With a focus on emotional impact, whether you’re writing a romantic drama film, or a historical epic TV series, our judges want to read your script.

REMIND ME

Contest Opening on May 1

Deadlines

May 31

Early

Jun 30

Regular

Jul 31

Final

Announcements

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Sep 8

Quarterfinalist

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Oct 6

Semifinalist

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Nov 3

Finalist

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Dec 8

Winner

Drama is at the heart of great Hollywood storytelling.  The genre of drama is broad, and allows storytellers to dive deep into the heart of the human condition, expressing universal themes with nuanced complexity and characterization. Our judges are looking for great stories with original voices and honest emotion. This competition celebrates great dramatic film writing. Whether you’re writing a sweeping period drama or a contained relationship movie, we want to read your film or TV script!

Judges

Get in front of Hollywood judges who love great drama.

Jonathan Wu

Creative Executive, Hello Sunshine

The production company of Academy Award-winning actress, Reese Witherspoon, behind such TV series as BIG LITTLE LIES and THE MORNING SHOW.

Natalie Sellers

Creative Executive, Annapurna

The production company behind award-winning films such as ZERO DARK THIRTY, FOXCATCHER, HER, HUSTLERS, VICE, and THE MASTER.

Richard Ruiz

Creative Executive, Searchlight Pictures

The celebrated studio behind such prestigious dramas including THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE OF EBBING, MISSOURI and Best Picture Winners BIRDMAN, 12 YEARS A SLAVE, SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE, and THE SHAPE OF WATER.

David Rabinowitz

Writer

The Academy Award-winning screenwriter of BLACKKKLANSMAN directed by Spike Lee.

Zara Randera

Drama Coordinator, NBC Universal Television

The iconic network behind such historical hits as THE WEST WING, FRIENDS, and SEINFELD, and current hit shows BLINDSPOT, CHICAGO MED, THE BLACKLIST, AND THIS IS US.

Prizes

Jump start your career

Grand Prize Winner

The overall grand prize winner in either feature, TV or short category will be welcomed to the ScreenCraft Writer Development Program and receive personal introductions and phone calls with one or more top Hollywood literary managers who are looking for talented emerging Film & TV screenwriters.

The top 3 winners’ project info and log lines will be circulated and recommended to our network of over 60 Hollywood managers, agents, producers and development executives.

ScreenCraft has a proven track record for getting writers signed with managers, agents, and staffed in writing rooms.

  • Personal Introduction to top literary managers

  • Accepted into the ScreenCraft Writer Development Program

  • $1,000 Cash

  • Complimentary Badge for the 2022 ScreenCraft Virtual Summit

  • Lifetime subscription to Arc Studio Pro

Runner-Up Prizes

Feature Winner

$500 cash award

Accepted into ScreenCraft Development Program

50% off 2022 ScreenCraft Virtual Summit

Lifetime subscription to Arc Studio Pro

Pilot Winner

$500 cash award

Accepted into ScreenCraft Development Program

50% off 2022 ScreenCraft Virtual Summit

Lifetime subscription to Arc Studio Pro

Short Winner

$500 cash award

50% off 2022 ScreenCraft Virtual Summit

Career Consultation

Lifetime subscription to Arc Studio Pro

SCREENCRAFT WINNERS

Winning a ScreenCraft competition can launch your career.

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Drama Articles

  • The Single Difference Between Cinematic Drama and Melodrama Mar 10 by Ken Miyamoto - What's the difference between drama and melodrama in features and television? This is one of the most highly-debated subjects in screenwriting — drama versus melodrama. When you search for the core definition of those two… ...
READ MORE ARTICLES

RULES & INFO

  • Rules
  • Eligibility
  • Selection Criteria
  • Additional Legal
  1. Submissions are accepted via electronic submission only, between February 1, 2021 and April 30, 2021.
  2. Entry fees and deadlines:
    1. $49.50 until the early deadline on May 31, 2021
    2. $69.50 until the regular deadline on June 30, 2021
    3. $79.50 until the final deadline on July 31, 2021
  3. Optional feedback from a professional reader may be requested at the time of entry. Requests for feedback after an entry is submitted will not be accepted.
  4. Feature screenplays must be a minimum of 75 pages and a maximum of 150 pages. Short screenplays must be between 7 and 35 pages. TV pilots must be between 25 and 75 pages. Any submission longer than 120 pages will incur a $1 per page overage fee for each page over 120.
  5. There is no limit to the number of projects you may submit.
  6. Entries must be received on or before the deadline dates by 11:59PM Pacific Time, and submission fee payment must be made in full at time of the submission. All entry fees are non-refundable.
  7. All submitted material must be original, and all rights must be wholly owned by the writer(s).
  8. Material must be submitted by the writer. Material written by writing teams must be submitted by one of the writers, with consent of the other(s). All writers must be credited on the title page.
  9. If a writing team is chosen as a winner, prizes will be given to the person who submits the project. Each team is responsible for dividing or sharing the prize money.
  10. Substitutions of either corrected pages or new drafts of the entered material will be allowed for a limited time with a $5 reentry fee through Coverfly. Please proofread your script carefully before submitting.
  11. It is recommended that original material be registered with the WGA or The Library of Congress before submitting to any competition, however we do not require registration.
  12. Contact info may be included on the cover page of the screenplay, however it is not required.
  13. ScreenCraft claims no ownership nor option on your work. All ownership and rights to the scripts submitted to this contest remains with the original rights holders. 

