Friday, June 30, 2006

Being a writer-director

John August talks about completing his first film as a writer-director.
One section of the movie has a combination of scripted and unscripted scenes, which ended up being my favorite thing to shoot. The luxury of having gifted actors and a lot of videotape is that they could simply start having a conversation in character, and seamlessly work in all of the scripted material. One scene had an 18-minute continuous take.

To me, this section was the best synthesis of writing and directing. While I was listening, I had to keep thinking how to steer the scene in an interesting direction. It was a screenwriter’s dream: My characters were alive in front of me, looking for something to talk about.

Fan power

As Dawn C. Chmielewski explains in The LA Times, film-makers are starting to canvas online opinion before they release a final cut.
Long before the summer thriller "Snakes on a Plane" slithers into theaters next month, potentially venomous fans started rattling.

The film's title says just about everything you need to know about the plot: On a transpacific flight, a Hawaiian mobster trying to eliminate a protected witness uncorks a carton of poisonous serpents. But as websites posted details during preproduction and as shooting got underway last summer, B-movie fans began to react. They wanted more creative snake attacks, more gore, more nudity and more of star Samuel L. Jackson's signature four-syllable obscenity.

Theatre at heart of ACE funding bid

Theatre and orchestras will form the cornerstone of Arts Council England’s bid to persuade the Department for Culture, Media and Sport to maintain investment in the cultural sector as part of its imminent spending review.
More from The Stage. As the report goes on to say, there's a real concern that DCMS will be focussing attention on sport rather than the arts in the run-up to the 2012 Olympics.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

New TMA rates

New rates have been agreed for writers under the agreement between the Writers' Guild of Great Britain, the Theatrical Management Association (TMA) and the Scottish Society of Playwrights.

The agreement sees rates for writers increase by 3% to reflect the increase in cost-of-living.

The editor's role

In The Daily Telegraph Dan Franklin looks back at the careers of two great literary editors, John Blackwell and Tom Maschler, and considers how the role has changed today.
It is rare to find an editor like John Blackwell these days. John's sort of editing took time - many cigarettes, many beers, much discussion and laughter. The impatient deadlines of modern publishing don't suit such people. Nowadays most publishers have tiny editorial departments and depend heavily on freelances. They may do an excellent job, but it is rare for them to build up quite the same relationship with an author.

In praise of Coward

The Albery Theatre is now the Noël Coward Theatre. In The Daily Telegraph Sarah Crompton explains why the playwright deserves to be honoured.
"I see a straight line from Wilde through Maugham through Coward and through Rattigan to Pinter," [Peter Hall] says. "I think all of them - even when they are Irish - have a species of the English stiff upper lip, which is a metaphor for not expressing emotion in any direct form and disguising it if you can. They are all cryptic, they are all subversively funny and they all have quite strong sentiment."

Slingshot films takes aim

A new British film company, Slingshot, opens for business this week with an ambitious pledge to produce 10 feature films over the next three years - a goal it hopes to achieve with a business model unique to this country: producing and distributing digital feature films.
More from Meg Carter in The Guardian.
"Having crunched the numbers it's clear that within a certain budget range - $5m and below - audiences tend not to care if you spend $5m or $500,000 because neither afford you big stars or glossy special effects: it's all about a story well told," Mr [Arvin] David [ Slingshot managing director] said.
Note: Slingshot doesn't seem to have a website yet.

Update: Thanks you yellowhorse (see comments) for finding the website.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Springer opera defeated?

In The Guardian, Polly Toynbee laments the end of the tour of Jerry Springer: The Opera.
This will be the last chance to see it, as its co-author Stewart Lee says glumly that he doubts it will ever be performed again. It shows how insidiously the tentacles of religious zeal invade every sphere of national life, despite the very small number of religious practitioners in this most secular of nations.

Laurie McCarthy interview

American TV scriptwriter, Laurie McCarthy (90210, CSI, Windfall), interviewed by Denis Faye for the Writers Guild of America, west.
Did working in soaps help you as a writer?

It gives you really good muscles in terms of breaking stories, but I think sometimes the execution of the stories [on daytime drama] is slipshod and very hastily done. It has to be because they're facing five hours of television a week, 52 weeks a year. They don't give it that much care… If you do that too long it becomes a habit. I didn't do it that long, and I learned from really good people how to be more meticulous.

