Recent Graduate Kristen Batko Continues to Reap Awards for Her Work
For only the second time in the history of the Peter & Barbara Benedek TV Writing and Screenplay awards, the same recipient won both prizes!
Batko's winning TV Pilot, entitled Psychos, arose from her work in the FTVM Honors Cohort of 15-16. The drama takes place in 1948 and revolves around three characters committed to Metropolis State Hospital -- Charlotte, a Rosie the Riveter type who becomes depressed after the war when she's forced back into being a housewife and pressured to become a mother; Robert, a 17-year-old with bipolar disorder and a penchant for getting in trouble way over his head; and Evelyn, a black lesbian who was part of an underground LGBTQ movement and institutionalized by her lover's husband.
Batko's winning screenplay, Murdering Mr. Hendry, won both the Benedek award for best screenplay and received top Hopwood honors, including the Naomi Saferstein Literary Award in Screenwriting. LaToya Morgan, television writer and screenwriter, writes of Murdering Mr. Hendry, "This is a very dark story about every child and parents’ nightmare -- the predator stalking the neighborhood while hiding in plain sight. Leading us through the darkness is Kaela, a strong, capable young woman haunted by a destructive encounter with the 'monster' living inside her school’s beloved teacher Mr. Hendry. She’s headstrong and confident, as badass as Buffy, and someone who follows her own rules."
Congratulations to Kristen for achieving such prestigious recognition!