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New look for Coming Up

After 13 years of the acclaimed strand, Channel 4 restates its commitment to new writers and directors with its new look Coming Up talent scheme that will now result in a feature length drama

In a move which will see the channel increase its investment in new writing and directing talent, Channel 4 is offering up-and-coming British film-makers the chance to have their own original feature length single drama produced in the new look Coming Up scheme which also benefits from an increased budget this year. From the submitted applications, a shortlist of 6 writers will be commissioned to write a full screenplay under the guidance of key industry talent. Three of those writers will then be selected to work alongside an established director and a short section of each script will be filmed before a panel of judges select one 90 minute screenplay to be produced in full with an up-and-coming director at its helm and broadcast on Channel 4 in 2015.

Continuing the spirit of supporting and unearthing bright new talent that has run throughout the previous 13 years of the Coming Up scheme, which launched the careers of some of the most exciting writers and directors in British TV including Tom Bidwell and Laura Neal (My Mad Fat Diary), EV Crowe (Glue) and Jack Thorne (Skins, This is England ‘88) and directors Wayne Yip and Alex Garcia (Utopia, Misfits), Tom Harper (This is England ‘86), Yann Demange (Top Boy, 71) and MJ Delaney (Powder Room), this new incarnation of Coming Up encourages applications from those looking to build a career in television.

Piers Wenger, Head of Drama: “The single play has long-since been regarded as the best way for writing and directing talent to come to the fore in British television and in its new incarnation Coming Up will offer creatives the chance to extend their imaginations by creating a larger scale and more visible piece of work and a unique calling card for their talents.”

Rob Pursey, MD Touchpaper TV: “We are proud to be working with Channel 4 on such a bold initiative. This is the opportunity for new writers and directors to announce themselves at the highest level.”

The scheme is funded by Channel 4 and produced by Touchpaper Television, a Zodiak Media company. The Channel 4 executive responsible for the scheme is Surian Fletcher Jones.

Notes to Editors:

• Unlike previous years which saw 7X30’ single pieces, this year’s Coming Up will see 6 shortlisted writers benefit from expert guidance and development before 1 X 90’ screenplay is selected to be produced and broadcast.

• Writers with no previous television experience and writers with a writing credit of less than 2 programme hours on a series or serial are eligible to enter.

• Directors with no television experience are eligible to enter, though they must demonstrate experience of working with crew and to a budget and on schedule. Directors with television drama series credits are also eligible as long as they have not led a series.

• Full application guidelines and forms for writers and directors can be found at www.touchpapertv.com and www.channel4.com/4talent.

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