Sunday Shorts Film Festival in London has awarded 'The Cheek' second place out of 40 scripts submitted to this season's competition, citing its strong characterisation, natural dialogue and relevant and important subject matter dealt with in a dramatic and realistic way.

In 'The Cheek', a personal trainer’s dream of running his own business is thwarted when he loses the premises to a refugee group, so when a family of refugees move into the neighbourhood, they’re the ideal scapegoats for his campaign of petty vengeance. But in a crisis moment when he’s at his most vulnerable, his neighbour shows him that there are different paths.  

The script is currently available to be optioned.

1 June 2020

Cheeky Runner-Up

Mediterranean Film Festival (MedFF), based in Syracuse, Sicily, has awarded an official selection to Marion McDowell's latest screenplay, 'The Cheek'.

In 'The Cheek', a personal trainer’s dream of running his own business is thwarted when he loses the premises to a refugee group, so when a family of refugees move into the neighbourhood, they’re the ideal scapegoats for his campaign of petty vengeance. But in a crisis moment when he’s at his most vulnerable, his neighbour shows him that there are different paths.  

MedFF is an IMDb Listing Qualifier and has been in operation for 4 years.

31 May 2020

MedFF selects 'The Cheek'

Filmmakers all over the world have been finding new ways to exercise their creativity while in lockdown.

Writer/Director Marion McDowell's latest offering is a travelogue-style visit to her home, starring her wheelie bin, her hoover and her Siamese cat, Remi.

You probably shouldn't watch it.

3 April 2020

Lockdown-inspired microshort released

Screenwriter Marion McDowell's debut drama, 'Mushrooms', is now available to watch on RTÉ Player.

'Mushrooms' is part of the 2019 RTÉ Storyland series on the theme of revenge. Under the Storyland banner, RTÉ and Northern Ireland Screen give emerging Irish creative talent an opportunity to make original Irish dramas available to a national and global audience on RTÉ Player.

The film stars Maggie Cronin, known for 2012 Oscar-winning short film 'The Shore'.

In 'Mushrooms', when walking on eggshells is no longer enough, a desperate woman takes drastic action to free herself from her controlling husband. The story seeks to highlight the realities and dangers of emotional abuse and coercive control.

27 November 2019

Mushrooms released on RTÉ Player

Belfast electropop singer and songwriter, Nadia Milliken,has been signed to play the role of 'Raven' in Marion McDowell's upcoming Northern Ireland Screen-funded dark comedy short, 'The Summoning'.

Nadia, who performs under the stage name 'NAD' has released such tracks as 'What I Need' out in April, and her latest offering, 'Remedy'.

In 'The Summoning', after a successful tabletop campaign, a Dungeons & Dragons group has a go at summoning a real demon, and gets both more and less than they bargained for.

6 October 2019

Belfast singer/songwriter lands role in 'The Summoning'

James Christopher, Director of Austin Revolution Film Festival, interviewed several of the winning filmmakers featured at this year's festival, including screenwriter Marion McDowell, pitch competition winner and screenplay finalist.

Austin Revolution Film Festival, now in its eighth year, celebrates independent film making, and is the top reviewed festival on FilmFreeway. Based in Austin, Texas, this year's festival selected 169 films out of more than 1500 entries to screen over the 5 day event between 3-7 September.

19 September 2019

Movie Bark podcast celebrates film festival success

Winners of the coveted FilmQuest Cthulhu Trophy were announced at the Closing Night Awards Ceremony September 14th, 2019 at Velour Live Music Gallery in Provo, Utah. Award nominees were chosen from 1120 submissions to this year's festival.

In the short script category, 15 finalists were shortlisted by a group of third party professional judges. The winners were as follows:

1st Place –  The Squirrels in the Attic by Rachel Thomas-Medwid
2nd Place – Plaything by Samantha Kolesnik & Jason Tostevin
3rd Place – Boos Up by Marion McDowell

'Boos Up' is available to be optioned.

14 September 2019

FilmQuest winners announced

Austin Revolution Film Festival has announced the winners of its 2019 Pitching Competition.

Screenwriter Marion McDowell will receive the coveted Austin Revolution Belt Buckle to commemorate her win, alongside four other pitching winners.

Contestants had 5 minutes to deliver a pitch for an unproduced project. McDowell's winning pitch reimagines 'Boos Up', her ARFF Finalist short script, as a 6 episode series exploring the theme that everyone - living or dead - wants to feel like they matter.

See the 'Winning Pitch' link below for the full 5 minute video.

13 September 2019

ARFF Pitching Competition Win

Production wrapped yesterday on 'Mushrooms', part of the 2019 RTÉ Storyland series on the theme of revenge.

