Melburnian Catherine S. McMullen has won the 2016 Sir Peter Ustinov Television Scriptwriting Award, awarded by the the International Emmys Foundation.
"The competition is designed to motivate non-American novice writers under the age of 30, and offer them the recognition and encouragement that might lead to a successful career in television scriptwriting," said the Emmys Foundation in a statement.
McMullen was recently included on the 2016 IF List as one of the local industry’s ‘Rising Talents,’ and was chosen as one of the inaugural recipients of Shane Brennan's Scripted Ink funding, which will see her sitting in on the script department of Foxtel series Wentworth.
McMullen graduated from the University of Melbourne in 2011 with a double degree in Arts/Law. She is represented by Dayne Kelly at RGM.
Her sci-fi thriller script Driven was a semifinalist in the 2016 Academy Nicholl Screenwriting Awards, a finalist in the 2016 PAGE International Screenwriting Awards, and was also nominated for the Lorne Film Festival's $10,000 Screenwriting Award.
Entrants for the Peter Ustinov award are asked to create a half-hour to one-hour English-language television drama script.
McMullen's script, sci-fi pilot Living Metal, was a finalist for the 2015 Monte Miller Award for "Best Unproduced Screenplay" from the Australian Writers' Guild, and a Finalist in Scriptapalooza’s TV Pilot competition.
McMullen also freelances in production, with gigs as an assistant construction coordinator on The Leftovers at Docklands, production secretary on Syfy's Childhood's End and post-production assistant on Syfy's Hunters.
The Peter Ustinov prize includes $2500 and a trip to New York for the International Emmy Awards.
Australia has good form with the award, with last year's winner Gabriel Bergmoser and winners from 2010 (Jason Spencer) and 2009 (Claire Tonkin) all hailing from Oz.