Monday, June 26, 2006

ITV cuts one-off drama

ITV is to scale back production of expensive dramas and makeover shows as part of a drive to save £100m.

The broadcaster said it would reduce production of "underperforming" one or two-part dramas in order to concentrate on long-running series.

It will also show fewer makeover and lifestyle programmes during the day, and aims to buy more US series.

The announcement comes in the same week that ITV announced it would stop making children's programmes in-house.
More from BBC News.

ITV is struggling with falling audience share and advertising revenues. Maggie Brown and Matt Wells take a long, hard look at the network in today's Media Guardian (free registration required).

A place called Writopia

Craig Mazin imagines a better world for scriptwriters...
Just like other studios, Writopia buys film rights to books and plays, purchases specs and commissions scripts from original pitches. Once you enter development with Writopia, though, you notice some immediate differences.

There is one producer and one studio executive assigned to your project. The three of you are a team. All for one, and one for all. You have some job security, as Writopia eschews one-step deals. Writopia’s philosophy is that every professional writer deserves at least two bites at the apple before any decision is made to go with someone else.

It’s nearly impossible that your first draft will unpleasantly surprise them, because Writopia Studios require the writer to first deliver a story treatment. By doing this, the team gets an opportunity to solidify just what this movie really is before the first script is even begun.

Parfitt gets teens remit at BBC

The BBC is clearly worried about losing a hold on the nation's youth. First came last week's announcement that, as part of the changes to BBC drama, Diederick Santer will have responsibility for developing younger-skewing drama series and serials (as well as being Executive Producer of EastEnders). Now comes news that Radio One Controller, Andy Parfitt, will have an additional role to "develop ideas for programming and content aimed at 12-16 year olds, which will deliver through existing broadband, TV and radio services."
Announcing the appointment, Mark Thompson said: "Andy's appointment is a significant step in developing the public service vision set out in Creative Future.

"The BBC plays an important role in the early years of many children's lives. But as they reach adolescence this relationship fades as the Corporation hasn't been producing enough content that appeals to them.

"We are now aiming to bridge that gap with high quality content tailored and packaged for them, which we hope will complement existing services provided by the commercial sector."

Aaron Spelling obituaries

The commercial entertainment television shows produced by Aaron Spelling, who has died following a stroke aged 83, generated tens of thousands of screen hours in America and across the world over four decades, but the question remains whether he lowered standards or merely reflected public taste.
More from Christopher Reed in The Guardian.

There are also lengthy obituaries in most other newspapers, including The LA Times and The Daily Telegraph.

Friday, June 23, 2006

The Play's The Thing - reviews

The reviews are in for On The Third Day by Kate Betts, winner of Channel 4's The Play's The Thing contest. And they're not too bad.

Both The Guardian and The Times give it three stars out of five, while Charles Spencer in The Daily Telegraph admits to being "unexpectedly impressed".

All the critics have their reservations about the play and the process, however, with Paul Taylor in The Independent finding little to like about either.
From the point of view of finding new talent, it would have been better to spend the money on a mini-festival at the Bush or the Gate. But that would not have been invidious enough for TV, which will never be theatre's route to rescue.
The final show of the series goes out on Channel 4 on Saturday night.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

BBC drama shake-up

John Yorke has been appointed Controller In-House Drama, it was announced today by Director of Drama, Entertainment and Children's Alan Yentob, in a move which will bring together all BBC England In-House Drama Production in a single department.

Yorke will have special responsibility for continuing drama series and singles, and will be joined by Kate Harwood, currently Executive Producer, EastEnders, as Head of Series and Serials.

Diederick Santer is appointed Executive Producer, EastEnders, with additional responsibility for developing younger skewing drama series and serials.

Nicolas Brown will join BBC In-House Drama in the newly-created role of Director of Drama Production and Sally Woodward Gentle becomes Creative Director in charge of all development in the department.

John Yorke, Kate Harwood, Nicolas Brown, Sally Woodward Gentle and Diederick Santer make up the senior management team of the In-House Drama department.
More from the BBC Press Office.

