The Triggerfish Story Lab reports receiving 1,378 entries from storytellers and filmmakers from 30 countries across Africa and its diaspora. The Cape Town, South Africa-based project is seeking writers for feature film and TV series projects.
Triggerfish Studios established The Triggerfish Story Lab with the support of The Department of Trade and Industry and The Walt Disney Company.
Industry experts will evaluate the 1,174 feature submissions and 204 TV series submissions. These experts include Peter Lord, the British director of international blockbusters like Chicken Run and The Pirates!; writer Jonathan Roberts (The Lion King); script consultant Karl Iglesias (Writing For Emotional Impact); and a panel of development executives from The Walt Disney Company, as well as South African storyteller Gcina Mhlope, comedian David Kau and Triggerfish’s development team of Anthony Silverston, Wayne Thornley and Raffaella Delle Donne.
The Triggerfish Story Lab called for uplifting, family-friendly stories.
Triggerfish will be investing up to 44 million Rand (about $3.2 million U.S.) over the next three years in The Story Lab, which aims to give Africa’s most talented storytellers and filmmakers the opportunity to develop their ideas alongside Triggerfish’s international network of mentors.
Selected storytellers will potentially have their concepts developed into episodic TV content or an animated feature film for the global market.
The selected Story Lab participants will receive two weeks of mentoring with key studio and television executives at Disney’s headquarters in Burbank, Calif., as well as workshops in Cape Town with leading Hollywood script consultant Pilar Alessandra, author of The Coffee Break Screenwriter.
The development process can take a number of years. For each phase of development, Triggerfish will provide financial support, workspace, and expert guidance by internal and international consultants and mentors, as well as a route to market through top-tier relationships with William Morris Endeavor.
A short list of about 20 projects will be announced in October. Shortlisted storytellers will take part in workshops in November before making their final pitches, after which
Triggerfish will announce the final Story Lab participants in December.