JUDGES

TO READ 2024's BEST SCREENPLAYS

Our award-winning industry judges have been involved in some of the best films and television shows made over the last 30 years.
They have won and been nominated for Oscars, Baftas, Golden Globes, and Emmys.

They will read the top five screenplays in their chosen category. 

View our Industry and Directors Roster.

FEATURE

ANTONY JOHNSTON – WRITER

Antony Johnston is one of the most versatile writers of the modern era, with a body of work spanning books, film, graphic novels, videogames, and non-fiction. An award-winning author and New York Times bestseller, his creations include ATOMIC BLONDE, THE DOG SITTER DETECTIVE, the BRIGITTE SHARP thrillers, and many more.

ALAYNA GLASTHAL – CREATIVE EXECUTIVE (FEATURES)

Alayna began working for the President of Atomic Monster, Michael Clear, in 2018 and has since advanced into an executive role. In addition to managing all film development for the company, she most recently worked on the production of Blumhouse/Atomic Monster film, NIGHT SWIM, starring Wyatt Russell and Kerry Condon. Next, she’ll be production point for the company on THE CURSE OF LA LLORONA sequel with New Line and a Blumhouse/Universal film based off a James Wan original idea.

NIKKI SOOHOO – ACTRESS

Best known for her roles in the movies: THE LOVELY BONES directed by Peter Jackson, STICK IT the gymnastics movie costarring alongside Jeff Bridges, and BRING IT ON FIGHT TO THE FINISH the cheerleading movie, Nikki has been a professional film and television actor for the past 17 years. You can see her on TV shows like THE RESIDENT, HEATHERS, SPEECHLESS, PRETTY LITTLE LIARS. 

RON LESHEM – PRODUCER, WRITER, SHOWRUNNER

Ron Leshem created the original EUPHORIA and executive produced the Emmy® -nominated HBO remake of the same title. The Israeli-American TV/film writer-producer also co-created HBO Max’s VALLEY OF TEARS and co-wrote the film BEAUFORT, which was nominated for the Academy Award® for Best Foreign Language Film. His next big project is the upcoming juvenile jail series BAD BOY from Peter Chernin’s The North Road Company and Israeli studio Sipur. A bestselling author published in 20 languages who won Israel’s top literary award, The Sapir Prize, Leshem’s lengthy credits additionally include co-creating and co-writing Hulu and Arte’s Syrian civil war drama NO MAN’S LAND, as well as Israeli Academy Awards-winning film, INCITEMENT. On television, his work as creator and writer includes the drama THE GORDIN CELL – adapted by NBC as ALLEGIAN – and script editor for the comedy-drama THE BAKER AND THE BEAUTY, adapted by ABC. While serving as head of content for Keshet, Leshem picked up and oversaw the development of PRISONERS OF WAR (original HOMELAND), THE A-WORD, and many other critically acclaimed international shows. He started his media career as a war correspondent and a news editor, later serving as deputy editor-in-chief of the second-largest circulation daily newspaper in Israel at the time.

EUPHORIA | 2019

ALEX RANARIVELO – DIRECTOR

Born in France and raised on Sergio Leone and “Star Wars”. Alex cut his teeth on indie films in a wide variety of genres, one of the most notable being AMERICAN WRESTLER about a 17-year-old Iranian refugee who defies adversity and becomes the high school wrestling champion during the Iran hostage crisis of 1980. It garnered multiple “Best Film” and “Best Actor” awards on the festival circuit. Alex won the Grand Prize at the Slamdance Screenwriting competition for his action-adventure script THE GIRL WITH NO NAME and has recently directed features for major streamers, including THE RIDE, for Amazon Prime, I BELIEVE IN SANTA for Netflix, and two for HBO Max.

MITCHELL ALTIERI – WRITER, DIRECTOR

With his family immigrating from Brazil, Mitchell Altieri turned to movies to help him practice the English language. That’s where he fell in love with cinema. Years later he would become an Award-Winning writer/director who has premiered his feature films at festivals such as SXSW, Sundance, Berlin, Sitges, and Fantasia. His filmography includes the cult classics THE HAMILTONS & THE THOMPSONS (Lionsgate), APRIL FOOLS DAY (Sony), THE VIOLENT KIND (RLJE Films), HOLY GHOST PEOPLE (Hulu), RAISED BY WOLVES (1091), A BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO SNUFF (Lionsgate), THE NIGHT WATCHMEN (Gravitas), STAR LIGHT (1091), and CONSUMED (XYZ Films). Television works include Lifetime’s true crime thrillers: THE DEADLIEST LIE, SISTERS ON THE RUN, and Tubi Originals: LA MADRE.