Comment: Nothing stays still for long in TV drama production these days. Yorke returned to the BBC from Channel 4 as Controller of Continuing Drama Series and Head of Independent Drama at the start of 2005 but has clearly developed the clout (partly through reinvigorating EastEnders) to demand a shorter title with an all-consuming remit.

These latest changes come after the departure of the BBC's Head of Drama Series and Serials, Laura Mackie, to ITV earlier this year.

Update: Ben Dowell's report for Media Guardian (free registration required).

Musical saturation

We're used to thinking of Broadway as dominated by musicals and the West End as still offering a home to plays, but the situation has changed, says Mark Shenton on The Stage Newsblog. There are currently just seven plays running in the West End's 39 venues, he says, of which only two are new (one of which is from Channel 4's The Play's The Thing).
We have not only caught up with Broadway in ticket prices, we are now in the inexorable slide to sidelining plays completely in the West End as they do on Broadway. Actually, they have as many plays on Broadway right now as we do: they, too, have seven houses currently hosting plays today (though a couple – Awake and Sing and Doubt — are about to close).

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Children's ITV under threat

TV is today expected to tell staff it is closing its inhouse children's production units with the loss of around 30 jobs, in what could be the first step in an eventual withdrawal from children's programming.

All employees who work in the units in London, Manchester and Leeds have been called to a meeting at lunchtime at ITV offices on the South Bank in London.

It is expected they will be told the division will close, with staff being made redundant at the end of their contracts.
More from Liegh Holmwood in Media Guardian (free registration required)

Update: ITV has confirmed it will close its inhouse children's programme-making department, saying it hopes to sell it as a going concern.

The Film Programme

Last week's edition of The Film Programme (click on "Listen Again") on Radio 4 had interviews with screenwriters Deborah Moggach and William Nicholson. Thanks to today's Shooting People for the link.

Monday, June 19, 2006

The Play's The Thing - *spoilers*

If you've been watching Channel 4's The Play's The Thing and are impatient to get to the final Act, the show's forum can help.

The True Life Story of [Your Name Here]

Youngblood, a collective of playwrights under 30, recently devised a novel way to raise money. The team held an auction on eBay offering to write a play about the winning bidder and stage it at the Brick Theater in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
More from Steven Mcelroy in The New York Times.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Ken Levine on rejection

American comedy writer Ken Levine offers advice on dealing with rejection.
I’ve saved all my rejection letters and wouldn’t you know, a number of the writers who initially said I sucked eventually submitted scripts to me looking for a job years later. (No, I didn’t just send back their rejection letters and flip flop the names…but I wanted to.)

Edinburgh Books Festival announces programme

Searching for an image to encapsulate her festival, director Catherine Lockerbie recalled the famous meeting between the precocious teenage Walter Scott and Robert Burns.

It took place in a literary salon in old Edinburgh, a house crammed with the brightest minds and imaginations of that age, among them James Hutton, the father of modern geology, and pioneering chemist Joseph Black.

"Fast forward to 2006," said Ms Lockerbie, "replace stone walls with tents, and what you have there is the essence of the Edinburgh International Book Festival."
More from Rosemary Goring in The Herald.

The line-up will include Seamus Heaney, William Boyd and Harold Pinter.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Traverse seeks new writers

The Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh is looking for up to 20 writers to take part in a 10 day residency as part of their inaugural emerging artists season. Each writer will be offered a fully paid residency with script development, masterclasses and mentoring by leading playwrights. The closing date for applications is 14 July 2006.

Full details are on the Traverse website.

Five commission improvised sitcom

Scream Films, the independent production house behind Extreme Makeover UK, is making an ad-libbed sitcom for Five.

The project is based on popular German show Schillerstrasse, which has become so popular with viewers there that more than 60 episodes have been made but it is still at pilot stage in the UK.

Five comedy controller Graham Smith explained: “The German version is very, very popular. It is a studio-based sitcom like Friends or My Family, with a live studio audience.”

Each episode of the show has a rough narrative but during the programme the director gives instructions to the actors through earpieces.

“For example, if the story was for an actor to change a light bulb, then as they mount the stepladder the director informs them that they have vertigo. The audience hears this but the other actors don’t. It is quite a simplistic style of humour,” Smith adds.
More from The Stage.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Timmer leaves ITV drama

Damien Timmer has resigned as head of drama for ITV's London-based drama department.

