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SCREENWRITER (SHE/HER)

VEIALU
AILA-UNSWORTH

My name is Veialu (pronounced Vay-ah-lou). I'm a screenwriter of mixed heritage from Papua New Guinea and New Zealand, based in San Francisco.

 

I write stories that explore identity, history, and finding our voices in the world as females of color. 

My genre is dramas/dramedies.

I meditate.

I have two master's degrees.

I once did a Goddess workshop in Egypt, whitewater rafted in Nepal, and saw a ghost in Rome.

29 is the number of countries I've traveled to.

5 of them I've lived in.

A punnet is what you get berries in where I'm from.

I make little houses from old boxes for my cats.

I’ve watched more movies and series than is probably medically advisable.

MY BACKGROUND

 

I found my happy-place screenwriting after 15+ years in the game as an award-winning television creative in Australia - writing, producing, directing, and editing 100s of Network TV campaigns - as well as directing theater pieces and short films (one of my shorts screened at the prestigious Berlin Film Festival and 27 film festivals).

AND I BLOG

I'm also the creator of @hollywood.diversity a film blog that celebrates diversity in old Hollywood, and  @united.we.rawr a community for underrepresented filmmakers.

Thanks for stopping by!

FAVORITES

 

First Storytelling Heroes: 

 

Anne Frank, Hone Tuwhare (Maori poet), Billie Holiday, Charlie Chaplin, Janet Frame (N.Z. author), elders who told me Maori myths, Nina Simone

Favorite Scripts: 

 

Stand by Me, Handmaid's Tale (pilot), The English Patient, Call Me By Your Name, Euphoria (pilot), Boogie Nights , Moonlight

Favorite Directors: 

 

Mira Nair, Amma Asante, Jane Campion, Wong Kar-wai, Walter Salles, Pedro Almodóvar, Dorothy Arzner, Chloé Zhao, Euzhan Palcy, Stanley Kramer

Favorite Movie:

 

This is hard to answer, there are so many!!

RECENT CONTESTS

 

2021

 

Selected for Round 2, Sundance Development Track 2022

 

Finalist, BIPOC Writers' Fellowship


Semi-Finalist, Creative Screenwriting Unique Voices

Top 100, Table Read Genre Competition (Historical/Biopic)

2020

Top 10% - Academy Nicholl Fellowship


Top 20% (Second Rounder) - Austin Film Festival Script Competition


Top 50 Finalist - Launch Pad Feature Screenwriting Competition

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