We work in an industry where 'who you know' is still a fast track to success and unpaid internships are rife. This unfair entry system leaves some of the UK's best untapped talent out in the cold.
Rebel Muse wants to help change this, with a series of events and opportunities for creatives seeking representation. We're calling it UNSIGNED. More than a diversity scheme, we want to focus on getting talent from low-income backgrounds the connections they need.
The first of these events was a showcase of twelve talented screenwriters, of every background and identity, picked by a panel of industry experts. Everyone was welcome to apply, no matter their experience, connections or education.
The showcase took place on the 28th June 2018, in a south London venue, where 12 finalists pitched to a room of agents and development execs. You can see a full list below.
Stay tuned for news of our next event, coming soon.
Our judges were:
Claire Sheppard, Carnival Films
Yero Timi-Biu, Writer
Abigail Dennis, Euston Films
Harriet Williams, Disney
115 applicants in 5 days
42% from low-income backgrounds
Kieran Roberts & Jed Birch
Tristan Alice Nieto
Anastasia, founder of Rebel Muse, on why UNSIGNED and opportunities like it are so important.
As a creative from a low-income background, I came into the industry without any pre-existing contacts or financial support. I was lucky enough to win two fantastic internships and never had to work or 'pay my dues' for free. If I had, I wouldn't have been able to afford those first steps into the industry.
I have spent the last couple of years trying to break in as a screenwriter. Getting an agent is often the first hurdle and a big one to make, as many agents go by recommendation. There is still a huge lack of female writers working in the industry; even less present are writers from low-income backgrounds, ethnic minorities, LGBTQI identities and those who are differently abled. This is no longer news but the gaps remain.
I decided it was time to try being proactive and create an opportunity for myself and others like me. People who have great ideas and talent but, for whatever reason, do not have the connections and financial stability to push their careers in the right direction.
When I was given the chance to host an event, it seemed like a no-brainer. So for this first UNSIGNED, I'm looking for ten screenwriters to join me in a showcase for the agents and execs who can open the right doors.
If you know an industry player who can help us, or a talented writer who deserves a hand up, please share this page!
For more info, you can get me on firstname.lastname@example.org