BellRock 2017 announces selected writers

Following an open call to emerging screenwriters based in Scotland, six participants have been selected to take part in BellRock 2017.

BellRock 2017 is an intensive mentoring and workshop programme led by Olivia Stewart of Three Rivers Film, and delivered in partnership with Hospitalfield with support from the National Lottery through Creative Scotland’s Screen Fund.

Alasdair Bayne, Catriona MacInnes, Declan Dineen, James Price, Marina Notaraki and Sara Jane Kirkwood will work with Olivia and fellow industry mentors, Alfredo Covelli and Ian Sellar to develop their projects during a series of residencies and discussions that will take place at Hospitalfield over the next five months.

The programme, running for its second year, will offer participants guidance and support towards writing their feature length screenplays. Applicants submitted project ideas and written material, which was reviewed initially by external readers before the final selection was made by Olivia Stewart and Ross McKenzie (Creative Scotland).

The participants will attend three residential workshops at Hospitalfield House between June and October 2017. These will include one-to-one mentoring sessions; group discussions, presentations and masterclasses.

I am very happy with this year’s group of writer/directors and anticipate with pleasure the privilege of learning, through their projects and conversation, about their vision and interpretation of life and contemporary culture.” Olivia Stewart, Workshop Director.

We are delighted to be hosting BellRock for the second year and given the demand for the places we look forward to continuing in future years to providing this substantial developmental experience.” Lucy Byatt, Director of Hospitalfield.

Following the success of the inaugural Bellrock Screenwriting Workshops in 2017, which resulted in the projects being pitched to an industry panel during the Glasgow Film Festival in February 2017, we are delighted to be working again with Olivia Stewart, Ian Sellar, Alfredo Covelli and the team at Hospitalfield, to host the programme in its second year. The selection process was challenging due to the high quality of material submitted by a number of outstanding screenwriters based in Scotland. We are hugely excited by the final selection and look forward to reviewing the final screenplays developed over the course of the programme.” Ross McKenzie, Screen Officer at Creative Scotland.

About the Writers

Alasdair Bayne is an experienced short film writer, director and editor, who aspires to write and direct feature films. In 2012, his short drama Birds screened at Encounters International Film Festival, and in the same year his Bridging the Gap documentary In Search of the Wallaby screened at the Edinburgh International Film Festival. In 2014 Alasdair spent 3 months in the village of Skagaströnd, Northern Iceland, filming the short documentary Brother. In July 2015, he co-directed the short drama Haftasonue with Cypriot filmmaker Talat Gokdemir. In 2017, he spent a month on residency in Finland, developing the feature screenplay for Public.

Declan Dineen was born to Irish parents in Wales and is now living in Scotland. Outside of writing he is voraciously creatively involved in music, magic and video games. He once tried to meet everyone who followed him on twitter, an idle whim which became became international news for a bizarre weekend in 2013 and formed the basis of a sell-out fringe show, #meetandtweet.

Sara Jane Kirkwood originates from a housing scheme in Clydebank and spent over 20 years working across the sectors in frontline social work, latterly in youth homelessness. She recently wrote and directed the short film Damned Dolls, supported through the Five@5 for Women programme of the Scottish Film Talent Network; and she has written the feature film screenplay Tolerance with financial support from Creative Scotland. Currently she is developing the feature film screenplay for Damned Dolls and is redrafting Crazy Daisy’s. Sara Jane has also written and self published a book, The Seven Sisters of Carbeth and working on the sequel, The Hand of Carbeth.

Catriona MacInnes trained as a performer and theatre maker at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and worked professionally as an actor before going on to study film. Her first film I’m In Away From Here premiered in competition at the 65th Venice International Film Festival in 2008, and her second short A Cuillin Rising premiered at the 55th BFI London Film Festival in October 2011. Catriona’s new short film Howls, produced by THIRD Films, was supported through the Scottish Film Talent Network (SFTN), part of the BFI NET.WORK, and will premiere at the Edinburgh International Film Festival in June. She is also working with THIRD Films and SFTN on development of her feature film screenplay Safe Days.

Marina Notaraki is a young filmmaker from Greece, based in Scotland since 2015. She graduated from Screen Academy Scotland. Her interests lie in writing about Youth and sub-cultures, Identity, Gender/Sexuality/Femininity, Mental Health, Race, Loneliness-Isolation, the Fault of Privilege and Trash Culture.

James Price is a self-taught screenwriter from the Springburn area of Glasgow. He was nominated for a BAFTA New Talent award as writer for the short film Dropping Off Michael, which went on to gain a Best Short Film nomination at the 2015 BAFTA Scotland Awards ceremony. His short screenplay Street Hassle came first place in Shore Scripts Short Film competition judged by Jeremy Irons and Tony Grisoni and other industry professionals. Currently he is in post-production on his short film Chibbed, which he wrote and directed for the online platform BBC Social.

About the Programme

This project arises from an identified strategic need for additional support for filmmakers and screenwriters based in Scotland, highlighted within Creative Scotland’s Film Strategy and is a partnership with Producer, Mentor and Script Consultant Olivia Stewart of Three Rivers Film; and Hospitalfield.

Olivia Stewart is the Director of the workshop and is joined by two other experienced mentors Alfredo Covelli and Ian Sellar.