About Series Drama Lab


The Series Drama Lab is a five-day Lab developed with Script to Screen as a part of the NZ on Air and New Zealand Film Commission Raupapa Whakaari Drama to the World initiative. The initiative was created to support writer/producer teams to develop distinctive, high-end scripted series.

Stage 1 Ten selected teams attend the Series Drama Lab where international advisors give feedback on story and market to assist the teams to further develop their concepts and strengthen appeal to the international marketplace. The teams also receive an initial grant of NZ$10,000. Teams then resubmit their re-worked projects.

Stage 2 Following the Series Drama Lab and submission of the re-worked projects, four teams are selected to receive additional development funding of up to NZ$80,000 to develop a series bible.


The ten Stage 1 projects selected for Series Drama Lab in 2019:

(*Not Her Real Name)
Pip Hall / Carmen J Leonard / Deborah Cope

All of Me
Daniel Musgrove / Natalie Medlock / Shoshana McCallum / Peter Salmon

Chasing Pure
Carey James Carter / Gavin Strawhan / Rachel Lang / Steven Ivan Zanoski

Dreamhunter
Roxane Gajadhar / Angela Littlejohn

Drunk Poetry
Briar Grace-Smith / Victor Roger / Desray Armstrong

O
Donna Malane / Paula Boock / Carthew Neal

Rockburn
Hannah Marshall / David de Lautour / Gareth Williams / Kelly Martin

Ruatoria
Kath Akuhuta-Brown / Greg McGee / Philippa Rennie / Robin Scholes / Lee Tamahori

The Different Girl
Alison Maclean / Philippa Campbell

The Harder They Fall
Matthew Saville / Luke Sharpe / Gerard Johnstone


The four projects selected for Stage 2 further development funding:

All Of Me – Shoshana McCallum, Natalie Medlock, Dan Musgrove, Peter Salmon
Depressed and ready to end it all, Lauren orders an illegal clone to replace her. But when she messes up the process and gets three unsatisfactory duplicates, she is forced to stick around and deal with herselves.

Ashes and Prophets – Kath Akuhata-Brown, Greg McGee, Philippa Rennie, Robin Scholes, Lee Tamahori
Arson, kidnapping and murder engulf a small New Zealand town, as a Māori rastafarian sect exacts revenge for historical land theft.

Rockburn – Hannah Marshall, Gareth Williams, David de Lautour, Kelly Martin
Trauma experienced as a teenager on her family farm, Rockburn, reverberates throughout three distinct ages of Celia Ray’s life. Now, a social worker in her 50s, she must confront her past to save a young girl’s future.

Drunk Poetry – Briar Grace-Smith, Desray Armstrong, Victor Rodger
Newly separated and in her forties, Lizzie discovers she has the emotional brain of a fourteen-year-old.  Now she has to grow up all over again.

Cian Elyse White, Writer/Director - FilmUp Participant

“Nōku te whiwhi ki te mahi i runga i tēnei kaupapa whakamīharo. FilmUp was a game-changer for me and my career - the intensives allowed me to work with incredible mentors, peers and form relationships which lead to me directing on a prime-time drama and developing my feature film. I highly recommend this amazing opportunity!”

Dennis Zhang - South Shorts participant

South Shorts has been instrumental in my development as a creative. I was constantly inspired and supported by like-minded individuals who are on the same path with a similar mission to share unique, important and beautiful stories. Seeing everyone else's, as well as my own progression in our craft as well as confidence in writing is a testament of the quality of the programme, its organizers and our mentors. I believe that we will see every single participant of South Shorts go on to create amazing projects and have long and fruitful careers in filmmaking, having had this programme as a catalyst and launching pad for that success. I cannot recommend South Shorts enough and would do it a million times over if given the opportunity.

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Workshop Participant

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Stallone Vaiaoga-Ioasa, Producer/Writer/Director - Strength in Numbers and FilmUp Participant

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Tui Matelau-Doherty - South Shorts Participant

The peer support and collegiality achieved through delivering the programme as group read throughs following feedback, superseded my expectations and taught me something new. It reflects ako, the Māori word for learning which also means teaching, and this is exactly what was achieved through the programme. We were both learners and teachers which was empowering and effective. The diversity in the room is extremely important to the filmmaking industry and to my own development.

Paolo Rotondo, Writer/Director - FilmUp Participant

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