London Screenwriters' Festival

Archive for July, 2010

Being Heard in the Great Debates: Social Media Strategies for Engaging in the Big Stories

Posted on: July 31st, 2010 by Lucy V Hay No Comments

UK Film CouncilOne of the things that is fantastic about the web is its pure and simple speed.  No sooner had we all taken in the shock announcement of the abolition of the UK Film Council than people were Twittering, blogging and updating their Facebook status all at once.

The web – particularly screenwriting and filmmaking websites – was ablaze this week with torrents of tirades against the closure, or against the UKFC itself.

How, then, do you get your voice heard amid all this noise and bluster? (more…)

London Screenwriters’ Festival Beyond the Bio: Charles Harris

Posted on: July 30th, 2010 by Lucy V Hay No Comments

Charles HarrisCharles Harris first worked in film as a projectionist and has worked his way to the top as a writer/director through a circuitous route taking in everything from editing to photography to writing short stories.

You can read more about Charles on his London Screenwriters’ Festival bio page.  Here’s what he told us when he sat down for his Q&A: (more…)

London Screenwriters’ Festival ‘Beyond the Bio’: Danny Stack

Posted on: July 26th, 2010 by Lucy V Hay No Comments

Danny StackDanny Stack is a writer and script consultant with credits including Doctors and Eastenders among others.  He recently wrote and directed ‘Origin‘, a short film that promises to knock socks off everywhere it plays.

You can read Danny’s bio page for more about him or visit his blog. You can also follow Danny on Twitter, but for now here’s his LSWF Q&A: (more…)

Talent, Learning and Craft

Posted on: July 24th, 2010 by Lucy V Hay 1 Comment

BBCLast night, the BBC’s Front Row programme on Radio 4 broadcast a 30-minute special on creative writing courses.

Featuring authors, screenwriters, lecturers and gurus from all sides of the writing spectrum, it’s a fascinating insight into the divided opinions on whether or not you can “learn” to write.

We can all do with developing our practice – learning new tips and tricks for creating the most powerful stories, the most vivid characters and the most “real” dialogue – but does a writer need an innate talent to be able to write at all? Or it is honestly possible to learn everything you need to know to become a successful writer from courses alone? (more…)

London Screenwriters’ Festival ‘Beyond the Bio’: Julian Friedmann

Posted on: July 23rd, 2010 by Lucy V Hay No Comments

Julian FriedmannAs an agent to writers of all ilks and co-Founder of one of Britain’s biggest literary agencies for writers both print and screen, Julian Friedmann is one of the best-placed people in the industry to serve as our Senior Festival Advisor here at the London Screenwriters’ Festival.

On top of his work representing the cream of British writing talent at Blake Friedmann, Julian is also an author and noted speaker on screenwriting.  Linda Seger, renowned author and screenwriting guru, said of Julian’s ‘How To Make Money Scriptwriting‘, “It’s full of insights that help writers in the business of screenwriting – a great help to actually get a script sold.”

You can read more about Julian on his profile page, but first see what he had to say in his Q&A:

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London Screenwriters’ Festival: ‘Beyond the Bio’: Lisa Holdsworth

Posted on: July 21st, 2010 by Lucy V Hay 1 Comment

Lisa HoldsworthLisa Holdsworth made her debut as a writer with an episode of ‘Fat Friends’ that saw her short-listed for a Best New Writer BAFTA award.  Since then she has spent three years on the Emmerdale writing staff and gone on to contribute episodes to ‘New Tricks’, ‘Robin Hood’ and ‘Waterloo Road’

You can read Lisa’s full bio on her speaker’s page, but before that, here is the Leeds-born writer’s Q&A:

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Tim Bevan joins the fest!

Posted on: July 20th, 2010 by Lucy V Hay No Comments

Tim BevanThe London Screenwriters’ Festival is delighted to announce that Tim Bevan, co-Founder and co-Chairman of Working Title Films, has joined our growing roster of speakers.  Working Title are one of Britain’s most renowned, respected and successful production companies with credits including ‘Four Weddings and a Funeral’, ‘Bridget Jones’s Diary’, ‘The Soloist’ and ‘Frost/Nixon’ among a back-catalogue of over 75 films.

We’ve been sifting through the surveys you’ve returned to us (huge thanks to everyone who took the time to fill one out) and one of the recurrent themes was a desire to see big name producers and development execs talking about how they work and how you can build a relationship with them.

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London Screenwriters’ Festival ‘Beyond the Bio’: Jonathan Newman

Posted on: July 19th, 2010 by Lucy V Hay 1 Comment

Jonathan NewmanWelcome to the first in our London Screenwriters’ Festival Q&A series that will be running here in the build up to the festival. It’s your chance to find out a little bit more about the speakers who will be at LSWF and go deeper than just a regular bio.

First up it’s writer-director Jonathan Newman, who has become one of the UK’s most exciting filmmakers after twice turning his own short films into hugely successful features: “Swinging With The Finkels” starring Martin Freeman (The Office, The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy) and Mandy Moore (Chasing Liberty, Southland Tales) and “Foster” with Toni Collette (The Sixth Sense), Ioan Gruffordd (Fantastic Four), Richard E Grant (Withnail & I, Jack and Sarah) and Hayley Mills (Pollyanna, The Parent Trap).

You can read his bio on the main site, but to delve a little deeper, click through to his Q&A:

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Shape Your Festival

Posted on: July 14th, 2010 by Lucy V Hay 1 Comment

Here at the London Screenwriters’ Festival we want to make sure that we’re offering you the very best content and biggest bang for your buck when it comes to our three days of seminars, talks and events.

To that end, we’d like you to take just 2 minutes out of your day to complete our short survey to let us know what YOU’D like to see at LSWF.

This survey closes on SUNDAY 18th JULY at 10pm BST so please, if you can, just take a couple of minutes to hop over and fill it out.

LSWF is a truly interactive festival and we want to make sure we’re providing you with the very best, highest quality and most immediately useful programme that we can.  The only way we can achieve this is with your input.

We can’t wait to hear what you think!

A New World for Writers

Posted on: July 13th, 2010 by Lucy V Hay 3 Comments

by Julian Friedmann

The new London Screenwriters’ Festival is timely for many reasons. One of the most important of these is writers having to become hyphenates: instead of the writer-director it is becoming more and more common to see writer-producers.

Many producers have little or no money – a reflection of the times we live in not an accusation. So now writers, instead of taking modest option fees and in effect losing control of their work, are being advised to become one of the producers and stay close to the action so they can monitor it and ensure that their script or novel is actively developed.

The problem then becomes: how do writers manage an area of the business few of them know much about?  The answer lies in events like LSWF, where talks, seminars and networking events will provide insights into this rapidly changing world for writers and filmmakers.

It is no longer enough to sit at home and tap away at the computer. Successful writers need to get out more and develop relationships with other players in the industry. What was so great about the festival at Cheltenham was the generosity of those networking; London should be able to follow in that tradition.

In addition to other writers, there will be agents, producers, script editors and directors for you to meet. The real question is: can you afford not to be there?

There is no excuse for ignorance in the way that there used to be and the LSWF will become an essential date in the calendar of everyone who writes scripts or buys them.

Julian Friedmann is a literary agent representing book and script writers at Blake Friedmann. An ex-publisher, Julian founded ScriptWriter Magazine in 2001. He lectures widely on scriptwriting and is co-founder and owner of TwelvePoint.com, which contains an array of valuable information about filmmaking, scriptwriting and financing for both new and experienced writers and filmmakers.