In June 2016, the Nantucket Film Festival and Screenwriters Colony launched of a new writers program, the Screenwriters Colony: Episodic Comedy, which ran June 10-23, 2016.

This inaugural collaboration provided four emerging episodic comedy writers with an all-expense paid trip to Nantucket for an immersive residency and mentorship program. While on Nantucket, the writers worked together with eminent professional industry mentors to experience the writers’ room, hone their craft, and develop their pilots.

The culmination of the Colony took place at the Film Festival on June 23 at the Legacy Lounge in the Dreamland Theater: Selections From Screenwriters Colony: Episodic Comedy. Our four talented writers presented live excerpts from their original pilots scripts featuring actors from the White Heron Theatre Company.

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Screenwriters Colony: Episodic Comedy

The Nantucket Film Festival’s Episodic Screenplay (30 Min) Competition winner received one of the spots in the writers-in-residence program. The Tony Cox Screenplay Competitions are sponsored by Showtime.

Eric Gilliland served as the Creative Advisor on the curriculum and will run the two-week program in June. Gilliland is a Peabody- and Golden Globe-winning writer/producer whose television credits include Roseanne, The Wonder Years, Who’s The Boss?, and That 70’s Show. Gilliland also produced the documentary God Grew Tired of Us: The Story of The Lost Boys of Sudan, which won both the Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival. He currently teaches at Tisch’s Goldberg School of Dramatic Writing at New York University.


Matt hobby
Joseph Smith & His W.I.V.E.S. (Women In Very Extreme Situations)

After she is rescued from kidnappers by the Mormon prophet, Joseph Smith, and his W.I.V.E.S. (Woman in Very Extreme Situations), Farrah, a St. Louis socialite, must decide whether to join their team in the epic battle between the Smiths and Jesus Christ.


Kevin Seccia
Vengeance IV: The Revenge

A man inadvertently Airbnb's his house to a Liam Neeson-esque tough guy.


Rose Surnow

An awkward tomboy is forced to deal with her intimacy issues when she gets a job as a sex writer. It's like Sex and the City if Carrie Bradshaw were Daria Morgendorffer.


Wyndham Lewis
The Godmother
Winner: Showtime Tony Cox Episodic Screenplay (30 Min) Competition

The black sheep of a perfect family is called on to take care of her spoiled niece and nephew when their parents go to prison for fraud.

About Screenwriters Colony

The Nantucket Film Festival is proud of its decade-long partnership with the Screenwriters Colony, an alliance dedicated to developing new writing talent. Each year the winner of NFF’s Showtime Tony Cox Feature Screenplay Competition receives an all-expenses paid, month-long artist-residency with the Screenwriters Colony.

The Screenwriters Colony is an artists-residency and mentorship program dedicated to supporting the next generation of talent. Its purpose is to offer screenwriters in the early stage of their careers a place to work and live that encourages them to find their voices and push the boundaries of their craft under the guidance of established industry professionals. 

Each year the Screenwriters Colony brings four emerging screenwriters together during the month of October to live and work together at picturesque Almanack Farm, perched on the edge of Nantucket’s cranberry bog conservation land. To ensure a comfortable and inspiring work environment, the Screenwriters Colony is an all-expenses-paid residency. Writers are provided with round-trip transportation to the Colony, a chef, shared car, bicycles, and private workspace.

Selected from a pool of industry-nominated candidates, the four writers-in-residence are granted ample time to generate and refine their projects and share work amongst themselves. With the belief that unique visions exist in every genre, and that the most dynamic group is made up of a diversity of voices, the Colony supports writers working in all genres from mainstream to independent to experimental.

Two industry mentors are brought up on three weekends throughout the month to workshop each of the writers’ screenplays. In addition to intensive one-on-one feedback sessions, writers and mentors enjoy an informal and sociable Colony experience over dinners and other island outings. Mentors are drawn from an ever-expanding pool of accomplished screenwriters, directors, producers and executives from throughout the industry.

Former Mentors and Advisors:

  • Campbell Scott, actor/writer/director (Off the Map, Big Night, Rodger Dodger)
  • Oren Moverman, screenwriter (Jesus’ Son, I’m Not There, The Messenger)
  • Bingham Ray, founder October Films and former president of United Artists
  • L.M. Kit Carson, producer/screenwriter (Paris, Texas, Bottle Rocket)
  • Coleman Hough, screenwriter (Full Frontal, Bubble)
  • Lawrence Inglee, creative executive at Marc Gordon Pictures (Saving Private Ryan, The Day After Tomorrow)
  • Whit Stillman, writer/director (Metropolitan, The Last Days of Disco)
  • Patty Jenkins, writer/director (Monster)
  • Dan Harris, writer/director (Imaginary Heroes) and screenwriter (Superman Returns, X­-Men)
  • Peter Sollett and Eva Vives, writer/director and co­writer (Raising Victor Vargas)