The TV Foundation (the umbrella charity of the Edinburgh TV Festival, brought to you by YouTube and Screen Scotland), is teaming up with internationally renowned journalist, documentary maker, broadcaster and author, Louis Theroux, to launch a new talent search to discover the next generation of on-screen documentary makers who want to follow in his investigative footsteps.
Looking For Louis will culminate in a must-see session at this year’s Festival where Theroux and his production company partners Nancy Strang and Arron Fellows will reveal the talented winner.
The search has been launched through Theroux’s production company, Mindhouse Productions, in partnership with The TV Foundation and Amazon Prime Video with support from The TriForce Creative Network.
Entrants will be asked to submit a one-page pitch for a two-minute micro-documentary. The submissions will be whittled down to a shortlist of 10 selected by a panel of influential industry figures. The shortlisted filmmakers will be given support to make their two-minute doc, to be shot on a mobile phone.
Mindhouse will select the six finalists whose films will form the basis of an Edinburgh TV Festival session featuring the filmmakers and Mindhouse executives including Theroux himself. The session will also examine Theroux’s passion regarding the need to find a new generation of creative and investigative talent and what advice he’d give to aspiring documentary makers.
The winner, announced during the Festival session, will win a six-month, exclusive development period with Mindhouse working with the company’s creative team to develop projects and pitch them to commissioners as well as free access to the Festival for the shortlist and winners.
In addition, Prime Video will also offer the winner a bespoke, 12-month programme of mentoring and training, overseen by Fozia Khan, Amazon Studios Unscripted Executive, to help them further their career goals.
Theroux said: “I am very excited to be part of this initiative. For me, one of the best parts of launching Mindhouse is being involved behind the scenes with new talent who can tell fresh stories in different and exciting ways. To paraphrase Danny Glover in Lethal Weapon, I’m getting old for this shit, and my knees aren’t what they once were. We need to safeguard the future of irreverent and intelligent on-camera reporting by bringing up the next generation of presenters.”
Campbell Glennie, MD of the Edinburgh TV Festival and TV Foundation said: “The TV Foundation is all about reaching out to, and discovering, new talent and showcasing that working in TV can be a career for anyone. Our schemes aim to ensure those who work in TV are as diverse as those watching it and in this initiative, spearheaded by the force of nature that is Louis Theroux, is a natural extension to our activity to find the industry leaders of tomorrow. We thank Louis, Mindhouse, Amazon Prime Video and TCN for teaming up with us to make this happen. The session at the Festival itself is going to be a must-watch for talent-spotters everywhere.”
“Documentary filmmaking in the UK is world class, so we’re excited to be helping unearth the future generation of filmmaking talent, and mentoring and training them to help propel them to the next level in their career,” said Fozia Khan, UK Unscripted Executive at Amazon Studios.
“We’re really excited to be working with Mindhouse to offer budding journalistic talent the chance to be front and centre presenting their own ideas,” said Fraser Ayres of TriForce Creative Network. “It’s such a great opportunity to accelerate the winners’ careers.”
Submissions are now open until 11.59pm on Sunday 25 July. More information and terms & conditions can be found at: www.thetvfestival.com/lookingforlouis