Applications now open worldwide for the 2020 Pustnik Screenwriters Residency


    TETA has opened applications for the 6th edition of Pustnik Screenwriters Residency which has been scheduled for 7-15 September 2020. Pustnik is the only Romania-based residency for feature film development and is dedicated to young and emerging filmmakers from all over the world.

    Pustnik is always hosted in remote locations, and in the last few years the Port Cetate has been its home on the banks of Danube. Acknowledging that travel and social distancing guidelines will be in flux between now and September, the team at Pustnik have worked out an alternative plan for an online-only edition for the residency program.

    Eight screenwriters – two from Romania and six internationals – will develop their first or second feature-length screenplays. Applicants are required to have previously written at least one short or feature film (fiction only) which has screened at a notable international film festival. Projects can be written in any language but fluency in English is mandatory for all residency activities.

    Applications are open at www.pustnik.com until June 15. As a non-profit organisation run by screenwriters for screenwriters, there are no application or participation fees. 

    The residents will be selected by the co-founders of Pustnik, Andreea Borțun (writer/director, Romania) and Bryn Chainey (writer/director, UK/Australia). In July the successful applicants will be announced as well as the final decision on whether the residency will return to the Danube or be an online-only edition. 

    Besides dedicated writing time, Pustnik residents will receive feedback on their projects from fellow writers and established European filmmakers. The first confirmed guest for this year’s edition is Romanian producer Bianca Oana, whose recent work includes Touch Me Not (winner of the 2018 Berlinale Golden Bear) and the 2019 documentary Collective (Toronto, Venice, Sundance).

    In the case of an online-only edition, Pustnik will offer each writer a micro-grant of 700 euros.

    “Pustnik began as a residency hosted by screenwriters for screenwriters. For us it has always been about focusing on the writers’ needs. We know the struggles and we know those unseen fears that hide behind our writing. 

    We also know that good cinema needs time and intimacy. And this has always taken centre stage in whatever we do at Pustnik. It’s still uncertain how the next couple of months will play out. We don’t know if we will be able to meet at Port Cetate for this year’s residency but we do know that whatever shape Pustnik will take, it will be there to offer a helping hand to the upcoming writers we admire. We are living through times in which artists are themselves going through a cultural state of emergency. That’s why, in the case of not being able to host the residency, we’ve decided to offer the 8 selected filmmakers online tutoring and a grant that would allow them to clear their schedule for one week and work on their feature projects.

    We have designed this programme to offer you a context of freedom. That may mean to run away in a remote place or to stay at home and get paid for your writing.” (Andreea Borțun)

    “Writers can apply with fiction projects covering any topic, and our aim is to support their writing process rather than shape it. That said, each year we decide on a theme that helps us structure our group discussions; in 2020 we’re focusing on The Seen and Unseen.

    For every word that lands on the page there are countless others which have been considered, tried, deleted, adapted, then abandoned; for each success in a writer’s career, there’s a secret backroom of failures; and for every action a character makes on-screen, there are a multitude of hidden forces motivating them. The writer’s challenge and privilege is to navigate the seen and unseen aspects of our world, and to forge connections between them.” (Bryn Chainey)


    About Pustnik:

    Pustnik is the first international screenwriters residency to take place in Romania. It aims to create an environment dedicated to clarity of thought, away from modern pressures. Pustnik is also a growing network of film professionals and a community whose aim is to ease and encourage collaboration across the international cinema industry.

    For more information:

    Laura Mușat – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Pustnik is organized by TETA

    TETA is an NGO founded in June 2006 and its main purpose is developing cultural activities and events to promote an alternative education for all participants enrolled in its projects and at the same time to offer a cultural revival to the communities in which the events take place. TETA is also producing films and theatre performances. 

    Cultural project co-funded by the National Cultural Fund Administration (AFCN) and Romanian Filmmakers’ Union (UCIN)

    Media partners: Film New Europe, Films in Frame, AARC, Observator Cultural