The film stars Maggie Cronin, known for 2012 Oscar-winning short film 'The Shore' and Ian Beattie, who played Ser Meryn Trant in Game of Thrones. Other cast members include Julie Alderdice, Andrea O'Neill, Matt Faris and Michelle De Silva. Screenwriter Marion McDowell also has a cameo in the film.

In 'Mushrooms', when walking on eggshells is no longer enough, a desperate woman takes drastic action to free herself from her controlling husband. The story seeks to highlight the realities and dangers of emotional abuse and coercive control.

Mushrooms was filmed on location in Maghera, Northern Ireland and features a score by well-known BBC composer, Andrew Simon McAllister.

19 August 2019

Mushrooms Wraps

Filming starts today in Northern Ireland for 'Mushrooms', written by Marion McDowell, directed by Meghan Mc Ardle and produced by Janine Cobain and Andy McCormick of Richter Media.

'Mushrooms' is part of the 2019 RTÉ Storyland series on the theme of revenge. Under the Storyland banner, RTÉ and Northern Ireland Screen give emerging Irish creative talent an opportunity to make original Irish dramas available to a national and global audience on RTÉ Player.

The film stars Maggie Cronin, known for 2012 Oscar-winning short film 'The Shore'.

In 'Mushrooms', when walking on eggshells is no longer enough, a desperate woman takes drastic action to free herself from her controlling husband. The story seeks to highlight the realities and dangers of emotional abuse and coercive control.

11 August 2019

Filming starts for RTE Storyland 'Mushrooms'

Founded in 1998, the Scriptapalooza Screenwriting Competition is focused on nurturing talent and creating real career opportunities for screenwriters. The judging panel is made up of producers, managers and agents, and is designed to get scripts into the hands of people who can take action to get them made.

Out of 3157 entries, 422 scripts were selected to move forward in the Quarterfinals.

In 'Costume Drama', after crossing the wrong person in the pub on Halloween night, three friends experience 24 hours of instant karma when their costume choices are turned against them.  The script has also won or placed in 12 other screenwriting competitions, including Silly Shorts Film Festival in England, Austin Revolution in Texas, USA, and Changing Face International Film Festival in Sydney, Australia.

The script is currently available to be optioned.

1 August 2019

Costume Drama in Scriptapalooza Quarterfinals

The National Irish Science Fiction Film Awards announced today that 'The Summoning' by screenwriter Marion McDowell has been nominated for the Golden Blasters Script Award.

Now in their tenth year, the Blasters are dedicated specifically to the art of the short film and screenplay in the genres of science fiction, horror and fantasy. This year's event will take place as part of WorldCon, held in Dublin, Ireland 15-19 August 2019. The award ceremony will take place at 14:30 on Sunday 18th August at Point Square: Odeon 1. Golden Blasters will be awarded to Best Film and Best Screenplay, and a Silver Blaster will be given to the film that wins the Audience Choice award.

In 'The Summoning', after a successful tabletop campaign, a Dungeons & Dragons group has a go at summoning a real demon, and gets both more and less than they bargained for.

After a recent funding award from NI Screen, 'The Summoning' is currently in pre-production and is due for release in November 2019.

28 July 2019

The Summoning nominated for 'Golden Blasters'

FilmQuest celebrates genre filmmaking in the realms of fantasy, horror, sci-fi, and the beyond, awarding filmmakers with over $20,000 in awards and prizes, including the coveted Cthulhu Trophy. This year the festival was named one of MovieMaker Magazine's "30 Bloody Best Genre Fests in the World".

The 2019 FilmQuest saw over 1,120 films and screenplays submitted for consideration. From these submissions, the selection team have made 192 Official Selections in films across several categories from around the world to play and compete at the 2019 FilmQuest Festival. Screenplay finalists were chosen by a group of professional third party judges, of which there were 55 Official Selection finalists: 35 features and 20 short scripts.

'Boos Up', now enjoying its 5th Finalist ranking, begins as a story about two rival ghosts haunting a struggling bar. When the bartender's half-baked attempts to reclaim his pub end up adding to his spiritual crisis, he has to make a difficult bargain to get rid of his unwanted guests.

The 6th annual FilmQuest will take place September 6th – 14th in Provo, Utah. 

18 July 2019

Boos Up selected as FilmQuest top 20 short script finalist

After awarding a 2018 Finalist spot for Best Comedy Short Script with 'Costume Drama', Austin Revolution Film Festival has announced 'Boos Up' as a Finalist in the same category for 2019, making it two in a row for screenwriter Marion McDowell.

'Boos Up' begins as a story about two rival ghosts haunting a struggling bar. When the bartender's half-baked attempts to reclaim his pub end up adding to his spiritual crisis, he has to make a difficult bargain to get rid of his unwanted guests.

