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25-Apr-2014 1:13am PDT  

 

Slamdance Screenplay Competition

19 Annual

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International
Submit Online
5634 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles CA 90038
USA
Phone: 323 466 1786
Fax: 323 466 1784
submissions@slamdance.com
http://slamdance.com/

OPEN CALL FOR ENTRIES • Select a Category of Entry to continue.

Feature Screenplays
Narrative scripts 70-150 pages in length. All narrative genres are welcome. Please note that for screenplays longer than 120 pages additional charges will apply.
Short/Webisode Screenplays
Narrative scripts up to 20 pages in length, intended for short film/webisode production.

With all webisode submissions, supplementary written materials may also be included but are not required. These could include up to five pages of concept, character analysis, and future episode mini-synopsis. Attach these to the end of the script in your PDF file.
Horror Screenplays
Narrative scripts 70-150 pages in length. Scripts including blood shed or the imminent threat of blood shed/death within the story. Please note that for screenplays longer than 120 pages additional charges will apply.
Original Teleplays
Half hour or one hour formats up to 80 pages accepted. Original material only. No specs.

With all teleplay submissions, supplementary written materials may also be included but are not required. These could include up to five pages of concept, character analysis, and future episode mini-synopsis. Attach these to the end of the script in your PDF file.

MISSION & OBJECTIVE
The Slamdance Screenplay Competition is dedicated to discovering and supporting emerging writing talent. We welcome screenplays in every genre, on any topic, from anywhere in the world. A unique feature of the competition is providing constructive feedback for every entrant. In addition to this, we also offer a more intensive coverage service for a supplementary fee. Now in our nineteenth year, we have a history of highlighting talented, independent screenwriters and introducing them to the entertainment industry. All of our readers approach scripts differently, but in general we are looking for originality and promise in a work. As an organization, we strive to foster an independent spirit among new writers and filmmakers. We've established a strong track record through our competition successes and are committed to continuing our pursuit to champion outstanding new work.

Our competition consists of four categories. Awards are given to the top three scripts in each category. In addition to that, Slamdance will present the Grand Prize for the best screenplay, regardless of category

• Feature
• Short/Webisode
• Horror
• Original Teleplay

We look forward to reading your work!


ABOUT THE FESTIVAL
PRIZES:

• A total of $11,000 will be awarded to the winners
this year.

• The Grand Prize winner will receive $5,000 in cash.

• The winner of the Feature, Horror, and Original Teleplay categories will receive $2,000 in cash, each.

• The winning Short/Webisode script will have an option to be produced and screen at Slamdance 2016.

• The top three screenwriters in each category will receive prize packages that include Festival Passes good for all screenings and parties at the Slamdance Film Festival in Park City, Utah (January 2015)

• The top three screenwriters in the Feature and Horror category are eligible for membership in the Writers Guild of America’s Independent Writers Caucus.

• The winning Short/Webisode and winning Feature screenplays will receive $2,500 in legal services from Pierce Law Group, LLP.

• The top three screenwriters in each category will receive merchandise from the Slamdance SHOP (T-shirts, beanies, etc.).

• The top three screenwriters in each category will be included in the 2015 Slamdance Film Festival program which is distributed to industry professionals in Park City and year round.

• Production companies, studios, top agencies and managers request to read our top scripts.


FINALIST & GENERAL FEEDBACK:

"Slamdance changed my life. They plucked my screenplay out of obscurity and gave me my big break. I owe them forever."
-Chad Crawford Kinkle, 2011 Grand Prize winner and writer of JUGFACE

"After my script, Dead in the Room, won the 2010 Slamdance Short Screenplay Competition, Slamdance produced the film in record time. I couldn’t be happier with the results; every aspect of the production is first class. With the overwhelmingly positive response we received at the Slamdance premiere, and more festival screenings to come, this outstanding film is already opening new doors for me as a writer."
-Marjory Kaptanoglu, 2010 Short Screenplay winner and writer of DEAD IN THE ROOM

"Our Slamdance success has without a doubt opened doors for us both in the US and here in Australia; in fact the script has now been optioned by a leading Aussie producer"
-Colin Cairnes, 2010 Horror Screenplay winner and co-writer of 100 BLOODY ACRES

