EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW – Screenwriter Jaimie Engle Breaks Down The Challenges in Writing UPtv’s Just Jake!

We at Survived The Shows had the incredible pleasure to chat with screenwriter Jaimie Engle and discuss her experience in the making of Just Jake. Check out the full interview in the article below!

Brittany Bristow and Rob Mayes star in the country music romantic movie Just Jake, which premiered Sunday, May 21 on UPtv. We at Survived The Shows had the incredible pleasure to chat with screenwriter Jaimie Engle and discuss her experience in the making of Just Jake and preview what people can expect from the movie. Check out the full interview below!

Brittany Bristow and Rob Mayes star in the country music movie Just Jake, premiering May 21 at 7 PM on UPtv. Let's take a first look!
EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW – Screenwriter Jaimie Engle Breaks Down The Challenges in Writing UPtv’s Just Jake!

What’s the main element in both the characters and the story in general that fascinates you the most and drew you to write “Just Jake”?

JAIMIE ENGLE: As the screenwriter, I had the privilege of inventing Jake and Amber, and all the other characters in this adorable film. Jake is the result of the main character’s dreams coming true in his career, yet still not able to find happiness, which happens so often. He wants to be “Just Jake” to Amber, but also wants the fame and fortune of being a country music sensation. Through his journey, he learns he is enough, just the way he is, and I hope that translates to everyone who watches the film. We all struggle with our own identity and “Just Jake” explores all angles around the topic.

What’s been the biggest challenge for you in writing this screenplay?

The hardest part when writing a script is knowing it is going to become a collaborative work and not look the same as the original. This is also the most exciting part! Brandon Clark, the director, made changes based off locations and sets I couldn’t possibly see when I was writing the script. Executive Producer Brian Bird knew my inclusion of Dolly Parton (in the original script) would put the film well over budget, so there were rewrites needed for budgetary constraints.

Taylor Bird rewrote the script with a hands on approach alongside Brian having worked on two previous films for True Brand Entertainment. Both Rob Mayes (as Jake Collins) and Brittany Bristow (as Amber Gibson) took the character from the page and breathed life into them. So many other people worked to take my story in my screenplay and turn it into the amazing film on UpTV Network, and I couldn’t be more grateful or happier about the process.

How would you describe “Just Jake” to all those people who haven’t watched it yet?

“Just Jake” is a love story and a glimpse into our own second chances throughout life. Jake chooses the road over Amber. Amber takes over Pops’ Diner and turns it into a bougie coffee shop, which may or may not have been her dream out of high school. It’s also about family, the one we are born into, the one we marry into, and the friends that are so close, they feel like family. Second chances are necessary to keep friendships and family together. We all mess up and pick the wrong road, but those few people in our lives who love us unconditionally are always there to pick us up, redirect us, or just give us a hug when we need it. I hope that the story in “Just Jake” leaves viewers with hope for reconciliation and second chances in their own lives and families.

What can you tease about Jake’s journey throughout the movie?

Well, the movie is out, so there’s no teasing necessary! You can download the UpTV Faith and Family streaming app on your smart tv and watch “Just Jake” for yourself. My tease comes in the form of the novelization, which will release on August 29th by Vinspire Publishing and now available for preorder on Amazon. The story in the novel follows the original screenplay very closely, so while it’s the same structure, it’s definitely told in a different style, with deeper connections, and a few details that didn’t make it into the film version. You can grab a copy of the Octoberfest Ginger Heart Cookie Recipe through a QR Code in the book and some other cool stuff. Preorder here: https://amzn.to/3qaeNOm and watch on Amazon here: https://amzn.to/3Wz6VCc

If you could choose a character from “Just Jake” that you would have loved to play if you were an actor, which one would it be and why?

I think playing June, Amber’s sister, would have been fun (though I couldn’t think of a better actor than Gigi Orsillo for the role). She is sassy and sweet, serious and all heart. I had a blast writing the relationship between June and her husband Spencer. They were so cute on the page. Sassy and sweet… that’s my kind of role.

Did you take anything from set, any prop or piece of costume, to remember your experience?

I didn’t make it to the set, but I did get and print copies of the movie poster. I also made some guitar picks that say “I pick you” which will be explained in the book as it wasn’t included in the movie, and I made some candles with the same message printed on the front to give away at my in-house movie premier to guests. It was so much fun! I even bought a red carpet and a single velvet rope to make it feel like a bigger deal.

This has been my dream since I was seven years old, to write a movie and see my name on the big screen. It is truly remarkable to witness your dream come true and I am truly blessed. I know God opened the doors for this to happen, from meeting the attorney who connected me with Brian Bird to finding a class to learn how to write through Story Summit after I said “Yes” when I had never written a movie before. If I’ve taken anything away from this it is to always believe in yourself, never let limitations define you, and surround yourself with people who can help push your dreams into reality.

Just Jake, starring Brittany Bristow and Rob Mayes, premiered Sunday, May 21 on UPtv. Get a preview below!

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW – Screenwriter Jaimie Engle Breaks Down The Challenges in Writing UPtv’s Just Jake!

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