What do George Lucas, Neill Blomkamp, and Lynne Ramsay all have in common? They started their careers off of a short script. We want to help build new great careers for amazing short script writers.

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Early Deadline in 2 days

Deadlines

Nov 30

Early

Dec 31

Regular

Jan 31

Final

Announcements

Feb 23

Quarterfinalist

Mar 16

Semifinalist

Apr 13

Finalist

May 4

Winner

ScreenCraft's Short Screenplay Competition is one of Hollywood's top contests celebrating short-form screenwriting. With the rise in demand for high-quality short content across new platforms and devices, and the increased industry importance placed on short filmmaking worldwide, we’re honoring the craft of short-form narrative screenwriting with this competition, which features a prestigious jury of industry-leading professionals.

$2,500 Option Prize from Couscous Film Production

Want to work with a production company to develop your short script into a full length feature film while earning money for the rights? Oscar-nominated Producer Sacha Ben Harroche and Couscous Film Production is going to option one short script for $2,500 and work with the writer to develop the project into a feature. This is a separate prize from the grand prize winner.

Couscous is a production company and multicultural collective of international directors and founders, uniting their boutique structure and globe-spanning resources to achieve the same resolve: crafting beautiful, emotionally-powerful work in the commercial and narrative spheres. Sacha Ben Harroche is the producer behind award-winning films like SOUND OF METAL, THE RIDER, and JAWLINE.

The 2021-22 ScreenCraft Short Script Competition Option Program has the following terms: the writer will be given option payment of $2,500 for an 18-month option period. Producers have first right of renewal of the option for an additional 18-month period and additional $2,500 payment. The option includes both the short script and any future feature film based on the short script.

Being chosen for this prize offers the writer the right to accept this option, but not the requirement. At the time the option is offered, writers may decline if they so choose.

$2,500 Option

The selected project will receive a minimum of a $2,500 option with a possible extension

5 Meetings

Coucous will be taking meetings with at least 5 writers

Development

Work with Coucous to develop a feature script from your short

Judges

Get in front of Hollywood judges who've made careers from short films.

Sydney Neter

Short Film Sales Agent and Distributor, SND Films

Sydney Neter started out as a production assistant for features and commercials in Amsterdam. In 1994, he founded the international boutique sales agency SND Films, selling award winning international short films, TV-movies and (feature) documentaries. Sydney has been on the Dutch Film Fund shorts commission from 2001-2010 and on the board of directors of the International Short Film Festival Go Short! in Nijmegen until 2011 and continues to be on the board of advisory. People call him Mr. Shorts now. He’s been on (shorts) juries, like Berlin, Dresden, Sundance, Palm Springs, Tel Aviv International Student Festival, Rio Short Film Fest etc.

Jason Stone

Writer and Director

Jason created and executive produced This is the End starring Seth Rogen and James Franco, which was based on his short film, Jay and Seth Versus the Apocalypse that he made as a graduate student at USC’s school of Cinematic Arts. His work now spans both feature films and episodic television. He worked extensively on the hit series’ Riverdale, Van Helsing, and Rogue. His most recent film, At First Light, premiered at SXSW film festival where it was bought by Gravitas Ventures for international distribution.

Inga Diev

General Manager, Ouat Media

Inga Diev serves as the General Manager of Ouat Media, a Toronto-based short film distribution and sales company. Recognized internationally as one of the world’s primary destinations for work by the industry’s rising stars, Ouat Media boasts an award-winning catalogue of titles featuring 12 Oscar nominees including 3 Oscar winners to date. In her role, Inga is responsible for the company’s business operations and oversees all the film sales and acquisitions.

Prizes

Jump start your career.

Grand Prize Winner

The overall grand prize winner will be welcomed to the ScreenCraft Writer Development Program and receive individualized consulting regarding your portfolio and career goals, develop a personalized plan of action for your writing career, and receive introductions with one or more top Hollywood literary managers, execs, or producers who are looking for talented emerging Film & TV screenwriters.

In addition, the winner's project info and log lines will be recommended in a targeted way to our network of 100+ Hollywood managers, agents, producers and development executives with mandates that match your writing and voice.

