18 November, 2019
Truant Pictures’ call for the next great Australian horror, sci-fi and thriller writers was answered with hundreds of submissions from across the country, confirming the depth and diversity of Australian genre writers. Truant Pictures is excited to announce the top three finalists and their screenplays, all of which exhibit a unique voice, strong craft and a compelling command of their genre.
David Willing & Beth King (VIC) – The Surrogate
When single mother Natalia gives birth despite not being pregnant, she discovers the ghost of a missing child is hell-bent on destroying her family.
Jonathon Green & Anthony O’Connor (NSW) – Emma After
A ghost girl falls in love with the living boy she’s meant to haunt away.
D.J. McPherson (VIC) – His Name Is Jeremiah
A damaged teen girl from a remote Australian town struggles to adjust when her violent mother is released from jail. Feeling lost and alone, she develops a dangerous obsession with a missing boy.
The three writers and writing teams will be read and noted by one of the prolific Industry Insider Judges; Stuart Beattie (Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Collateral, I, Frankenstein), Zak Hilditch (Rattlesnake, 1922, These Final Hours) or Yolanda Ramke (Cargo).
“It’s an exciting time to be working in the genre space, there’s just such a hunger out there for bold new mythologies and world-building — both from an audience perspective and from a development standpoint,” said Yolanda Ramke. “What’s especially encouraging is that we’re seeing more and more Australian stories in the horror, thriller and sci-fi arena breaking through, both at home and in the global market.”
The Grand Prize Winner of the Truant Pictures Screenplay Competition will be announced on Monday, 25 November and will receive a $5,000 cash prize, a hot desk for one week at Truant Pictures’ office in Sydney, and mentorship from Truant’s Development & Production Executives Toby Nalbandian and Greg Schmidt. The two additional finalists will also receive $1,000 cash prize.
You can read more about the competition here.