Jon Smith is an internationally published, best-selling author of twelve books and writer of four staged musicals and has been writing professionally for thirteen years. Awarded a MA in Screenwriting from the UK's Bournemouth University, his screenplays consistently place in major competitions, including Semi-Finalist in the Nicholl Fellowship Award 2014, administered by the Academy of Motion Pictures. He currently lives in Cheshire and his first film Beyond the Bridge written with Ian Masters premiered at the Tokyo Film Festival in 2016. He was Associate Producer on Ikonic Film's feature Kidnap Me (2017) and is currently developing a number of TV series and feature film projects.
FILM & Television
Asia sanmenkyô (2016) Directed by Kulikar Sotho - 30 min section of Omnibus Film with three Asian film directors. Premiere: Tokyo IFF
In 1994, the reconstruction of the "Japanese Bridge" in Phnom Penh is complete after two years. Fukuda, the president of the Japanese company that oversaw the reconstruction, stands by the bridge and remembers the time he spent in Cambodia. It was in early 1970 when he came here to build the bridge. He fell in love with beautiful Mealea and promised her that they would get married and live in Japan together. However, as the Khmer Rouge gained power, his father made him return for fear of safety. Twenty years later, Fukuda stands by the bridge and wonders if Mealea is still alive.
Hidden - Finalist in the South East Asian Film Financing Forum 2016; presented at Tokyo Talents (Berlinale)
Privileged siblings Sonina and Sambath evade the evacuation of Phnom Penh and disappear into the emptied city as the Khmer Rouge holocaust begins. A thriller of survival and resistance set against the stunning backdrop of an abandoned city and one of the most brutal social experiments of the twentieth century. “Tonally, this script matches the subject matter with plenty of darkness and grit. The setting is…established with a clarity and precision that gives the reader a clear sense of time and place. The dialogue feels understated in a strong way, as this script relies more on images to communicate itself than spoken words.” Blacklist
Before the Fall - Nicholls Fellowship in Screenwriting: Semi Finalist
A noir thriller in which a disparate group of expats scheme against each other in their desperate attempts to escape from Phnom Penh before it falls to the Khmer Rouge. “Professional, intelligent, and mature writing. Excellent utilization of the film noir genre…There's an unwavering sense of urgency with the tension constantly ramping up…Every character is deep, flawed, and has their own distinct perspective.” Blacklist
The Path - Nicholls Fellowship in Screenwriting: Quarter Finalist
A Cambodian monk is reluctantly tasked with the return of a priceless stolen Angkorian artefact from a remote rural pagoda, to Oudong mountain, the resting place of Cambodia’s Kings.
Venus – The Final Draft Big Break Screenwriting Competition: Quarter Finalist
A young black woman travels to Europe to make her fortune as a musician, but instead, due to her large and pronounced buttocks, becomes the unwitting star of one of the most infamous and popular freak shows in England and France.
Otranto – 8-part original TV series developed with Apulia Film Commission, Italy | Screencraft Screenwriting Fellowship Semi-Finalist, 2017
When a female British agent washes ashore in Otranto, Italy, with dead and dying Syrian refugees, retired MI5 analyst, JENKINS, must work with shady Italian police inspector, ANTONIO, to solve the case. A post-Brexit thriller in which an ideological (and biological) time bomb is released on Otranto’s picture-postcard shores.
BOOKS & NOVELS
• The Bloke’s Guide to Pregnancy (Hay House)
• The Bloke’s Guide to Babies (Hay House)
• The Bloke’s 100 top tips to surviving pregnancy (Hay House)
• The Bloke’s Guide to baby gadgets (Hay House)
• The Bloke’s Guide to getting hitched (Hay House)
• Toytopia (Wrecking Ball Press)
• Be #1 on Google (McGraw Hill)
• Grow Your Business with Google Adwords (McGraw Hill)
• Dominate Your Market with Twitter (Infinite Ideas)
• Web Sites that Work (Infinite Ideas)
• Smarter Business Start-Ups (Infinite Ideas)
• Start an Online Business (In Easy Steps)
• Digital Marketing for Businesses (In Easy Steps)
• Scary Musical – (StandIN Ovation/Dir. Rob Finlay) Waterfront Theatre, Belfast
• Monte Cristo – The Musical – (YMT:UK/Dir. Stephen Jameson) Hippodrome, Birmingham
• Naughty Pour Homme – (Park Theatre/Dir. Jez Bond) Park Theatre, London
• Like Me – Development workshop and industry showcase, Waterloo East Theatre, London
EDUCATION & PROFESSIONAL TRAINING
Master of Arts in Screenwriting
Bournemouth University, United Kingdom
Bachelor of Arts in American Studies (Honours)
University of Reading & University of Texas at Austin
The Society of Authors # 38117
Writers’ Guild of Great Britain # 12871668