Greek Film Non-Profit Oxbelly Announces Two New Writing Programs

The two programs are both free for participants, and set to launch June 2023.
Oxbelly film event
Courtesy of Oxbelly

Oxbelly, film producer Christos V. Konstantakopoulos’ non-profit supporting emerging screenwriters and directors, has announced the creation of two new programs for international writers: the Oxbelly Writers Retreat and the Oxbelly Episodic Program.

The Episodic Program is a week-long training course that will select 10-12 writers interested in entering the television industry, and provide them with simulated writers room exercises, masterclasses, and panels that aim to demystify the writers room process and share best practices for a career in TV writing. The Oxbelly Writers Retreat will bring together 15 emerging fiction writers and poets to participate in workshops, craft sessions, and unstructured writing time lead by program director Chigozie Obioma and faculty members Rebecca Makkai and Kwame Dames.

“Since its inception, Oxbelly has provided a training ground and a launchpad for emerging international film talent,” Konstantakopoulos said in a statement. “As the demand for singular serialized content continues to grow, we are thrilled to be opening up the Oxbelly experience into the world of TV, with an initial focus on writing and development, and with an eye towards exciting new avenues for funding, production and distribution.”

The Writers Retreat and Episodic Program will be held concurrently between June 3 and June 11 in Costa Navarino, Greece, with collaboration opportunities for fellows in both programs. The programs act as a replacement for Oxbelly’s Screenwriters & Directors Labs, which will next be held in Summer 2024. Athina Rachel Tsangari will serve as artistic director for the labs, which have featured Paul Thomas Anderson, Willem Dafoe, Lucrecia Martel, Ruben Östlund, Dee Rees, Lulu Wang, and other notable directors and industry professionals as advisors.

The deadline to apply for both programs is February 28. Oxbelly does not charge a fee to apply, and all expenses for selected participants are covered by the program. The programs are sponsored by are supported by the Captain Vassilis and Carmen Constantakopoulos Foundation, TEMES, and Konstantakopoulos’ production company Faliro House.

“I have always dreamt of a place where writers could gather to feast on words, exchange craft ideas with fellow writers, and have the space to instantly put those ideas and knowledge into their creative work. When I arrived at the Oxbelly space in Messinia Greece last year and spoke with the visionary founder, Christos Konstantakopoulos, I knew this was it,” Obioma said in a statement. “What we are offering is special in that it is all free and therefore without barriers to writers no matter where they are or what their means may be. It is, for me, a major dream come true.”

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