Modern Tales is a UK-based 5-month story and professional development program for emerging diverse filmmakers, particularly focused on BAME (Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic), female and disabled talent. The program offers training, support and expert intervention in both the creative and market-conscious inception and development of a long-form fiction project.
Modern Tales has announced the eleven teams selected for full Project Development for their inaugural professional development scheme.
Over the next five months, these teams – made up of 24 filmmakers – will take part in an intensive set of eight courses, where they will workshop their long-form fiction projects to get them ready for market. The scheme will culminate in a final pitch to a panel of industry experts. The writers, producers and directors selected for the 2017 program bring with them a diverse range of experiences, stories and voices. 60% of the filmmakers are from a BAME background and 65% are women. Amongst the teams are an all-female film collective who are developing new sci-fi drama series, “Orchids”; director/producer Nina Salomons and writer Karim Flint bring with them their 80’s inspired teen comedy, “Hall Monitors”; and long-time collaborators Shack Baker and Shane Davey share their social commentary thriller, “British Bulldog.”
Here are some emerging British filmmakers we just might be writing about in the future! Good luck as they embark on this new journey.
The project development teams, along with their project titles and descriptions, follow below:
— Victoria Thomas & Avril Evans – “The Catch” – Writer/producer Victoria Thomas is an award-winning and BAFTA Scotland nominated filmmaker. Together, she is working with ex BBC director Avril Evans on “The Catch,” a Crime Thriller inspired by a true story of a Fisherwoman who accidentally stumbles across a lucrative drug haul which a Colombian cartel and M15 are both desperate to get their hands on.
— Koby Adom, Aegina Brahim & Adjani Salmon – “Patterns” – Director Koby, producer Aegina and writer Adjani come to Modern Tales with their project “Patterns” about a young British fashion student from a working-class background who strives to break into the UK fashion industry. With a central theme of men’s mental health, the story follows Kwame’s life in London as his obstacles wear him down.
— Dipo Baruwa-Etti & Corine Dhondee – “Quiet Storm” – Corine and Dipo started working together in 2017 developing “Quiet Storm.” The feature follows a young woman who is informed of her brother’s death, but she refuses to accept the reality. Alongside her best friend, she retraces his steps, and as each day passes she clings onto the hope that he is still alive. Corine is a director whose short films have screened at the BAFTA-qualifying Hot Docs, Sheffield Doc/Fest and the London Short Film Festival. Dipo is a freelance producer, and works at David Higham Associates.
— Shane Davey & Shack Baker – “British Bulldog” – Shane and Shack have been collaborating for 10 years. Their projects include music videos, short films and an award-winning micro-feature. Their project, “British Bulldog,” is a breakneck paced thriller with a social commentary; the story features two MC’s being chased across London by a corrupt police officer hell bent on framing them for a crime he committed.
— Sunny King & Alex Kessie – “Prey” – Director/producer Sunny King and writer Alex Kessie are collaborating on revenge thriller, “Prey.” “Prey” is based on Sunny’s short of the same title, which was featured on the BBC and had a short theatrical release. Alex has worked in TV for the past eight years, most recently as Script Coordinator on the award-winning Netflix drama, “The Crown.”
— Athena Mandis & Lynne Rogers – “Monsoon Rain” – Athena Mandis is an award-winning filmmaker with a project shortlisted for the Sundance Screenwriters Lab. Lynne-Anne Rodgers is an actress and producer. Her short film is currently out to Festivals. “Monsoon Rain” is a drama set in London and India, exploring sibling rivalry, family obligations, mortality and the nature of homeland.
— Lauren Cooney & Lisa Jacobi – “Retrieval” – Writer/director Lauren and producer Lisa are collaborating on sci-fi-drama “Retrieval,” about a young woman sent to India to bring home her sister as their dying father’s wish, but is obstructed by the sister’s belief that the Apocalypse is imminent. In an era of burgeoning fake news and echo chambers, we’re exploring the divisive beliefs that tear loved-ones apart.
— Karim Flint & Nina Salomons – “Hall Monitors” – Nina Salomons is a Dutch director and producer who now calls London her home. Karim Flint is an award-winning screenwriter, comic book publisher and journalist. Together they make up two thirds of the production company Angry 3, the brains behind “Hall Monitors,” a teen action/comedy inspired by the golden age of 80s Hollywood excess.
— Roxy Rezvany & Emily Warren – “Faith” – Emily is a writer-director whose work in theatre and film focuses on innovative depictions of women. Roxy is a producer with an award-winning background in documentary and broadcast television. They are co-writing and producing “Faith,” about a Muslim girl who secretly converts to Christianity when she discovers the story of Joan of Arc.
— Laura Kirwan-Ashman, Charlotte Lowdell & Aya Arden Clarke – “Orchids” – Laura, Charlotte and Aya make up all-female DIY film collective, Sorta Kinda Maybe Yeh. They starred in, self-produced and released their first project, a web series by the same name, in April 2016. To Modern Tales, they bring with them sci-fi drama series, “Orchids,” which looks to explore important conversations about mental health and human connectivity in today’s modern world.
— Anna Maguire & Jessie Mangum – “Miniatures” – Anna Maguire is a writer, director and actor. Her short “Your Mother and I” recently won The Best British Film Award at the London Short Film Festival. Producer Jessie Mangum has recently been commissioned through Film London’s Microwave scheme with Looted. “Miniatures” is a feature film about a mother and her adult daughter attempting to come to terms with their absolute lack of connection after Jeanne tries to kill herself.
For more information about the teams and their projects, visit www.moderntales.co.uk.