UEA’s Creative Writing graduate, Deborah Davis’ latest screenplay, The Favourite, has been nominated for the Best Original Screenplay at this year’s Oscar’s.

The film stars Olivia Colman (Peep Show), Emma Stone (La La Land), and Rachel Weisz (Disobedience).

Directed by Yorgos Lanthimos, The Favourite is set in the 18th century when England and France are at war. Queen Anne reigns, but she is frail so Lady Sarah must take lead. Abigail, their newly appointed maid, becomes close with Sarah and Abigail takes the opportunity to return to her aristocratic roots.

Davis began writing the script whilst studying for her MA at UEA, which became co-written with Tony McNamara.

The script was first titled Balance of Power and was driven by her passion for history. Davis is a notable feminist and said that she wanted to see ‘women running the show’ who had ‘very deep, intimate, and complex emotions’.  

The Favourite has been nominated for a number of other awards, such as the BAFTAs and the Golden Globes. She was in fact the only female screenwriter to be nominated for these awards this year, which Davis described as ‘very disappointing’.

After twenty years, Davis’ sensational script has finally made it to the big screen. The only question is, who will be the next UEA graduate to do the same?


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