Scriptwriter, Author, Speaker
When I was eight-years-old, I watched the greatest film I had ever seen: Jurassic Park. Steven Spielberg and Michael Crichton led me to discover my love for stories, science-fiction and spectacle -- and how to annoy people by reciting the spelling of 'palaeontology'. As a child, I desperately wanted to be a palaeontologist like Dr. Alan Grant. But as I got older, I realised that crafting emotional, thrilling and mind-bending stories was what I wanted to do with my life. It was the script that became my obsession.
So, when I was nine-years-old, I sent a letter to Amblin Entertainment to tell Mr. Spielberg how much I enjoyed Jurassic Park. I even asked him for a job. I guess my (very short) CV got lost in the application process. No worries; I got over it.
When I was thirteen, I migrated with my family to Singapore from the UK. Here I embarked on my dream of being a writer and filmmaker. I enrolled in Ngee Ann Polytechnic's Diploma in Film, Sound and Video, and here I learnt how to make my own films and the art of cinema. After graduating, I pursued a BFA in Creative Producing from Dodge College of Film and Media Arts, Chapman University, to learn the business aspect of the craft.
Whilst a student, I pitched and developed an original children's animation series with Cartoon Network (Hong Kong) after winning their SNAPTOONS' competition from a pool of 40 animation companies and producers. Whilst developing the show, I wrote for commercials, animation, comic books and international networks. This included children's preschool channel Zoomoo, and its spin-off series Zoomoo's Got Brains, which was nominated at the Asian Television Award 2015 for Best Preschool Programme.
As a scriptwriter for television, companies and brands, I've written for diverse clients such as Mediacorp Studios, Singapore Tourism Board, Singtel, Google, OCBC, Grab, MyRepublic, AIA, Razer, Jones Lang LaSalle, J.Walter Thompson, and many more.
In an attempt to master my craft, I've also published short stories in anthologies this is how we walk on the moon (Ethos Books) and Singapore Love Stories (Monsoon Books), nominated at the Popular Readers' Choice Awards 2017. And in 2016 my unpublished sci-fi adventure novel Maxine Starr: Last Vanguard of the Zodiac won the Mentorship Prize by becoming a finalist of The Launchpad Manuscript Programme 2016, in partnership with The Tracking Board, Ridley Scott's Scott Free productions, crowdfunding publisher Inkshares and Energy Entertainment. Chosen by Mike Mongo, a STEM educator, astronautics teacher and bestselling author of The Astronaut Instruction Manual, Maxine Starr is on track to be self-published in 2018.
Today, I've been lucky enough to have been a fiction writer and screenwriter for nearly a decade. Growing up in England and Singapore has afforded me with a unique perspective of the world: a more nuanced eye for Western sensibilities, Asian values, and embracing the misrepresented. I try to bring this viewpoint to my work, truly believing that the future of storytelling lies in breaking social barriers, exploring never-before-seen stories, and empowering characters with unique cultural voices.
And that's my story. I continue to write for books, television, online platforms, and blog about creativity and storytelling. Thank you for visiting my website! Feel free to reach out if you'd like to collaborate or discuss why dinosaurs have feathers.
WRITING AWARDS / MENTIONS
2017 - NIKOLA TESLA: NECROMANCER - Bluecat Screenplay Competition 2017 - Quarterfinalist (272 out of 3272 entries). Comments from coverage:
"This script is excellent. It's stylistic, fun, wildly imaginative, visual, and full of action. The dialogue really crackles with life and personality. Nikola Tesla feels like a developed, distinct protagonist. The glimpses into his extraordinary mind are extremely engaging, and his story would be fascinating even if the supernatural element was absent altogether because he is such a strong character.
His relationship with both his mother and his undead friend Ivan is great. Ivan's resurrection is funny, smart, creepy storytelling. Penny, too, is likeable and interesting from the moment she is introduced. The scene where she and Nikola talk over soup bowls at a restaurant on page 54 is super. There is a crisp edge to their relationship, and to most of the characters in the story. Nikola's mother's death and the subsequent scene with his father on page 73 are moving and eloquent.
On top of that, the style of the action and descriptions is just incredibly charming and fun to read. The writer took a risk with infusing so much personality into the format of the script, but it really works. The total infectious enthusiasm for the material and the characters, not the mention the excitement involved in bringing this world to life, comes through very strongly. This piece is awesome."
