AOTS Script Competition

Action On The Side is now running a short screenplay competition

I’ve set up the competition to help screenwriters to get their films made.

There are two categories: PRODUCED scripts and UNPRODUCED scripts.

The UNPRODUCED scripts are maximum 10 pages and the submitter must include a pitch video. This is based on what we do in the Action On The Side project. It gives the writer practice in pitching their story to Producers, and it helps them to define their story.

The PRODUCED scripts are for writers who have already made their short film or who are in the process of making it. It’s a way for filmmakers to get some production funds or recoup some of the funds spent making their film. If the film is made, they need to submit a link to the film; if it is being made, they need to submit a treatment, look book, or production stills.

The prize money isn’t a huge amount – for now. But it is something that we can give to filmmakers to support them in their filmmaking skills development: which is my goal for Action On The Side.

The best scripts will also get feedback, laurels, a digital certificate, and a discount code to use the feedback services from our sponsors, MyScreenReaders.com

Submission Deadlines

  • Earlybird: 7 January 2022
  • Regular: 30 January 2022
  • Late: 27 February 2022
  • Notification: 21 March 2022

The announcement will be at the AOTS screening, March 2022.

Please share this script competition to any interested parties if you think it looks worthwhile competition for them.

Ealing Film Festival

The Ealing Film Festival is NEXT WEEKEND

Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th December 2021

Ealing Green Church
(W5 5QT)

Tickets available at this link

Information on the programme at this link

Even if you can’t attend the event in person, the shorts will be available online for the audience vote.

See you there!

Ealing Film Festival

How to add a film to Letterboxd

Letterboxd is a social media site for lovers of film.

Here’s my profile

I use the app and website religiously, and expound its virtues with every film person I know. I encouraged students to use it, so they could get into the habit of logging and reviewing films — building up their film language and their film knowledge.

I find the habit of logging films to be so beneficial. With Letterboxd, you can:

  • log the films you watch
  • review the films you watch — reviews you can refer to later if you forget what you thought of a film
  • add films to bespoke lists — I use the list function as a teaching tool
  • use the stats function to see your viewing habits – getting cool reports for the end of the year, and even see what percentage of films from a particular crew member or actor you have ever seen
  • follow people and have them follow you
  • easily add films to an awesome watchlist — one that sends you notifications when films on your watchlist become available on your favourite viewing platforms
  • find new and interesting films to watch

I was so happy to find that short films are on Letterboxd as well. Now I can log the shorts I watch. It has saved me a few times when I hadn’t realised I had already watched a film through.

I have been watching loads of short films on channels such as Dust, Alter, Omeleto, and Crypt TV. Every film, I log, and I include the YouTube link so others can watch as well.

What I have found frustrating though is when films don’t appear on Letterboxd. How can I log them if they’re not there?! This has been especially frustrating during film festivals…

{I hope this rant on my FB embedded properly}

After attending the Aesthetica Short Film Festival and realising that most of the films are not on Letterboxd, I had to take action!

So, here is a video that outlines how to get your film on Letterboxd

Step 1: add the film to The Movie Database (TMDb)

Step 2: … that’s it.

Keep watching to see it done in real-time with one of our Action On The Side shorts.

and Filmmakers: please … please … PLEASE … make sure your film is on Letterboxd.

so geeks like me can watch it and log it.

Ealing Film Festival

I have joined the 2021 Ealing Film Festival Team as their Volunteer Coordinator

CALL FOR VOLUNTEERS

The Ealing Film Festival has been established to encourage a diverse cultural offering from within the borough, London, UK and far beyond.

The festival is run by a team of enthusiastic volunteers. This is the first time the festival has run in person. Screenings will be held in Ealing on Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th December, 11am to 11pm.

Join our team

Volunteers are vital to run this independent festival. By volunteering, you will join a dedicated team, have fun, build experience, and watch some films!

Register your interest here https://bit.ly/eff21volunteer

Limited roles available. 

Timeline

Deadline to apply
Sunday 21 November

Volunteers confirmed
Wednesday 24 November

Festival
Saturday 4 December, Sunday 5 December

Questions? Email info@ealingfilmfestival.com

Onto new things

I am in Week 2 at a new job. I have left teaching, and am now a Data Operator at Vice UK.

That means that I work in the Postproduction Team. As the first step in Postproduction, the Data Ops team ingests footage from Production, uploads it to central servers, and creates proxies for the Assistant Editors (AEs) and Editors to use.

Vice creates documentaries, magazines, various forms of journalism. They have YouTube channels (main channel) and videos on their website.

I am looking forward to the new challenge.