The network has confirmed that Mr Timmer, the respected head of drama (London) for ITV Productions, handed in his notice to the ITV Productions director, John Whiston.

Mr Timmer and Michelle Buck head the ITV drama department, which makes Lewis, Agatha Christie's Marple and Poirot.

More from Ben Dowell in Media Guardian (free registration required)

Sam Shepard interviewed by Joe Penhall

In 1972, Shepard escaped to London for a couple of years - and it was then that his writing took a quantum leap forward. He was asked to direct his friends Bob Hoskins, Stephen Rea and Kenneth Cranham in his first major play, Geography of a Horse Dreamer, at the Royal Court. "It was a great experience, which changed the way I approached writing, because I started writing for the actors. I'd shape things and move them around and realise what was possible or not possible. You understand the rhythmic structures much better when you work directly with actors. It's like a piece of music, it shifts and changes."

Hemingway said that writing is all about rewriting and, having directed, Shepard learned to rewrite. "With the early stuff I never rewrote anything. It was the arrogance of youth. 'Fuck it, if you don't understand it I'll just write another one.'

"I was riding those plays, like you'd ride a horse. You'd go as hard as you could, then get off and get on another one and go again and not really give a shit about how you're riding them. You'd just leave them wet and go and get on the next one. But then I started to become interested in the form and what was possible. How you have to pay attention to certain details of language, of structure, of rhythm, in order to make a play that wasn't just opening a window and letting wind rush through the room. Now," he concludes, "I love rewriting. I go over and over and over stuff - it's become a fetish."
More in The Guardian.

Sex in video games conference

The first conference of its kind, Sex in Videogames was about creating a market out of disparate interests and niches. As a result, only one question lurked beneath the soul-searching panels on ethics and the somewhat misguided commentaries on sexual desire. That question was whether money could be made from combining two of the most lucrative markets in the world: adult content and video games.
More from Annalee Newitz in Wired.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

World Cup Tapes - first winners

The first winners of the BBC's World Cup Tapes monologue contest are being broadcast this week.

The competition is still accepting entries.

The Play's The Thing

Did you see the first episode of The Play's The Thing on Channel Four last night? It's their hunt for a brand new writer, with the winner of a Pop Idol-style contest getting their play staged in the West End.

Because writing doesn't make great TV (What are you going to show? Typing? Tea-making? Lying awake at night?) the focus is on the panel - made up of a producer, an agent and an actor. No writer on the panel, of course.

The Guardian's Nancy Banks-Smith liked it.
You were irresistibly reminded of that scene in The Producers, where Max Bialystock and Leo Bloom are demolishing skyscrapers of scripts in the hope of finding one new play guaranteed to fail. And, suddenly, there it is. A sure-fire, deckle-edged, copper-bottomed flop. Springtime for Hitler. A gay romp with Adolf and Eva. Leo: "Wow! This won't run a week." Max: "A week! This play is guaranteed to close on page four!"

The Play's the Thing (Channel 4) is an unexpected treat at this time of year. Funny, touching and instructive. A producer, Sonia Friedman, an actor, Neil Pearson, and a literary agent, Mel Kenyon, are wading through 2,000-odd plays - some odder than others - by unknown writers. The winning play will be produced in the West End.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Stoppard's Rock 'n' Roll

A new play by Tom Stoppard is a major event. With Rock 'n' Roll in previews at the Royal Court, he has been featured in The Independent, The Observer and The Times.
“Prosecuting rock’n’roll musicians [in communist Czechoslovakia] was, if anything, more significant than arresting some famous scientist or academic,” says Stoppard. “Because the scientists, the poet, the essayist were actively opposing the regime, whereas the musicians were just a pain in the arse. What Havel realised was that this represented something very dangerous: now the state could put you into jail simply for being the wrong sort of bloke.”

Garrison Keillor interviewed

Writer and radio star, Garrison Keillor, has written a movie. He's interviewed by Dylan Callaghan for the Writers Guild of America, west.
Radio is a magical medium and movies are very hard work. Radio employs language to the fullest. It addresses mature people with some experience in the world, which they bring to the game, so a few references can produce images more vivid than most of what you'd see on a screen. You can do a monologue on several different levels, and the audience picks up everything and adds their own experience and comes away delighted.

