Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Coming Up: Stir it Up

Well they may not be prime time, but to be fair to Channel 4 they are showing a few of the films. The next one is 1:30am tonight.

Coming Up: Stir it Up (2006)
Stir it Up: Romantic drama about love, loss and liberation, as a shy teenager falls for her mother's toy boy.

Written by Elizabeth Heery
Directed by Colin Hutton

I'm becoming increasingly worried, when checking out IMDB, about what these successful writers go on to do. Not a lot, it would appear. But I am enjoying watching these series of films.


Janice Okoh said...

Hope they are on Channel 4 catch up.

I'm thinking maybe a lot of the writers are so cutting edge they don't fancy writing for mainstream t.v. And you know it takes ages to get anywhere in film. Andrea Arnold directed one years back and she's got an oscar.

Jez Freedman said...

I think they will be on Catch Up - the previous two were.

SeamusH said...

I did Coming Up,as a writer, in 2007, broadcast 2008. It was a brilliant experience and the film was well received but it's definitely not a "give up the day job" deal. It does get you a lot of interest from agents and producers however and the rest is pretty much up to yourself. The greatest relief for me, after spending a few years telling people I want to write for TV, was to finally get something on TV. And the two and a half grand was nice as well.

But you should definitely go for it, it's a lot of fun

Jez Freedman said...

wow congrats Seamus! Fantastic achievement and great to hear from a writer who succeeded. Tell us more. What was your film about, how did the process work? If you wanna get in touch for a proper interview email me. If you can't be arse, that's ok too!

SeamusH said...

Hi Jez

Don't think my career quite merits an interview but here's a short summary of my Coming Up experience.
I tried for it initially in 2006 and they liked the idea and commissioned a treatment. I think they commissioned about fifteen treatments and progressed 8 or 9 to script stage. But I didn't make it any further that year and was, of course, gutted.
I tried again in 2007 with a new sample script and idea, and again had a treatment commissioned. The producers teamed me up with a great script editor and this time I made it to script and production stages. It was filmed in October, so I had from May to late August to develop the script. If you're a writer, rather than writer/director, they offer your script to about three of the chosen directors and ask them to pitch for it, though I had no input into that process. You do get involved in nearly everything else though and my relationship with the director was a very happy one.

The finished films get an industry screening at the National Film Theatre and the DVD's get sent to nearly every agency and production company. I had lots of meetings, got an agent, and a commission for a comedy pilot still in dreaded development. So it was great exposure.

My film was called And Kill Them, about a troubled young army recruit who sees a pin up girl on his barracks wall come to life and talk to him.

I had no career to speak off when I applied, certainly no agent so you don't need to be that experienced. Also if you think it would be any help to see the one page idea I applied with just reply and I'll email it to you.

Really enjoy your blog and good luck with Coming Up

Jez Freedman said...

Thanks Seamus, that's great and really interesting to see how it pans out. I would certainly love to see your one pager and if it's ok with you I will post it on the blog as I'm sure others will feel the same

SeamusH said...

Just sent it off to your hotmail address. Also should have added that there didn't seem to be any bias against writers in favour of writer/directors. And the budget per film in my year was about eighty thousand, so you can be a bit more ambitious than your average short.

Jez Freedman said...

thanks very much. that's really good of you. I will post it up here tomorrow.

I wonder if the budget is still 80 grand in this climate. I hope so for all those who make it!

Janice Okoh said...

The process was really useful, Seamus. Would love to see the one page too!!!!