JEAN-CHRISTOPHE BOUZY – WRITER, EDITOR

Jean-Christophe was born in 1978 and graduated from french Cinema School La Fémis in 2005. Since then, he’s been mainly working as an editor and/or screenwriter on features such as RAW, LET THE GIRLS PLAY and TITANE. He’s a big fan of Tom Cruise, Luchino Visconti, and Jean-Pierre Melville.

ADRIAN STURGES – PRODUCER

Adrian began his career producing short films with such directors as Rupert Wyatt – SUBTERRAIN and GET THE PICTURE and Sam Taylor-Wood – LOVE YOU MORE, the latter being nominated for a BAFTA and the Palme d’Or. His first feature was THE BAKER. Subsequently, he produced THE ESCAPIST, ALBATROSS, and the BAFTA nominated THE ENFIELD HAUNTING.

TV PILOT

SEAN CHARLES – PRODUCER

Sean Charles is a Development & Production Manager at ALLBLK an AMC Networks property. He is responsible for producing and developing all original content for the streaming service, in addition to assisting in acquisitions and scheduling. Sean most recently worked in Corporate Communications working across internal and external communications from the Sundance Film Festival. He also formed and led the inaugural Black employee resource group, Vested Interest in Black Employees (V.I.B.E) from 2018 through 2021, as Co-Chair.

KIRSTIE MACDONALD – PRODUCER

Kirstie MacDonald started her television career at World Productions where she script edited many shows including BAFTA-winning THE COPS, OUTLAWS, THE FEAR, LINE OF DUTY, and SAVE ME before exec producing the true-crime dramas, IN PLAIN SIGHT and DARK ANGEL for ITV. During her time at Expectation Entertainment, she was executive producer on the BAFTA-winning drama GUILT for BBC Scotland, which starred Mark Bonnar. As Creative Director at FilmNation, she oversees a diverse slate of writer-driven series that reflect a broad range of bold and entertaining stories.

BRITNE OLDFORD – ACTOR

Britne Oldford’s work includes the award-winning FX show AMERICAN HORROR STORY, and “Fei aka Number 3” in the smash hit series THE UMBRELLA ACADEMY now streaming on Netflix. Britne will next appear as a co-star alongside Rachel Weisz in the upcoming Amazon series DEAD RINGERS for Amazon/Annapurna TV, due out in 2023. On the big screen, Britne was seen as ‘Missy’ in the Twentieth Century Fox feature FREE GUY, starring Ryan Reynolds and Jodie Comer.

EMMA LUFFINGHAM – PRODUCER

Emma joined World Productions in 2019 as Head of Development. During that time she has also story-produced SHOWTRIAL (BBC), KAREN PIRIE (ITV), and a handful of upcoming projects in production. Prior to joining World, Emma was at Tiger Aspect where she script exec’d THE GOOD KARMA HOSPITAL and headed up a Writers Initiative to identify new British Asian talent. Emma began her drama career at the BBC where her credits include the Bafta-winning THREE GIRLS, UNDERCOVER, SILK, WHAT REMAINS, and THE INTERCEPTOR.

MICHAEL HYATT – ACTRESS

Michael Hyatt was born in England to Jamaican parents. At the age of 10, she immigrated to the United States with her mother and two siblings. Before Hyatt’s work in film and television, she enjoyed memorable performances on Broadway including the critically-acclaimed RAGTIME. Michael can currently be seen on the FX series SNOWFALL and the Sony feature film adaptation of the acclaimed bestselling book, WHERE THE CRAWDADS SING. Her television credits include THE WEST WING, THE WIRE, TRUE DETECTIVE, and CRAZY EX-GIRLFRIEND. She’ll next be seen in the Apple+ limited series THE LAST THING HE TOLD ME, with Jennifer Garner.

PETER MOHAN – WRITER, PRODUCER

Peter has more than 600 hours of dramatic programming for network television. His credits as a writer and Executive Producer include THE HARDY BOYS, ORPHAN BLACK, THE LISTENER, LOST GIRL, MUTANT X, DUE SOUTH, and BLOOD TIES. In addition, Peter has twice served as the Showrunner in Residence for Norman Jewison’s prestigious Canadian Film Centre.

