Villa Albertine, the SACD, the CNC, and the Writers Guild Foundation are bringing back for a third season Boulevard des Séries: The Factory, a program to accompany newly created series and to immerse French and Québécois writers, creator-writers and/or writer-directors in the Hollywood industry. For the second time, a writer from Quebec will also join the program thanks to support from SODEC.
The Factory defines itself as a place for experienced French and Québécois writers, who have a series project with high international potential to develop, to learn and to sharpen their skills and know-how.
The Factory will take place from October 2 to 20, 2023, and will welcome, in Los Angeles, six French writers and one Québécois writer. They will be accompanied, individually and in English, by screenwriting specialists with whom they will have the opportunity to work on the development of their project, particularly on the pilot script and on the artistic direction. These three weeks of immersion will also be the occasion for the participants to share their stories with experienced writers and showrunners, and, through their discussions with professionals, to get insider access to the landscape and practices of Hollywood. The cultural exchanges will be enhanced by organized group visits to studios and writers’ rooms, as well as convivial opportunities for networking.
Objectives of the residency:
- Through individualized guidance from screenwriting specialists and grouped discussions and workshops with showrunners, producers and experienced professionals, offer to participating writers the necessary tools resulting in a pilot script that meets the demands of the international market and incorporates a strong artistic direction.
- Through the discussions, facilitate the transfer of American skills and know-how in terms of series writing and of show creation (including artistic direction), in function of diverse genres (fantasy, comedy, horror, teen drama, etc.), formats, and audiences.
- Encourage opportunities for international collaboration between French, Québécois, and American writers.
The working language during the entirety of the residency is English. This means that all materials, written and spoken, at all points during the process, must be in English.
The final script could be multilingual, in French, English, or any other European language.
Terms of coverage
The Villa Albertine, the SACD, the CNC, and the SODEC will cover, per author and per project:
- A mobility grant including travel fees, lodging, and per diem;
- A schedule of group meetings and individual sessions led by local partners;
- The organization of convivial moments for networking;
- The communication surrounding residents and their projects.
Villa Albertine, the SACD, the CNC, the Writers Guild Foundation, and the SODEC
April 28: Deadline for submitting applications
May 1 – June 30: Application selection
July 10: Laureates announced
Starting September 4: online writing workshops with script doctors (2 to 4 workshops of 1.5 hours per project)
October 2 – 20: Writers residency in Los Angeles
Complete applications are to be submitted before April 29, at 11:59pm French time on the platform
Project eligibility criteria (these criteria are cumulative):
- Project in English with strong potential for the international market;
- Material provided, drafted in a bilingual version (French-English): Application form duly completed online + pre-bible* (5 pages) + note on the series’ artistic direction + the complete pilot script for dramatic series or one example of an episode for episodic series + short video presentation of the applicant’s career and project in three minutes maximum (no editing is expected, but a simple video shot on camera; the candidate must not be reading a prepared text. The video must be uploaded on a platform such as Youtube, Vimeo or Dropbox and must be accessible only to those who have the viewing link) ;
- Original creation (adaptations are not considered);
- Must be fictional (live action);
- Must include at least six episodes, with no maximum number of episodes;
- The length of the episodes must be at least 20 minutes
- The presented project can already have been optioned by French or Quebec producers, without any obligation;
- The project can be written by more than one writer: collaboration work but in this case, only one of the writers can take part in the residency, depending on the agreement between authors.
- The project can have already received a writing or development grant, notably aid provided by the SACD, the Association Beaumarchais, the CNC, the support of a regional collective (municipality, region), the SODEC, or the Fonds des medias du Canada;
- The project cannot have already been proposed during a previous call for application to Boulevard des Séries: The Factory.
Writer eligibility criteria (these criteria are cumulative):
The application is presented by the writer. The writer must:
- Be the scriptwriter and/or director, French-speaking from France or Québec, and member of the SACD or of the SARTEC for at least three episodes of a same season of a series broadcast on a TV channel or an on-demand audiovisual service in France or Québec between 2018 and 2023.
