“The industry’s #1 horror screenplay contest” – IndieWire Horror thrills an audience like no other! Whether you're writing a frightening feature or a terrifying pilot, our judges are ready for your scares!

REMIND ME

Contest opens on Aug 1, 2021

Deadlines

Aug 31

Early

Sep 30

Regular

Oct 31

Final

Announcements

Dec 1

Quarterfinalist

Jan 5

Semifinalist

Feb 2

Finalist

Mar 2

Winner

Horror is a one of the best genres for emerging talent. It has launched countless careers, and it is consistently popular worldwide. Horror confronts us with our deepest fears and anxieties, and it can be a powerfully cathartic experience. Whether you’re writing a contained, socially-relevant horror movie, or a big horror TV series, our judges want to read your script.

Judges

Get in front of Hollywood judges who love great .

Ryan Turek

VP of Development, Blumhouse Productions

Company credits include PARANORMAL ACTIVITY, INSIDIOUS, SINISTER, OCULUS, THE PURGE, OUIJA, THE GREEN INFERNO, Academy-award nominee WHIPLASH and UNFRIENDED.

C. Robert Cargill

Screenwriter

Screenwriter, novelist, journalist and podcaster best known as the writer of DOCTOR STRANGE, SINISTER, and SINISTER 2, as well as executive producer of horror series INTO THE DARK.

Brittany Klesic

Creative Executive, Monkeypaw Productions

Creative Executive at Monkeypaw Productions, Jordan Peele’s production company behind such iconic horror titles as GET OUT and US, and Co-Producer on their new feature CANDYMAN.

Crystal Holt

Director of Scripted Programming, AMC Networks

Director of Scripted Programming at AMC Networks, the cable television network behind the iconic horror franchise THE WALKING DEAD and its spin off FEAR THE WALKING DEAD, as well as BREAKING BAD and MAD MEN.

Sarah Christine

Development Executive, Goal Post Pictures

Development Executive at Goal Post Pictures, an Australian-based production company whose feature film THE INVISIBLE MAN, is the highest grossing horror film of 2020.

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

Previous Successes

Placing in a ScreenCraft competition can launch your career. See More Successes

As Featured in

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Rules & Terms

  • Rules
  • Eligibility
  • Selection Criteria
  • Additional Legal
  1. Submissions are accepted via electronic submission only, between August 1, 2021 and October 31, 2021.
  2. Entry fee for each submission is 
    1. $49.50 until the early deadline on August 31, 2021
    2. $69.50 until the regular deadline on September 30, 2021
    3. $79.50 until the final deadline on October 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. TV pilots must be between 20 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.

  • The contest is open to entrants who will be 18 or older at the time of the winners’ announcement. 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.)
  • 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).
  • All material submitted to other competitions or contests are eligible for this contest.
  • There are no requirements as to when the material was written.
  • Screenplay and intellectual property must be wholly owned and submitted by the writer(s).
  • Material should be submitted in standard screenplay format, font, spacing and margin.
  • We have no preferences regarding title page content. Title and name of writer would suffice.
  • Entries for this competition are managed on the submission platform Coverfly.
  • Adaptations are ineligible unless the underlying rights are owned by the writer or the work is in the public domain.
  • Feature screenplays longer than 150 pages will not be eligible.
  • All material must be submitted electronically as a PDF or it will not be eligible.
  • 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).

Thrills and Scares

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