Award-winning Scottish writer Krysty Wilson-Cairns is the first ever EIFF Screenwriter-in-Residence. Between now and June 2017, when the film festival will return to the city, Krysty will have access to the four Edinburgh universities where she can develop project ideas with science and humanities researchers.
This new programme has been developed and supported by Wellcome and in partnership with the Beltane Public Engagement Network who provide links and facilitate access to research at The University of Edinburgh, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh Napier University and Queen Margaret University. This access helps build connections between the worlds of film and science.
Born in Glasgow, Krysty graduated from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and went on to gain her masters in screenwriting at the NFTS.
Krysty’s screenwriting credits include supernatural television drama PENNY DREADFUL and the award-winning short films ALL MEN’S DEAD, THE END OF AN ERA and FINK.
Krysty was named a 2014 Screen Star of Tomorrow and is currently in development with features THE VOYEUR’S MOTEL (Dir. Sam Mendes & Prod. Steven Spielberg) and THE GOOD NURSE (Prod. Darran Aronofsky). Her original screenplay AETHER was listed in the top ten of the 2014 BLACKLIST, BRIT LIST and the HIT LIST and was picked up by Film Nation Entertainment.
Throughout her residency Krysty will be sending in updates on her progress and experiences. Here's her first update:
As someone who often deals in make believe, I thought I might have some sort of authority on the odd, the magical, and the weird. But after a few weeks into my time as the Edinburgh International Film Festival’s Screenwriter in Residence I realize that the authorities on magic, oddness and utter weirdness are very much the scientists. And they are wonderful.
You’ll have to excuse me if I get a little sycophantic here, but when you meet people who are dedicating their lives to things like curing kidney disease or Alzheimer’s, it’s hard to not want to put them on your shoulders and parade them through town for being total heroes. Since I lack upper body strength, I plan on doing a little of that parading here, and of course in my work as a screenwriter.
As I’m embedded with some of the foremost universities in the country, I’ve been treating my year long residency as an academic year, so here follows my update as I come to the end of term one.
The University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Napier, Heriot-Watt University, and Queen Margaret University, or The Fab Four as I like to call them, have opened their doors to me, and like a muggle that has been invited to Hogwarts, I’ve mainly spent these last few weeks mouth open, oscillating between, “really?” and “wow.”
I’ve had the pleasure of meeting people who are working on bio-mining asteroids; creating of gel matrixes, which will hold stem cells and allow us to print organs; fellows working in the field of acoustics and using computer models to create sounds that have never, ever been heard before; and this list could go on, and on, and on.
The areas and fields covered by the fellows and researchers at The Fab Four are so vast, and wide, and like the universe still expanding. I am a science-fiction nerd in a candy shop. There has been a character idea, or a story, or an incredible concept in every single meeting. Story ideas abound, and I’m sort of hoping someone at one of these fantastic Universities perfects human cloning, I’m afraid I won’t have the time to tell all the stories I’m going to have by the end of term three.
About the partners
Wellcome exists to improve health for everyone by helping great ideas to thrive. They are a global charitable foundation, both politically and financially independent. They support scientists and researchers, take on big problems, fuel imaginations and spark debate.
Beltane Public Engagement Network:
Beltane is a network for people interested in making academic research accessible to a wide variety of audiences. Beltane is providing access to the best researchers in the region and facilitating access to behind-the-scenes at the research labs. Beltane is supported by four Edinburgh universities: The University of Edinburgh, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh Napier University and Queen Margaret University.