Winner Revealed for Issa Rae’s Writing Talent Contest


ColorCreative.TV, set up by producers Issa Rae and Deniese Davis (Insecure), along with Sky Vision and Talos Films, have unveiled the winner of FRESH WAVE!, a new diverse talent initiative for underrepresented writers.

Katelyn Howes’ The Awoken was selected from more than 2,000 entries. The sci-fi drama is about a young adult who is resurrected from cryogenic preservation in 2103, into a very different world from 2017, and joins an underground network of rebels fighting for basic human rights.

The Awoken is produced by ColorCreative.TV and Talos Films, with funding from Sky Vision. A 10-minute pilot presentation was shared with TV execs and press at an intimate event in Los Angeles.

Rae remarked: “Providing a platform for underrepresented voices is extremely important to me, particularly with so many polarizing views dominating the mainstream right now. I’m so pleased that FRESH WAVE! has produced not just a fantastic winner in Katelyn, but a wealth of new voices amongst the other finalists, showing that there is a huge amount of diverse young talent out there ready to light up our screens.”

Jane Millichip, the managing director of Sky Vision, noted: “Sky Vision is committed to developing and showcasing diverse new talent worldwide. Katelyn has conceived a remarkable idea, and delivered it with true sophistication. With Issa and Deniese’s expertise, the production skill of Talos Films and Sky Vision’s backing, I’m sure The Awoken will have huge international appeal.”

Elli Hakami and Julian P. Hobbs, co-presidents of Talos Films, stated: “We believe The Awoken does what all great science fiction does—it moves the heart as well as the mind. It also gives us a lens into our present by looking into the near future.”

Howes added: ”I am so thrilled that this story has been given such an amazing opportunity. The producers and mentors of FRESH WAVE! have provided a thoughtful and unique program that has allowed a female-created sci-fi world to come to life. With The Awoken, I set out to write about privilege and how you can only really see it once it’s taken away. It’s a story about growing up. It’s a story about memory. And of course, at its heart, it’s a story about love.”