Cassian Elwes Launches Indie Screenwriting Fellowship

Cassian Elwes

The winner, whose script will have appeared on the Black List or its website, will receive a trip to the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.

Producer Cassian Elwes and Black List founder Franklin Leonard announced Tuesday the creation of a screenwriting fellowship that will award one writer an all-expenses-paid trip to the 2014 Sundance Film Festival and mentorship from Elwes.

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Writers who've had a script on the Black List or scripts on the website (which launched in October 2012) are eligible to enter for the Cassian Elwes Independent Screenwriting Fellowship. The writer must have lifetime earnings not exceeding $5,000 with a screenplay of indie sensibility to be considered.

After Dec. 1, Elwes will receive a shortlist of contestants and make the final decision, choosing one winner. The Black List and Elwes plan to award the fellowship annually.

"Behind every great independent film is a great writer," says Elwes, whose producing credits include Dallas Buyers Club, All Is Lost and Lee Daniels' The Butler. "While it's been my honor to work with some of the greatest filmmakers ever I have never lost sight of the fact the words were as important as the images. I love what the Black List is about, and I've been privileged to work on a number of films that have appeared on it. My hope is that Franklin and I will find the next wave of new voices that are the lifeblood of independent cinema."

Established in 2005 as an annual survey of several dozen executives' favorite unproduced screenplays, the Black List has grown to survey over 500 executives each year, releasing an annual list of the most promising unproduced screenplays.