Gateway LA script development program launched

31 July, 2014 by Press Release

Australians in Film (AIF) has appointed a new President, Simonne Overend, and one of her first points of business as she steps into the role is to launch the Gateway LA script development program.

The program will support the development of commercially successful, Australian created television and movie screenplays for US and international audiences.


Says Ms Overend: 'Gateway LA presents a fantastic opportunity to make Australians in Film an even more supportive and useful resource for Australians living and working in the U.S.'

'This new program will help Australian projects secure exposure to the best networks in the business, and our goal is to discover screenplays with strong global appeal. I look forward to steering the program and supporting the wealth of talent we are currently seeing emerge from Australia, and to working with the Australians in Film network as a whole.'

Ms. Overend will co-chair the program with Peter Lawson, Executive Vice President of Production and Acquisitions at Open Road Films.

Ms Overend has been based in Los Angeles for the past several years where she works as Vice President of Scripted Development for Essential Media (Saving Mr Banks, Rake, Jack Irish), creating a slate for the U.S. market.

The Gateway LA prize will see between one and three winners announced per year. They will be selected from an 'Aussie List' of up to 10 film and television scripts, circulated to a group of judges selected from the AiF network.

Winning projects receive a cash award to facilitate development of the script, a flight to LA, targeted meetings with producers and executives, and table reads.

Modelled on The Black List and the UK's Brit List, the script development program promotes Australian writers to both Australian and international producers, development executives and talent in Los Angeles.

Applications Open on August 4 and close on September 12. Visit for more information.

Australians in Film, the LA-based non profit entertainment industry association has a membership network including producers, development executives, a Board of Advisors and Board Members including Greg Basser – CEO of Village Roadshow Entertainment Group, writer/director Stuart Beattie, Peter Lawson, Executive Vice President of production and acquisitions at Open Road, Tracey Vieira, CEO Screen Queensland, and Ian Sutherland Producer, Origin Productions.