The Austin Revolution Film Festival, now in its 8th year, is one of FilmFreeway's 'Top 100 Festivals', and seeks to champion the indie filmmaker as the star, creating opportunities for press, networking and collaboration. Awards are given in dozens of categories across several genres, including a screen writing competition for features and shorts. The festival also prides itself on its unique trophy for winners: a rodeo style belt buckle.

17 July 2019

Two in a row: Comedy Finalist with Austin Revolution 

Marion McDowell's Storylands project, 'Mushrooms' has been green lit by RTE, and now enters pre-production with filming scheduled for mid-August. Richter Media is to produce.

Meghan Mc Ardle, fresh from directing shorts for BBC's 'Two Minute Masterpiece' and 'True North Shorts' as well as a Northern Ireland Screen-funded independent short, 'Money Doesn't Grow On Trees', has been attached to direct the project.

In 'Mushrooms', when walking on eggshells is no longer enough, a desperate woman takes drastic action to free herself from her controlling husband. The story seeks to highlight the realities and dangers of emotional abuse and coercive control.

A casting call is in progress - click the link below for details on how to submit.

16 July 2019

Green light for Mushrooms, Mc Ardle attached to direct

'Boos Up' has been named to the list of screenplay finalists for Wexford Film Festival in Wexford, Ireland.

'Boos Up' begins as a story about two rival ghosts haunting a struggling bar. When the bartender's half-baked attempts to reclaim his pub end up adding to his spiritual crisis, he has to make a difficult bargain to get rid of his unwanted guests.

The fourth annual Wexford Film Festival will take place over 3-4 August 2019. 

8 July 2019

'Boos Up' in Screenplay Finals for Wexford Film Festival

Script Summit screenplay competition, run by the team behind WeFixYourScript.com, is part of the two-week-long Action On Film MEGAFest that takes place in Las Vegas during late July / early August 2019 and spans 11 different film festivals. Script Summit is also a qualifying competition for Coverfly's Red List.

Finalists who attend the event in Las Vegas are eligible for free entry into seminars, pitch sessions, award shows, table reads, premiere screenings of over 100 films, and various other networking events over the two week period.

Script Summit has also partnered with Krista Keller Talent Management who has committed to represent one of the 2019 winners. Other prizes include $1000 cash, WriterDuet screenwriting software, InkTip Script listings and a featured logline in InkTip magazine.

8 July 2019

'Boos Up' named as Script Summit finalist for Best Plot

In conjunction with the British Film Institute and the National Lottery Fund, Northern Ireland Screen has awarded a funding grant to support production of 'The Summoning'.

In 'The Summoning', after a successful tabletop campaign, a Dungeons & Dragons group has a go at summoning a real demon, and gets both more and less than they bargained for.

Casting and pre-production is due to start shortly, with the project to be completed during 2019. Mark Kullas is attached to direct, with Ryan Coney as Director of Photography.

2 July 2019

Northern Ireland Screen award for 'The Summoning'

The final six projects selected by RTÉ for the upcoming series of Storyland have been announced. Among these is 'Mushrooms' by Marion McDowell, which will be produced by WritePath NI in conjunction with Richter Media.

 

David Crean, Executive Producer for RTÉ Television said ‘The new series of Storyland will explore dramas focused around a theme of ‘revenge’. One of the key reasons for Storyland is to broaden the reach of who gets to write drama, helping new writers and producers to develop. This year we are looking for original voices with something to say about contemporary Ireland’. 

'Mushrooms' tells the story of a desperate housewife who takes drastic measures to solve her problem. It’s only then that she discovers that she, herself, may be the problem that someone else has decided to solve.

25 April 2019

'Mushrooms' selected for RTÉ Storyland

'Mushrooms', written by Marion McDowell, is one of 12 projects that have been shortlisted by RTÉ for the upcoming series of Storyland.​

Under the Storyland banner, RTÉ and Northern Ireland Screen give emerging Irish creative talent an opportunity to make original Irish dramas available to a national and global audience on RTÉ Player. The 12 shortlisted projects are split between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Interviews will take place later this month to determine the final 6 projects that will go forward for development.

10 April 2019

'Mushrooms' shortlisted for RTÉ Storyland

Marion McDowell's latest short script, 'Shiny Things', deals with the difficult themes of suicide and forbidden love against the controversial backdrop of Northern Ireland, but uniquely told from the perspective of a common magpie.

 

Marion said she wrote the poem that her script is based on in response to the suicide of someone important to her, in frustration that people never see just how much value they hold. 

 

The log-line reads:

A magpie encounters a man at the end of his tether. She offers a different perspective when she comments on how many things she sees in him that would be worth stealing.

