FLEX 2

FLEX participants 2022. Image: Lisa Stonehouse

Creatives Selected for FLEX Development Hub

Screen Yorkshire & SIGN, the Screen Industries Growth Network, are delighted to announce the thirty successful writers, directors and producers selected to participate in the second edition of FLEX – their ground-breaking development hub for creatives from across the UK, with a specific focus on Yorkshire & Humber talent.

The talented group of creatives, selected through a competitive application process, came together for the first time on 13th & 14th July at The Electric Works in Sheffield for an induction event facilitated by industry specialist coach Kate Maxwell.

Being part of Flex as a producer was not only a creatively stimulating and extremely supportive environment, it also allowed me to add an exciting project to my slate at Bombito. I learnt a lot from each session, speaker and crucially our cohort! I met so many amazing creatives from across Yorkshire and beyond. The final pitch session opened up a lot of conversations, doors and future collaborations. Our Flex project: YA TV drama Ghoul Friends - written by Catherine Wignall - has recently received support from the BFI Young Audiences Content Fund and we are running a writers room for the project in August/September. Catherine and I head to Warsaw at the end of September where we have been selected to pitch the project at Kids Kino Industry. Ghoul Friends wouldn’t have existed without FLEX as that is where we came together and started developing the idea - alongside our mentors and team members. I can’t wait to see where our project goes next and I am equally excited to see the careers of each of my cohort skyrocket too.

Reece Cargan - Producer, Bombito Productions on FLEX 1

We're incredibly lucky to have another fantastically talented, and genuinely exciting cohort on FLEX 2. I can't wait to see how the programme will continue to break new ground in storytelling and challenge boundaries. I've every confidence these creatives are going to smash it.

Jo Schofield, Senior Talent Executive, Screen Yorkshire

Jo Schofield, Senior Talent Executive at Screen Yorkshire

I had the best time on FLEX, connecting with talented peers who continue to support each other and the experience has significantly propelled my career. I have developed meaningful relationships with commissioning executives and commenced storylining on a continuing drama. I have also developed a storyworld IP with FLEX producer Thea Burrows, which has been selected for a further two industry programmes, looking at the convergence of screen and creative technologies to develop agile content. I firmly believe that these opportunities came about as a result of the confidence FLEX instilled in me and the fierce support from the Screen Yorkshire team. The programme offers a super valuable platform where my voice was truly heard.

Emma Nuttall, writer, who took part in FLEX 1

Writers, Directors and Producers Induction

After introductions, Kate led the group of storytellers through a series of exercises and team building activities, to help inspire and connect the second FLEX cohort as they embark on their agile storytelling journey.

FLEX participants were also invited to a networking dinner and drinks as part of the induction process, to facilitate bonding and share personal interests and aspirations with their fellow participants, ahead of forming their writer / director / producer teams over the coming weeks.
Photography: Lisa Stonehouse

Kate Maxwell led the induction for FLEX participants. Image: Lisa Stonehouse

Coming up next for FLEX 2......

Throughout the six month programme, which is funded by the Screen Industries Growth Network (SIGN), participants will be guided by showrunners, commissioners and innovative creators to give them insight into the landscape of the platforms where their stories will sit.

Alongside this, individuals benefit from regular development support from the Screen Yorkshire’s specialist industry team. The next steps for FLEX include participant driven team formation, followed by allocation of their development bursaries, meet the commissioner sessions and further in-person events and showcases.

Even though we’ve only just begun I already feel like I’m part of a new and wonderful creative community. Getting to be around so many talented writers, directors and producers is like the most inspiring summer camp imaginable. I’m really excited for all the creative journeys we’re going to go on and the mentorship and guidance we’re going to get along the way. Feels really great to know that filmmaking and storytelling talent in the north is being so carefully cared for.

Brett Chapman, Director

Flex is unique, not only in its inclusion of underrepresented groups, but in the way it centres the artist and the collaborative process from day one.

Elena Pavli, Writer

On Flex, there's a buzzing, collaborative energy in the room that's really exciting to be a part of! The potential for all the different permutations we could work in, and all the different things that we could make together feels vast and rich, and the compassion and support within the cohort is very present. It's like no development program I've ever done before

Conway McDermott, writer

FLEX participants 2022. Image: Lisa Stonehouse