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The San Francisco Film Society, in partnership with the Djerassi Resident Artists Program, announced the winner and honorable mention of the 2011 Djerassi Residency Award/San Francisco Film Society Screenwriting Fellowship given annually to encourage the career of an emerging or established screenwriter. The fellowship is part of the Film Society’s suite of filmmaker services designed to foster creativity and further the careers of independent filmmakers. Adam Chanzit was selected for his project The 15th Stone. Christy Chan was awarded an Honorable Mention for her screenplay, This Must Be the Place.

The panelists who reviewed the finalists’ submissions are Eric Escobar, screenwriter/filmmaker; Brent Hoff, writer/filmmaker/editor; Sara Dosa, SFFS grants and residencies coordinator and Athena Kalkopoulou, SFFS fiscal sponsorship coordinator. The jury commented, “After a passionate debate, we chose a screenwriter who possesses tremendous skill. The Djerassi Residency will allow him to further hone his craft and produce a script that we believe will go far.”

The Djerassi Resident Artists Program, located 40 miles south of San Francisco in the Santa Cruz Mountains overlooking the Pacific Ocean, offers living and studio accommodations and all meals at no cost to an emerging or established screenwriter from August 9 through September 8, 2011. The award provides uninterrupted time for work, reflection and collegial interaction, making the opportunity unique in its capacity to provide the winner with an inspiring and supportive environment in a stunning rural location. The winner and honorable mention were selected from 67 applications submitted in response to an international call for entries. This award is supported by a gift from Dale Djerassi.

WINNER
Adam Chanzit, The 15th Stone
When a struggling Cleveland musician receives disturbing emails from his former best friend, he decides to find his old pal. The trail leads to a Daoist temple in the mountains of China where his friend has established a new life for himself. But a number of troubling activities — visits by government officials, the trading of illegal goods, the exchange of a child — lead the musician to suspect that a nefarious network may be operating out of the temple and that his friend may be involved.

HONORABLE MENTION
Christy Chan, This Must Be the Place
The Chen family travels to China to visit its ancestral village, unaware that the genealogy agency purportedly specializing in reuniting emigrants with their families is running an elaborate scam. The agency escorts Chinese Americans to a village in rural China where actors and locals have been cast to play the emigrants’ destitute relatives. The Chens have trouble adapting to rural life and their earnestness begins to affect the villagers’ game plan. An expected death strains the fake family ties to the breaking point. For more information visit christychan.net.

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