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Finalist Revealed for 2019 Writers Residency

Nassau, Bahamas

Presented by 



THE DANCE OF THE BULL, written by  Alex Hodgson  / Canada
Set in 1918, Ronda, Spain, Sixteen year old Lucia must train to become a matador to save the life of her new best friend: a strayed Spanish fighting bull.

MEASURE OF A MAN, written by  Anika Poitier  / United States
The Life of Sidney Poitier a kid from the rural Bahamas who rises to be one of the most influential black actors in a time of great social injustice, proving that the only one who defines you is yourself.

EYES OF DAWN, written by Sheri Davenport   / United States
Mata Hari. A liberated woman, far ahead of her time, brutally betrayed? Or a dangerous spy who betrayed her country? You decide.

MALICK, written by  Armelle Lajus  / United Kingdom
A young boy's journey through the streets of Dakar as he tries to find his way home after running away from his abusive teacher.

BREAKWATER, written by  Tad Daggerhart  / United States
As a scorching heat wave grips The Bahamas, DAYA - a local waitress, and IRIS - a seasonal tourist, plot to blackmail Iris' abusive husband. But when their best laid plans go awry out on the high seas, Daya and Iris' whole world begins to capsize.


PROOF, written by 
Tabitha Ritchie  / Bahamas
Set in The Bahamas, the estranged daughter of an affluent rum-making family returns home following the disappearance of her younger brother. She grapples with her troubled past while a supernatural thread arises surrounding her missing brother.

HELL HOUND, written by  Giancarlo Fusi  / United States
Following the death of his wife and baby during childbirth, a sharecropper's burning desire to be a famous Bluesman leads him to sell his soul to Satan at a Mississippi crossroads to become the greatest guitarist of all time. But his Faustian pact unleashes a pair of vicious and rabid hellhounds that will doggedly pursue him for the rest of his days.

SCOTUS, written by  Alan Jenkins  / United States
“Love, ambition, and high constitutional stakes intertwine in this one-hour drama that follows the days and nights of Law Clerks at the Supreme Court of the United States—SCOTUS.”



Roger Corman
Producer, Writer, Director | Writers Mentor

Roger Corman is an American director, producer, and actor. He has been called "The Pope of Pop Cinema" and is known as a trailblazer in the world of independent film. ... In 2009, he was awarded an Honorary Academy Award "for his rich engendering of films and filmmakers." More on Roger Corman

Julie Corman
Producer, Writer | Writers Mentor

Julie Corman is a producer, known for Rebel Highway (1994), A Cry in the Wild (1990) and The Lady in Red (1979). She was the chair of the graduate film program at NYU at turn of the century and since been giving seminars in screenwriting at Yale, several Japanese Universities and around the world. Julie has also taught courses in screenwriting/creative writing at NYU.   She has been married to Roger  Corman. More on Julie Coman

Antonio D' Intino
Literary Manager | Writers Mentor

Antonio was born and raised in rural Ohio and attended Columbia College Chicago. After stints at Gale Anne Hurd’s Valhalla Entertainment and Principato-Young Entertainment he landed at APA in the feature literary department working with clients like Mike Flanagan and John Carpenter which continued to solidify his love of genre filmmakers. After nearly three years he left APA to join Jeremy Platt as he launched Plattform. Assembling a roster with a focus on the unique and left-of-center, he also assisted in the development of studio projects like DEATH NOTE and the TV series HAP & LEONARD. He helped manage Plattform’s first look deal with Amazon Studios. More on Antonio D'Intino

Nate Kohn
Producer | Writers Mentor

Dr. Nate Kohn is professor at the University of Georgia, Associate Director of the George Foster Peabody Awards, festival director of Roger Ebert's Film Festival, director of the University of Georgia MFA program in screenwriting and award-winning producer. Dr. Kohn produced Zulu Dawn starring Burt Lancaster and Peter O’Toole; the independent feature Somebodies, which premiered at Sundance (2006); Rain, the Bahamas’ first indigenous feature which premiered at Toronto (2007) and on Showtime (2010); the feature film Bottleworld (2010); More on Nate Kohn

Tivi Magnusson
Producer | Writers Mentor / Short Film Juror

Tivi Magnusson, has been a producer for over 25 years and started his company M&M Productions in 1995, with his son Kim Magnusson. Tivi has always been an incubator for young talent. 2010 Oscar Winner Best Short Film, Live Action The New Tenants (2009) 2009 Oscar Nominee Best Short Film, Live Action Grisen (2008). He is a producer and actor, known for Adam's Apples (2005), Flickering Lights (2000) and The Island on Bird Street (1997). More on Tivi Magnusson

Jib Polhemus
Producer | Writers Mentor

Jib Polhemus has worked in the entertainment business for the past 20 years, starting his career working with the Producer of the Oscar winning film, LEAVING LAS VEGAS.  From there, he transitioned to the powerhouse agency, Creative Artists. At CAA, he met legendary producer, Dino De Laurentiis, who hired him as a development executive where he worked on numerous films including:  Kurt Russell ‘s BREAKDOWN and The Wachowskis’ first film, BOUND. More on Jib Polhemus

Dara Cohen
Producer | Writers Mentor

Dara Cohen is an executive with 20 plus years of experience in development, production and programming. Her experience in the Film, TV, Music and Digital/Social Media industries provide a unique perspective and approach to maximizing creative options, outlets and strategic partnerships when creating original content. More on Dara Cohen


* Retreat at Borgo Ferri, Italy, which includes the Art House in Baronial Palace Ferri-Lenarciak during the month June 2020 for one person. Organized visits will be arranged to Magna Grecia (Antique Great Greece) region, which today is located in Calabria, Basilicata, Puglia and Sicily. Magna Grecia is the most original land where story writing began with Homer's Iliad and Odyssey. Formal introductions will be made to editors, producers, famous writers, philosophers and to both festival organizers from Magna Grecia and Taormina Film Festival. (Travel not included)

* Cash Prize award provided by Source Management + Production

* InkTip: Winners of the Writers Residency Program will receive an InkTip Script Listing to promote themselves and their scripts to InkTip’s entire network of producers, managers, and agents. 

