This afternooon’s activities

Lunch ends at 2.30pm, and the next panel runs until 3.30pm.

WRITERS RESPONSE I: Interventions on writers issues
• Chuck Slocum, associate executive director of the WGA West will outline the American deal following the strike
Robert Staats, managing director of VG Wort will examine the complex question of reciprocity and multi-territory licences
• Cécile Despringre, executive director of SAA, the new organisation of Audiovisual Authors’ collective management societies in Europe, will talk about European collective management societies’ collaboration to improve writers’ remuneration
• Maureen Parker, executive director of WGC will discuss the issue of collection from the writers perspective looking at how and what to collect? How can writers best arrange to collect what is paid to them?

The following panel will run from 3.30pm – 4.30pm.

WRITERS RESPONSE II: What are the key issues for writers?
What are the key issues for writers in the context of the scenarios outlined over the last day and an half? How can writers enhance their status worldwide?
• Lowell Peterson, executive director of WGA East (chair)
• Tim Pye, president of the AWG
• Bernie Corbett, general secretary of the WGGB
• Peter Henning, board member of the VDD
• Daniele Cesarano, president of SACT
• Olivier Lorelle, president of UGS
• Marcilio Moraes, president of the Screenwriters Association of Brazil
• Leora Kamenetzky, chair of the Scriptwriters Guild of Israel

A coffee break will last until 5pm, and the final session will last until 5.30pm.

Closing session: GLOBAL RESPONSE
• Christina Kallas, president of the FSE
• Michael Winship, chair of IAWG/President of WGA East


Participant profile: Lars Boom

We leave Greece temporarily to travel to the Netherlands to meet Lars Boom.

Lars Boom

Lars Boom

Lars Boom has been writing since 1990 for television, film and theatre.

In theatre he has written musical plays like the award-winning In the shadow of Brel (about Jacques Brel through the eyes of his driver and friend Jojo) and two libretti for opera: Van Gilse and Slauerhoff, the Dutch poet.

Lars has also written about 100 episodes for comedy serials such as: Zeg ‘ns Aaa, Oppassen, Victorie, Sam Sam, Flodder, Bradaz and Sprint; drama and police serials Westenwind, DOK 12 en Baantjer; and a variety of drama formats for companies like Eyeworks and Endemol.

His feature film screenplays include Frans, a man with mental damage who runs away with his favourite pig because of the swine flu, and Rikshawboy, a romantic comedy about a Rikshawboy from India who becomes a cyclist in The Netherlands.

Day one: overview

SGC–SGIDay one of the conference is now over. It’s been a long day, with lively debates about the state of the film and television industries, the advent of new media, and prognostications about their future(s).

At times people became passionate about the subject, which is a good reaction, because this is something in which we are invested: artistically for some, and commercially for others. And, as always, the clash happens when the two worlds of creativity and finance collide.

Hopefully, tomorrow we can engage further on the topics and explore solutions.

The conference twitter hashtag is #wcos and the twitter stream can be followed here live. Several of the participants have been posting their thoughts on the panels, and you can expect more tomorrow.

This afternoon’s session

After lunch, the first discussion will kick off at 2.30pm, and end at 3.30pm.

FIRST DEBATE: Working with directors
(the first of two debates on issues of particular interest to writers)
Whose film is it anyway and what does it matter?
• Stanislav Semerdjiev, FSE board member (chair)
• Srdjan Koljevic, Peter Hedges, Scott Alexander, Guillaume Laurant, Guy Hibbert, Sergio Sanchez, Mateo Gil, Olivia Hetreed, writers

The following discussion will run from 3.30pm – 4.15pm

DISTRIBUTION I: New distribution methods and the implications for writers
Digitisation and the net have changed distribution of content. What are the implications of the changed distribution structures for production in general and how does this impact writers?
• Rebecca Schechter, president of the WGC (chair)
• Arvind David, producer and CEO of Slingshot Studios
• Lucinda Engelhart, head of production at Aramid Capital
• Julian Friedmann, agent
• Fred Breinersdorfer, writer

There will be a coffee break from 4.15pm – 4.45pm.

The last dicussion of the day will take place from 4.45pm – 5.30m.

DISTRIBUTION II: Interventions on distribution issues
• Anita Ondine, founder of Seize the Media, will make a presentation on the different possible models for monetisation of the internet. Will it be advertising supported, streaming, subscription?
• Tilman Scheel, CEO of Europe’s Finest will look at the digital future of cinema and TV distribution.

There are no other events planned for the day.

Conference is underway

Christina Kallas introduces the conference

Christina Kallas introduces the conference

Due to the traffic in Athens the conference is running approximately half an hour late.

We’re only a hour into the event, and already many serious issues facing screenwriters across the globe are being delved into.

Christina Kallas, president of the FSE, and Michael Winship, President of the WGA (East), introduced the event and welcomed the participants.

Those of you who are following the conference on twitter, should check out the #wcos twitter stream, to which several members of the conference are contributing.

Acropolis photos

Sandwiched between old and newI’ve added some photographs to the Conference’s Event page on Facebook, and I’ve also created a Picasa Album with some of my images.

The low light comined with my average camera meant that they are good for viewing on the web only.I spotted a number of fancy gadgets among the conference members so I’m sure many of you took better quality images.

Feel free to upload your favourite pictures to Facebook. If you wish to add pictures to the Picasa Album, and have a Google account, then drop me an email to wcosblog [at] and I’ll enable sharing on the album.

Or send the images to me at that email address and I’ll add it to the blog myself – make sure you let me know what attribution you would like.

I like this picture because of the juxaposition of the old Athens city under the shiny New Acropolis Museum, with screenwriters as a conduit in between.

Tomorrow morning’s schedule

Tomorrow the bus leaves the Titania Hotel at 8.45am for the conference venue.

The first session will begin at 9.30am and run until 10.30am

Opening session: GLOBAL CHALLENGE
Welcoming speeches and opening of the conference
• Representatives of the Greek Government and Government Agencies
• Michael Winship, chair of IAWG/president of WGA East
• Christina Kallas, president of the FSE

The next panel will run from 10.30am – 11.30am

PRODUCTION I: Global trends in production
An assessment of global trends in production for cinema and television – volume of production, budgets, how the production will be funded and how (and when) this will change in the digital age.
• Sven Baldvinnson, vice president of the FSE (chair)
• Michael Gubbins, film industry analyst and former Screen International editor
• Caterina d’Amico, CEO of RAI Cinema
• Jonathan Davis, coordinator of the EFAD
• David N. Weiss, writer

There will be a break for coffee from 11.30am  – noon.

The last session before lunch will run from noon until 1.30pm.

PRODUCTION II: Interventions on production related issues
•Yomi Ayeni, creative lead of Expanding Universe will discuss writing and producing for the net: new formats, new dramaturgies, new procedures.
•Kelly Sweeney, head of original productions at Bebo will address new decision making for production and the building of new audiences.
•Alison Taylor & Peter Mohan, writers, will address the role and form of drama for television considering such questions as: will reality continue to be important; will the pilot season model in the US continue; will seasons of half hour or one hour drama continue to be the structure and the reality and future of the “created by” (showrunner) model.

Lunch will occur from 1.30pm – 2.30pm