RANDALL KEENAN WINSTON – PRODUCER

Randall Keenan Winston is the producer of many beloved comedy series including SCRUBS, and COUGAR TOWN, working with such icons as Michael J. Fox and Courteney Cox. He is currently serving as Executive producer and Director on AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE and MIXEDISH. Randall proudly served as a board member of Ohio University and the Lupus Foundation of America and has served as mentor and Director for The International Screenwriters Association and GLAAD.

DAISY HAGGARD – WRITER, ACTRESS

Daisy is a hugely respected actress and writer, known for her portrayal of ‘Myra Licht’ in comedy series EPISODES, starring opposite Matt LeBlanc. She was most recently seen starring opposite Martin Freeman in TV comedy series BREEDERS which aired on Sky and FX in the US. In 2019 Daisy wrote, produced and starred in the BBC comedy BACK TO LIFE which received critical acclaim. The first series aired on Showtime. Daisy is currently writing series 2.

REBECCA GIBSON – WRITER, PRODUCER

Rebecca is a partner and Head of Development at Eagle Vision (TAKEN. RECLAIM(ED). BUFFY SAINT-MARIE: CARRY IT ON.), with whom she recently won the Banff World Media Festival’s Innovative Producer Award. Rebecca is devoted to mentorship, working with the CMPA, WIFT, ACTRA, and WIDC, and several other national organizations to support diversity, accessibility, and inclusion. Rebecca founded Orange Daisy Project, to support mental health for teen girls. She is a multi-award-winning writer, director, producer, and actor.

JOSEPH MALLOZZI – WRITER, PRODUCER

Joseph is a writer and producer known for STARGATE SG-1, STARGATE: ATLANTIS, DARK MATTER, and TRANSPORTER: THE SERIES. In 2012, he co-created the comic book DARK MATTER with Paul Mullie and made it into a TV series with Mallozzi and Mullie co-writing. A renowned and respected sci-fiction writer, Joseph has written on scores of TV shows, including projects as diverse as THE ADVENTURES OF PADDINGTON BEAR to RIPLEY’S BELIEVE IT OR NOT!

BILL THOMAS – SHOWRUNNER & DIRECTOR

Bill is a drama showrunner and documentary maker for various channels including Investigation Discovery, National Geographic, and the BBC. Bill also directs feature films and TV series – most recently an adaptation of THE THREE MUSKETEERS for Signature Entertainment and AMERICAN MONSTER for Arrow Entertainment. Bill began his career in film and TV art departments, working as a prop maker on various movies, including STAR WARS, five of the HARRY POTTER films V FOR VENDETTA, GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, JAMES BOND, and THE DARK KNIGHT RISES.

TRACY A. WHITAKER – WRITER

After studying screenwriting in Los Angeles, Tracy became a regular staffer on NBC’s popular thriller BLINDSPOT. Prior to writing, Tracy was a Sergeant in the Army National Guard for eight years. Tracy co-wrote THE GHOST AND THE HOUSE OF TRUTH, the World Cinema Feature Winner at New York’s Urbanworld Film Festival.

RACHEL JAMES – DEVELOPMENT EDITOR

Rachel is a Development Editor working at RED production Company in the UK. She started her career as a trained broadcast journalist in regional news before making the move into TV production. She gained over 12 years of experience working with indies and broadcasters like BBC, Tiger Aspect, and Phil McIntyre across a number of high-end TV drama series. Most recently at RED, she worked with the script team on IT’S A SIN, the Channel 4, and HBO hit show by Russell. T. Davies.

SHORT FILM FUND

FARAH NABULSI – WRITER, PRODUCER, DIRECTOR

Farah Nabulsi is an Academy Award Nominated and BAFTA Award Winning Palestinian-British filmmaker. She has been writing and producing short fiction films since 2016. Farah’s directorial debut THE PRESENT (2020), distributed on Canal+ and Netflix Worldwide, won over 50 International Film Festival Jury and Audience Awards, a BAFTA Award, and an Oscar Nomination. Her multi-award-winning directorial feature-length film debut, THE TEACHER, which she wrote, directed, and co-produced, had its World Premiere at the 2023 Toronto International Film Festival in Official Selection (September 2023). Farah is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

KIMBERLEY BROWNING – SHORT FILM PROGRAMMER AT THE TRIBECA FESTIVAL

Kimberley is a Short Film Programmer at the Tribeca Festival and the Program Advisor for Tribeca’s AT&T UNTOLD STORIES feature film grant program. Her recent production credits include UPROOTED (HBO MAX) and BEING MICHELLE. She is also a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences Short Film and Animation branch.

