The Best Screenplay Competitions Focused on Genre are on ScreenCraft

By January 30, 2020Blog, Featured

Writing well in a particular genre is one way to prove your screenwriting skills in Hollywood—and ScreenCraft has several genre-specific competitions that can connect you with literary managers, agents and producers. Whether you’re crafting an action-filled epic like 1917; a drama like Marriage Story or Little Women; a comedy, sci-fi adventure, or horror story; or even a TV pilot or short film, consider what contests ScreenCraft has to offer in 2020.

Don’t have a completed script, but think you have a killer comedy or horror idea? Consider pitching it in one of ScreenCraft’s genre concept competitions for a chance at development. 

For all contests, you must be at least 18 years old to enter and can’t have earned more than $50,000 from writing for film and TV.  Also, the work you submit must not have been sold or optioned.

ScreenCraft Sci-Fi and Fantasy Feature Film, TV, and Short screenplay competition: One grand-prize winner from either format receives $1,000 and a personal introduction and phone call with one or more top literary managers. Runners-up from the Feature and TV/Short category each receive $500 and a personal recommendation to ScreenCraft’s network of industry professionals. Judges include Rashonda Joplin, creative executive at MGM Television, and Casey Minella, manager at the management and production company Circle of Confusion. Length: Features must be from 75 to 150 pages. TV pilots, between 25 and 75 pages. Shorts, from 7 to 35 pages. You can submit more than one project.
Deadline: Jan. 31 (early); March 31 (final)
Entry fee: $49 to $69 (standard); $118 (includes feedback)

ScreenCraft Comedy Feature Film, TV, and Short screenplay competition: Open for entries starting Feb. 1, this genre contest takes comedies of all size, from action-comedy blockbusters to romantic comedies. Past judges include Judit Maull, a development executive at Adam Sandler’s production company Happy Madison Productions, and Haroon Saleem, an executive at Ben Stiller’s production company Red Hour Films. One grand-prize winner receives $1,000 cash and a personal introduction and phone consultation with top literary managers, agents, and producers. A second-place winner receives $500 and personal introductions to industry executives, as well as in-depth career development with the ScreenCraft team. Three top finalists receive written feedback from a professional Hollywood script reader. Length: Features are recommended at 100 to 120 pages.
Deadline: Feb. 29 (early); April 30 (final)
Entry fee: $49 to $69 (standard)

ScreenCraft Horror Feature Film, TV, and Short screenplay competition: Open for entries starting April 1, this contest’s past judges include writer-director Ari Aster (Midsommar) and Ryan Turek, VP of development at Blumhouse Productions. One grand-prize winner receives $1,000 cash, a personal introduction and introductory phone call to top managers and agents. A second-place winner receives $500 cash, a phone call with a top literary manager, and circulation of the project to ScreenCraft’s network of professionals. Three top finalists receive in-depth development notes from a professional script reader. Length: Features are recommended at 100 to 120 pages.
Deadline: April 30 (early); June 30 (final)
Entry fee: $49 to $69

ScreenCraft Drama Feature Film, TV, and Short screenplay competition: Open for entries starting June 1, this contest celebrates nuanced complexity and universal themes. Past judges include Richard Ruiz, creative executive at Fox Searchlight. One grand-prize winner receives $1,000 cash and introductions and phone consultations with managers, agents, and producers. A second-place winner receives $500 cash, a phone call with a top literary manager, and circulation of the project to ScreenCraft’s network of professionals. Three top finalists receive $100 and development consultation. Length: Features are recommended at 100 to 120 pages.
Deadline: June 30 (early); Aug. 31 (final)
Entry fee: $49 to $69

ScreenCraft Animation Feature Film and TV competition: Open May 1, this contest honors screenplays in three categories: animated feature, animated adult TV pilot, and animated kids TV pilot. Grand-prize winners across all three categories win $1,000, plus circulation of their projects to ScreenCraft’s network of industry professionals. Past judges include Donald H. Hewitt, English-language screenwriter of Hayao Miyazaki’s acclaimed anime films My Neighbor Totoro and Spirited Away.
Deadline: May 31 (early); July 31 (final)
Entry fee: $49 to $69

ScreenCraft Action & Adventure Feature Film, TV, and Short screenplay competition: Open Aug. 1. One grand-prize winner receives $1,000 cash and introductions and phone consultations with managers, agents, and producers. A second-place winner receives $500 cash and the introduction of their project to industry professionals. Fifty top finalists will have their loglines recommended to ScreenCraft’s professional network. Past judges include executives at Bad Robot and Paramount.
Deadline: Aug. 31 (early); Oct. 31 (final)
Entry fee: $49 to $69 (standard)

ScreenCraft Family Feature Film, TV, and Short screenplay competition: Open Oct. 1. One grand-prize winner receives $1,000 cash, an introduction to a top literary manager, and circulation of their project to ScreenCraft’s professional network. A second-place winner receives $500 and circulation of their synopsis. Past judges include executives at Lucamar Productions and the Hallmark Movie Channel.
Deadline: Oct. 31 (early); Dec. 18 (final)
Entry fee: $49 to $69 (standard)

If your project doesn’t fit those genres, don’t worry. ScreenCraft also offers these other contests:

ScreenCraft Public Domain Feature Film, TV, and Short screenplay contest: Open March 1.
Deadline: March 31 (early); May 31 (final)

ScreenCraft Stage Play contest: Open June 1.
Deadline: June 30 (early); Aug. 31 (final)

ScreenCraft Pilot Launch contest: Open July 1. Series bible required.
Deadline: July 31 (early); Sept. 30 (final)

ScreenCraft Cinematic Book Contest: Open Sept. 1
Deadline: Sept. 30 (early); Nov. 30 (final)

ScreenCraft Cinematic Short Story Contest: Open Sept. 1
Deadline: Sept. 30 (early); Nov. 30 (final)

 


Valerie Kalfrin is an award-winning crime journalist turned essayist, film critic, screenwriter, and emerging script consultant. She writes for The Hollywood Reporter, CC2K, Script magazine, The Guardian, Film Racket, Bright Wall/Dark Room, ScreenCraft and other outlets. A member of Screenwriters of Tomorrow and the Tampa Bay Film Society, she’s available for story consultation, script editing, coverage, and collaboration. Find her at valeriekalfrin.com or on Twitter @valeriekalfrin.


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