ScreenACT’s script development program Accelerator POD has concluded with up to six projects mooted for a greenlight in the coming months.
This year, 49 emerging screen practitioners participated in the four-month market-focused program, where they worked with script editor Karel Segers and received marketplace assessment from international sales agent Odin’s Eye Entertainment.
Odin’s Eye looks to select four to six films out of the program each year. These are then produced by Canberra-based production studio The Film Distillery.
Last year’s program saw three projects green-lit to go into production in early 2017. The aim is to select six more titles from this year’s round to produce by early 2018. The hope is to shoot and post-produce these films in the ACT, using Canberra-based crew.
One of last year’s successful projects is suspense thriller Contained, expected to begin shooting in February. Ryan Coonan will direct, while Richard Barcaricchio will produce; both wrote the script. The film is fully financed with a budget of $1.5 million, with casting currently underway.
The film follows two witnesses of a dockside crime who have been imprisoned in a shipping container that’s pushed overboard. To avoid sinking, the two men must break out of their makeshift prison – drifting in a busy but remote offshore shipping lane – before they sink to the bottom of the Pacific.
Odin’s Eye Entertainment CEO Michael Favelle said buyers’ responses to Contained at the recent American Film Market were encouraging.
Two more projects will follow: Tony D’Aquino’s female-driven ensemble horror film The Furies and Samuel Bartlett’s cyber-thriller The Contractor.
“The Odin’s Eye team are very proud to have been involved in and help shape this innovative production accelerator program since day one. We are now seeing the fruits of our labours with three market-ready projects in pre-production and many more to come,” said Favelle.
“Final selections from the 2016 POD will be announced in the coming months, with sales commencing late next year.”
Screen ACT director Monica Penders said she was thrilled to see that the program had been so successful in developing and identifying writing talent.
“Working in partnership with The Film Distillery and Odin’s Eye Entertainment has been a great experience and we are delivering a unique and innovative model.”