Screen Queensland (SQ) in partnership with Wattpad, the global multiplatform entertainment company for original stories, today open applications to a ground-breaking opportunity for Queensland filmmakers, announcing the two hit stories that applicants will pitch to adapt for screen.
In an Australian-first partnership that was announced in June this year as part of SQ’s $3.3 million COVID response package, the Wattpad initiative invites Queensland film practitioners to pitch creative adaptation ideas for their choice of two Wattpad original young adult titles: The Bro Code (21.1 million reads) by Elizabeth A. Seibert (@joecool123), which was published by Wattpad Books in September; and How To Lose Weight and Survive The Apocalypse (62,000 reads) by Australian Kate J. Squires (@Blondeanddangerous).
SQ will invest up to $50,000 in two selected pitches, for a 12-month development phase and production of proof-of-concept scenes or short films.
The development phase will be overseen by Wattpad’s expert global entertainment executives. The company will engage the global Wattpad community, as well as existing fans of The Bro Code and How To Lose Weight and Survive The Apocalypse, incorporating data-driven audience feedback from the Wattpad platform and social media into the development process.
Screen Queensland’s Chief Creative Officer Jo Dillon said it’s this data-driven aspect that makes the partnership and opportunity truly unique and career-changing for the two individual recipients or teams.
“The opportunity is immense for local screen practitioners to tap into Wattpad’s global audience of over 80 million avid readers, ready to give their honest and valuable opinions.
“The two selected titles, The Bro Code and How To Lose Weight and Survive The Apocalypse, have a together accumulated millions of reads on Wattpad, providing a real launchpad for these projects to gain data-backed traction amongst an existing fan base, offering the potential creation of a feature film or series,” Ms Dillon said.
“We’re looking for creative pitches from applicants with writing, producing or showrunning talent, that present an original take on the properties, with a solid hook, great characterisation and market potential.”
“We’re thrilled to kick-off the next phase of our work with Screen Queensland,” said Dexter Ong, Head of Asia for Wattpad Studios. “The Bro Code and How To Lose Weight and Survive The Apocalypse are exceptional stories that fans around the world have fallen in love with. We can’t wait for these stories to find new fans on screens everywhere.”
Screen Queensland encourages applications from practitioners state-wide, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, female and non-binary identifying, LGBTQIA+, disabled, culturally and linguistically diverse and more. Applications close 9am Friday 20 November, 2020. To apply, visit www.screenqueensland.com.au’