About New Voices Fellowship for Screenwriters

Inspired by the nexus of India’s millennia legacy of story-telling traditions, and its equally impressive contributions to the world of film, the New Voices Fellowship for Screenwriters (NVFS), was initiated by Asia Society in India to cultivate new talent and ideas with a focus on the craft of script writing. The aim of this programme is to provide a new way in which to understand the scope of independent film, and the way in which Indian films can successfully cross borders to tell important stories that can be both universal in their context and local in their setting. 

The New Voices Fellowship for Screenwriters hosts a diverse and talented group of screenwriters who will explore new approaches to storytelling and screenwriting, provide peer feedback, and work with respected professionals in the field. Through an open application process, 12 writers from across India will be selected and invited to attend the first workshop. At the end of the workshop, seven of them will be selected to become Fellows of NVFS and enter the eight-month writing programme, in which they will cultivate their stories to a fully-developed script, under the regular and intensive guidance of their mentors. The aim is to encourage the writers to realize their ideas more holistically, and craft them into a competently written screenplay.


A second workshop will be held shortly after, where writers will receive feedback from other mentors as well as their peers. The third edition of the fellowship will conclude in April 2016.


Each participating Fellow will receive:

  • A stipend of Rs. 2,00,000.
  • Regular guidance from eminent mentors who are screenwriters and writer-directors for the duration of the eight-month long programme.
  • Two five-day-long intensive workshops conducted by Anjum Rajabali, with the active participation of mentors, advisors, and other industry professionals.
  • Recommendations on how to approach production houses and studios, how to pitch, and how to navigate other professional and legal aspects such as contracts, copyright, and safeguards.