BAHAMIAN WRITERS WORKSHOP / added to BIFF's Writers Residency 

ONE FRIDAY MORNING, written by Inderia Green / Bahamas
The lives of several Bahamians are tragically altered on a holiday otherwise devoted to celebration.

SOUL TIE written by Kreimild Saunders / Bahamas
Soul Tie is a story of a lesbian love relationship between Ceecee (a middle-aged woman) and Julie (a twenty something year old woman); a relationship burdened by Julie's homophobic family and Julie's autism spectrum disorder, medical and emotional conditions (the latter linked to childhood trauma). In spite of these challenges and the alienating effect it has on the couple, their love eventually transcends them in a surprising and dramatic spiritual awakening.

Bahamian Mentor

Maria Govan is of Greek, Bahamian and Scottish decent, Maria was raised on the small island of New Providence in the Bahamas. In her twenties she spent four years in Los Angeles working in production before returning home to make small, guerilla-style, local documentaries of her own. A decade of such listening and hands on work, shaped her foundation. Her first narrative feature film Rain, staring CCH Pounder and Irma P Hall, was shot in the Bahamas, and in 2008 premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and Bahamas International Film Festival. Having won numerous awards internationally, Rain, was licensed to Showtime Networks, and distributed by RLJ Entertainment.

Maria’s second feature, Play the Devil, was one of three films to be awarded a significant grant from Creative TT, a government arm in support of the creative arts in Trinidad and Tobago, and was shot entirely in Trinidad in the spring of 2015. The film was selected for the Caribbean spotlight at Ventana Sur, a film market in Buenos Aires, and also selected for Primera Mirada at IFFP (Panama). Play the Devil  premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival in June, 2016 and has had garnered great success on the festival circuit. Breaking Glass is now distributing Play the Devil worldwide. In February of 2018, a new chapter began in Maria’s career, when Ava Duvernay hired her to direct the episode “No Haven In My Shadow,” from the scripted series Queen Sugar. That episode aired on the OWN network on June 20th, 2018.

Govan, now represented by Circle of Confusion, is currently pursuing further directing jobs in television, while also developing her own television series entitled, Brooklyn Uchedeshi - My Life in a Dojo and her next feature film Epiphany.  She is also writing a television pilot for Westward Ho Productions and Archery Pictures in the UK.

Bahamas International Film Festival (BIFF) connects emerging TV & Film writers with the best industry professionals in an intimate setting in Nassau, Bahamas, December 9 to December 11. Writers will receive first hand knowledge and build lasting relationships with field experts at the intense Writers Residency Program.


Should your screenplay not be selected as a Finalist and you wish to have the same experience, BIFF is inviting a few select writers to join in on the invaluable mentorship for a $1,500.00 tuition (not including airfare).

For more information
please contact us via email
Writers Residency Program

Bahamas International Film Festival (BIFF) Screenwriters’ Residency Program

Bahamas International Film Festival (BIFF) connects emerging TV & Film writers with the best industry professionals in an intimate setting in Nassau, Bahamas, December 9 to December 11. Writers will receive first hand knowledge and build lasting relationships with field experts at the intense Writers Residency Program.

Previous residency advisors and mentors included:

Roger Corman | Producer (Death Race 2000,Scream 3, The Fantastic Four)
Suzanne Warren | Producer (Last King of Scotland, Hacksaw Ridge)
Susan Batten | Writer-Producer-Actor (Showing Roots, Love Once and Always)
Alessandro Camon | Writer (The Messenger)
Scott Budnick | Producer (The Hangover)
Sean Covel | Film Producer (NapoleonDynamite, Beneath, Cafe)
Jib Polhemus | Producer-Manager (Tomb Raider, The Mechanic, Expendables 2)
Vince Gerardis | Producer (HBO Games Of Thrones)
Nate Kohn: Professor (The University of Georgia), Associate Director (The George Foster Peabody Awards)


“BIFF Nurtures not only the creative process but the human spirit. The Mentors invest in each writer with their time, energy and focus. It’s a daring thing that people do called writing. The mentors understand and welcome that with a generosity toward every writer. They spark a supportive dialogue that can help the story sing.” Susan Batten

" Since the launch of the BIFF Screenwriters Residency Program in 2005, it is an important component to BIFF and the flourishing filmmaking industry around the world. BIFF has invited leading industry professors such as Ted Hope, Roger Corman and Malcolm Lee to provide guidance to over 90 screenwriters from around the globe. We are proud to have a forum to nurture the next generation of scriptwriters,” said Leslie Vanderpool, Founder & Executive Director (BIFF).


"At the Bahamas Screenwriting Residency, the writers are the VIPs. Five days of sun and sand in an intimate, welcoming environment, hanging out with industry insiders dedicated to improving your script and advancing your career. It's one of the best things I've ever done as a writer." Winner of 2018 Screenwriters Residency Program, Mr. Kerry Douglas Dye

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