Back on set

I was back on set for the first time since before the pandemic

I was the First Assistant Director and Production Manager for Velma Velma Velma, a short film directed by Josh Kidd, shooting in East London, 21-23 July 2021

The last film I was on set for was A Winter Barbecue, the last Action On The Side film. We shot that the day before the UK went into its first lockdown, in March 2020.

The key changes shooting post-covid include:

  • requiring proof of negative test result
  • wearing a mask when inside
  • minimising people on set
  • staggering call and wrap times
  • increased hand-washing and use of sanitiser
  • individual catering, minimising cross-contamination

Now that I’ve cracked that on-set cherry again, time to get to more film shoots.

Runner Call: Velma Velma Velma

CREW CALL | EAST LONDON | EXPENSES ONLY

FineLight Films are looking for a Runner for Weds 22, Thu 23, and Fri 24th July, 08:00-18:00, in East London.

This is for their short film Velma Velma Velma, directed by Josh Kidd.

I am on set as Production Manager and 1st AD.

The Runner role is unfortunately unpaid (microbudget production). Catering provided and travel covered between zones 1-5. It would suit someone early in their career wanting on-set experience. You would be helping out on set where needed, and I would show you how to do Clapper Loading, DIT’ing, and Script Supervision (for those who don’t know me, I’m a trained Film Lecturer and run Skills Development programme Action On The Side).

Please contact me directly if this sounds like you. Email patriciahetherington.nz@gmail.com with your details, ideally before 7pm Monday 19th July 2021.

Please share with interested parties. TIA.

I won a teaching award

I forgot to say at the time (because I have been swamped and didn’t update this site), but I won a teaching award.

I was nominated by at least one student for supporting students during lockdown.

Free online courses

Are you interested in developing yourself with CPD courses?

Here are some places that provide training, most of it free.

The Dots: free membership. They have a weekly newsletter with upcoming events. If you join, add me here

Screenskills: a mixture of free and paid events. You can set up your own account to access. When you complete courses, the certificates are available online for you to access and download whenever.

Eventbrite: the platform that most of these pages use. Follow your favourite organisations for notifications, and check what is coming up. While you’re there, you can find me here

Art For Introverts: Online lectures on art, psychology, and science

We Are Albert: free training, especially on sustainability in the industry

Stage 32: set up a free account. They have paid and free courses.

Film London: training opportunities

Google Digital Garage online courses: not filmmaking, but some useful short courses

London Screenwriters Festival: join their mailing list for events (note these are not free).

Paid Members only (probably)

BECTU: possibly only available to members of the Broadcasting, Entertainment, Cinematography and Theatre Union

WFTV: only available to members of Women In Film & Television UK

Shooting People: possibly only available to members

MOOCs

A MOOC, of Massive Open Online Course, is a place to complete courses online with other participants. Online University Courses are MOOCs: things like The Open University. Websites such as Udemy, MOOC.org, Khan Academy, Coursera, Masterclass, and FutureLearn are MOOCs. Some MOOC platforms / courses are free, whereas some others you have to pay.

These are some that I recommend if you are a beginner filmmaker that wants to develop your skills.

Resource Websites

British Council Film

BAFTA does a series of Q+As with BAFTA Guru

What are some other resources you can think of?

Share them here as a comment and I will add them to my list.

Crew Roles for Sussex Indie Feature

I’m working with Gielgud Films on their latest feature film, A Book About Her

I have joined the film as Assistant Producer & Production Manager

We are currently hiring five roles under the UK Government Kickstart Scheme.

Five roles:
Storyboard Artist, Assistant Animator, Assistant Film Editor, Assistant Screenwriter, PR & Social Media Assistant

A BOOK ABOUT HER
This debut British feature film, from award-winning Writer/Director Suzanne Gielgud, is a coming of age story that follows 18-year-old Sophie’s journey to become a writer. As Sophie discovers her muse, 19-year-old rebel Evie, she finds herself caught in the middle of a conflict between her LGBT beliefs and the church.
Filming August 2021 in Sussex

Available Roles

These are paid roles for 6-month work placements starting 21 June 2021

Placements are onsite in Sussex-based office or work from home

  • Storyboard Artist
  • Assistant Animator (2D)
  • Assistant Film Editor
  • Assistant Screenwriter
  • PR & Social Media Assistant

Eligibility

These roles are being filled under the UK Government Kickstart Scheme. To be eligible, applicants must be aged 16-24 and be on Universal Credit. We are especially interested in Film School Graduates or those with some industry experience.

TO APPLY

Contact films@gielgud.com to register your interest. You will be provided with more information on how to apply through your Job Centre.

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