X-Pollinator Elevator

X-Pollinator announce new development programme, ELEVATOR

X-Pollinator is an initiative that helps rapidly address the lack of gender diversity in the Irish screen industry. Founded in 2019, X-Pollinator’s inaugural programme of events saw 140 participants, 37 sessions and 63 industry speakers inspire collaborations and networking amongst the next wave of female Irish talent over two weekends. In 2020, INCUBATOR offered a paid and structured period of development for six female-driven projects.

For its next edition, ELEVATOR is a brand new development programme that seeks to identify and support up to twenty emerging and diverse female and non-binary writers and directors. X-Pollinator: ELEVATOR is supported by the Screen Skills Ireland, Fís Éireann / Screen Ireland and the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI).

As there is still under-representation in gender diversity amongst writers and directors across the industry, ELEVATOR will be open to female and non-binary talent only, but the further goal for ELEVATOR is to actively seek out and support a deeper range of under-represented and emerging voices. They are looking for and wish to nurture members of the LGBTIQ+ community, People of Colour and Talents with disabilities, and those from under-represented groups and diverse socio-economic backgrounds who may not be aware of the opportunities available to them to access the screen industry. ELEVATOR is also focusing on regional voices, with the objective to have half of its participants based outside of the Dublin region. Applicants will be required to submit an idea / project that they wish to develop and pitch across the initiative.

Through case studies and panels, ELEVATOR will offer its participants, who are new entrants to the industry or early in their careers, a comprehensive understanding of the development process, and of the opportunities and careers in writing and directing for the screen, pitching, how to find a producer, and a chance to build a network of collaborators.

ELEVATOR wants to support and inspire its participants to share themselves, their aspirations and their work and to arm them with the tools they’ll need to start professionally making work for the screen, and to become the inclusive leaders of the future.

X-Pollinator believes that lack of diversity, equity and inclusion hurts under-represented groups in society including people of colour, people from working class backgrounds, women and LGBTIQ+ groups. They believe that these communities must be centered in the work they do and the programmes that they run. They also feel that some of the most exciting new filmmakers and stories are by creatives from under-represented groups and strongly encourage applications from people with these identities.

The programme will consist of six online sessions commencing in October 2021, including a pitching workshop sponsored by Creative Europe Desk Ireland. These sessions will lead up to an online pitching event, where the participants can opt in to present their project in front of an industry panel. The winning pitch will be awarded development funding to help create a treatment, a script editor as well as a designer to help create a pitch book for their project.

The applications will be assessed by a selection panel made up of the X-Pollinator team and an external industry assessor, and X-Pollinator has announced that Dr. Zélie Asava will be taking part in ELEVATOR in this role. Dr. Asava is a lecturer, author and public speaker on race, gender and representation in screen studies. X-Pollinator has also worked closely with Adaku Ezeudo from PhoenixRize Consulting, the boutique diversity, equity, and inclusion training, coaching, and consulting company, on ELEVATOR.

Application Process:

Who can apply?

Emerging female identifying and non-binary writers and directors only with a new project / idea they wish to develop

ELEVATOR will be looking for more talent based outside the Dublin region – by setting a 50% quota for talent based outside this region

Priority will be given to talent from all under-represented groups

ELEVATOR participants cannot be former X-Pollinator participants

As with X-Pollinator’s original programme, participation is encouraged from those looking to work in the screen industry with a background in any art form including, but not limited to – visual art, journalism, commercial production, theatre, literature, game development and to those wishing to cross over from different formats such as factual and entertainment, and different roles and departments within the screen industry

ELEVATOR is not open to producers who are not also writers and/or directors

What kind of projects / ideas can I apply with?

Full length narrative fiction feature film or television series, creative documentary, animation (series or feature film)

What do I need to submit?

Up-to-date professional bio / CV
Personal statement – 500 words max
Outline of the new project / idea – 500 words max

Please submit your application to ELEVATOR via this link.

Key dates:
Applications open Friday 20 August, 11am
Applications close Monday 6 September, 11am
Online sessions to begin weekly w/c 4 October
Online pitching event – late November 2021

If you have any questions on the application process, criteria or requirements, please get in touch with X-Pollinator at info.xpollinator@gmail.com

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