language capability and cyborg technology linking him to the cloud. He is the first of his kind and was created by Zoe. He is a full grown cat but prefers to display his profile photo with something from his younger days. He is obese and has an affinity for finches.


Please sign in or sign up to comment.