- Be the writer/creator of at least one series whose episodes are equal to or longer than 30 minutes, and broadcast on a TV channel or on an on-demand audiovisual media service in France or in Québec between 2018 and 2023 OR have previously obtained an audiovisual grant from the innovation funds of the CNC (support of the concept, writing, re-writing, or co-writing of fiction, animation, or documentary international co-productions), from a region or municipality (fiction, animation) OR have previously participated in the Boulevard des Séries training program.
- Be able to speak English fluently and send a short (maximum 3-minute) video in English, presenting the author’s career and project (no editing is expected, but a simple video shot on camera; the candidate must not be reading a prepared text);
- Be available during the entire duration of the residency from October 2 to 20.
Villa Albertine will announce the results of the official selection by email to candidates on July 10, 2023
In the case of selection, a detailed agreement will be signed between the selected series writer and Villa Albertine.
The applications will be examined by a selection committee composed of:
- At least two members from the Writers Guild Foundation and Villa Albertine
- At least two members proposed by the SACD
- At least two members proposed by the CNC
- At least one member proposed by the SODEC
The selection committee will take into consideration the following criteria:
- The artistic value of the project;
- The writer’s experience;
- The originality of the concept in comparison to other series already on the market;
- The international potential of the project;
- The adaptability of the project to international market demands;
- The universal social value of the proposal.
The selection committee will aim to accept a diverse set of subjects among the seven projects selected and the writers who present them.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, international travel between France and the U.S. could be disrupted in the last quarter of 2023. Regarding safety, in the event of a rapid change of situation, and in consideration of decisions made by French and American authorities, the organizers reserve the right to reschedule, cancel, or modify the activities proposed to participants.
The organizers commit to inform participants of any change of dates and/or format of the residency.
Equally, participants confronted with personal or professional setbacks in the context of current health and safety are held to immediately contact the organizers and to inform them of any impossibility to travel.
The candidates, or their producers, must possess all the rights of the proposed project.
Communication and confidentiality
All documents and information provided in the application are strictly confidential and will not be published under any circumstances.
Only a single one-page summary of the seven selected projects will be printed in a booklet which will be distributed during the residency to potential partners such as producers, platforms, or broadcasters. A list of the seven selected projects, which will include the title of the project and the writer’s name, could be used for communication purposes and published in the press.
For any questions on the topic of this call for applications, you may contact:
Villa Albertine – Lucie Carette, Film and TV Attachée and Director of Villa Albertine in Los Angeles firstname.lastname@example.org
SACD – Valérie-Anne Expert, Deputy Director of Cultural Action valerie-Anne.email@example.com
CNC – Alice Delalande, Head of department, Fiction/Animation Innovation Funds Alice.Delalande@cnc.fr
SODEC – Brigitte Dupré, International Affairs Delegate firstname.lastname@example.org
*A pre-Bible is a 5-page presentation document of the project’s fundamental elements
The document must include:
- The title, genre and format of the series
- The series’ concept (subject, topic, type of plot)
- Main characters presentation
- Presentation of the series’ world
- An overview of narrative arcs, particularly the series’ end point for serialized series.
Society of Dramatic Authors and Composers (SACD)
The SACD is the oldest authors’ society in the world. Founded by Beaumarchais in 1777, the society is owned by its author members. It represents more than 60,000 authors in the cinema, audiovisual, digital creation, podcast and performing arts sectors. The SACD manages and defends their rights collectively, provides them with numerous services, offers them workspaces, advises them in their access to their social rights or matters related to their author status… SACD also supports contemporary creation and the distribution of works, thanks to the “private copy remuneration” system.
Centre national du cinéma et de l’image animée (CNC)
Created in 1946, the Centre national du cinéma et de l’image animée (CNC) is a public administrative organization, set up as a separate and financially independent entity which comes under the authority of the French ministry of culture and communication. Its principal missions are : support for the film, broadcast, video, video games, immersive productions and technical industries; promotion of film and television for distribution to all audiences and preservation and development of the film heritage.
The Writers Guild Foundation
Since 1966, the Writers Guild Foundation has been the premier Hollywood resource for emerging writers and entertainment lovers. A 501 nonprofit organization, the Foundation’s mission is to preserve and promote the history and craft of writing for the screen. WGF supports the community through various programs, including their Veterans Writing Project, their Volunteer and Mentorship Programs, their Archive, and the Shavelson-Webb Library – the world’s only library devoted entirely to writing for the screen.