The Architect (All Fall Down)

Institute History

  • 2002 June Screenwriters Lab


Leo Waters is an idealist architect from the suburbs whose designs for public housing projects have garnered him great acclaim. Tonya Neeley is a pragmatic activist from the projects who is determined to have the decaying, gang-ridden homes torn down.

Leo is unable to separate the current ills of the public housing efforts from the great ideals from which they were born. He can see only the blueprints; he’s blind to the cracks in the plaster. And his denial is mirrored in his personal life.

Leo fails to connect with his closeted son, Martin, who has returned home after dropping out of school. He is unaware that Daddy's little girl, his dutiful daughter Christina, is confused by her burgeoning sexuality and is acting out this confusion by hitchhiking rides with father figures, late into the night. And he is completely oblivious to the deeper implications of his wife Corinne’s fixation with the city’s decaying environment.

Unlike Leo, Tonya is all too aware that her intelligent teenage daughter Cammie could become just another inner city statistic. Tonya allows Cammie to live with her boyfriend’s wealthy family and attend a better school. But their distance isolates mother and daughter, and further buries Cammie’s unexpressed grief for the death of her brother.


As you use our Online Archives, please understand that the information presented from Festivals, Labs, and other activities is taken directly from official publications from each year. While this information is limited and doesn't necessarily represent the full list of participants (e.g. actors and crew), it is the list given to us by the main film/play/project contact at the time, based on the space restrictions of our publications. Each entry in the Online Archives is meant as a historical record of a particular film, play, or project at the time of its involvement with Sundance Institute. For this reason, we can only amend an entry if a name is misspelled, or if the entry does not correctly reflect the original publication. If you have questions or comments, please email [email protected]