Acclaimed screenwriter to lead workshop at Manchester chaplaincy

The novellist and screenwriter Frank Cottrell Boyce (the man behind the 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony) will be running a film writer’s workshop this evening at the Jesuit-led Catholic Chaplaincy of Manchester Universities. The Chaplaincy is collaborating with the Insight Film Festival to create the North of England Student Film Award 2014 for full-time students in Northern England. Successful entrants will be invited to Hollywood for a six week internship with Loyola Productions – if they can convince a panel of industry professionals that they can portray faith in film in a confident and creative way. This evening’s workshop is intended to give creative students the confidence to enter.

The Film Award is being offered to a student who is undergoing full time graduate or post graduate work in Manchester or elsewhere in the North of England. They will be required to submit a synopsis of a movie they would like to make, which addresses the topic of faith, together with a sample screenplay or storyboard. Alternatively, they can submit a short film or video - up to five minutes in length - that is relevant to the award ... or a combination of both synopsis and short film. How they choose to interpret the subject, and any conclusions they make on it, are entirely up to the student film makers themselves.

Faith in film

“Film making is a powerful way of telling stories that inspire and change hearts and minds,” says Jesuit Chaplain in Manchester, Fr Tim Byron SJ. “The hope is to identify students who can portray faith in film, and to give them confidence to act on their creativity with support and training. It’s open to students of all faiths - and 'portraying faith in film' is deliberately vague, so as to give them a fairly blank canvas.  It will enable us to identify someone who is serious about making films, and has talent - who will then be given the chance to experience a six week internship at Loyola Productions in Hollywood, which is renowned for its award-winning documentaries, promotional films and instructional videos that reflect the Jesuit commitment to education and social justice.”

Loyola Productions, based in Culver City, Los Angeles, USA, is a creative media company that builds on the 450-year-old Jesuit tradition of effective engagement with the communication arts.

Entries to the competition must be submitted by 12 noon this Friday (16 May 2014). They will be assessed by Insight’s panel of industry professionals and academics. Finalists will be invited to attend an interview, which will include a Skype conversation with Loyola Productions and religious TV producer, John Forrest, who established the Insight Film Festival in 2007.