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Rocliffe Blog November 2010 by Stephen O’Reilly

26 November 2010
Actors performing at BAFTA/ROCLIFFE New Writing ForumBAFTA

Stephen O’Reilly blogs for BAFTA giving us an insight into what it was like when his script, ‘The Red Diary’ was presented in front of some of the industries’ best minds.

Tuesday 16th November

Tuesday 16th November is quickly turning into a milestone for me.

For anyone new to the event, BAFTA/Rocliffe New Writing Forum seeks out new talent and gives the 3 writers selected a platform to expose their work, get feedback from an Industry big hitter and network with Producers/Writers/Agents/Directors.

I have to admit I was pretty nervous on the night but after seeing my script excellently acted & directed in rehearsal I had no doubt as to what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. Debra Hayward, Exec Producer at Working Title Films, was the Industry big hitter and gave some great feedback to me and the audience. I got some really practical pointers on script formatting and I’ve taken Debra’s advice & changed one of the key scenes in ‘The Red Diary’.

The Q&A created a lot of debate around the alternate endings in my script and the possibility of using short films as a tool to generate interest in a feature script. Debra’s professional opinion was a ‘proper fully formed screenplay’ is always the best foot forward.

As always the bar is where the business is done and BAFTA/Rocliffe didn’t disappoint. I was approached by an Agent & Director on the night, have since been in touch with both and have been contacted by another Agent. The Guinness wasn’t bad either.

All in all the whole experience has been extremely positive and I’d urge any new writers to get something submitted in the next round.