The Night Before
(the other 7 nights)

A Chanuka rom-com by Chen Drachman

"This is a smart, charming script with commercial value. Production companies should be quick to spot the viability of this project. The lead and supporting roles should attract strong talent.”  
The Black List reviewer

Concept

The screenplay was inspired by years of Christmas rom-coms, and is meant to deliver a Chanukah story that much like its Christmas counterparts, will be viewed and enjoyed by people of all backgrounds. 

With a lot of humor, diversity, heart, and the famous festive presence of NYC  (which gives so many holiday movies an extra magical touch,) The Night Before feels familiar, and at the same time entirely new, giving it the potential of becoming a holiday classic.
The genre was thoroughly researched, down to a nearly scientific approach, and has been tested on a diverse focus group in multiple stages. It’s a chance to take an established cultural cornerstone, and look at it from a completely new angle, through the eyes of another culture that usually doesn’t get to partake. 

"It has the tone and voice of a successful streaming flick. it's absolutely deserving of the chance to make an audience smile on screen."
The Black List reviewer

Story

After her boyfriend breaks up with her on the first night of Chanukah, a woman vows to win him back by the end of the holiday, only to run into trouble when her ex makes a reappearance that will force her to question what she wants from life.

"This script follows the traditional rom-com structure beautifully. It does a really good job mapping the specifics of Christmas themed romantic comedies to a specifically Jewish, Chanukah set story."
WeScreenplay Diverse Voices Reviewer

Writer's Bio

Chen Drachman is an Israeli-American, award-winning actress and filmmaker based in NYC.

She was a film and TV major in high school in Israel (graduated with honors), specializing in scriptwriting, producing and editing.

She became a permanent resident through an application of excellence in the field of production.

Her acting credits include Last Week Tonight, and The Path, starring Aaron Paul.

Her first film, The Book of Ruth, starring Tony and Emmy Awards nominee, Tovah Feldshuh, has been in numerous festivals in the U.S. and abroad, including Cinequest (an Oscar qualifying festival,) the Chelsea Film Festival, the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival, BOGHOSHORTS (an Oscar qualifying festival,) the Vancouver International Film Festival (Canadian Screen Awards qualifying festival) and more.

The film won Best Narrative Short at the San Diego Jewish Film Festival.

"It's an incredibly enjoyable read from start to finish. It stands out within a crowded genre. The Jewish/Not Jewish game - full of brilliant puns - is electric. This script earns its happy ending, and it should leave its audience smiling.”
The Black List reviewer

Writer's Statement

“Living in my chosen home of NYC for a decade gave me a very vivid picture of what the holidays look like in this diverse, inclusive city. After years of hearing Jewish audiences asking for a ‘holiday movie of our own,’ I embarked on a year long process of familiarizing myself with a genre that every American grew up knowing, yet was a cultural gap for me. I fell in love even with the absurd aspects of the genre, while noticing that it’s the stories with the bittersweet angle (such as The Family Stone) that truly became classics. I identified over 30 ‘tropes’ and found ways to give them a Jewish twist. Above all, I wanted the film to present a Jewish family in all of its honest, painful, diverse glory. And as an immigrant and a member of the LGBTQ+ community, I wanted a story that allows for representation of many groups. Time and again readers from the focus group noted that they laughed out loud while reading, and that they were ecstatic to finally see a Chanukah movie that almost doesn’t involve Christmas at all. I’ll be thrilled to show the masses how beautiful our tribe is.”

“The Upper West Side of New York is extremely specific and well represented in film (Nora Ephron, Woody Allen, etc) and the dialogue here feels of a piece with those voices, while being updated for the current generation.”
WeScreenplay Diverse Voices Reviewer