John Brabourne Awards


The Awardees

  • Awardees July 2018

Alexandra Blue

Alexandra is an award-winning producer, with accolades including Emerging Producer of the Year (SASA 2014), Best Emerging Filmmaker (Shorts Film Festival 2013), a nomination for Best Short Film at the Australian Academy Awards (AACTA’s 2015). Alexandra has worked for some of the top British production companies, including Warp films, Element Pictures and Heyday. She is currently developing feature films with Film4 and Screen Australia. The JBA will go towards supporting Alexandra via living costs, to develop and finance her first feature Pollyamorous (Wr: Elaine Gracie Dir: Ella Jones), and produce three short films: End-O (Dir: Alice Seabright, Wr: Elaine Gracie), Luna (Wr/Dir: Laurie Nunn) and Martha (Wr: Iona Firouzabadi, Dir: Christopher Haydon).

Claire Alberie

Claire is a writer specialising in television drama. Her previous work includes award-winning short films, community media and devised theatre. She is a BAFTA Cymru nominee for ‘Three Days’ which she directed for BBC Wales in 2013. Claire has been supported as emerging talent by Ffilm Cymru, Creative England, BFI NETWORK, BBC Wales, and BAFTA. Her first television pilot ‘Paper Dolls’ was selected for the BAFTA Rocliffe Forum List 2017. She will use her JBA to cover living costs whilst she develops further original drama projects. Claire is represented by Christian Ogunbango at United Agents.

Daryl Chase

Daryl, from an early age, developed a passion for moving image. Keen to explore the filmmaking process, he first learnt to make tea, followed by lighting, editing and directing. This led to working both freelance and in-house, creating commercials, music videos and online content, winning awards along the way. Always with an eye on directing long form narrative the opportunity arose to develop a modern vision of Macbeth in collaboration with Screen Northants, whose aim is to engage with and involve young and disadvantaged people in the filmmaking process. Having finished principle photography, the JBA Award will contribute to the completion of the film, shining a light on new talent and benefiting those the process seeks to help. With Macbeth completed Daryl plans to develop an original script he has written, as well as progress other concepts towards production.

Dorothy Allen-Pickard

Dorothy has been making award-winning documentaries, fictional shorts and multimedia shows over the last 7 years and she has a particular interest in mental health issues and the social and political changes that affect young people. Recently she has been working with non-professional actors to create semi-autobiographical films that merge documentary and fiction. Her films have won prizes including the Guardian Documentary Award, Best UK Short at Open City Doc Fest, Young Director’s Award, Vimeo Staff Picks and Total Theatre Award and have screened at international festivals, as well as on BBC3, Channel 4, i-D and The Guardian. She’s also the co-founder and video editor of feminist film journal Another Gaze and a member of the award-winning multimedia company Breach Theatre.

Ewa Smyk

Ewa is an animation director with a background in graphic design and illustration. In 2015, while studying MA Communication Design at Central Saint Martins she directed her debut short film The Deal – an animated documentary about the courting traditions in the Eastern-Polish borderland, created in an unusual combination of 2D animation and stop motion. The Deal has been screened at over 30 film festivals around the world, including the Academy Award qualifying Cork Film Festival, Uppsala Short Film Festival and Rio de Janeiro International Short Film Festival, among others. It was awarded the Art Direction Prize at the Animage International Animation Festival of Pernambuco. Ewa is currently enrolled at the National Film and Television School on the Directing Animation MA. Her JBA will contribute towards her second year tuition fees.

Holly Elson

Holly was selected as one of 25 breakout filmmakers for the Emerging Visions Program (Film Society of Lincoln Center, IFP, New York Film Festival), Holly Elson is a Midlands based documentary director and producer working in film and transmedia with her company Hark Pictures. As a filmmaker she combines archive and contemporary observational documentary to tell unique personal stories. She has been working on broadcast, independent and commercial content in a variety of roles for over a decade. She has directed and produced documentaries for the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Discovery and PBS. Alongside producing her own projects and raising two young children, Holly also works freelance on feature length and short form content across various platforms; work has included content for the likes of National Geographic and Netflix. Holly’s JBA award will be used to support production of her latest project, the feature documentary, The Viking of 6th Avenue, about legendary New York icon and musician Moondog.

Lawrie Doran

Lawrie was born and raised in Manchester, now based in London, Lawrie is a screenwriter working across film and TV. He is drawn to stories that mix genres and play with tone to confront audience expectations. Lawrie’s short films have played at international festivals including the BFI London Film Festival, Palm Springs and Rhode Island and he has participated in leading development schemes including Torino FilmLab, BFI NETWORK x BAFTA Crew, Film London’s London Calling, and the Edinburgh Film Festival Talent Lab. In 2017 the Hospital Club named him as one of their ‘Emerging Creatives’ and his first feature as co-writer and producer, ‘Speaking in Tongues,’ will had its world premiere at the 2018 Austin Film Festival. Lawrie’s JBA will be used to support development of his writing slate, including gothic horror police diver series ‘Five Bells,’ family drama ‘Right to Disappear’ and high-concept rom com ‘Yesterday Tomorrow Today,’ which is in development with Met Film Production and BAFTA-nominated director Samuel Abrahams, and has made it on to the Brit List 2018.