We want to set you up for success, and here are a few basic screenplay etiquettes that will help your screenplay.

  1. All writers at least 18 years of age are eligible. However, a writer who has earned more than $50,000 (or equivalent currency) from professional writing services for film or TV in the preceding year is not. (Contest winnings not included.)
  2. All persons from anywhere in the world are eligible; however the material submitted must be in English (occasional dialogue in other languages is acceptable, if subtitle translation is provided).
  3. All material submitted to other competitions or contests are eligible for this contest.
  4. There are no requirements as to when the material was written.
  5. Screenplay and intellectual property must be wholly owned and submitted by the writer(s).
  6. Material should be submitted in standard screenplay format, font, spacing and margin.
  7. We have no preferences regarding title page content. Title and name of writer would suffice.
  8. Entries for this competition are managed on the submission platform Coverfly.
  9. Adaptations are ineligible unless the underlying rights are owned by the writer or the work is in the public domain.
  10. Feature screenplays longer than 150 pages will not be eligible.
  11. All material must be submitted electronically as a PDF or it will not be eligible.
  12. Entries for this competition are managed on the submission platform Coverfly.
  • The winners will be chosen based on the following criteria: 
    • Voice
    • Concept
    • Story
    • Structure
    • Characters
    • Dialogues
    • Genre Conventions

     

    Criteria for Winners and Finalists:

    1. The winners and top finalists may be contacted by interested industry representatives, such as managers, agents or producers. 
    2. Entrants may be required to submit further information to assist in the judges’ verification of eligibility. 
    3. Any entrant may be deemed ineligible as a Finalist or Winner at the sole discretion of ScreenCraft. 
    4. Finalists may be required to sign and return within seven (7) business days of receipt a notarized Affidavit of Eligibility and a Release and Indemnification and proof of valid passport and any other documents that ScreenCraft or any other partner may require before receiving prize payment. Failure to respond to the initial notification within ten (10) days or return of notification will result in disqualification. 
    5. We reserve the right to amend these rules at any time.
  • COPYRIGHT AND OWNERSHIP: ScreenCraft or any other partner, employee or agent associated with this contest claims no ownership nor first right of option to any original screenplay submitted to this contest. All ownership and rights to the scripts submitted to this contest remains with the original rights holders until and unless other agreements are made.
  • PUBLICITY: Except where prohibited by law, participation in the contest constitutes each entrant’s consent to ScreenCraft and its agents’ and contest sponsor’s use of entrants’ names, likenesses, photographs, and/or personal information for promotional purposes in any media, worldwide, without further payment or consideration. All uses of a entrants’ information are in accordance with our Privacy Policy.
  • REFUND POLICY: All entries are non-refundable.
  • ENTRY CONDITIONS AND RELEASE: BY ENTERING THE CONTEST YOU ACKNOWLEDGE THAT YOU HAVE READ AND AGREE TO THESE CONDITIONS. You agree to release and hold harmless ScreenCraft, ScreenCraft.org, its subsidiary, parent and affiliated companies, Prize contributors, judges, screenplay readers, Sponsors, and any other organizations responsible for administering, advertising or promoting the Contest, and every one of their respective members, directors, employees, agents and representatives (collectively, the “Released Parties”) past and present from and against any and all claims, expenses, and liability, including but not limited to damages and negligence to property and persons, including but not limited to invasion of privacy, defamation, slander, libel, violation of right of publicity, copyright, infringement of trademark or other intellectual property rights relating to a participant’s Entry, participation in the Contest and/or acceptance or use or misuse of Prize; provided however, that such release will not apply to any commercial exploitation of the script by a Released Party in violation of your rights under applicable copyright law; and (c) indemnify, defend and hold harmless the ScreenCraft.org and its Sponsor, agents and employees from and against any and all claims, expenses, and liabilities (including reasonable attorneys fees) relating to an entrant’s participation in the Contest and/or entrant’s use or misuse of Prize. Employees of ScreenCraft and their immediate families are ineligible to participate in this contest. Any such submission will be immediately disqualified. ENTRY TO THIS CONTEST IS VOID WHERE PROHIBITED or restricted by any Federal, State or Local law. Voided entries will be refunded. Recipients’ eligibility will be verified before the grant is awarded and the winner may be required to sign an affidavit of eligibility. By entering the contest, you authorize us to use any trusted third-party online and cloud-based services and databases for hosting, managing and/or transmitting your submission file(s).

SCRIPTS WE LOVE

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