CORIN TAYLOR – EXECUTIVE PRODUCER AT BLINK PRODUCTIONS

Corin Taylor is an Executive Producer at Blink Productions. A graduate from the London Film School, Corin started working within the Blink family as Head of Production at Colonel Blimp in 2014. During his time there, he produced award-winning music videos for the likes of Tame Impala, Royal Blood and Rag N’ Bone Man. Helping diversify Colonel Blimp from being purely a music video company, Corin also produced TV commercials, branded content and short films for a number of up-and-coming directors along with more established names such as Dougal Wilson, David Wilson and Fred Rowson. Since Blimp and Blink combined in 2017, Corin has produced internationally recognised commercials with Blink, which have gone on to win awards at the British Arrows, Cannes Lions and Ciclope. Corin is currently building a slate of long-form projects at Blink which includes a film with internationally renowned director Ira Sachs that is now in post-production.

LIBBY PETERSON – HEAD OF DEVELOPMENT AT CAVIAR

Libby Peterson is the Head of Development at Caviar, the production company whose critically acclaimed, award-winning films include SOUND OF METAL, WAR PONY and THE RIDER, among others. Libby is responsible for sourcing, curating, and managing a diverse slate of film and television projects that usher in fresh stories from exciting filmmakers. An extremely proud lefty she grew up in a town called Fallbrook, the Avocado Capital Of The World. She currently lives in Los Angeles and sometimes Italy. Long story.

OLIVER SHUSTER – WRITER

Oliver Shuster is a screenwriter based in London. He studied medicine and then trained as an illustrator before finding his way into film. He has written and co-written a number of feature and short screenplays including ‘What’s Up With Fred?’, ‘The Place Behind Her Eyes’ (winner NYU’s Purple List), ‘Aamir’ (BAFTA nominated), and ‘Truth Serum’ as well as the upcoming ‘What the F@t’ and ‘The Reunion.’ He co-founded AnfanTerrible Productions with Vika Evdokimenko.

LUCY HAY – SCRIPT EDITOR, PRODUCER

Lucy is an author and script editor. She is the associate producer of Brit Thrillers DEVIATION and ASSASSIN. In addition to script reading and writing her own novels, Lucy also blogs about the screenwriting process through her internationally renowned website Bang2Write.

BRENDAN BEACHMAN – WRITER, DIRECTOR

Brendan Beachman is a multi-award-winning writer and director. Having won our 2022 Short Film Fund with his script A WEDDING DAY the film was produced and is currently enjoying a successful run on the festival circuit. Brendan was also a Best Horror Winner in 2021 with his feature screenplay THE LOOKOUT, co-written with Justin Boyes. THE LOOKOUT was optioned by Steak and Rosé Films and is now in development. Brendan cut his teeth writing/directing/producing/editing/sound designing, and hundreds of advertisements & is now a full-time commercial director with worldwide representation.

EMILIO VAZQUEZ REYES – WRITER, PRODUCER, DIRECTOR

Emilio Vazquez Reyes is a Mexican-American film director based in Frisco, Texas. At 16, his directorial debut short film HONEYBEE won the Grand Jury Award for Texas High School Shorts at the 2022 SXSW film festival and the Golden Gate Award for the Youthworks category Academy-Award Qualifying San Francisco International Film Festival. Shortly afterward, he co-founded his arthouse independent film production company, Goretti Pictures LLC. As of late, they are currently working on producing larger-budget films while expanding their team, influence, and presence.

AMIR OVADIA STEKLOV – WRITER, DIRECTOR

Amir Ovadia Steklov is a Berlin-based Israeli filmmaker. His films are dealing with topics of Racism, LGBTQIA, and immigration within a sex-positive framework. Amir graduated from Sam-Spiegel Film School in 2013 and has worked as an independent film editor and animator since then. He is also part of a growing movement of queer activists-filmmakers in Berlin Germany. Amir is best known for his award-winning films DON’T BE A DICK and BI THE WAY.

KATHERINE PROPPER – WRITER, DIRECTOR

Katherine Propper is an Austin-based director and writer. Her latest short film BIRDS was awarded the Grand Jury Prize at AFI Fest ’22 and received special jury recognition at SXSW ‘22 and in the International Competition at Clermont-Ferrand ’22. Her prior short film STREET FLAME screened at the Tribeca Film Festival ’19 before winning awards at numerous regional festivals. Born and raised in Los Angeles, she has since moved to Texas, experimenting with her creative process, and drawing from non-fiction filmmaking and experiences such as working as an editor for director Terrence Malick.

