Outlander’s Sam Heughan picks winners

OUTLANDER star Sam Heughan has named the winners of his Write Start award.

Heughan launched the competition last year to encourage students at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (RCS) to develop original work.

This year’s winners are Hayley Louise McGuire and Jayme Bartlett, who are both in the third year of their bachelor of arts (BA) filmmaking degrees, who receive £5,000.

They are collaborating on Baobhan Sith, which is described as “a psychological thriller set in Glasgow, that draws inspiration from Scottish folklore, Pre-Raphaelite art, and the work of Robert Burns”.

Runner-up Ariana Crolla, a second-year BA filmmaking student, receives £1,000 to develop her film Frank, which is “centred on a young homeless man who believes he’s the reincarnation of St Francis of Assisi”.

Heughan graduated from the RCS’s forerunner, the Royal Scottish Academy of Music & Drama, in 2003 with a degree in acting.

“Once again, it’s wonderful to see the care and consideration that has gone into each pitch, and I thank everyone for sharing their concepts – there’s so much talent within the walls of RCS, a wide variety of ideas and creativity,” he said.

“Congratulations to this year’s winners, Hayley Louise McGuire and Jayme Bartlett, and runner-up Ariana Crolla – both pitches had clear and engaging narratives and eloquent presentations and I’m delighted that there is such a strong representation for female filmmakers.

“I can’t wait to see how their films develop.”

Read more Sam Heughan news on Scottish Field’s culture pages.

Plus, don’t miss the April issue of Scottish Field magazine.