True Colours wins Euroscript Screen Story Competition 2021

Euroscript is an outstanding resource for scriptwriters, providing practical, exercise-based workshops, script and story feedback, and script development. The company, which is a collective of professionals, is dedicated to the craft of writing and is respected throughout the industry for the quality of its work. They were founded in 1995 by the Screenwriters’ Workshop, with the aim of improving the quality of scripts going into production across Europe.

Through training programmes, feedback services and their annual Euroscript Screen Story Competition, as well as masterclasses and partnerships with organisations including The London Screenwriters’ Festival, BFI, Kingston University, Birkbeck College, Tampere Film Festival, they support writers of all levels to develop their work.

This year, we are pleased to announce that Mark has won the 27th Screen Story Competition for his feature-length screenplay, True Colours. The prize is a range of screenwriting services, including a script doctor, to help refine the script to its best potential. Then the screenplay will be read by Louisa Minghella at Blake Friedmann Literary Agency and he will have a meeting with the agency.

We asked Mark to tells us a bit more about the screenplay and how it came about, plus how important this win is for him personally.

True Colours is about a group of IT staff stuck in the office of a fashion retail company due to a freakish smog that has enveloped the outside world. Anyone who comes into contact with this smog is unable to control their impulses and reveals their true selves, their true colours. Eventually, everyone in the office becomes exposed and they have to deal with all the quirky personality traits and inner feelings they normally suppress but are no longer able to control, including one among them who is a killer.

I wrote the screenplay when I was furloughed at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic during the first lockdown in the UK. I’ve worked in IT in offices my entire adult life, so the idea of being trapped is personally quite horrific. I’ve also noticed since 2016 the political spectrum has altered, and people have been showing who they really are as a consequence. It is as if whatever lines that existed before have been erased.

The story is partially based on my own personal experiences and the multitude of diverse characters I’ve worked with over the years. I threw aside any normal focus on screenplay structure or the so-called rules and wrote what I wanted to write. The result is a quite bonkers comedy thriller which is certainly different from the norm.

Winning Euroscript is a personal vindication. I was beginning to doubt my creative skills and my voice. Developing the script with a professional script doctor is an enormous opportunity for me to help refine and define those skills further. And then, to be presented to one of the top agencies, well that is a golden opportunity.

Whatever the outcome, I’m going to try my best to be the best I can be and at the end of it, if all I have is a screenplay I’m proud of, then that will be worth it.  

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