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

  • Personal Introduction to top literary managers, executives, or producers

  • Accepted into the ScreenCraft Writer Development Program

  • $1,000 Cash

  • Complimentary Badge for the 2022 ScreenCraft Virtual Summit

  • Invitation to a Finalist exclusive networking and career mentoring event

Runner-Up Prizes

1st Runner Up

$500 cash award

Invitation to a Finalist exclusive networking and career mentoring event

Complimentary badge for the 2022 ScreenCraft Virtual Summit

Finalists

Invitation to a Finalist exclusive networking and career mentoring event

Previous Successes

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

As Featured in

Short Film Articles

  • 3 Eye-Opening Differences Between Short and Feature Scripts Oct 12 by Ken Miyamoto - A short script can't just be a feature condensed into smaller perimeters — the same way a feature script can't just be a lengthened short. They are two different beasts to tackle — complete with different… ...
READ MORE ARTICLES

Rules & More

  • Rules
  • Eligibility
  • Selection Criteria
  • Additional Legal
  • FAQs
  1. Submissions are accepted via electronic submission only.
  2. Entry fees are as listed on the site and checkout form. No coupon or discount is applicable on a previous entry.
  3. Optional feedback from a professional reader may be requested at the time of entry. Requests for feedback can be done through Coverfly
  4. While short scripts may be any length, we recommend scripts be between 2 - 30 pages. Any script submission longer than 30 pages will incur a $1 per page overage fee for each page over 30.
  5. 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.
  6. All submitted material must be owned by the writer(s), however the material may be based on other works not owned by the writers.
  7. 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).
  8. 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 any prizes awarded as they deem fair (whether there is a cash value or not).
  9. 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.
  10. 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.
  11. Contact info may be included on the cover page of the screenplay, however it is not required. ScreenCraft uses Coverfly to manage submissions and automatically removes cover pages before scripts are read by the judges.
  12. 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. 
  13. The decision of the judges will be final and cannot be contested in any manner. There is no score on a scorecard that guarantees advancement to the next level as advancement will be based on all scores in the competition.
  14. ScreenCraft reserves the right to change deadline and announcement dates at any time.
  15. ScreenCraft reserves the right to amend these rules at any time.
  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 12 months or $500,000 (or equivalent currency) from professional film or TV in the proceeding 10 years is not eligible. (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. The material may have been written at any time.
  5. Material should be submitted in standard screenplay format, font, spacing and margin.
  6. We have no preferences regarding title page content. Title and name of writer would suffice.
  7. All material must be submitted electronically as a PDF. Broken files or non-PDF files may be accepted, but if the file cannot be read ScreenCraft will not judge the submission.
  8. ScreenCraft reserves the right to amend these rules at any time.
  9. Prize winners may be required to sign an affidavit of eligibility and proper tax documentation before prizes are released.
  10. By entering the competition, user acknowledges their eligibility for the competition. ScreenCraft will verify all eligibility requirements at the finalist stage of the competition and before distributing any prizes.

The reading and judging of the scripts will be based on the following criteria: 

  • Voice
  • Concept
  • Story
  • Structure
  • Characters
  • Dialogues
  • Genre Conventions

In addition to the scoring criteria for the script, ScreenCraft may conduct interviews and send questionnaires to learn more about the entrant, their voice, perspective, and goals to help identify the winning projects. Top scripts are ready by the industry jury who votes for their favorite scripts at their sole discretion.

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. All recognition, placements, and winners are chosen at the sole discretion of ScreenCraft.
  5. 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. 
  6. We reserve the right to amend these rules at any time.
  1. 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.
  2. 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 entrants' information are in accordance with our Privacy Policy.
  3. REFUND POLICY: All entries are non-refundable.
  4. SITE TERMS OF SERVICE. All ScreenCraft Terms of Service apply in addition to these rules and eligibility criteria.
  5. DATA MANAGEMENT AND PRIVACY. Entries for this competition are managed on the submission platform Coverfly, and ScreenCraft (a d/b/a of Red Ampersand, Inc) uses other data management tools, including but not limited to, Google Services and Amazon Web Services, to securely manage your data. ScreenCraft is not accountable for any data hacks (internal or external) or user errors that may release scripts or writer data unintentionally.
  6. ENTRY CONDITIONS AND RELEASE: BY ENTERING THE CONTEST YOU ACKNOWLEDGE THAT YOU HAVE READ AND AGREE TO THESE CONDITIONS. You agree to release, indemnify 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). The governing law is California.

For a full list of FAQs, please visit our help site here.

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