Carolyn Kras

Carolyn Kras
2014 Hearst Fellow
Los Angeles, CA

Research at AAS

The Second City (1-hour drama series)

stereograph of Saint Patrick's church and schoollithograph of people fleeing Chicago firelithograph of Chicago fire from the view of Lake Michiganground view of burnt out buildings in Chicago

In 1871, the Great Chicago Fire burns the city to the ground. When a murderous convict escapes from the burning prison and is roped into joining the Chicago Police Department, he must juggle a double identity, manage criminal associates and corrupt cops and muscle his way to the top of Chicago politics. This is all while three titans – the head of the Chicago Tribune, a Catholic nun and a scheming city councilman – battle to build one of the greatest cities of the modern world from out of an ashen jungle.The Second City is a post-apocalyptic drama about the power struggles involved in building a new civilization. Through the journey of a convict-turned-cop, we will follow the rebirth of Chicago from the night it plunges into darkness to the night, 22 years later, when electric lights finally turn on at the World’s Fair and the Windy City takes its place on the global stage.


About the Fellow

Carolyn Kras is a writer for screen and stage based in Los Angeles. She was named to ISA’s List of “Top 25 Screenwriters to Watch in 2020.” She was also chosen as one of six writers who pitched pilot scripts at Content London, a leading summit for global television drama. Carolyn pitched her pilot The Second City, a police drama that takes place in the wake of the Great Chicago Fire. Academy Award winner Melissa Leo headlined the reading of Carolyn’s screenplay Magnetic at the Hamptons International Film Festival Screenwriters’ Lab. Magnetic also won the Alfred P. Sloan first place screenwriting award, the Plume & Pellicule Award, the Screenplay Search Award, and the Award.

Carolyn has also received the Visionary Playwright Award and Commission from Theater Masters, and the resulting play Mine & Yours was named a top national new play by the Bay Area Playwrights Festival (Finalist), The Kilroys List Honorable Mention, and an L. Arnold Weissberger Award Nominee. Her plays have been produced or developed at Antaeus Theatre Company, The Blank Theatre, The Road Theatre Company, The Looking Glass Theatre (NY), Long Beach Playhouse, Chicago Dramatists, Stage Left Theatre, Found Stages, Centenary Stage Company, 20% Theatre Company Chicago, Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre, Live Girls! Theatre, Williams Street Rep, Chicago New Work Festival, Theater Masters, Pittsburgh New Works Festival, the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and more.

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