The Pitch – The Judges

The judges will select, at their own discretion, pitches they believe are equipped to impact the world through art and film. Further information is available on judging criteria and how the voting works.

The Pitch 2014 – Industry Judging Panel

 

Paula Gooder

Dr Paula Gooder is a freelance writer and lecturer in Biblical Studies. Her research areas are the writings of Paul the Apostle (with a particular focus on 2 Corinthians), New Testament Interpretation and the development of Ministry in the New Testament Period.

She is Canon Theologian of Birmingham and Guildford Cathedrals, Lay Canon at Salisbury Cathedral, a Six preacher of Canterbury Cathedral, Vice president of the Bible Society, Visiting lecturer at King's College, London, and Associate lecturer at St Mellitus College, London. She is a Reader in the Church of England and a member of General Synod. Paula attended the finals for The Pitch in January 2013 and was a judge in January 2014. She is particularly interested in story form and keen to help the theological development of the competition.

 

David Gyasi

Actor David Gyasi was born in Hammersmith, London and has appeared on Stage, TV and Screen. Currently he is filming on Christopher Nolan's Interstellar and previous screen appearances include Cloud Atlas, The Dark Knight Rises, Red Tails (all 2012), and Shooting Dogs. Amongst his many TV appearances are White Heat, Dr Who, Waking the Dead, Murderland and Law and Order, and he has appeared on stage across the UK including War Horse at the National Theatre.

 

Nev Pierce

A journalist and screenwriter, Nev Pierce is Editor-At-Large for EMPIRE, the world’s biggest film magazine. He also contributes regularly to The Observer and his work has appeared in The Guardian, The Independent, The Sunday Times and Esquire. He has served on two BAFTA juries and reviewed films for Sky News and BBC Radio. He wrote the short film Rahab, for previous Pitch-winner Rob McLellan, and has various screenplays in development, including his directorial debut. If you want to read some of his articles – including interviews with Brad Pitt and Jack Nicholson – and learn more about him than you could possibly need to know, visit nevpierce.com.

 

Lucy Scher

A founding director of The Script Factory (1996) Lucy saw success with the first season of Screenplay Readings in London, sourcing talent and finance for unproduced projects. Through innovative development and training programmes over the last 16 years, Lucy has worked with numerous writers on short, feature and documentary projects including writers Paul Fraser (Twenty Four Seven), Alice Addison (The Hunter); and celebrated documentary filmmaker Nick Broomfield.

An experienced development mentor; she has devised and delivered courses for numerous production companies; worked for regional production funds; and conducts training for The Script Factory both throughout the UK and internationally. Lucy is author of Reading Screenplays: How to analyse and evaluate film scripts (Kamara Books, 2011)

 

Previous Judges

 

Anna Cox

Anna Cox has worked at the BBC since 1993 as a documentary director and producer. Her award winning films have ranged from a fly on the wall documentary for BBC2, about an experiment into prayer in the States, to numerous drama documentaries for BBC1. Her work has taken her from the deserts of Egypt to the suburbs of New Zealand, via the “Hollywood” sets in remote parts of Morocco. She’s currently producing four hours series of TV for BBC1, which will broadcast in the lead up to Christmas this year.

 

Paula Gooder

Dr Paula Gooder is a freelance writer and lecturer in Biblical Studies. Her research areas are the writings of Paul the Apostle (with a particular focus on 2 Corinthians), New Testament Interpretation and the development of Ministry in the New Testament Period.

She is Canon Theologian of Birmingham and Guildford Cathedrals, Lay Canon at Salisbury Cathedral, a Six preacher of Canterbury Cathedral, Vice president of the Bible Society, Visiting lecturer at King's College, London, and Associate lecturer at St Mellitus College, London. She is a Reader in the Church of England and a member of General Synod. Paula attended the finals for The Pitch in January 2013 and was a judge in January 2014. She is particularly interested in story form and keen to help the theological development of the competition.

 

David Gyasi

Actor David Gyasi was born in Hammersmith, London and has appeared on Stage, TV and Screen. Currently he is filming on Christopher Nolan's Interstellar and previous screen appearances include Cloud Atlas, The Dark Knight Rises, Red Tails (all 2012), and Shooting Dogs. Amongst his many TV appearances are White Heat, Dr Who, Waking the Dead, Murderland and Law and Order, and he has appeared on stage across the UK including War Horse at the National Theatre.

 

Stuart Hazeldine

Stuart Hazeldine is one of a select number of UK-based screenwriters who write exclusively for the major Hollywood studios. His first credit was the sci-fi TV movie Riverworld in 2003. In 2007 he rewrote The Day The Earth Stood Still (directed by Scott Derrickson, starring Keanu Reeves & Jennifer Connelly) and the thriller Knowing (directed by Alex Proyas, starring Nicolas Cage).

He recently adapted John Milton's epic religious fantasy poem 'Paradise Lost' to be directed by Alex Proyas in January 2011 starring Bradley Cooper, Benjamin Walker and Casey Affleck, and has just written ‘Gods and Kings', an epic retelling of the story of Moses, for producer Dan Lin (‘Sherlock Holmes') and Warner Bros.

