Awesome news for a writer who contributes to this site – one of those who was quite active during the early days of S&A, pre-Indiewire. That’s right, in case you weren’t aware, Wendy Okoi-Obuli also happens to be a screenwriter, and I’m happy (or chuffed as they say across the pond), to share that a project of hers has been shortlisted for the Film London Microwave program, which is sponsored by the BFI and BBC Films.
The initiative’s goal is to “back diversity… aiming to long list at least 50% filmmakers from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds.” The program not only funds films, but also offers training through production, as well as distribution support, for projects that are eventually greenlit for production. It offers promising filmmakers development support and funding for production and distribution of film projects.
Think of it as a combo filmmaker lab and a film market.
The commissioned films will be awarded £100,000 (about $156,000) of their total production budgets of £150,000 (around $235,000). Completed films will also have access to an additional £25,000 (about $39,000) of funding to assist with distribution.
“With our previous slate, the bar has been set extremely high. However, given the calibre of the teams behind the shortlisted projects I’m certain we’ll see some exciting results and look forward to showcasing some brave new filmmaking voices. We are also working to ensure a better cross section of London’s wonderfully diverse community is reflected in the slate,” said Adrian Wootton, chief executive of Film London and the British Film Commission.
After a record-breaking open call which attracted 160 applications, 12 projects have been selected for the latest round of Microwave (Wendy’s project is titled “The New Thirty”). Click on each title link to read up on each:
- Butterfly Kisses
Greer Ellison (writer), Rafal Kapelinski (director), Merlin Merton and David Braithwaite (producers)
- Daphne’s Inferno
Nico Mensinga (writer), Peter Mackie Burns (director), Valentina Brazzini and Tristan Goligher (producers)
James Condon (writer) Adam Randall (director) Bennet McGhee and Matt Wilkinson (producers)
- Kill Her Witch
Faye Gilbert (writer and director), Yaw Basoah (producer)
- Night Dances
Johnny Kenton (writer and director), Jo Allan (producer)
Ruth Ivo (writer and director), Rachel Wardlow (producer)
- The Blue House
Patrick Dickinson (writer and director), Sophie Venner (producer)
- The New Thirty
Wendy Okoi-Obuli (writer), Remi Vaughan-Richards (director), Yvonne Isimeme Ibazebo (producer)
- The Opposite of Everything
Ruth Pickett (writer), Nour Wazzi ( director), Stephen Smith (producer)
- The Visitor
Sebastian Godwin (writer and director), Hugo Godwin (producer)
Ayndrilla Singharay (writer), Liam Creighton (director) Fiona Black (producer)
Keir Burrows (writer and director), Dieudonnée Burrows (producer)