16 April 2021 The Irish Film & Television Network
     
Ray Sullivan & Rob Davis's The Skwoids named JETS Winners for 2021
05 Mar 2021 : News Desk
JETS 2021
Irish project The Skwoids has been named among the winners of the JETS 2021 Initiative following this year’s online edition, which took place in February.

Sam Uhlemann & Juliane Wothe’s project The Last Watch was named alongside four other international projects as a second place winner.

Over 110 special guests and participants took part in this year’s event with WEP Productions and JETS Distribution revealing this year’s winners at the 5th JETS edition for 1st, 2nd and 3rd feature film filmmakers in front of an international jury made up of producers, financiers, distributors, and world sales agents.

The 1st place winners for the 5th JETS edition were Greg Jeffs & Kevin Wallis; project Section Z (Canada), Christina Tournatzés & Melanie Blocksdorf; project Karla (Germany), Ray Sullivan & Rob Davis; project The Skwoids (Ireland), Lillian Løvseth & Trond Morten Kristensen Venaasen; project Darkest Forest (Norway), Sandulela Asanda & James C. Williamson; project The Trek (South Africa), and Faye Jackson & Barrington Paul Robinson; project Snowflakes (UK).

The 2nd place winners included Leah Rifkin & Sonja Verpoort; project Salem’s Diary (Canada), Rodney Charles & Yasmin Rams; project Bush Boys (Germany), Sam Uhlemann & Juliane Wothe; project The Last Watch (Ireland), Wandile Molebatsi & Natasja de Lange; project Rocket Boy (South Africa), and Kelly Holmes & David Brown; project Year of the Heart (UK).

Described by the JETS jury as having “commerciality and a solid story,” Ray Sullivan & Rob Davis’s The Skwoids is set on the distant world of Hibernia, where a small human colony eagerly awaits the arrival of their families, but 24 hours before the ship lands, a native species called The Skwoids infiltrates the base and kills every human it can find.

Only three survivors are left: the brilliant engineer Ruth Goodall, her pet Skwoid Tony, and a hard-nosed soldier named Rhodes. Only they can protect the incoming colony vessel; Only they can stop The Skwoids. The film is described as Predator meets Gremlins, and based on the comic Good Business by Simon Roy.

Animation and science fiction specialist Ray Sullivan is now planning the full-length version of his four-minute short film from 2017 with Amy De Bhrún, Darryl Kinsella, and loads of Skwoids. What begins so cruelly and sarcastically is said to end with a heart-warming coexistence between the humans and the indigenous people of Hibernia.

Ray Sullivan has amassed over 50 million viewers on Youtube through his numerous short films, and now Sullivan and Davis are looking for a co-production partner to help secure a  three million euros budget to fund the production and post-production of The Skwoids.

While Sam Uhlemann & Juliane Wothe’s project The Last Watch was described by the JETS jury as “Very marketable” with great “commerciality.” The Last Watch begins at the start of the last 48 hours at the small, isolated Mount Rose Police Station; the office is closing down due to the government’s cutbacks. With the false arrest of an innocent young man and his death in police custody, mistakes are made that will force the remaining officers to break the law they swore to uphold.

The Last Watch is a story about what can happen when our survival is threatened and we violate our most basic moral beliefs by breaking the laws that keep us alive. References to the transnational movement Black Lives Matter (BLM), founded in 2013, are unmistakable. After George Floyd was killed in the course of a violent arrest on May 25, 2020, in Minneapolis, and the following day extensive demonstrations against police violence and racism started in numerous other cities in the USA, the Irish film project is more topical than ever. The production team will now seek to secure a budget of €2.5 million to deliver the film.





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