Archive for October, 2010

Whackala seeks new writers

28th October 2010 by Maura McHugh

Whackala writersWhackala is looking for new writers for a comedy/action-adventure animation series for 7-11 year old children.

Writers need to have some experience at writing for children’s animation, have a knack for comedy (especially slapstick) and action-adventure.

Interested writers should get in touch by writing to hello [at] whackala.com.

Underground Cinema Returns

27th October 2010 by Maura McHugh

Underground CinemaSeason II of Underground Cinema has returned. The first screening will take place at 7.30pm on Friday November 5th in the Kingston Hotel in Dun Laoghaire.

Once a month, for the next ten months, Underground Cinema will screen a programme of short films, animated films, documentaries and music videos. All the short films screened are eligible for nomination for the Underground Cinema Awards.

The timetable:

  1. Screenings from November to July
  2. The Underground Cinema Nominations in August 2011
  3. The 2nd Underground Short Irish Film Festival in the Screen Cinema, Dublin on 15-16 September 2011
  4. The 2nd Underground Cinema Awards in Fitzpatricks Castle on 17 September 2011

A twelve-month membership to the Underground Cinema costs €50.

The Write Direction

26th October 2010 by Maura McHugh

Northern Ireland ScreenAs part of Northern Ireland Screen’s drive to develop a sustainable and dynamic screen industry in Northern Ireland, it is running a panel session on Friday 12th November entitled The Write Direction, looking at how young screenwriters and film-makers can break into the industry.

The workshop will take the form of a panel event, moderated by renowned industry pundit and former European Editor of trade bible Variety, ADAM DAWTREY.  Key members of the panel will include London-based literary agents MATTHEW BATES of Sayles Screen and ROB KRAITT of AP Watt, as well as the award-winning writer GUY HIBBERT and actor/filmmaker LIA WILLIAMS.  Further panel participants are to be confirmed.

The session, aimed at upcoming screenwriters and film-makers, will look at key questions such as:

  • What are literary agents currently looking for?
  • How do they make their choices?
  • How does a screenwriter break into the industry?
  • If I’m a feature film writer and haven’t had a break, should I switch to television?
  • Are soaps a good way in?  Or short film?
  • Am I at a disadvantage if I only write and I don’t want to direct as well?
  • What you need to secure an agent?  Is it a Catch 22?  I can’t get an agent before I get a credit.  I can’t get a credit before an agent.
  • What is the market looking for in terms of talent.  Is there a certain “type” or “trend” right now?
  • Should I align myself with a producer or production company or keep my options open?
  • How involved do agents get in terms of packaging and producing?Can agents help bring finance to the table?
  • How a successful writer/agent partnership works and tips for good agent relations.

THE WRITE DIRECTION
Friday 12 November 2010 at 3.30-5.00pm including Q&A
The Crescent Arts Centre, 2-4 University Road Belfast BT7 1NH

Please note that this workshop takes places before the BAFTA/Rocliffe New Writing Forum event, which is at the same venue on the same date at 7.00pm.  If you have already registered for the BAFTA/Rocliffe event, you must register separately for this workshop.  If you are attending both events, we have made provision for hot food between 5.30pm and 6.30pm.

The event is free of charge.  Please email rsvp@northernirelandscreen.co.uk with your name immediately to reserve your place, and put “THE WRITE DIRECTION” in the subject line.

Francis MacManus Competition

21st October 2010 by Maura McHugh

RTE Radio1This year marks the 25th anniversary of the RTÉ Radio 1 Francis MacManus Short Story Competition, which over the years has proved to be the launching pad for many renowned Irish writers.

The competition, which was founded to commemorate the writer and broadcaster, Francis Mac Manus, has been a source of encouragement and inspiration to thousands of emerging writers over the years and continues to offer a platform for the best of new Irish writing.

The author of the overall winning story will receive €3,000 with prizes of €2,000 and €1,000 awarded to the second and third prize winners.

Entries should be written for radio and should be within the range of 1,800 to 2,000 words.

RTÉ Radio 1 will broadcast each of the winning stories and all of the shortlisted entries.

The closing date for entries is Friday 31st December 2010 and the results will be announced in May 2011.

Information on how to apply is available on the web site.

British Arts Council Announces Cuts

20th October 2010 by Maura McHugh

Arts Council England’s budget will be cut by 29.6% over the next four years by Britain’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

ACE chief executive Alan Davey said the cut “will inevitably have a significant impact on the cultural life of the country”.

He added: “The Secretary of State has asked us to try to ensure that funding for arts organisations is not cut by more than 15% over the next four years – the tipping point that we identified to the chancellor some months ago.

“Council had already indicated they will seek to minimise the effect of any cuts to the portfolio of arts organisations we regularly fund and will consider the overall position when it meets on October 25. We will now be analysing the details of the settlement and the consequences for the arts in this country as a whole.”

ACE’s current government grant is £449.5 million, of which the lion’s share (about £350 million) goes to ACE’s 850 regularly funded organisations.

The response to the announced cuts has been swift and disappointed from Arts organisations in the UK, as reported in The Stage.