Producer and manager Raquelle David is helping Australian directors and writers to package film and television projects in the US.
Since joining Elevate Entertainment – a boutique Hollywood production and management firm – last February, David has been working on multiple projects for clients.
Her Aussie talent roster includes The Butterfly Tree’s Priscilla Cameron, Tanna’s Bentley Dean, Observance’s Joseph Sims-Dennett, Belinda King, Shane Danielsen, Adam Cianco and David Lawrance.
“We work with directors and writers to creatively develop their projects, represent them in the industry, find finance and put films together,” she tells IF.
“Where we don’t produce we set up projects with a studio or another production company. It’s a matter of finding the right fit for the project.”
Elevate was founded by Alex Cole in 2009. Among its high-profile clients are Jacki Weaver, writer/director Taylor Sheridan (Hell or High Water, Wind River), and Corin Hardy (who has just wrapped The Nun, the latest edition of The Conjuring franchise).
David is working with Cameron and producer Bridget Callow-Wright to help raise finance for The Breathing Sea, an intimate mystery following a couple of fifty years who re-discover each other after confronting the lingering secrets of their past, co-written with Heather Phillips.
Elevate controls the rights to Australian writer Isobelle Carmody’s novel Evermore, the post-apocalyptic fairy tale of a princess who dwells in a strange, walled kingdom, surrounded by plague-ridden people. No writer is yet attached.
The firm also has life rights to the story of Mirsada Buric, a 3,000-metre runner from Sarajevo who was captured by Serbian troops and later competed in the Barcelona Olympics, which is in development with UK/Canadian filmmaker Pat Holden.
Dean is developing an Australian historical film which is similar in tone to Tanna.
Sims-Dennett is working on two projects including Cry of the Hunters, a thriller about a fatal exorcism in Australia, with producer Kristian Moliere.
Belinda King co-wrote with Alethea Jones the pilot and series bible for Cleopatra in Space and will be lead writer on the series for DreamWorks Animated Television.
Danielsen is working with Lee Tamahori on an historical adventure set in 1830s New Zealand being developed by Robin Scholes’ Jump Film & TV and Andrew Mason and Troy Lum’s Hopscotch Features.
Danielsen is also collaborating with Icelandic director Grímur Hákonarson on his English-language debut The Fence, to be produced by the UK’s Element Pictures.
“One of the reasons why I made this move is that I saw a lot of colleagues and friends come to LA after they had made their first film and put their stamp on the filmmaking world and not know how to navigate the system,” David said.
“So I saw a place for myself where I could be helpful and protective to Australian filmmakers and help to demystify how the industry works here. I want to see more collaboration between the two markets.
“There’s a gap in the marketplace for original and inventive stories that are not based on IP that attract the big studios. Part of my job is to nurture and develop these concepts with our writer and director clients to find the right homes.”