East Hampton, NY (March 29, 2021) – HamptonsFilm, home of Hamptons International Film Festival, announced today the selected fellows, screenplays and mentors for the 21st edition of their annual Screenwriters Lab, which will take place April 9-11, 2021. The Lab pairs rising screenwriters with established screenwriters, directors, and creative-producers for a weekend of one-on-one mentoring sessions. Given the current COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s lab will take place virtually.
“We are committed to celebrating 21 years of the HamptonsFilm Screenwriters Lab by continuing this early spring tradition virtually. We so very much appreciate that our mentors James, Jesse, and Sara have agreed to dedicate their time to this program and to working with these screenwriters. It’s a fitting announcement in Women’s History Month that all three selected screenwriters are female for the second time in three years.” said Anne Chaisson, Executive Director.
The three selected screenplays for 2021 are “Back Seat” by Lana Wilson, “Bear Lake” by Zoë Maltby, and “Samir, the Accidental Spy” by Charlotte Rabate.
“Since the Lab’s inception just over two decades ago, over fifty screenplays have been developed at our lab, with many being produced, premiering, and winning awards at Festivals such as Sundance, Cannes, SXSW and more, in addition to screening theatrically around the world,” said David Nugent, Artistic Director of HamptonsFilm. “This year’s selected artists bring diverse, unique, and personal stories about people from all different walks of life. We are so excited to go on their journey with them.”
This year’s mentors include Independent Spirit Award winner James Ponsoldt, screenwriter of THE END OF THE TOUR, THE SPECTACULAR NOW, and SMASHED; Jesse Andrews, an award-winning screenwriter and New York Times best-selling novelist whose work includes ME, EARL AND THE DYING GIRL as well as Pixar’s upcoming LUCA; and Sara Colangelo, whose three feature films have world-premiered at Sundance and been released worldwide, including LITTLE ACCIDENTS and WORTH, as well as THE KINDERGARTEN TEACHER, which served as the Opening Night Film of the 2018 Hamptons International Film Festival. Both Colangelo (2013) and Ponsoldt (2008) are alumni of the HamptonsFilm Screenwriters Lab.
This year’s Lab is funded with support from the Melissa Mathison Fund. Previous recipients of support from the fund include Cathy Yan (DEAD PIGS, 2018 Sundance Film Festival), and Annabelle Attanasio (MICKEY AND THE BEAR, 2019 SXSW Film Festival). The fund was established in 2016 and named for the late, beloved Oscar®-nominated screenwriter, and strives to foster the continued development of female writers in the industry.
Highlights over the past two decades have included Michael Tyburski and Ben Nabors’ THE SOUND OF SILENCE, starring Peter Sarsgaard and Rashida Jones, which premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival; Ísold Uggadóttir’s AND BREATHE NORMALLY and Christina Choe’s NANCY, which both premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and received awards for directing and screenwriting, respectively; Destin Daniel Cretton’s SHORT TERM 12, starring Academy Award®-winning actors Brie Larson and Rami Malek, which won the Grand Jury and Audience Award at SXSW in 2013; Justin Schwartz’s THE DISCOVERERS, starring Griffin Dunne, which made its world premiere at HIFF 2012; Sara Colangelo’s LITTLE ACCIDENTS, which premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, starring Elizabeth Banks and Chloe Sevigny; and Claudia Myers’s FORT BLISS, starring Michelle Monaghan and Ron Livingston, which was released in 2014.