by FilmInk Staff

The Taiwan Film Festival in Australia is hosting its first-ever Pitching Competition, offering a unique opportunity to turn a literary adaptation into a short film, with a cash prize of $5,000!

Pitching Competition – From Taiwanese Bookshelves to Screen

4-6pm 13 Sep 2024 @ Australian Film Television and Radio School

For the first time, the Taiwan Film Festival in Australia is hosting a unique pitching competition to promote the adaptation of translated Taiwanese literary works into screenplays. This event offers emerging filmmakers an entry into international co-productions and adaptation, providing a rare opportunity to elevate their creative projects.

The competition is open to both established filmmakers and recent graduates. Participants have the chance to win a $5000 cash prize to kickstart the production of their short film. Don’t miss this opportunity to take your filmmaking to the next level!

How It Works

Select one of the five listed books to base your screenplay on, focusing on a specific part or chapter for your adaptation. Develop your screenplay by the chosen segment of the book into a visual story, and prepare a detailed pitch including your storyboard and vision for the film. Each team will have up to 10 minutes to present their pitch in English, in person at the AFTRS. The production crew must include at least one Australian member, and at least 30% of the film’s production must take place in Australia.

What the Winner Gets

The winner will receive a $5000 AUD cash prize to kickstart their short film production and have the adaptation IP fees covered by the festival. They’ll also benefit from pre-pitch support and ongoing assistance to ensure project completion. Guidance on applying for additional funding and resources will be provided, along with valuable feedback from an additional

Time Frame

The winner’s project timeline spans from September to October 2024 for finalising the script, followed by November to December for completing the filming phase. In 2025, January to March is allocated for post-production activities, while April to November will focus on participating in film festivals.

The pitching competition juries include:

  • Director Colin Cairnes | Late Night With The Devil (2023)

Colin began his career directing sitcoms in Singapore in the 90s. He and his brother Cameron have since collaborated on several films. Their debut feature, 100 Bloody Acres (2013), won the Midnight X-treme award at the Sitges Film Festival and was nominated for two AACTAs. Their second film, Scare Campaign (2015), won multiple awards at MonsterFest. Their latest film, Late Night with the Devil, premiered at SXSW in 2023 and received praise from Stephen King. It became IFC’s biggest opening weekend film in March 2023.

  • Producer Kylie de Fresne | Goalpost Production

Kylie du Fresne, a partner at Goalpost Pictures, is a multi-award-winning film and television producer. Currently, she is in post-production for Amazon’s first original feature film, Five Blind Dates, and serves as Executive Producer for the Stan Original Series Black Snow and the modern reimagining of Carmen (2022). Kylie produced the box-office hit The Invisible Man (2020) and is Executive Producer of I Am Woman(2019). Her film credits include Top End Wedding(2019), Upgrade(2018), Holding the Man(2015), and The Sapphires(2012).

  • Author Benjamin Law | Wellmania (2023)

Benjamin Law is an Australian writer and broadcaster known for his diverse contributions to literature and media. He authored The Family Law (2010), Gaysia (2013), the Quarterly Essay Moral Panic 101 (2017), and edited Growing Up Queer in Australia (2019). As an AWGIE Award-winning screenwriter, he co-executive produced, co-created, and co-wrote the Netflix comedy-drama Wellmania (2023), and wrote the play Torch the Place (2020). He also created and co-wrote the award-winning TV series The Family Law (2016–2019). Benjamin holds a PhD in creative writing and cultural studies from QUT. Benjamin has written for over 50 publications, including the Monthly, frankie, Guardian, Monocle, and Australian Financial Review, and serves as a literary scout for Hachette Australia.

  • Bobby Romain | Screen Australia – Head of Development

Bobby is a seasoned industry professional with 15 years of experience as a producer, writer, and broadcaster. Before joining Screen Australia, he was Acting Senior Investment Manager at Screen NSW, overseeing projects like The Drover’s Wife (2021), June Again (2020), True Colours (2022), Bump (2021), among others. He also managed talent initiatives such as Talent Camp NSW and the Emerging Writers’ Incubator. Bobby has worked as a Commissioning Supervisor and Producer at SBS Australia and NITV, and with companies like Screentime Australia, Hopscotch Films, eOne Entertainment, and Screentime New Zealand. He holds a Master of Arts in Screenwriting from the Australian Film Television and Radio School (AFTRS).

  • Su Shu-Kuan | Taiwan Creative Content Agency (TAICCA) – Assistant Director

Shu-Kuan holds a Ph.D. from the Institute of Social Research and Cultural Studies at National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University, Taiwan. She joined TAICCA in 2020, overseeing the TAICCA SCHOOL and TAICCA ACCELERATOR programs, and serves as Deputy Director for TCCF Pitching. Previously, Shu-Kuan was Director for CNEX Foundation and CNEX Chinese Documentary Forum (CCDF) from 2015 to 2020. Shu-Kuan has extensive experience organizing film events, talent workshops, and festivals.

The books include:

A writer embarks on an epic quest in search of his missing father’s stolen bicycle and soon finds himself caught up in the strangely intertwined stories of Lin Wang, the oldest elephant who ever lived, the soldiers who fought in the jungles of South-East Asia during the Second World War and the secret worlds of the butterfly handicraft makers and antique bicycle fanatics of Taiwan.

A light and sweet romance story of a resolute yet affectionate boss and his cute and light-hearted assistant. Love with its joys and hassles can turn even the boring office work into an exciting romantic adventure!

A female student is found dead on the badminton court in a university gym, surrounded by three lines of shuttlecocks, with the crime scene locked from the inside. How did the killer commit this impossible murder that suggests a cult ritual? Ruoping Lin, an amateur detective, is contacted by the police to solve this baffling case.

Romantic prospects are popping up everywhere in the life of successful lawyer Alan Yang. The only problem: he is already engaged to be married in one year’s time. Starting from this seemingly rom-com premise, the novel proceeds to steer readers through a dark maze of dubious intentions, guiding them to a masterful final reveal.

New Gods comprises five interconnected novellas that weave together the tales of new deities emerging from the intersection and clash of various cultures, subcultures, ethnicities, and faiths within Taiwan’s hidden realms. These novellas, which can be enjoyed individually or collectively, introduce us to embodiments of danger and transformation. The spirits they evoke are poised to guide us towards a new path. A Thousand Scars is one of the five stories featured in New Gods.

Find out more about Pitching competition: