HamptonsFilm, home of Hamptons International Film Festival, announced today the selected fellows, screenplays and mentors for the 22nd edition of their annual Screenwriters Lab, which will take place April 8-10, 2022. The Lab, which will be held in an in-person setting for the first time since 2019, pairs rising screenwriters with established screenwriters, directors, and creative-producers for a weekend of one-on-one mentoring sessions.
“This signature event of our year-round programming is in many ways defined by the intimacy of the mentorship that takes place,” said HamptonsFilm Artistic Director David Nugent. “While we are thankful to have found our way virtually through our 20th and 21st editions, returning to an in-person setting this year with such unique and compelling scripts means so much to us as an organization and a film-loving community.”
The three selected screenplays for 2022 are “Marilou is Everywhere” by Jimmy Goldblum, “The Leftover Ladies” by Farida Zahran, and “In Search of Time” by Jamil McGinnis & Pat Heywood. Full bios of participants are included below.
This year’s mentors include Academy Award-winner Mollye Asher, producer of Chloe Zhao’s Best Picture-winning film NOMADLAND; Peter Hedges, a novelist and screenwriter whose work includes WHAT’S EATING GILBERT GRAPE, A MAP OF THE WORLD, THE SAME STORM, and the Academy Award-nominated ABOUT A BOY; and Alice Wu, whose most recent film THE HALF OF IT won the Founders Award at the Tribeca Film Festival and received a nomination for Best Screenplay at the Independent Spirit Awards. Hedges also previously served as a Screenwriters Lab mentor virtually in 2020.
“It is an honor and a privilege to once again welcome our distinguished mentors back to East Hampton after two years of virtual labs,” said HamptonsFilm Executive Director Anne Chaisson. “This year, it is safe to say our mentors’ talent speaks for itself, and we are so grateful to Mollye Asher, Peter Hedges, and Alice Wu for generously making the time to work with our lab participants to help develop their brilliant pieces of work.”
HamptonsFilm also announced that Zahran and her project “The Leftover Ladies” is the recipient of the 2022 Melissa Mathison Fund. Previous recipients include Lana Wilson’s “Back Seat,” Kelly O’Sullivan’s “Mouse,” Kirsten Tan’s “Higher,” Aemilia Scott’s “The Birthday Suit,” Annabelle Attanasio’s “Mickey And The Bear,” and Cathy Yan’s “Dead Pigs.” 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 of the Screenwriters Lab over the past 22 years have included Andrew Semans’ RESURRECTION, starring Rebecca Hall and Tim Roth, which premiered at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival; 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 Awards 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.
Photos of this year’s mentors and participants are available here. For more information on this program, please visit the HamptonsFilm website. The landmark 30th annual Hamptons International Film Festival will take place from October 7 – 16, 2022.
“Marilou is Everywhere” by Jimmy Goldblum
Logline: Consumed by the longing for a different life, 14-year-old Cindy Stoat flees her abusive family and carefully slips into another—replacing a girl whose own sudden disappearance still haunts their rural town.
Bio: Jimmy Goldblum is an Emmy Award-winning Director & Producer based in Altadena, CA. His short documentary, A BROKEN HOUSE, was shortlisted for the 2022 Academy Awards; it also won the IDA Award for “Best Short” and was nominated by Cinema Eyes for “Best Non-Fiction Short.” He directed the pilot and set the look for Netflix’s reimagining of Unsolved Mysteries, produced by 21 Laps (Stranger Things). It was Netflix’s most watched series in the world for its first 10 days. He also set up the series and directed an episode of the Apple+ / A24 series, Home, and he directs episodes of the critically acclaimed documentary series, Chef’s Table. Jimmy directed and produced TOMORROW WE DISAPPEAR, a feature documentary about India’s last colony of magicians, acrobats, and puppeteers. IndieWire listed it as one of the “20 Best Documentaries of 2014.”
“The Leftover Ladies” by Farida Zahran
Logline: A 60-something woman tries to leave her polygamous husband after he expresses a renewed commitment to their stale relationship.
Bio: Farida Zahran is an Egyptian writer/director based in Brooklyn, working across film and TV. Most recently, she wrote on the acclaimed TV series Ramy (A24 & Hulu). Her short film YOUTH premiered at SXSW and screened at festivals worldwide. It received an Oscar-qualifying award at Palm Springs ShortFest, and is a Vimeo Staff Pick. She is a graduate of the NYU Graduate Film Program. Zahran is currently in development on her debut feature, as well as a half hour series.
“In Search of Time” by Jamil McGinnis & Pat Heywood
Logline: A boy journeys across Brooklyn as he seeks to return his friend’s notebook before the day’s end.