ELENA RUSCOMBE-KING – WRITER

Elena is an award-winning screenwriter known for co-writing A LOVE STORY which won the BAFTA for British Short Animation, the Japan Media Arts Festival Excellence Award, the Cilect Student Animation award; among others. Her first feature, HITCHHIKERS, in development with Bridgeway Films, is due to shoot later this year.

SAM BARON – WRITER, DIRECTOR

Sam Baron is a writer and director based in London. A former 2017 Shore Scripts Short Film Fund winner, his short films have been viewed 6 million times online. He also won the Academy’s Nicholl Screenwriting Fellowship and has been on the Brit List twice. He has written for the TV shows CHLOE (BBC/Amazon), LOCKWOOD & CO (Netflix) and THE UNDERTOW (Netflix); has developed original TV projects with Netflix, BBC and Sky; and has written feature scripts for directors James Marsh, Scott Z. Burns and Alice Seabright.

NORA KIRKPATRICK – WRITER, DIRECTOR

Nora Kirkpatrick is a writer/director living in Los Angeles. She has created and/or written series for CBS, Hulu, Amazon, and Comedy Central, among others. She was a founding member and accordion player for the GRAMMY-winning band, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, and is currently a staff writer on the new Amazon series, DAISY JONES AND THE SIX. She also directed an episode of THE GOLDBERGS (ABC).

JAMES GOULD-BOURN – WRITER

James Gould-Bourn is a novelist and screenwriter. His debut novel BEAR NECESSITY was published by Scribner in 2020. The television rights have been optioned by triple Emmy award-winning production company Lime Pictures. James has written several short films, two of which have been developed. His short script A YOUNG MAN’S GAME won the 2019 Shore Scripts Film Fund and will be directed by Emmy-winning director Ben Tricklebank.

PHUMI MORARE – WRITER, DIRECTOR

Phumi Morare is a writer/director from South Africa who is passionate about redeeming the African and feminine identity in cinema. Her short film LAKUTSHON’ ILANGA (When The Sun Sets) was shortlisted for the 94th Academy Awards, won an NAACP Image Award, and was acquired by WarnerMedia OneFifty. She is a Tribeca Chanel Through Her Lens Women’s Filmmaker Program alumnus and a Film Independent Screenwriting Lab Fellow. She completed her MFA in Film Directing at Chapman University and has a background in investment banking at Goldman Sachs and management consulting at McKinsey & Company.

JONES – DIRECTOR

Jones is the filmmaking project of Michael Woodward and Max Barron, based in London and Mexico City. Their film and advertising work has received numerous awards and nominations worldwide, including European Young Director of the year at Cannes, a CICAE Art Cinema Award, Edinburgh’s Michael Powell Award, best TV drama series at Monte Carlo, and a BIFA. Their work has been screened at New York’s Rochester Museum of Fine Art, and their music videos have been viewed more than 50 million times online. Their latest piece, the satirical short film Three Meetings Of The Extraordinary Committee, was nominated for BAFTA in 2022.

GAIA MEUCCI-ASTLEY – PROGRAMMER, SCRIPT CONSULTANT

Gaia is a film programmer, script reader, and film project assessor, with 10 years of experience working in new and emerging talent. She has been the Short Film Programmer of the Edinburgh Film Festival and the Encounters Festival in Bristol. Her festival positions also include the London Film Festival and the Clermont-Ferrand Short Film Festival. Currently, she is focusing on her work in talent development, collaborating as a reader and assessor with organizations including the BFI Network, Serial Eyes, and Less Is More.

OUTHERE CONTEST

LUKE OLIVEIRA-DAVIES – PRODUCER

Founder and creative producer at the award-winning Polari Creative. Founded in 2020, Polari is an award-winning production company committed to championing stories from diverse perspectives and uplifting the voices of underrepresented creatives both upfront and behind the scenes.

JOY GHARORO-AKPOJOTOR – PRODUCER

2020 Screen International Star of Tomorrow, Joy Gharoro-Akpojotor is a producer whose work focuses on Black, Queer, and Female-led content for Film and TV. Joy runs Joi Productions, which received a BFI Vision Award.

DREW HUBBARD – SCRIPT CONSULTANT

Founder of Pride Reads, the groundbreaking screenplay development service offering sensitivity and authenticity reads for queer/lgbtq+ manuscripts and scripts specifically for gay/queer male and non-binary characters.

BETHANY BLACK – WRITER, ACTOR

Comedian, Actor, and Writer for Frankie Boyle’s New World Order, and Late Night Lycett, Bethany is blessed with a sharp tongue and a desire to overshare. She is critically acclaimed for her personal, confessional style of comedy.