A few times, during this picture, I thought to myself, "I should've tried this as a radio drama." But movies have the oomph of money and sex appeal. Movie stars are the last true celebrities in America. The challenge of movies for me is that I know almost nothing about them. I'm not a major movie fan. I was brought up fundamentalist, and so I associate filmdom with moral squalor and eternal damnation.

Bennett's Tony triumph

Alan Bennett's play The History Boys won six awards at last night's Tony Awards, including Best Play.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Guild statement on agent tax fears

WGGB General Secretary, Bernie Corbett, has issued a statement in response to press reports that writers' agents' fees could lose their tax deductible status.

Update: Richard and Judy have won their case, with the judge ruling that they are "theatrical entertainers". The Guild will be keeping a close eye on any moves that threaten writers' ability to offset agents' fees agaist tax.

Arts manifesto

Britain's cultural leaders have united to launch a manifesto to convince government of the central role played by the arts in the life of the country.

Figures including Sir Nicholas Serota, director of the Tate, Nicholas Hytner from the National Theatre and Tony Hall from the Royal Opera House have put aside differences in the struggle for funding to present one vision of past successes and future potential.
More from Louise Jury in The Independent.

Allan Prior: 1922 - 2006

Long-time Guild member, Allan Prior has died at the age of 84.

Prior was one of the original writers of Z-Cars on BBC One (a series based on a single play by Troy Kennedy Martin) and wrote five of the first ten scripts.

He also created other series, including Stookie, The Charmer (based on a novel by Patrick Hamilton) and Howard's Way (co-created with Gerard Glaister).

There are obituaries in The Times and The Guardian.
Allan Prior, who has died at the age of 84, claimed his place in the pantheon of popular television as one of the founding writers of the BBC-TV police series, Z Cars, a distinction roughly on a par with membership of the 1966 England World Cup team. Developed from a single play by Troy Kennedy Martin, Z Cars was the first cops-and-robbers series to treat policemen as fallible human beings, to get away from the Scotland Yard scene in favour of a raw, sprawling, new-town landscape, and to anticipate the policing by motor car that would soon be general.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Zak Penn and Simon Kinberg interview

X-Men: The Last Stand scripters Zak Penn and Simon Kinberg never knew they'd work together on the final installment of the hit 20th Century Fox franchise, and they certainly never dreamed they'd finish it together. “We had never met before X-Men 3,” explains Kinberg, who burst into the biz with last year's Mr. and Mrs. Smith (his thesis at Columbia Film School). “The studio did something that studios do with large, tent-pole movies on a tight schedule, which is, they hire more than one writer to write different drafts simultaneously and eventually hire another writer to cut and paste that together and another and on and on.”
Interview with Penn and Kinberg by Dylan Callaghan for the Writers Guild of America, west.

Romantic comedy

The article by Billy Mernit on writing romantic comedy, published in the Writers' Guild's magazine UK Writer (Spring 2006) is now available on the Guild's website.
Movie producers aren’t interested in scripts that won’t really fill and hold the big screen, so make sure you’ve made your romantic comedy a movie, as opposed to a stillie. Great movies move - and romantic comedy duds talk themselves to death. I know that many of us lovers of the form are drawn to it precisely because it’s often about wonderfully pithy, sharp, delicious repartee. But too much talk can be the difference between a pass (because what you’ve written is more like a play or a TV show) and a green light - because your romantic comedy can really pull people into a multiplex.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

The double life of Daniel Handler

Last Wednesday, one of the world's bestselling authors was due to give a reading at a big London bookshop, Waterstone's in Piccadilly - and it was cancelled due to lack of interest. It summed up Daniel Handler's predicament.

Under his own name, which is how Waterstone's billed him, he is just another aspiring author, with a new novel bobbing at about number 4,000 on the Amazon chart. Under the preposterous pen name of Lemony Snicket, he is a superstar, whose 12 children's books, collectively entitled A Series of Unfortunate Events, have all been international bestsellers. When Handler gives a reading as Snicket, he doesn't get cancelled; he gets mobbed.

It must be a weird feeling, like being jealous of yourself.
"It's quite magical actually," Handler says over green tea in a chic London hotel. "You hand over your credit card and very few people recognise your name."
More from Tim De Lisle in The Guardian.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

The Artful Writer's mission statement

Sometimes controversial American blog The Artful Writer has issued a Mission Statement. There are currently 459 comments on the post...and counting.

