A spur-of-the-moment decision to enter a New Zealand film competition could spell fame for a budding Invercargill scriptwriter.
Emma Schranz, a Southern Institute of Technology graduate film student, entered the synopsis for her film Valley of Souls in the New Zealand Film Commission's and Dark Sky Films' Make my Horror Movie competition.
It offers the winner $200,000 to produce their movie with a location and cast of their choice.
Two days after entering, Ms Schranz was contacted by a producer working alongside Hollywood director Daniel Kaufman asking for more of her work after being sent a link to her entry via Facebook.
Kaufman has worked on blockbusters including X-men: The Last Stand and District 9.
Ms Schranz is now waiting to hear whether her work could give her the career-changing opportunity to collaborate with Kaufman and his team on the script of new sci-fi blockbuster Atlantis: Conspiracy, set to begin production next year.
"I'll hear hopefully by next week," she said.
Ms Schranz said the opportunity had been completely unexpected. "It's completely surreal. I never really thought about entering [the competition] as an advertisement of my work."
Ms Schranz said that, despite the excitement of waiting to hear back from Hollywood, she planned to focus on graduating and garnering more support for her Make My Horror Film entry. The winning film concept needs to attract the most attention via social networks, as well as impressing a panel of industry judges.
Ms Schranz said her entry was "gaining lots of momentum" and had already earned a spot on the "most popular page" on the competition website with more than 450 likes.
"The competition is opening strange and wonderful doors," she said.
The top two films of Make my Horror Movie will be announced on December 7 at the New Zealand Film Awards with the overall winner announced on January 16.
Olivia Taylor-Peebles is a Southern Institute of Technology journalism student.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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