Since its launch in 2011, The Sam Spiegel International Film Lab has become a leading force in the development of groundbreaking feature films by some of the world’s most promising talents.
Each year the Lab selects 12 international writers/directors who are at advanced stages of writing their first/second narrative feature film. The participants are invited to Jerusalem for two working sessions and an additional session via zoom, over a seven to eight month period.
The selected projects undergo an in-depth process with one of our acclaimed script editors, after which they are presented to an audience (after a short pitch training) of jury members and decision makers, highly esteemed film professionals at a celebratory communal event in Jerusalem. The jury awards production prizes totaling $50,000- $70,000, generously donated by the Beracha Foundation. The Lab holds the rights to change the amount of the prizes.
The Sam Spiegel International Film Lab supports bold storytellers, who look deeply into the human experience in search for their unique truth.
The projects speak for themselves.
The Sam Spiegel International Film Lab supplies filmmakers with creative oxygen- time, mentorship, and deadlines.
The Lab participants are invited to Jerusalem for one 4-6 day writing session which usually takes place in December and an online 4-6 day writing session which usually takes place March or April. During these days, the Lab's devoted script editors lead an in-depth process with the filmmakers, listen to each project, defining its needs: Searching for its heartbeat, the pulse of the story, mining for the characters' emotional truth. Asking difficult questions that need to be faced to make each script the best it can be.
Between the face-to-face sessions, filmmakers meet the script editors online, to continue the work in progress. As the third session nears, the developed scripts are submitted for the jury's reading. At this point the producers and filmmakers are required to create a short scene which best reflects the artistic intent and vision of the film-to-be.
Before the final session the filmmakers receive a short pitching training.
In the third and final three to five-day session, which takes place in July, the projects meet the world! At the pitching event, filmmaker and producer teams present their projects and scenes to the prestigious jury members, as well as to an audience of relevant decision makers from the international film circuit. Based on the full script and the artistic vision, the jury awards production prizes totaling $50,000-$70,000, generously donated by the Beracha Foundation. The Lab holds the rights to change the amount of the prizes.
This final session creates opportunities for the projects' producers to meet potential partners- co-producers, sales and distribution companies, funders- and solidify their production packages.
Conducted in the Sam Spiegel work ethic, the seven to eight-month Lab is as rewarding as it is demanding.