Sam Barnett

Sam started his film making journey in the exhibition sector as a manager at the Showroom Cinema in Sheffield, before progressing to Creative England and Film Hub North over the span of four years. Sam now works as a freelancer across film exhibition and production, recently line producing the upcoming Dawn of the Dark Fox by 104 Films in Sheffield, co-ordinating the BFI Film Academy, and working for eOne as a Regional Marketing Officer. Sam is also an upcoming film producer based in Sheffield, working within a small, dedicated and experienced team with Jim Wraith and Jacob Welby, specialising in the representation of hard-to-reach communities within the North, unearthing new and exciting stories through documentary and fiction. The JBA is supporting the post-production of the upcoming documentary The Hovarths. Set in Sheffield, the documentary follows a Roma Slovakian family whilst they compete together in the world of kickboxing. Following their daily lives and training schedules, the film culminates in an event in which all six members of the family compete on the same night.

Scout Stuart

Scout is a filmmaker born and raised in Manchester, currently living in London. As a screenwriter, her short narrative films have received funding and support from BFI NETWORK and Creative England, and have screened at festivals including Edinburgh International Film Festival, Uppsala IFF and Palm Springs IFF. Scout was selected for the iFeatures (BFI, Creative England, BBC) development scheme with her debut screenplay ‘Mud’. She has also received support and commissions from Arts Council England, Video Jam, Flux Factory, and The Esmée Fairbairn Foundation. As a director, Scout has been mentored through BFI Flare, an initiative to help develop LGBTQ filmmakers. From a working-class background, she was the first person in her family to go to University. Alongside filmmaking, Scout has worked as a teaching assistant on the course she graduated from and leads filmmaking workshops with young people. Her JBA provides support towards developing her slate.

Sophie Ansell

Sophie is an artist and filmmaker who has worked extensively in various art department roles. She studied Performance Design and Practice at Central Saint Martins and lives and works in London. Her first narrative short, Funemployed (2016), screened at festivals including London Short Film Festival and Encounters, was nominated for Best Production Design at Underwire Festival and was awarded Film of the Month by director Anna Biller on the Shooting People website. She is currently in post-production on her upcoming short, The Girl in the Shed, which was commissioned by Talkies Community Cinema. Her work utilises stylised aesthetics and dark humour as tools to playfully disjoint dominant narratives.  Her award will help fund training at London Film Academy.

Stephanie Zari

Stephanie is an award winning, BAFTA long listed filmmaker currently in development on her debut feature, In Our Blood, a provocative psychological horror about the broken bond of triplets. The screenplay was a semi-finalist in the 2016 Shore Scripts feature competition out of 2,500 submissions and awarded Creative England/BFI Emerging Talent Development Funds that completed in 2018. The project was chosen for the 2017 Birds Eye View/BFI FILMONOMICS programme headed by Mia Bays and was selected for 2018’s Galway Film Market. Stephanie received the 2017 Pia Pressure New Voices Award for her latest short film Being Keegan starring Stephen Graham (This is England, Boardwalk Empire, Gangs of New York, The Irishman) that has already received several awards and her short films have screened to critical, online and festival success at Oscar, BAFTA and BIFA qualifying festivals. Stephanie is also part of the 2018 BAFTA X CREW Talent Development Programme for writers, directors and producers and is a mentor for the BAFTA/BFI Film Academy Alumni Programme. Her JBA award will allow her to write the next drafts of In Our Blood to an advanced stage for finance and packaging.

Zsofia Szemeredy

Zsofia is currently completing her second year in Marketing, Distribution, Sales & Exhibition MA course at the National Film and Television School in Beaconsfield. Her recent projects at the school include Falling Sky, a graduation game, which was nominated for Best Student Game at the Game Awards in 2017 and Inanimate, an animation which has won multiple prizes including 3rd Prize in Cannes Cinefondation and Jury Prize in Annecy. After gaining an unconditional offer to start in 2017, she ran a successful Indiegogo campaign to finance her tuition fees in the first year. While being at the NFTS, Zsofia produced the Indie Film Distribution Summit, a weekend masterclass with 30 industry experts and 100 participants.  She has also been working as a freelancer and intern for the past six years, for companies such as Premier PR, Sundance London, London Screenwriters Festival, Picturehouse Entertainment, or the marketing department at NFTS to highlight a few. She is a contributing writer at Film Editing Pro, and writes screenplays and short stories in her free time – mostly science-fiction and fantasy. The JBA will go towards Zsofia’s second year tuition fee and living expenses, while she’s finishing up her course and starting to set up her own company.