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Sammie - Jo Cunnane, LISP 2022 Short Screenplay Official Selection by 'Sabriyya'

LISP 2022 Short Screenplay Official Selection 'Sabriyya' by Sammie - Jo Cunnane

- Can you please tell us about you and your daily life?

I am an artist and illustrator mainly but I also enjoy writing as a hobby. I have always been driven towards the more controversial subject matter, especially around areas of trauma and mental health from the female perspective. To me, this topic is like a well-loved armchair with its old familiar grooves, it is a personal expression and cathartic process as well as an opportunity for awareness.

- When and how did you get into writing?

I have always enjoyed original writing in school although I had never really written a script before I studied my degree in film. I think it gave me an opportunity to try a completely new writing medium that I have grown to love. - How does it feel to have your work recognised?

I am incredibly grateful for any kind of recognition as the creative industry can be quite disheartening at times. I feel it is really important to recognise and celebrate independent artists and creative people whenever possible. - How did you develop the idea for your LISP-selected story? Is there a story behind your story? And, how long have you been working on it? I had worked on the concept for Sabriyya for a couple of months and completely immersed myself in research into the countries, cultural norms and especially immigration and the life surrounding a refugee fleeing their home. The idea was inspired by The Little Match Girl by Hans Christian Andersen as I loved the story as a child, it is so bleak but powerful in its message. I wanted to bring the story into the modern day and I felt that the idea of the child refugee would marry perfectly with the concept of the little match girl in her frozen isolation and longing. A girl adrift in the world reminiscing of what was and dreaming of what could be with a far from picture perfect resolution. I felt the lack of a happy ending was important as it reflects the real world issue of immigration and the struggle refugees face when they reach supposed sanctuary.

- Can you please give us a few tips about writing a Screenplay?

I like to write from what I know and even if the story isn't from a real memory, the characters will be based on relationships in my life. I feel this helps with scriptwriting as the dialogue will have more of a natural flow and feel more alive and realistic. - Lastly, do you recommend the writers submit their screenplays to LISP?

I would recommend writers submit their work to LISP, they are well organised, vigilant in communication and are very approachable.



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