02 April 2019

A Bird's-Eye View Of Suicide 'Shiny Things' Wins Script Competition - Q&A with Marion McDowell

Known for Academy Award winning films like Slumdog Millionaire and exciting programs like 48 Hours Sacramento and Digital Odyssey Conference,The Sacramento Film Festival will host a cinema art celebration on April 27-May 5th 2019.
 

All scripts selected by the American Screenwriting Conference are in competition for major awards to be unveiled on May 5th 2019, at the Sacramento Film Festival awards ceremony, to be held on board the Delta King, a genuine 1860s riverboat and floating hotel located in historic Old Sacremento. 

Tickets available via Brown Paper Tickets.

02 April 2019

'Boos Up' nominated for Sacremento screenwriting award

Sunday Shorts is an international monthly short film festival and script competition with awards and screenings in London and Lisbon, Portugal, with plans to also operate in Berlin.

Known for its friendly and thoughtful approach, Sunday Shorts is run by passionate writers and filmmakers offering a modest submission fee in exchange for professional reader notes on every script. Prices start at $10 / $5 for students. Full written analysis can also be provided.

Sunday Shorts hosts a free invite-only film awards and networking event in London each year to honour the best of the year's film submissions across 14 categories including Best Director, Best Actor and Best Screenplay.

01 April 2019

'Shiny Things' wins script competition at Sunday Shorts film festival

Phoenix Film Festival, located in Phoenix, Arizona, and Arizona Short Film Festival, based in Tempe, have both named Marion McDowell's 'The Summoning' as a short screenplay finalist in their respective festivals.

In 'The Summoning', after a successful tabletop campaign, a Dungeons & Dragons group has a go at summoning a real demon, and gets both more and less than they bargained for.

Arizona Short Film Festival is run in association with Close:Up, a collection of international film festivals supporting indie filmmaking, including festivals in Reykjavik, Copenhagen, Edinburgh and Rome.

Now in its 19th year, the Phoenix Film Festival annually holds 300 screenings and provides filmmaking seminars to capacity audiences of over 28,000. It has been named one of The 25 Coolest Film Festivals and a Top 50 Worth the Entry Fee by MovieMaker Magazine. 

15 March 2019

Arizona loves kittens! 'The Summoning' shortlisted in two film festivals

The first round Official Selections for the 2019 Script Summit Screenplay Competition have been announced, which includes 'Boos Up', a short comedy farce by Marion McDowell, about ghosts in a pub. Two more rounds of official selections will be announced before finalists are chosen in July.

Script Summit is a festival dedicated to supporting screenwriters, offering opportunities to connect with directors, producers, and other writers, as well as hosting Q&A panels, seminars, table reads of selected scripts, an awards dinner, and cash prizes. In addition, Script Summit has partnered with the famous Action on Film MEGAfest, which provides all writers with officially selected scripts an all-access pass to official Action on Film seminars and film screenings, worth over $800.

These events are are held side by side at the Brenden Theaters in the Palms Hotel in the beautiful Palms Casino/Hotel/Resort in downtown Las Vegas July 30-August 1 2019.

06 March 2019

Script Summit Screenplay Competition announces Official Selections

Twister Alley Film Festival, located in Woodward, Oklahoma, has announced its screenplay contest finalists. 29 feature screenplays, 13 short screenplays, and 8 TV pilot screenplays have been included in the list. Winners for each category will be announced at the Awards Ceremony on 4th May 2019.

'Boos Up' begins as a story about two rival ghosts haunting a struggling bar. When the bartender's half-baked attempts to reclaim his pub end up adding to his spiritual crisis, he has to make a difficult bargain to get rid of his unwanted guests.

A table read featuring local actors has been scheduled for the afternoon of 3rd May. Finalist writers attending the event are invited to select one scene from their screenplay to be read live in front of an audience of festival-goers.

Twister Alley is ranked on FilmFreeway's Top 100 Best Reviewed list and was named to MovieMaker Magazine's 2017 Top 50 Film Festivals Worth The Entry Fee.

05 March 2019

Twister Alley Screenplay Contest names 'Boos Up' among finalists

The Miami International Science Fiction Film Festival is one of the premier SciFi Film Festivals in the US. Now in their sixth year, the festival runs from Thursday, March 21st to Sunday, March 24th. 


'Boos Up' begins as a story about two rival ghosts haunting a struggling bar. When the bartender's half-baked attempts to reclaim his pub end up adding to his spiritual crisis, he has to make a difficult bargain to get rid of his unwanted guests.

Screenplays that make it through to the next round will have one page selected by the author performed during the MiSciFi Awards Ceremony in a live stage performance. The top three winning scripts will also be awarded free software licenses for 'Final Draft', and a further, costumed, live read.

22 February 2019

MiSciFi selection for 'Boos Up'

 
 
 
 
 

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