Script Pool

Script Pool competition, a part of Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event film market activities and Discovery Campus educational program, takes place for the sixth time already. Each year it highlights five international projects and the team behind them - director, scriptwriter, and producer. The aim is to gather film projects with high distribution value with a final draft in place. Focusing on the script and the overall project presentation, the projects, and their teams will be presented to the international industry decision-makers (sales agents, financiers, and co-producers) whose contribution will increase their sales and distribution potential.

The submissions for Script Pool 2023 are now closed!

The selected projects will be announced in September 2023

In 2023, the participants will have the opportunity to receive innovative training by EU project CresCine, with a strong focus on script and project development and training on decision-making, maximising the chances of success.

The projects were selected together with the online platform T-port, where it is possible to check out the previous projects of the participants.


The deadline is extended and the new date to send in your application is 7 July 2023!

Previous years

Script Pool selected projects 2022 – written by Heinrich Sepp and directed by Rene and Carmel Köster, produced by Andreas Kask (Estonia)
Talitha Kumi – writer-director Hadar Morag, produced by Shira Hochman (Israel)
Transparency of Evil – writers Márcio-André de Sousa-Haz and Doruntina Basha, directed by Márcio-André de Sousa-Haz and produced by Julie Arrue, Gabor Dettre, Alexandra Hoesdorff (France, Luxembourg, Belgium)
And Thus It Will Go On – writer-director Marina Palacio, produced by Lara Izagirre (Spain)
Home – writer-director Or Sinai, produced by Adi Bar Yossef, Vladimir Yastenko (Israel, Ukraine)

The projects were selected together with the online platform T-Port, where it is possible to check out the previous projects of the participants.


While taking part in the Script Pool program, the participants will work together with well-known script doctors and pitching mentors. Each project will have the chance to pitch its story to a top specialist in the field and get one-to-one feedback. The program includes 1:1 meetings and lectures by mentor Deborah Rowland, 1:1 meetings with script doctor Marietta von Hausswolff, and meetings with decision-makers and jury members.

As of 2022 Script Pool program has partnered up with International Screen Institute which delivers three tailor-made workshops: How To Pick The Right Sales Company, Sales and Distribution Agreements Top Tips, and How To Develop a Festival Strategy?

The main award of a 2500 Euro prize is given to a writer-producer team by the jury that includes Mark Brennan (literary agent at United Agents), Margot Hervee (Senior Licensing Manager, MUBI), and Louis Balsan (Executive VP, international distribution and acquisitions at Anton).

Program 2022

Saturday-Sunday, 12-13 November // Online
One-on-one meeting with script doctor Marietta von Hausswolff.

Monday, 14 November // Online
15:00–16:30 Workshop by pitching mentor Deborah Rowland “Pitch Perfection”.
This session will teach how to attract the best sales agents, distributors, and financiers to your film critical. Offering plenty of practical tips and advice, Deborah will talk you through how to structure and deliver your finest pitch.

Saturday, 19 November // Online
One-on-one meeting with pitching mentor Deborah Rowland.

Tuesday, 22 November // Nordic Hotel Forum
9:30–11:00 Fireside chat: Black Nights Stars casting agents and casting directors meeting with Script Pool directors to talk about their work and experiences.

12:00–13:30 Workshop with Julia Short and Beatrice Neumann from International Screen Institute “How to Pick The Right Sales Company?”*
This session will break down sales company business models, and licensing structures (who takes what rights) and share further top tips on how to determine which sales company is right for your project. The 60min presentation will be followed by a 15/30min Q&A. Outcomes: Understanding of Current sales landscape; What a Sales company does; Sales Company business models – helping you to find out which is the right one for your project (all rights, Home Ent and TV Driven, Festival Focussed, Specialists, Sales
Company considerations)

16:00–17:30 Workshop with Julia Short and Beatrice Neumann from International Screen Institute “Sales & Distribution Agreements Top Tips”.*
Following on from the sales company webinar, this session will inform you on the differences between a Distribution Agreement and a Sales Company Agreement – key points you should consider in your agreements, obligations, and approval rights, and a useful deal checklist. Outcomes: understanding of sales and distribution agreements; what can and can not be negotiated; understanding of payment terms, rights, and the terms; clauses to be aware of in your agreements; obligations from a producer’s perspective.

18:00–19:30 Fireside chat with pitching mentor Deborah Rowland “Don’t Sabotage your own film”.*
Deborah will talk about the biggest mistakes she has seen filmmakers make when preparing their films for release. Using real industry examples, she will show you how to avoid them and give your film the best chance of success when it comes to marketing and distribution.

Wednesday, 23 November // Nordic Hotel Forum
10:00–11:30 Masterclass with Andrea Pallaoro, director of “Monica” and the producer Eleonora Granata “How a European director carved out a niche for himself in America”.*

12:00–13:00 Script Pool Pitching event.*

14:00–18:00 Script Pool participants’ one-on-one meetings with the decision-makers and the jury.

Thursday, 24 November // Nordic Hotel Forum
14:00–15:30 Workshop with Julia Short and Beatrice Neumann from International Screen Institute “Design Your Festival Strategy”.*
The strategy for your film may be to launch at a festival – Which is the right festival? Which is the right strand? Do international buyers attend? Will your film get reviewed? Does your film really rely on a festival launch? Would a specialist festival be best suited? This session will take you through the options so that you can design your film festival strategy.
Outcomes: understanding of festivals and their various strands; which festival and why; alternatives to the A-List; specialist festival landscape; tips & advice; being prepared if your film is selected; being aware of when selectors view films and what stage of the production process.