2016 - MAXINE STARR - Launchpad Manuscript Competition Mentorship programme WINNER (Mentorship prize chosen by Mike Mongo). The Launchpad Manuscript Competition in partnership with Scott Free productions, Inkshares, and Energy Entertainment. Comments from Launchpad readers:
"A manuscript that’s not afraid to tackle a lot of themes, this is chockfull of a plethora of original, fun ideas – such as how zodiac signs are anthropomorphized as various alien races. The protagonist is an intriguing and strong female lead, with a relatable multicultural background and her struggles to adapt to a new home, both of which are drawn directly from the author’s own childhood experience, so the lead feels genuine and grounded, even in such a high concept sci-fi world. Her world is deeply explored and visualized, and it jumps off the page, immersing the reader from page one."
Here’s what Mike Mingo had to say:
"Of all the YA books I have read so far this year two have excited me more than any others. The one in Darcy Conroy’s fantasy serial The War of Wind & Moon.
The other YA fiction which filled me with that secret joy of reading something very special indeed–like the first time I read S.F. Said’s Phoenix or Jamison Stone’s Rune of the Apprentice–is having the great good fortune to be have come across Kane Wheatley-Holder’s Maxine Starr: Last Vanguard of the Zodiac. I say good fortune because as a children’s book author I get to read more than my fair share of children’s books. Maybe more than even parents of young kids. And this year as a professional courtesy I was asked to "read over" the pre-publication edition of Maxine Starr.
What luck! Maxine Starr is as fun as reading gets, the writing on par with some of my favorites–Philip Pullman, Alan Garner, J.K. Rowling. And yet it’s flavor is distinctly contemporary. To me the most thrilling part of the story was the adventure starts in the cultural melting pot that is Singapore. From there it goes to space but what a brilliant locale to kick-off this unforgettable adventure.
I won’t spoil the tale but if you like your magic scientific and your science magical, you will fall hard for the adventures of Maxine Starr: Last Vanguard of the Zodiac. With writing as good as this, I expect to be hearing from author Kane Wheatley-Holder for a very long time–and for fans of great YA characters that’s good news, indeed. Long live Maxine Starr!"
2016 - DARK ISLAND - Feature Film Script - Quarterfinalist Scriptpalooza and Top 100 screenplays - Table Read My Screenplay Contest London 2016.
Logline: Set on the island-state of Singapore, four University students seek refuge in a remote industrial building on the night of the Apocalypse. But when they become hunted by an unseen force outside, the group must confront an unstoppable evil that’s even closer: each other.
- 21st Eye Level Children’s Literature award - 1st place (local prize) for short story “The Magic Show”
- Cartoon Network SNAPTOONS finalist - Asia Pacific. Winning pitch out of over 40 entries from production houses and animators.
SCRIPTWRITING - Head Scriptwriter of Big 3 Media, Author, Speaker (Present)
Kane has cut his teeth in numerous Asia-based production houses as a writer and producer. He currently serves as Head Scriptwriter of Big 3 Media where he writes for corporate businesses, television, and leads a team of writers in developing new content for a variety of platforms.
- ZooMoo TV channel (Asia) - wrote over 17 hours of content. Content was aired internationally and used for press events worldwide.
- Scriptwriter for gameshow series 'Zoomoo's Got Brains' - 10 episodes. Nominated for Best Preschool Programme at the 2015 Asian Television Awards.
- Wrote and directed numerous projects, ranging from commercials, instructional videos, television pitch proposals, comic books and music videos.
2018 - National Youth Film Awards 2018 - How to survive as a screenwriter after graduation - Speaker and panelist
2018 - Young Writer's Festival 2018 - Pitching your work out there - Speaker; The Power of Film and your Will to Write it - Moderator
2017 - Content Development in the Age of Digital Disruption - Beach House Workshop 2017, Pixel Studios - Speaker, Panelist
2016 - SHINE Festival Singapore 2017 - Writing for Branded Content Class - Conductor, Speaker
PUBLISHED SHORT STORIES
- 'Space, Time and Chicken Rice' reprint in Singapore Love Stories - Monsoon Books
- 'The Ostrich of Kampong Glam' printed in this is how we walk on the moon - Ethos Books
- ‘Jurong Swimming Complex’ in 50 Metres: Our Swimming Pools
- Anthology Pulp Toast/Roti Bakar ‘The Dice’ & ‘The Weightlifter’
- The Epigram Books Collection of Best New Singaporean Short Stories Volume 2 (Honorary Mention)