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Sirona - an original screenplay by David Ness


I have written an eco-science-fiction mystery screenplay entitled Sirona.

Synopsis: The forest holds a precious secret. A young girl named Sirona is chosen as healer by the mysterious ‘little people’ who have appeared to warn a planet in ecological peril. Noah, a hermit who lives in the forest also knows of the little people. Together, Sirona and Noah become the target of occult forces seeking world destruction. Can Sirona and Noah stop them?

I am a lecturer in social science, cultural studies and film and media at the University of the Highlands and Islands. Like many, I have been inspired by the action that young people around the world are taking to demand action on climate change. My son Eric is a teenage climate striker (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tPsHOr8i-g) and XR member who is featured in a FANS Youth Film Festival (https://filmaccess.scot/festival/) award-winning short film being shown around the world. Like Eric and his friends, my screenplay features a brave and imaginative young woman who is drawn into a world threatening crisis, and with the help of some very special friends she must fight to protect the earth and those she loves from ecological destruction.

In my academic life, I have authored a number of degree courses in film studies, social science and culture studies, but I have also been involved in film making and music. Publicity of note includes being invited by Tilda Swinton and John Byrne to show three short films I directed at Tilda’s Cinema of Dreams Film Festival in Nairn in 2009.

Feature scripts I have written include Isobel Gowdie, based on the legend of the witch of Audearn, which attracted publicity (https://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/208756/Will-Karen-find-time-for-bewitching-new-role) with the potential involvement of actress Karen Gillian who expressed an interest in the lead role (https://www.pressreader.com/uk/the-herald-on-sunday/20101031/282424165594355).

I directed a promo for the feature film Where Love Reigns (based on the play Sabina by Snoo Wilson). I worked with Snoo on the screenplay adaption and attracted an illustrious team including double Oscar winning cinematographer Jack Cardiff and award-winning composer Michael Nyman (https://www.scotsman.com/arts-and-culture/film-and-tv/director-has-scorsese-on-board-but-it-s-sponsors-he-really-needs-1-728414). Screen rights complications meant that the project had to be abandoned, although behind the scenes footage is presented in 2010 major award-winning documentary ‘Jack Cardiff, Cameraman’ (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fs0F9m5BXAE).

As lyricist and singer, recent music projects include the release of album Promesse du Bonheur under the name Baba Vuk (https://vimeo.com/246180083), which made it onto the 2018 Scottish Album of the Year awards longlist (https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/tvandshowbiz/2444761/baba-vuk-new-music-with-jim-gellatly/). In 2020, I release a new album Age of Extinction with my band nohumaneye.

Sirona is a contemporary science-fantasy eco drama featuring a secret occult Order lead by the storm witch Callech who seeks to stop Sirona, a young woman chosen to be healer by the mysterious little people of the forest who have returned to warn of impending ecological disaster. Sirona was originally set on a remote Scottish island but then I chose to set the story in America to synthesise the ancient wisdom and mythology of the indigenous peoples of the Americas with ancient Celtic mythology. I believe that Sirona has the potential to be a zeitgeist story that will appeal to young adults and a wide global audience of any age group.

I hope you find my screenplay synopsis interesting and look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely,

David Ness