Monday, 28 November // Online
Script Pool participants’ one-on-one sessions with the International Screen Institute.

*The event is accessible to accredited guests of Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event
The time zone for the schedule is Eastern European Time (EET).

About the jury members

Mark Brennan has been a literary agent at United Agents for just over three years, representing writers and directors across film, TV, and theatre, having come up through the offices of Tim Corrie and Camille McCurry. He began his career in the industry working in post-production as an edit and sound assistant before moving into docu-drama casting and research for Midas Productions and Irish broadcaster TG4 (CEART AGUS COIR, IDIR MNA). What followed included time spent at Element Pictures (THE FAVOURITE) working primarily across their theatrical and distribution arm, Rainmark Films (now Turbine Studios – SMALL AXE) as production and development support for producer Tracey Scoffield and her team, and Sebastien Raybaud’s financing studio Anton Corp (HIS DARK MATERIALS, PADDINGTON 2) as their acquisitions and development executive.

After graduating from Sciences Po Bordeaux with a Master’s in IP Law, Margot Hervee was an active team member for the launch of Tënk, a SVOD platform dedicated to creative documentary cinema based in Lussas, France. She then moved to London for a Master's in Film Studies at UCL and started to work at MUBI alongside her studies. She now manages licensing operations for MUBI globally, with a focus on exclusive direct-to-platform releases and global editorial programs, working with both sales agents and directors/producers to secure the best films for the platform. Her previous experience includes working at institutions (Cinémathèque de Toulouse, Institut Français du Royaume-Uni), in film production (La Huit Production), and festival coordination (FIFIB).

Louis Balsan is the Executive Vice President of international distribution and acquisitions at Anton. Anton is a global provider of premium content for all platforms across film, television, digital, short-form, and animation. The company partners with leading creators worldwide to produce shows which marry creativity with commercial prowess. Its hallmark is high-quality storytelling. With offices in London, Los Angeles, and Berlin, the Anton team is committed to bringing the best of European and international content to global audiences.

Meet the speakers

Deborah Rowland has over 28 years of experience in marketing and all aspects of film distribution: theatrical, home entertainment, VOD, international sales, TV, and exhibition. She has held senior positions at Curzon Artificial Eye, Contender/EOne, Disney, Icon Film Distribution, Koch Media, and Twentieth Century Fox. Deborah runs We Are The Tonic, an entrepreneurial consultancy for sales agents, distributors, and filmmakers. She is the Lead Tutor on the UK National Film and Television School’s MA in Marketing and Distribution, MA, and is an Honorary Fellow of the University of Exeter.

Julia Short has worked in film distribution for over 30 years. During this time at PolyGram, she was responsible for running the theatrical marketing and publicity department in the UK, releasing such films as SHALLOW GRAVE, TRAINSPOTTING, FARGO, TWELVE MONKEYS, and THE USUAL SUSPECTS. In 2003 Julia set up VERVE PICTURES, a UK distribution company that acquired and released films from original filmmakers where she acquired Andrea Arnold’s RED ROAD, the Oscar-nominated DOGTOOTH, and released a number of films by first-time filmmakers.
For the last 10 years, she has worked as a consultant across various aspects of the film industry and was Director of Content for the Creative Europe-funded training program Inside Picture for 8 years. She designs and delivers training programs for various organisations: Screen Ireland, Creative Scotland, UK Film Distributor’s Association, and Creative England. Currently, she is consulting with producers on their international and festival strategy and is the Head of Studies at the Vienna-based International Screen Institute which she help set up in 2019.

Beatrice Neumann recently took on the role of Head of Skills and Industry Engagement for Screen Yorkshire, where she will be looking after the skills training programs Beyond Brontës, Centre of Screen Excellence: Yorkshire (CoSE: Y) and Connected Campus while nurturing Screen Yorkshire’s relationships in the screen industry. She joined Screen Yorkshire as CoSE: Y manager in January.
This follows an 8-year period of working as a freelance film and distribution consultant, trainer, and mentor at her own company BeA Film besides lecturing part-time at Sheffield Hallam University. She worked with filmmakers developing marketing and distribution strategies, occasionally distributed direct work in the UK (WE ARE THE GEORDIES, BATTLE MOUNTAIN: A GRAEME OBREE STORY) in collaboration with the filmmakers, designed training programs for the international film industry and created the DIY distribution marketplace Distribution Rewired in collaboration with Edinburgh International Film Festival. She has delivered training and mentoring for Creative England, Screen Skills Ireland, the Film Distributors’ Association UK, Dame Changers Australia, British Film Institute, and Film Cymru, amongst many others, and often moderates and speaks on industry panels. Recently she helped develop ISI – International Screen Institute, a new training organisation based in Vienna, Austria.

Preceding that she had enjoyed an 11-year career in film acquisitions for sales and distribution where she worked on films like Andrea Arnold’s FISHTANK, Luca Guadagnino’s I AM LOVE, and Oscar-winning THE COVE for The Works, and before that Content Film.

Read the news about the projects of 2022 Script Pool competition and the programme attached

Check out the projects for Script Pool 2021
Watch the "Meet the Director" masterclass with Baltasar Kormakur