AIF has appointed a new President, Simonne Overend, and one of her first points of business has been to launch the Gateway LA script development program.
The program will support the development of commercially successful, Australian-created television and movie screenplays. Ms Overend said recently in LA:
This new program will help Australian projects secure exposure to the best networks in the business, and our goal is to discover screenplays with strong global appeal. I look forward to steering the program and supporting the wealth of talent we are currently seeing emerge from Australia, and to working with the Australians in Film network as a whole.Simonne Overend has been based in Los Angeles for the past several years where she works as Vice President of Scripted Development for Essential Media, creating a slate for the U.S. market
She will co-chair the program with Peter Lawson, Executive Vice President of Production and Acquisitions at Open Road Films. In his previous roles, Lawson served as President of Production at Thunder Road, and Executive Vice President of Acquisitions and Co-Productions at The Weinstein Company.
The Gateway LA prize will see between one and three winners announced per year. They will be selected from an ‘Aussie List’ of up to 10 film and television scripts, circulated to a group of judges selected from the AiF network.
Winning projects receive a cash award to facilitate development of the script, a flight to LA, targeted meetings with producers and executives, and table reads.
Modeled on The Black List and the UK’s Brit List, the script development program will promote Australian writers to both Australian and international producers, development executives and talent in Los Angeles.
Applications are now open and will close on September 12.