Two filmmaking teams–each with scripts about the role of technology in society–have won Sloan Science in Cinema Fellowships from the San Francisco Film Society. Now in its second year, the partnership between the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the Society awards $35,000 to each filmmaking team along with a two-month residency at FilmHouse in San Francisco, and mentorship from a scientist. The 2017 winners are co-writers Darcy Brislin and Dyana Winkler, and co-writers Mark Eaton and Ron Najor.
Brislin and Winkler’s winning feature script, BELL, is a biopic of inventor Alexander Graham Bell. Most famous for his invention of the telephone, the story is also of Bell’s involvement in eugenics. BELL has been supported by two prior Sloan grants from the Sundance Institute. Darcy Brislin is a writer and producer currently assisting with the production of MAPPLETHORPE, a biopic about the acclaimed photographer Robert Mapplethorpe starring Mark Smith (DOCTOR WHO). Dyana Winkler is a writer, director, and producer currently in post-production with her feature documentary UNITED SKATES about skating culture.
Najor and Eaton won for their thriller DARK WEB, which tells the story of an IT specialist “forced to go off the grid in order to stay alive after she is manipulated into hacking and exploiting a large software company,” according to the logline. Ron Najor is a producer who has worked on three features including SHORT TERM 12, starring Brie Larson, which won the Grand Jury Prize at SXSW. Mark Eaton is a writer and director whose previous directing work includes the feature documentary ANGELS AND AIRWAVES: START THE MACHINE about musician Tom DeLonge and his band.
Stay tuned to Science & Film for more as these scripts develop into feature films.