Bios: Jamil McGinnis and Pat Heywood have been making films together since 2016. Their work has screened with institutions such as Locarno, Telluride, AFI, BFI, Museum of Modern Art, Lincoln Center, Walker Arts Center, and Clermont-Ferrand—where their short film GRAMERCY was awarded the 2021 Lab Competition’s Grand Prix. Their debut feature film IN SEARCH OF TIME was supported by Rooftop Films 2021 Filmmaker Fund Camera Grant, and most recently, they were participants in the Thessaloniki International Film Festivals’ inaugural Filmmaker Lab in Greece. They are co-founders of Seneca Village Pictures, a home to continue exploring spaces between life and cinema.
Mollye Asher is an Oscar-winning producer based in New York City. She produced Chloé Zhao’s NOMADLAND, which won Best Picture at the Oscars, Spirit Awards, BAFTAs, Golden Globes, Critics Choice, and Gotham Awards. Other credits include the Spirit Award-nominated and Tribeca Audience Award-winner, CATCH THE FAIR ONE, the Gotham-nominated SWALLOW, Cannes Directors’ Fortnight top prizewinner THE RIDER, SXSW Grand Jury Prize winner FORT TILDEN, Spirit Award-nominated SHE’S LOST CONTROL, and SONGS MY BROTHERS TAUGHT ME (Cannes, Sundance). Asher won the Producers Award at the 2020 Film Independent Spirit Awards and was included in Variety’s 2021 NY Women’s Impact Report.
Peter Hedges first novel What’s Eating Gilbert Grape was the basis for the 1993 film, which he also wrote. Hedges’ screenplays include co-adapting Jane Hamilton’s A Map of the World and Nick Hornby’s About a Boy, for which he received a Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar® nomination. Hedges made his feature film directorial debut with PIECES OF APRIL, starring Katie Holmes and Patricia Clarkson. In 2007, Peter directed and co-wrote DAN IN REAL LIFE for Touchstone Pictures / Focus Features. In 2012, Peter wrote and directed THE ODD LIFE OF TIMOTHY GREEN for Disney. In 2018, Hedges’ wrote and directed BEN IS BACK, which starred Julia Roberts and Lucas Hedges. Hedges’ most recent film THE SAME STORM was shot virtually/remotely during the summer of 2020. Featuring a cast of 24 that includes Sandra Oh, Mary-Louise Parker, Noma Dumezweni, Moses Ingram, and Elaine May, THE SAME STORM had its World Premiere at the 2021 Telluride Film Festival. Hedges has taught at Yale University, Bennington College, and the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. He has served as a Creative Advisor at the Sundance Screenwriters’ Lab and previously served as a Mentor at the HamptonsFilm 2020 Screenwriting Lab.
With a 15-year break between her two films, Alice Wu knows life isn’t lived linearly. A former computer scientist, she designed software for Microsoft until her late twenties, when she left the tech world to become a filmmaker. Her debut feature, SAVING FACE, made its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival where it was acquired for theatrical distribution by Sony Pictures Classics. The film garnered several festival accolades, as well as a GLAAD Media Award nomination for Outstanding Film-Limited Release and a Breakthrough Director Award nomination for Wu at the Gotham Independent Film Awards. Wu’s second film, THE HALF OF IT, won the Founder’s Award at the Tribeca Film Festival before it was released on Netflix in 2020. The script was a 2018 selection for the prestigious Black List and received a nomination for Best Screenplay at the Independent Spirit Awards. Between these two films, Wu has been living her life: spending time with her family, perfecting her scone recipe, studying and teaching long-form improv. This is perhaps why she is known for humanistic comedies that feature Asian, immigrant, and queer characters caught in unexpected circumstances.
HamptonsFilm, home of the Hamptons International Film Festival (HIFF), based in the Hamptons on the Eastern End of Long Island, was founded in 1992 to celebrate the art of film and to introduce a unique and varied spectrum of international films and filmmakers to our audiences. A non-profit organization with year-round screenings of global narrative and documentary films, an annual Screenwriters Lab, a summer documentary showcase, and extensive educational initiatives, HamptonsFilm offers programs that enlighten, educate, and provide invaluable exposure for filmmakers, while also providing the East End of Long Island with an educational and cultural experience that enriches the lives of its citizens and contributes to the local economy. HIFF, celebrating its 29th year, is an annual premiere film event in New York State, and an intimate showcase of some of the year’s best offerings in contemporary cinema from around the world. Awarding prizes to filmmakers in cash and goods and services of over $130,000 each year, with over $4.5 million awarded in competition funds and services over the past 30 years, our program continues to play an important role during awards season. 2020 marked the 11th time in a row that a film in the Festival has become the eventual Best Picture winner at the Oscars, making HIFF the only Festival in the world with such a distinction. For more information, please visit hamptonsfilmfest.org.