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Nelson Downend is a screenwriter, composer and lighting designer living in New York City. His most recent feature script, “Desdemona”, made Top 20 in the 2019 Roadmap Writers “Road To the New Republic Feature Competition”, made Top 50 in the 2019 ISA Fast Track Fellowship, made Top 20 in the 2018 Roadmap Writer’s “Jump Start” Competition, was a 2018 Scriptapalooza Semifinalist and a Selected Project for the 2018 Stowe Story Labs. His most recent pilot script, “Ex Parte”, was a Finalist in the 2019 Creative World Awards Screenplay Competition.

Nelson’s one-hour pilot script for “The Divinity Cycle” won 3rd Place in the 2019 Cinequest Screenplay Contest, received Special Mention in the 2019 ISA Fast Track Fellowship, made Top 50 in the 2019 Roadmap Writer’s “Jump Start” Competition, was a Finalist in the 5th Annual ScreenCraft Screenwriting Fellowship, was a two time Table Read My Screenplay Semifinalist (Austin & Park City), was a 2018 BlueCat Semifinalist, was a Semifinalist in the 2018 Stage32 TV Contest, was a Selected Project for the 2017 Stowe Story Labs, was a Finalist in the 2016 ScreenCraft Pilot Launch Competition, and was a Finalist in the 2015 New York Screenplay Contest. A short film version of the script was a Finalist in the 2019 Cinequest Screenplay Contest, was a Semifinalist in the 2019 Big Apple Film Festival, was a Finalist in the 2017 Page International Screenwriting Awards, was a 2018 Table Read My Screenplay Semifinalist (Austin), was a 2017 ScreenCraft Short Screenplay Contest Semifinalist, was a 2017 ScreenCraft Short Film Production Fund Semifinalist and listed Top 50 in the 2016 Cinequest Screenwriting Competition.

Nelson’s one-hour pilot script for “In Chrysalis” made Top 50 in the 2019 Roadmap Writer’s “Jump Start” Competition, was a Semifinalist in the 2019 Big Apple Film Festival, was a Semifinalist in the 2019 Stage32 TV Writing Contest, made the Top 50 in the 2019 Cinequest Screenplay Contest, was a Runner-Up in the 2018 ScreenCraft Pilot Launch Competition, was a 2018 Official Selection of the New York Television Festival, was a 2018 BlueCat Semifinalist, and was a Semifinalist in the 5th Annual ScreenCraft Screenwriting Fellowship. A feature version of the script was a Finalist in the 2017 We Screenplay Feature Contest, was a Semifinalist in the 2017 ScreenCraft Action/Thriller competition, was a Selected Project for the 2016 Stowe Story Labs, was a Runner-up in the 2015/2016 Fresh Voices Screenplay Competition, was a Winner in the 2015 Los Angeles Film & Script Festival and a Finalist in the 2015 New York Screenplay Contest. The project advanced to the 2nd Round of the 2017 Sundance Screenwriter’s Lab, and a Digital Series version of the project advanced to the 2nd Round of the Sundance New Voices Lab and was a Semifinalist in the 2017 Austin Film Festival and in the 2019 Table Read My Screenplay (Austin) competition.

Nelson’s lighting design career spans twenty years and includes work in the fields of theatre, dance, performance art and architecture, both in the US and abroad. He was an Associate at architectural lighting firm Domingo Gonzalez Associates (2000-2006), and a Senior Designer at Lumen Architecture (2007-2012). His architectural projects have included galleries, hotels, restaurants, transportation facilities, offices, monuments, schools, theatres, parks and residences. His most recent designs include the premiere of Aynsley Vandenbroucke’s “And” at Abrons Art Center and Asia Gagnon’s “The Kind Of Thing You Don’t Talk About” at the Performing Garage.

Nelson is currently working toward an MFA in Television Writing at Stony Brook University in Manhattan.