I First Reels: The Scottish Film Council and Scottish Television‘s collaborative project to encourage new ﬁlm and video-makers to produce original work is undergoing subtle changes as it enters its third year. Two categories of award will now be available: small scale projects may I receive up to f l .000 funding. while more ambitious projects will be eligible for up to £3,000. A number of support mechanisms. both ﬁnancial and training-based, are also being developed to assist award-winners. This year will also see involvement from the Gaelic Television Committee as a result of several recent applications being for projects in the Gaelic language. Application fortns for the scheme. which closes on 23 Dec. are available from the Scottish Film Council. 74 Victoria Crescent Road. Glasgow G12 9JN. I Dead By Dawn: The next instalment of the Scottish horror extravaganza takes place over the weekend of 22—23 Jan at the Filmhouse in Edinburgh. More than merely an all-night sitting of all things gory. the festival combines its screenings with a forum on independent genre ﬁlmmaking in the UK at 7pm on Sat 22. where current and future productions will be discussed by producers. directors. f/x teams and support crews. The ﬁlms themselves begin, appropriately. at midnight. with a line-up that at the moment includes Abel Ferrara’s Body
Snatchers, Mariano Baino‘s feature Dark Waters. Brian Yuzna‘s H. P. Lovecraft production Necrrmmnicmt, The Haunting and Bad Taste. A dealers' room and video room runs through the night. showing classics on a 5ft square screen. Tickets cost £2 15, and further details are available from Adele Hanley on 03] 447 8704.
I New Visions: The second New Visions international Festival of Film and Video will take place from 4-8 May 1994 in Glasgow. The Festival will include screenings of works selected from international open submissions, specially curated thematic programmes. linked workshops and talks by ﬁlmmakers. New Visions aims to blur the distinctions between experimental and mainstream production by mixing formats and genres (abstract. documentary. animation. experimental narrative) within single programmes. and so each session should include a wide spectrum of independent moving images. Themes for the 1994 Festival include the street joumalism and video diaries of Camcorder Culture to ‘a celebratory and progressive survey’ ofcurrent work north ofthe border in Re-lmaging Scotland. Media activism. multi-media events. found footage and an
; installations will also be very much in
Preview copies for submission should
be submitted on Video PAL System VHS or PAUNTSC U-matic only.
Cinematic projection will be in Super/Standard 8mm. 16mm and 35mm. but exhibition prints should not be submitted until requested. Return postage should be included with all
, preview material. The deadline for
submission is l Feb. and forms are available from New Visions, PO Box 1269, Glasgow G3 6QA. (AM)
Je ne regrette rien
The affair started with a classified ad in The list. Not the lonely hearts, but the lonely filmmakers: Desperater seeking a Glasgow based casting crew for their nascent production, Ho Regrets. For the last three months the co-directors Eddie Harrison and Mondo Ghulam have been rehearsing the film and shooting a short video promotion to attract finance for it.
Ho Regrets is a real-time story set in Glasgow, concerning a young lawyer, mugged by two junkies at a speedbank machine, who then kidnap him so that they can steal another £200 after midnight. Everything goes horribly wrong when they return and the machine has broken down, they are caught by the police and the lawyer is
forced to abduct his kidnappers in order to clear his name.
‘The script is based on a number of screen writing courses I took,’ says Eddie Harrison. ‘lt is taken from the American model of what makes a successful iilm and twisted in a
number of directions in order to provide something that has a bit more flavour. it’s got car crashes, it’s got exploding cash machines, it’s got the lot.’
Using the Hollywood model in the 0K does not necessarily make a good iilm, as The Young Americans recently showed. ‘You’re talking about the quality of the film there,’ responds Harrison, ‘with the talent we’ve got, we really think our film is going to be of a much higher quality than The Young Americans. If anyone wants to come in on the film they have to come in on the understanding that it is on deferred payment. For that reason we believe we will get brilliant performances from cast and crew.’ (Thom Dibdin)
No Regrets are aiming to raise £100,000 through the Business Expansion Scheme by the end of the year. For a prospectus, contact McClure, fiaismith, Anderson and
. Gardiner on 041 204 2700.
:— leading by example
Beatrice Colin reports on this year’s Sharing Stories and Movie Makars events.
Scotland buzzed with celluloid luminaries and screen ﬁnanciers last week in two separate locations, as the Scottish Film Council's annual screenwriting seminar, Movie Makars, was held in lnvemess. and the ﬁlm and television co-production conference. Sharing Stories. took place in Glasgow. For 30 emerging Scottish screenwriters and producers, Movie Makars was a ﬁve-day plunge into big bucks. case—studies, pitching tips and straight-up inspiration. To provide the sparks — the wit and wisdom of writing duo lan la Frenais and Dick Clement; directors Nic Roeg. Atom Egoyan and Volker Schlondorff; plus producers, representatives from broadcasting companies and funding bodies. and unsung but ﬁnanced talent from as far as New Zealand. All were on hand to stimulate and encourage the next
Volker Schlondorﬂ: dispensing wisdom at Movie Makars generation of Scottish ﬁlmmakers.
La Frenais and Clement came clutching their newest script. a biopic ofthe life of Harpo Marx called No Use Talking, and bemoaned the fact that Hollywood had made them change the emphasis from a story about friendship between two men to a love story. Roeg detailed a punishing and damaging shooting schedule on his new movie. Hear! ofDarkness, while writer Alan Sharp revealed that. after ﬁve ﬂops in
= Hollywood. you're practically in career outerspace. While many well—known contributors had looked West and relocated to America. the most recent success 3 stories seemed to come from this side ofthe Atlantic. Carol McGillivray and 3 Helen Wright have just written a six- ? part drama series called Mum for the BBC. it focuses on live women and their pregnancies. from conception to delivery. and is full of humour. pathos and sharp observation. With trolley- loads of rejection letters and insults ! behind them. their travails with no experience and a happy ending induced i a ripple of hope. Producer Andrew ! MacDonald and writer John Hodge also l l
: spoke on how they raised £1 tnillion for ‘ the feature Shallow Grave in Britain
; due to the excellence of the script.
I Yet the overall impression gleaned from writers. producers and broadcasters was of cupboards full of unmade scripts and unfinanced projects. In Scotland. the situation seems particularly bleak. Scottish Television was attacked for putting no money into feature ﬁlm production. and it was pointed out that. although Scotland makes up l0 per cent of the population. only 1.4 per cent is spent on Scottish productions. And so The Cmnmimrenrs producer, Linda Myles. had one vital piece of advice for any
.vponsnred /)_\‘ BACARDI BLACK
talent: look East. think Euro.
Sharing Stories — geared more for producers — looked in depth at European and intemational co- production. and presented a programme of sessions such as development of projects. contracts. documentaries which cross borders. cash flow problems and the pitching of several projects to broadcasters. Here. too. opinions differed. ‘Co-production should grow out of enthusiasm for the material.‘ said one contributor. ‘The best co-production is driven by a passion and a belief that the material is marketable in its own country.‘ However. it was argued from another corner that the notion of what makes a good script is entirely different all over Europe.
Of course. it was the exceptions which proved screenwriter William Goldman‘s rule about the movie business and provided the most inspiration to emerging writers and producers. Atom Egoyan‘s excellent new ﬁlm Calendar was one of those screened at lnvemess. With a tiny budget, Egoyan almost dispensed with a script and conventional narrative. and the ﬁlm was practically made up as he went along. And which project won the pitching session at Sharing Stories? A Viking sitcom. Nobody knows anything, really.
16 The List 3-16 December I993