From street to stage

Alecky Blythe explains to Dominic Cavendish in The Daily Telegraph why she writes plays using verbatim speech from real people.
Blythe, 33, warmed immediately to the idea of forcing actors to replicate the minutiae of others' speech: "They can't fall into their own speech-patterns. Their egos get lost in the effort of concentrating, which is acting as it should be, but so rarely is." But it's the content rather than the style that most appeals, the chance to get closer to ordinary people, and find out what's going on in their heads.

Bite-sized plays

As a thirty-minute Beckett (Eh Joe) opens in the West End, Dominic Maxwell in The Times looks at the pressures on playwrights to keep it brief.
The fun-sized dramacule could become the art form of the future. As Tom Stoppard admitted on Radio 4 last week, the thing for a playwright to aspire to these days is the compact 90-minutes-straight-through show in the style of Art. And once we get over this whole value-for-money neurosis — Eh Joe’s producers have tried to deal with this by making tickets half the usual West End prices — we’re free to admit that it’s a rare play that wouldn’t benefit from some snips. Savage snips in many cases. And if the purists demur at hacking out 80 per cent of Hamlet to get it down to sitcom length, fine, what’s wrong with seeing an extract instead? Offer a Hamlet of sheer excitement: the show’s breakout hit, the “To be or not to be” soliloquy, followed by a rousing swordfight with Fortinbras. Here in iPodworld, who’s got time for more than that?

The right to sleep

The audience burst into wild applause when two-time Oscar-winning cinematographer Haskell Wexler asked a packed house at the Writers Guild Theater, “Can I make the grand statement that all of us here feel that the issue of rampant excessive hours in our business must be addressed as an urgent health and safety issue?”
More from Marsha Scarbrough for Written By.

Monday, June 05, 2006

National Theatre of Scotland triumphs at awards

The new National Theatre of Scotland has picked up six prestigious awards - less than four months after its first public performances.

The company came out on top at the Critics Awards for Theatre in Scotland (Cats) ceremony in Dundee.
More from BBC News.

Pitch Factor

As part of the Screenwriters' Festival New Writers Day, here's your chance to take part in THE PITCH FACTOR, in association with Channel 4's IDEASFACTORY. Send us your story ideas for a feature film and win a place on a personal screenwriting coaching session with pitching expert and agent Julian Friedmann, THEN pitch your idea to a high-profile panel of judges, chaired by Oscar®-winning screenwriter, Julian Fellowes.
The closing date is 16 June. Full details from The Screenwriters' Festival.

Publishing faces a digital revolution

An interesting take on the familiar subject of publishing in the digital age, by Motoko Rich in The New York Times.
Hovering above the discussion of all these technologies is the fear that the publishing industry could be subject to the same upheaval that has plagued the music industry, where digitalization has started to displace the traditional artistic and economic model of the record album with 99-cent song downloads and personalized playlists.

Treasury targets "tax perks"

Gordon Brown wants to recoup millions of pounds from celebrities as part of a Treasury drive to reclaim an estimated £97 billion underpaid in tax each year.

HM Revenue & Customs is mounting a test case against Richard Madeley and Judy Finnigan, the chat show hosts, that will set a legal precedent for television presenters, authors and footballers.

It claims that they have wrongly written off the cost of employing agents against their tax bills and wants to recover a six-figure sum to cover the period back to the late 1990s.

It could affect thousands of big names such as J K Rowling, the author, Jamie Oliver, the television chef, and Frank Lampard and Michael Owen, the England footballers, according to tax experts. In total the Revenue is hoping to recover hundreds of millions of pounds.
More from Robert Winnett and David Leppard in The Sunday Times.

Laverty film wins Palme d'Or

Just in case you missed it, The Wind That Shakes The Barley, directed by Ken Loach from a script by Guild member Paul Laverty, has won the Palme d'Or at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival.

Laverty and Loach have worked together on several films before, including Ae Fond Kiss, Sweet Sixteen, My Name Is Joe and Carla's Song.

For a final word on Cannes from a writer's POV, have a look at blogs by two Guild members - Jacob Weinstein and Danny Stack.