The Rocaberti Writers' Retreat
Saturday, August 22nd 2020, 8:30am to 1:30pm PDT
Welcome to Rocaberti Virtual, the Rocaberti Writers’ Retreat online!
Rocaberti Virtual is a 5-hour mini-retreat which will give you a taste of a retreat itself by combining some of the ingredients which go towards creating the unique and unforgettable experience that is Rocaberti.
Live Presentations from Industry Professionals
British Producer Joan Lane, who developed THE KING'S SPEECH, will give a live presentation on THINKING OUTSIDE THE BOX, revealing the challenging process of getting the Academy® Award-winning movie made, offering invaluable insights into the filmmaking process along the way and Hollywood Literary Manager Spencer Robinson will speak on HOW TO DELIVER A SUCCESSFUL PITCH - BOTH WRITTEN AND SPOKEN.
In addition, each attendee will receive a pre-recorded presentation on 'MAKING A SCENE' by million-dollar screenwriter Diane Drake (WHAT WOMEN WANT, ONLY YOU) and British film director Niall Johnson on MAKING THE READER 'SEE' YOUR STORY: A DIRECTOR'S PERSPECTIVE.
Eight writers will be specially selected for each online event and then individually matched with one of the Rocaberti Virtual mentors.
These writers will be invited to submit a 2-page synopsis of their project, and will then receive live feedback from their mentor.
Live Pitching Sessions
At each Rocaberti Virtual - just like at the retreats themselves - four writers will be selected to pitch their project to all four mentors, receiving valuable insights into not only the pitching process, but also into how the industry will respond to their project... and who knows what might happen as a result?! (We're delighted to say that 12 Rocaberti writers from the 2019 retreats now have their projects in development with a mentor!)
Live Q&A with Industry Professionals
Your chance to ask and receive feedback from the Rocaberti mentors on their presentations or on any other aspect of the industry! (You'll have the chance to send in as many questions as you like during Rocaberti Virtual itself.)
Saturday, August 22nd 2020, 8:30am to 1:30pm West Coast time
11.30am to 4.30pm East Coast time
4.30pm to 9.30pm UK time
Please note all times below are U.S. West Coast time:
Karin Maxey (Canada)
Rocaberti Virtual is one of the best online writing seminars I've been a part of. The impressive roster of mentors, coupled with the amazing community atmosphere Claire has created leaves you feeling inspired and ready to write.
Sally Averill (United Kingdom)
I was so amazed that 5 hours in front of my laptop just flew by - thanks to the fabulous mentor stories/comments/contributions and the wonderful pitching and storytelling from everyone. I felt so inspired! I can’t deny that I felt a little sceptical that an online retreat would work so well but it way surpassed my expectations. Thank you for including me Claire and the really seamless & professional organisation between timezones which made it seem effortless... Best thing so far in my 5 weeks of lockdown. Thank you!
€ 199.50 / session
Early Bird Registration (by midnight, PDT, July 31st, 2020): € 149.50
- Join in a video conferencing call to watch the mentors' live presentations.
- Receive a more in-depth understanding of the development process through the feedback to individual writers during their one-on-one mentoring sessions.
- Attend the pitching sessions and receive valuable insight into how to sell your project to industry professionals.
- In addition, each attendee will receive a pre-recorded presentation on 'MAKING A SCENE' by million-dollar screenwriter Diane Drake (WHAT WOMEN WANT, ONLY YOU) and British film director Niall Johnson on MAKING THE READER 'SEE' YOUR STORY: A DIRECTOR'S PERSPECTIVE.
- Post your questions on any aspect of the business during Rocaberti Virtual itself.
- You'll also be invited to be part of a private, Rocaberti Virtual Facebook community, which will continue after the retreat.
- In addition, you'll be able to use the full amount of your Rocaberti Virtual registration fee towards the cost of an actual retreat itself!
€ 399.50 / session
Early Bird Registration (by midnight, PDT, July 31st, 2020): € 349.50
- All of the benefits of Level 1.
- Eight writers will be selected to send in a 2-page synopsis of their project to receive live, on-air, feedback from a specially-matched Rocaberti mentor during the virtual retreat. (Maximum of 15 minutes per writer).
To apply for Level 2, please write to [email protected] in order to set up an interview to begin the selection process.
(Personalised Feedback + Pitching)
€ 499.50 / session
Early Bird Registration (by midnight, PDT, July 31st, 2020): € 459.50
- All of the benefits of Levels 1 and 2.
- Four of the eight writers from Level 2 will be invited to pitch their projects live to receive feedback from all four Rocaberti Virtual mentors. An invaluable insight into the pitching process and a chance to get your work heard by top industry mentors with the power to help get your project made!
To apply for Level 3, please write to [email protected] in order to set up an interview to begin the selection process.
Your Rocaberti Virtual Mentors
Joan Lane is a film and theatre producer and has worked in arts management and production for over 30 years. Trained as a Speech and Language Therapist, with a background as a music scholar, she has also worked as a vocal consultant.
