Monday, March 3, 2014


Los Angeles – The Writers Guild of America, West has announced its 2014 Feature Access Project honorees, recognizing nine WGAW members who     competed in the Guild’s diversity screenwriting programme.                                  

Coordinated by the WGAW Diversity Department, the Guild project seeks to identify outstanding diverse writers and make their scripts available to entertainment industry decision-makers, including producers, studio executives, agents and managers, to help raise their profile and generate potential employment opportunities. More information about the honorees and complete versions of their screenplays can be found at:


There are three honorees of  Indian origin among the nine.

RADHA BHARADWAJ – “Final Boarding”
Radha Bharadwaj is an Indian filmmaker, film producer and screenwriter. She moved to the United States in her late teens to study film. Bharadwaj's screenwriting and directing feature debut is Closet Land. The critically acclaimed surreal psychological drama was released by Universal Pictures in 1991, making Radha Bharadwaj the first director of Indian descent to have a film released by a major Hollywood studio. Closet Land stars Alan Rickman and Madeleine Stowe. Ron Howard and Brian Grazer produced the feature. The screenplay for Closet Land won the Nicholl Screenwriting Fellowship sponsored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, among others.

Bharadwaj's second feature is the Victorian gothic mystery, Basil. The period thriller, set in the United Kingdom, stars Derek Jacobi, Christian Slater, Jared Leto and Claire Forlani. The director's cut for Basil was twice selected to be the closing night film for the Special Presentation series at the Toronto International Film Festival, and chosen for a prime slot at the Los Angeles Film Festival. The film was also acclaimed at the American Film Market.

NAYAN PADRAI -  "Billion Dollar Raja"
Nayan Padrai, director, co-writer, producer  studied screenwriting and filmmaking at The School of Visual Arts, NYC.  In his early twenties, Padrai trained with some of the finest acting teachers in New York, which gave him the foundation to write characters and dialogue. Padrai was the Co-Founder and President of CineMaya Media,  one of the largest South Asian media, entertainment and marketing conglomerates in the U.S. There, Padrai wrote, produced and/or directed over 300 hours of Indian television programming across genres, oversaw publication of several newspaper titles, the development of a radio station and television network, and founded an advertising agency which was one of the top 15 multi-cultural advertising agencies (ranked by Ad Age). As a screenwriter, Padrai (and his writing partner Ralph Stein) have written over a dozen screenplays together.  When Harry Tries to Marry” is Padrai’s  feature film directional debut.  He had also adapted “Beneath a Marble Sky,” based on the acclaimed novel of the same name, which was to be produced by Eriq LaSalle’s Humble Journey Films.  

“Guns and Saris”

Tianna Majumdar-Langham is British/Indian and grew up in England, India and the U.S. Chris was born in Sudan to Egyptian/Armenian parents, though his family fled to Australia after a military coup. They both currently live in Santa Monica.

Tianna Majumdar-Langham and Chris Bessounian won the 2011 Academy Nicholl Fellowships with Guns and Saris. Their screenplay, Butcher of Bosnia, reached the Top 30 in the same year. In 2008, they won a BAFTA/LA Student Award for their short film, The Kolaborator, which screened in over 50 film festivals worldwide. They are currently writing a number of international projects, including  The Neighbor, a thriller set in Switzerland for Amka Films, and Cristina and Violetta, a Swedish/Italian co-production for producer Peter Kropenin. They have just completed A Perfect Terrorist, their Academy Nicholl Fellowships’ year screenplay, and are developing a number of other film and television projects.


The other six honorees are:

Soo-Hyun Chung – Faith
Q.Terah Jackson III – Rustin
Joy Kecken – All-In
LaToya Morgan – Same River Twice
Galen Tong – The Monkey King

The Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW) is a labor union representing writers of motion pictures, television, radio and Internet programming, including news and documentaries. Founded in 1933, the Guild negotiates and administers contracts that protect the creative and economic rights of its members. It is involved in a wide range of programs that advance the interests of writers, and is active in public policy and legislative matters on the local, national and international levels. For more information on the WGAW, please visit:

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