Please introduce yourself, what you do, why you do it, and what you want people to know about you.
My name is Anthony Osarfo, an entertainment journalist, and a multi-award-winning horror screenwriter based in Ghana, West Africa. I’m married to one smart, and an ambitious lady named Janet Braun, an American. Now that Hollywood embraces diverse voices more than ever, my vision is to penetrate the Hollywood industry with adapted African mythos, folktales, and beliefs into cinematic storytelling for modern-day cinephiles.
I’ve been writing screenplays since 2009. Fueled with determination, I’ve been able to win and placed creditably well in notable contests such as WINNER – Best Supernatural Horror Script – Hollywood Horrorfest International Film Festival; WINNER—Best Original Screenplay— Hollywood Blood Horror Festival; WINNER–Best Horror/Thriller Screenplay—Hollywood Just4shorts Film and Screenplay Competition. Also: GRAND JURY PRIZE—Best Feature Screenplay – Los Angeles Motion Picture Festival; WINNER – Best Screenplay Concept and Theme—Creepy Tree Film Festival.
I placed in the FINAL STAGES of the following contests: 13Horror.com Film & Screenplay Contest; Creative World Awards (CWA); Oregon Short Film Festival. SEMI-FINALIST – Los Angeles Crime and Horror Film Festival; and QUARTER FINALIST in: Austin Screenplay Awards; New York City International Screenplay Awards; and Chicago Screenplay Awards. Finally, AWARDEE for Top 100 Hot Scripts – Capital Fund Screenplay Competition. I’m an African horror screenwriter whose vision is to penetrate Hollywood to tell African stories or tales storied on the back of Africa for global cinema.
What qualities make you different and unique from everyone else in the industry?
I think I prefer others’ opinions as an answer to your question. See what a judge in one of the contests I entered wrote about my visual writing style. This should be enough summary:
Describe THAT moment when you realized you wanted to do what you do now. Who did you tell first? What has it been like since that moment?
Somewhere in 2009, my passion to write stories was highly pronounced. I wrote a short story and asked an old schoolmate of mine, Prince Ntim, whom I’ve known for twenty years now to give me feedback. He read it and was moved and fascinated. But in a split second, he said “why am I even surprised? You have been a storyteller since our high school days.” He took my mind back to our school days when one of my manuscripts won the overall best story.
At that moment, I recalled standing in front of our class and receiving accolades from our Essay Master, Mr. Siaw. What made it a big deal then was the fact that I was an Accounting student—not a pure literature student. Prince spurred me on to continue telling stories cos storytelling is my talent. I obliged and have since not looked back. When it comes to talent, sometimes it takes the next person to discover who you truly are to you.
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve had to face and how did you overcome it?
A lot of challenges. The first has to do with my geographical location. I live in Ghana, West Africa, yet want to penetrate Hollywood as a screenwriter (laughs). Even those living in America, LA, for that matter with all the connections, proximity, and credit are struggling to step a foot in Hollywood. The second one, which I share and forever will, is the difference in written English, African voice, and culture. I write British English, most Africans do too due to British colonization. But I’m now compelled to switch to American English to gain the goodwill of American readers to enable me penetrate the industry.
I’m just spent having to continue explaining to American readers that bonnet is hood, cheque is check, learned is also learned somewhere, others say washroom instead of bathroom, gas station in America is filling station elsewhere— (laughs). Of course, Americans are known for their parsimony for the real Queen’s Language. Yes, I f**king say so! Lmaaooo!!
Understandably, one must do what the Romans do when in Rome, so I understand the challenge. I hire American editors. To me, it’s one of the wisest decisions I’ve taken for my screenwriting career. On my location (residence) as a challenge, I’ll finally relocate to America to join my wife and kids, and if necessary visit LA to have a first-hand experience of how things work in Hollywood and its dynamics.
If you had to pick the TOP 3 people you’d want to meet that could take your career (or business) to the next level…who would those 3 people be?
Jordan Pele, because he produces horror movies and believes in giving blacks and African-American storytellers a voice. Ryan Coogler. I admire him for his appreciation for African narratives. Mel Gibson. I admire his artistic eyes for strong visuals. He goes any extent to shoot onerous scenes. He’s one director who makes me stretch my full imagination when writing, knowing that, “if it can be written, or thought, it can be filmed” as said by Stanley Kubrick
List the direct links/URL to your social media profiles so people can follow you:
- Facebook: https://web.facebook.com/osarfoa/
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/osarfoanthony/
- Stage32: stage32.com/profile/700517