Her company, Wild Thyme Productions, has toured six innovative productions of Shakespeare’s plays in the UK and Germany and mounted world premiere showcases and readings of new plays and musicals in London. She is a member of Musical Theatre Network UK, concerned with the writing of new musicals, and also of The British Shakespeare Association.
Primarily engaged as a Consultant by the BBC, Joan’s skills were used for the recording, filming and Royal Opera House performance of THE LITTLE PRINCE. She was a director for BBC Radio Two and BBC Television’s New Talent UK-wide search for the Voice of Musical Theatre, involved with background music for the film THE ACTORS, coordinated the participation of singing Angels for Stephen Fry’s directorial film debut, BRIGHT YOUNG THINGS and worked on the BBC’s Promenade Concert/Opera, THE WATER DIVINER’S TALE.
As well as touring with her own company, Joan has worked on several plays at the Royal National Theatre and toured plays with ATG and Pleasance Theatre. She recommends scripts to Russian translator colleagues and two plays were produced in Russia recently.
Her varied work in music, theatre, film and television exposed Joan to scripts and screenplays and she is known for having developed the film, THE KING’S SPEECH, directed by Tom Hooper, starring Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush and Helena Bonham Carter, and adapted from the stage play by its author David Seidler.
More recently, she has developed a screenplay from a radio play and has been commissioned to write a screenplay based on a true story. Currently, four TV series on which Joan has worked with first-time writers are under consideration.
Spencer Robinson was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA, and got his start in the Film Industry as a Production Assistant on glamorous productions like car commercial, cereal commercial, and other car commercial. He then landed a job in the mailroom at MBST Entertainment, where he learned about management from some of the legends of the representation world.
After mastering the art of making phone calls and scheduling lunches as an assistant at Cornice Entertainment and Howard Entertainment, he eventually moved to Verve Entertainment where he was promoted to manager. His focus was always split between writers and actors because having relationships with both sides only helps the clients that much more. Six years ago, Verve merged with Art/Work Entertainment, and Spencer is still there.
Art/Work has writers and actors on several TV series, as well as feature writers making movies for major studios. The company also represents comedians who tour nationally and internationally. Spencer has been a manager for 10 years. He loves to watch TV, and even sleeps sometimes.
Diane Drake is an accomplished professional screenwriter, writing instructor, story consultant, speaker, and author. Prior to becoming a screenwriter, Diane served as Vice President of Creative Affairs for Academy Award-winning director/producer Sydney Pollack. Her first produced original script, ONLY YOU, starring Robert Downey, Jr. and Marisa Tomei, sold for one million dollars, while her second produced script, WHAT WOMEN WANT, starring Mel Gibson and Helen Hunt, is the second highest grossing romantic comedy of all time. In addition, both films have recently been remade in China featuring major Chinese stars.
Diane is a member of the Writer’s Guild of America and has been an instructor/speaker/panelist for the Austin Film Festival, UCLA Extension Writer’s Program, Scriptwriter’s Network, Story Development Group, University Club, and Writer’s Store. She has also served as a judge for the Austin Film Festival, UCLA Extension Contest, and The Humanitas Prize. She recently released her debut book, Get Your Story Straight: A Step-By-Step Guide To Screenwriting By A Million Dollar Screenwriter, (Reel Life Publishing, May 2016).www.dianedrake.com
Niall Johnson has been a British-based film writer and director for 20+ years. His most recent work is as a writer on the visually-striking animated drama-documentary ANOTHER DAY OF LIFE, based on the memoir by Ryszard Kapuscinski about the Angolan civil war of the mid-1970s. Winner of the Best Animated Film at this year’s European Film Awards, it received its World Premiere at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival. Niall’s two most recent films as Writer-Director were released within a year of each other: MUM’S LIST (2016) the critically-acclaimed true story weepie romance based on St John Greene’s best-selling memoir, starring Rafe Spall and Emilia Fox; and the Western-styled adventure story THE STOLEN (2017) set in New Zealand’s 1860s Gold Rush, starring Alice Eve, Jack Davenport, Graham McTavish and Richard O’Brien.
Niall came to Hollywood’s notice in 2003 with his spec supernatural script WHITE NOISE, starring Michael Keaton, which opened in January 2005 at #1 in the UK and #2 in the US, where it broke the record at the time for the biggest January opening for a non-sequel. In 2005 Niall wrote and directed black comedy KEEPING MUM, starring Rowan Atkinson, Maggie Smith, Kristin Scott Thomas, and Patrick Swayze. He adapted the script from an original by Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Richard Russo (Nobody’s Fool, Empire Falls). His other credits include wife-swapping comedy-drama THE BIG SWAP, and traditional haunted house TV-Movie THE GHOST OF GREVILLE LODGE starring Prunella Scales and George Cole.
Born and raised in Sutton Coldfield, near Birmingham, Niall’s passion for movies is a result of a childhood spent producing epic remakes of the likes of PLANET OF THE APES, STAR TREK, DOCTOR WHO and BATMAN with his brother, a friend, and a silent Kodak 8mm film camera—the most notable recurring feature of these being his mother’s laundry hanging on the washing line in the back-yard.