Unknown Canadian filmmakers get their First Shot at Hollywood with Jameson and Maggie Gyllenhaal

Jameson gives 3 aspiring filmmakers a chance to work with Kevin Spacey, Dana Brunetti, and Maggie Gyllenhaal

TORONTO, Dec. 4, 2015 /CNW/ - Calling all aspiring filmmakers! Now in its fifth year, the Jameson First Shot film competition is open for entries. Together with Kevin Spacey and Trigger Street Productions, Jameson is on the hunt for the most gifted, undiscovered filmmakers with compelling stories to tell.

The competition is all about giving talented filmmakers a break – a first shot at the industry. It asks aspiring filmmakers to be fearless; to write about what matters to them, tell the stories that they want to tell and, ultimately, make the film they want to make. It's looking for undiscovered filmmakers with big ideas and an insatiable desire to create. These aspiring creatives are encouraged to enter through the competition's website.

First Shot winners are given access to Hollywood-level production resources, with the chance to develop relationships with some of the world's best actors and producers. Actors who have participated in Jameson First Shot in past years include Uma Thurman, Kevin Spacey and Willem Dafoe.

This year, three talented winners will have the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to turn their scripts into short films starring Maggie Gyllenhaal, and have them premiered in LA, with the acclaimed cast and crew in attendance.

Kevin Spacey knows how difficult it can be to break into the film industry. Having succeeded himself, he feels it is important to "send the elevator back down," as his mentor Jack Lemmon once told him. "It's not about where someone is, it's about where they might get to in 10 years if they're encouraged, nurtured and guided," said Spacey.

"Last year, after receiving hundreds of submissions from aspiring filmmakers around the world, a Canadian winner's treatment stood out as one of the strongest," says Taryn Denman, Brand Manager, Jameson Irish Whiskey, "With the deep talent pool in our country, we hope we can change the life of another Canadian winner in 2016."

In 2015, Stephan Tempier travelled to Los Angeles to direct Adrien Brody in his short film, Boredom. Boredom is about a troubled man who still identifies with being a child. A haunting and beautiful eight-minute short, Boredom breaks down the man's troubled relationship with his friends and family. 

"To enter First Shot, I created a role I thought Adrien Brody would be interested to play," said Stephan Tempier, Jameson First Shot competition winner. "The next thing I knew, Kevin Spacey was calling to tell me I had won, and soon I was in LA, working closely with Adrien. Now, my film has been seen by almost a million people worldwide. Jameson First Shot is the best filmmaking competition with the best prize I can think of. It's not money, it's not gear; it's an experience and opportunity to learn."

With Maggie Gyllenhaal as muse, this year's entries are sure to be creative and daring. So, what does Maggie look for in a script? The actor recommends taking a new angle: "An observation that we haven't seen, that's real, which people relate to, that's complicated – as we all are."

To aspiring entrants, Maggie recommends "putting a little bit of your actual self into what you're doing—good art takes vulnerability."

Applicants must be at least 25 years old and living in Canada, the US, UK, Ireland, India, Australia, South Africa, and Russia. The competition is open to entries until January 4th, 2016. Full rules, including length and theme, can be found at http://www.jamesonfirstshot.com/.

SOURCE Jameson Canada

Video with caption: "Maggie Gyllenhaal to star in Jameson First Shot 2016". Video available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRr6SM_YFSM

For further information: contact Jameson Canada - Jameson.Canada@pernod-ricard.com

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