All News & Features
Booking is now open for this year's BBC TV Drama Writers' Festival
When: Wednesday 11th and Thursday 12th July 2012
Where: Leeds College of Music, Leeds
The TV Drama Writers' Festival is the festival for professional television writers. Providing a unique opportunity to mix with BBC drama commissioners and producers, and writers who are at the top of their field, the festival is a mix of masterclasses, conversation and debate - led by writers for writers. It is an opportunity to be inspired, challenged, and to have your say. The theme of this year's festival is 'Ambition'.
The 2012 festival will be chaired by Peter Bowker - with Stephen Butchard, Danny Brocklehurst, Toby Whithouse, Emma Frost, Ashley Pharoah and Jack Thorne helping to put the sessions and masterclasses together.
The closing date for bookings is 20 June 2012.
Full details are on the BBC Writersroom website.
A birthday tribute from David Edgar, President of the Writers' Guild
(Photo of Arnold Wesker by Leon Kreel)
Today is the 80th birthday of one of the greatest playwrights of the last 60 years. For me, it's also the birthday of a friend, with whom I have broken bread, addressed conferences, traversed Eastern Europe and, on occasions, done all three. Along with all my colleagues at the Writers' Guild, I offer heartiest congratulations to Arnold Wesker.
Properly, this event has been marked by a Weskerfest. Along with a celebration of his work at the King's Head, revivals of three of his most enduring plays (The Kitchen at the National Theatre, Chicken Soup With Barley at the Royal Court and Roots at Theatre Clwyd) have reminded audiences how central Arnold's work was to the golden era of playwriting at the Royal Court in the late 1950s, and has remained to the British theatre which flowed from it. Arnold and his colleagues put the character of contemporary British society at the centre of the British stage, where it has remained ever since.
A statement from the Writers' Guild
The Guild has been aware for some while that the BBC will moving their children's programmes from BBC One and BBC Two to CBBC and CBeebies. No date has yet been set for the move.
The BBC has stated that spending on children's programmes won't be affected. The Guild has also received an undertaking that no changes will be made until fully agreed with the BBC Writers' Forum, which consists of the WGGB, PMA (a.k.a. agents) and the BBC.
As ever, the Guild will protect its members.
Guild launches Guidelines for writers and those working with writers in the comics, cartoon strip and illustrated story industries
Written in consultation with writers working across the comics industry these new guidelines provide an overview of the rates and conditions writers should expect. Be you an industry veteran, or looking to sell your first work don’t sign a contract without reading this document first.
Download the guidelines (pdf)
Dublin 7-10 June
John Ford Ireland presents a four day event focusing on film and filmmaking, inspired and informed by the work of Irish-American director John Ford and his ongoing influence on contemporary cinema.
Leading filmmakers and creatives including directors Peter Bogdanovich, Jim Sheridan and John Boorman and writers Patrick McCabe, Colin Bateman and Paul Fraser will participate in a varied programme of industry events, masterclasses, lectures and screenings.
For more information or to register for a Season Pass go to www.johnfordireland.org
A report, some musings and some things to come, by Andy Walsh
An introduction by Anne Hogben
This event was the third successful gathering of members of the WGGB and Directors UK. The last one was held, along with producers from PACT and actors from Equity, at BAFTA during the London Film Festival last October. That was a different, more structured, type of event. All participants had to submit a proposal in writing in advance, about a project already in development so it was aimed at members of all four organisations, e.g. a writer with a script looking for a producer, a director looking for an actor, or a producer looking for a director so it can had a Speed Networking feel to it ('I am a … looking for a ….'). I was delighted to get several messages afterwards from Guild members who had attended telling me that their projects were moving on as a result of brief encounters made that evening. I hope we can organise something similar during the 2012 London Film Festival – running from 10–25 October. I’d welcome any suggestions from members about holding a similar event during the LFF.
Anne Hogben is Deputy General Secretary of the Writers' Guild
The Elizabethan alchemist and enigma Dr John Dee noted that by mixing writers with directors in a darkened room one could create gunpowder. Four hundred years later and the appearance of a writer’s name on a mobile phone leads to a moment of prescience…what is to follow for the next half hour will be war stories. ‘Director steals credit, plot ravaged and twisted beyond recognition and the swine never even bought a round.’