Derek Rydall

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Derek Rydall (born April 18, 1968) is an American screenwriter, screenplay consultant, script doctor, actor, stuntman and author.


Acting career[edit]

Derek Rydall has worked as an actor, starring in several films and television shows with Tom Skerritt, Charles Bronson, Elliott Gould, Tony Roberts (of Woody Allen films), Paulie Shore, director John Turtletaub, and many others. His biggest role was the lead in Phantom of the Mall: Eric's Revenge,[1] along with Morgan Fairchild, Rob Estes, Pauly Shore, Jonathan Goldsmith and Kimber Sissons.[2] Rydall also starred as the boyfriends in the horror films Night Visitor (1989) and Popcorn. Rydall quit acting after a crisis while snorkeling alone in Jamaica (see below: "Near death experience").

Screenwriter career[edit]

As a screenwriter, screenplay consultant, and script doctor, he has been on staff for Fox ("Wildforce Rangers") and Disney, developed projects for RKO, United Artists, Miramax, Fine Line, Universal, Saturn (Nicolas Cage's company), Deepak Chopra, Wildrice, Longbow, and the creators of Air Force One and Ghost. Additionally, Rydall script-doctored on the feature films Diamonds and No Turning Back.[3]

Author career[edit]

Rydall is the author of "I Could've Written a Better Movie than That!: How to Make Six Figures as a Screenplay Consultant – Even if You're Not a Screenwriter," and "There's No Business Like Soul Business: a Spiritual Path to Enlightened Screenwriting, Filmmaking, and Performing arts", both published by Michael Wiese Productions.[4]

Rydall has also worked one-on-one with numerous screenwriters, independent producers, and executives from around the world; and has sold, optioned, or been hired to write over 20 film & TV projects.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Rydall is the nephew of film director Don Siegel.

Near death experience[edit]

While in Jamaica on the set of a film that was experiencing problems, Rydall claims he decided to go snorkeling in a coral reef without telling anyone where he was going or what he was doing. According to Rydall, he found himself lost and surrounded on all sides by fire coral, becoming increasingly disoriented as he frantically tried to make his way back to shore.[5] Rydall claims he frantically kept himself afloat as his body became physically exhausted, and he describes the bizarre mental gymnastics one's mind goes through as they face oblivion including fantasizing about fame, even in death, and rationalizing that someone would rescue him.

According to Rydall, his mind rejected each of the previous rationalizations until, completely out of energy and unable to keep himself afloat any longer, Rydall realized there was no choice except "to let go." Rydall claims that all fear and doubt vanished, and as he let go he was overcome with a sense of peace, and he found himself suddenly able to swim out of the reef.

After this experience, Rydall quit acting and embarked on a long period of spiritual reflection which included time spent at the feet of various gurus, a short stint in a monastery, and long periods of time spent reading and meditation; ultimately culminating in his discovering what he calls "The Law of Emergence" which stands as a criticism of self-help claiming that people don't need to fix their 'self' rather they need to allow the good inherent in the self to emerge. Rydall would later publish a book titled "Emergence" in which he detailed the Law in further detail.[6]


  1. ^ "Phantom of the Mall: Foy's Revenge".
  2. ^ "‘Phantom of the Mall: Eric’s Revenge’ with lead Derek Rydall".
  3. ^ About us. Scriptwriter Central. Archived 2009-12-27 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ About Derek Rydall Archived 2009-02-09 at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ Derek Rydall - Conscious Life New
  6. ^ Rydall, Derek. Emergence: Seven Steps for Radical Life Change. Hillsboro, OR: Atria /Beyond Words, 2015. Print.

External links[edit]