Stuart made his directorial debut with the British psychological thriller Exam, which he also wrote, produced (with Gareth Unwin) and financed. It won the Santa Barbara Film Festival and the Bronze Hitchcock award at the Dinard Film Festival. He was nominated for a 2010 BAFTA for Best Debut.

 

Toby Jones

Distinguished stage, television, and film actor Toby Jones was born on September 7, 1966 in Hammersmith, London. His parents, Freddie Jones and Jennifer Heselwood, are actors as well. Toby has two brothers: Rupert, a director, and Casper, a fellow actor. He studied Drama at the University of Manchester from 1986 to 1989, and at L'École Internationale de Théâtre in Paris under Jacques Lecoq from 1989 to 1991. Naturally, his career began on the stage (and continues there), but film and television roles came soon after his studies. This British character actor has appeared in many films including Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002), The Mist (2007), Frost/Nixon (2008) Captain America: The First Avenger (2011) and The Hunger Games (2012)

 

Martin Kiszko

Martin has composed and orchestrated over 200 scores for film and TV. Amongst these were the landmark natural history series Land of the Eagle and Realms of the Russian Bear, in which he pioneered the recording of music samples on film locations. The diversity of Martin’s material also embraces BBC, ITV and C4 dramas including: Black Hearts in Battersea, The Levels, and The Uninvited. His TV signature tunes include: BBC’s Newsround, Food and Drink, Omnibus, Wildlife on Two and The Natural World. Martin Kiszko is an external examiner for the National Film and Television School's MA composers.

 

David Oyelowo

David has worked in film, TV and Theatre in the UK and the USA. He played Henry VI with the RSC (d: Michael Boyd) and Prometheus in Prometheus Bound, in both London and New York. His work in TV includes Kremlin in No1. Ladies detective Agency, the last work from Anthony Minghella, and Danny in three series of the BBC programme Spooks. Recent film credits include Joe ‘Lightning’ Little in the Lucas Films epic Red Tails. He was nominated for Best Actor in the 2010 Royal Television Society Awards.

David plays the protagonist in The Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011). He is currently in production of One Shot playing opposite Tom Cruise. He is married to the actress Jessica Oyelowo and they are currently living in Los Angeles. Both Jessica and David starred in the winning pitch for 2010: Rahab.

 

Nick Park

Mention Wallace and Gromit to almost anyone and they’ll automatically smile. The cheese-obsessed inventor and his trusty dog have become part of the national consciousness and, along with the Creature Comforts animated series, have won Nick four Oscars and six BAFTAs.

 

Debs Paterson

Debs is a director and writer, whose first feature 'Africa United' was made by Pathé and BBC Films in 2010.

Debs was born in Taiwan, raised in the north of England, did A levels in the south of India and then studied literature at Cambridge. She then presented 'Total Football' (the Match of the Day equivalent) in Singapore for the 2000-01 season, getting a co-producing credit on the show by the end of the year. Knowing that she wanted to direct movies, she moved back to London and spent the next five years working in every aspect of the industry from casting to producing, to corporate promos, charity videos, live and motion graphics and trade unions. She was in a bad car accident late 2003 which put everything on hold, but when she was fully recovered she started making short films again. Her first short in 2007 was 'We Are All Rwandans', filmed on location with non-professional Rwandan actors. Her second was 'Home' - made for LA's 168 Film Festival, where she won best director. Her third was 'Supraman and the School of Necessity' - commissioned as a finalist film for US-based contest 'The Doorpost Film Project', and shot on 16mm in Bangalore, India. Then in 2009, the idea arrived for 'Africa United'.

Debs was nominated for the Best Debut Director BIFA for Africa United in 2010, and was a BAFTA Brit to Watch in 2011. She is currently developing a slate of new projects and splits her time between London and LA.

 

Nev Pierce

A journalist and screenwriter, Nev Pierce is Editor-At-Large for EMPIRE, the world's biggest film magazine. He also contributes regularly to The Observer and his work has appeared in The Guardian, The Independent, The Sunday Times and Esquire. He has served on two BAFTA juries and reviewed films for Sky News and BBC Radio. He wrote the short film Rahab, for previous Pitch-winner Rob McLellan, and has various screenplays in development, including his directorial debut. If you want to read some of his articles – including interviews with Brad Pitt and Jack Nicholson – and learn more about him than you could possibly need to know, visit nevpierce.com.

 

Lucy Scher

A founding director of The Script Factory (1996) Lucy saw success with the first season of Screenplay Readings in London, sourcing talent and finance for unproduced projects. Through innovative development and training programmes over the last 16 years, Lucy has worked with numerous writers on short, feature and documentary projects including writers Paul Fraser (Twenty Four Seven), Alice Addison (The Hunter); and celebrated documentary filmmaker Nick Broomfield.

An experienced development mentor; she has devised and delivered courses for numerous production companies; worked for regional production funds; and conducts training for The Script Factory both throughout the UK and internationally. Lucy is author of Reading Screenplays: How to analyse and evaluate film scripts (Kamara Books, 2011)

 

David Suchet

Most famous for his portrayal of Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot, David is also an internationally acclaimed theatrical performer. He took the lead role in the play Oleanna, directed by Harold Pinter, at the Royal Court Theatre. His other TV credits include: Maxwell and The Way We Live Now. He has won two RTS awards and an Emmy.