“Winning the Slamdance Short Screenplay Contest was such a great experience because winning the contest, as prestigious as that was, was just the beginning. Slamdance produced the film and they paired me with a talented, seasoned indie director to bring it to the screen. And then premiering the film up in Park City on a Saturday night in front of Steven Soderbergh’s new film was icing on the cake. It was truly an awesome opportunity and experience.”
-Christopher Hlas, 2009 Short Screenplay winner and writer of HEY VENDOR

“Thank you very much for the one-on-one consultation last week. I've had several script consultations over the past two months from Europe and this was one of the best by far. The hour and half was packed full of information and guidance, especially in regard to structure, continuity and character development. My reader didn't spare any information she thought would help me refine my script and take it to the next level. She put a lot of work and heart into every aspect of the process. The price was more than reasonable for her experience and all the work she put into it. I've had really bad sessions in the past that cost me way more money!”
-Haifaa Al Mansour, 2009 entrant who utilized our one-on-one Screenplay Competition Services

“Without the help of Slamdance and Upload Films I would not have been able to see my hopes come to fruition,"
Nancy Kissam - Writer and director of 2006 Screenplay Competition Winner and 2009 Slamdance Film Festival Special Screening DROOL

"Winning Slamdance was an incredible moral booster and the seal of approval that made the industry stop and take notice."
Nicole Kassell - Slamdance Screenplay winner and director of THE WOODSMAN

"The Slamdance Screenplay Award received by Joshua Marston for MARIA FULL OF GRACE was the first public validation of the project...the publicity surrounding this award helped put the project in the public eye."
Paul Mezey, - Producer, MARIA FULL OF GRACE


ORGANIZERS
Anna Germanidi (Festival Director) ; Hilary Campbell (Festival Coordinator)

GENERAL RULES
Slamdance Screenplay Competition Announcement Dates:

• September 3rd 2014 - Announce 100 Quarter-Finalists
• September 10th, 2014 - Announce 32 Semi-Finalists
• September 17th, 2014 - Announce 12 Finalists - In no particular order
• October 8th, 2014 - WGAW Party for Finalists and Semi-Finalists - Announce Winners

Rules:

1. Scripts submitted to the competition must NOT have been previously optioned, purchased or produced at the time of entry.
2. Scripts submitted to the competition must not have received awards from other competitions over $1,000 at the time of entry.
3. Screenwriters who have had previous feature screenplays produced and distributed by non-independent means are ineligible.
4. Screenplays must be in English, formatted in 12-point courier font.
5. Don’t cheat in an effort to keep the page count to 120 or less. We will notice and ask that the extra fee be paid for the screenplays in excess of 120 pages. As a standard rule, 1.5” left, 1” right and 1” top and bottom dimensions are acceptable.
6. To enter the Slamdance Screenplay Competition, you must agree to its Terms and Conditions.
7. The Slamdance Screenplay Competition readers’ decisions are final.
8. No specs will be accepted for the Original Teleplay category.

Guidelines:

1. In the event of multiple writers, list all additional co-writers. Please NOTE: Slamdance divides awards equally among co-writers.
2. Slamdance is not responsible for screenplays or coverage stolen or lost in transit.
3. For screenplays longer than 120 pages, fifteen dollars is added to the regular entry fees.
4. Cover pages are optional. If you decide to use one, it would ideally include just a title, author name, WGA registration number and Copyright information. The cover page does not count towards the overall script page count.

SCRIPT REGISTRY: To protect your script, we strongly suggest you register your work with the Writers Guild of America, West (www.wga.org or call 323.782.4500) and the US Copyright Office (http://www.copyright.gov).

Prizes:

• A total of $11,000 will be awarded to the winners this year.
• The Grand Prize winner will receive $5,000 in cash.
• The winner of the Feature, Horror, and Original Teleplay categories will receive $2,000 each.
• The winning Short/Webisode screenplay will have an option to be produced and screen at Slamdance 2016.
• The top three screenwriters in each category will receive prize packages that include Festival Passes good for all screenings and parties at the Slamdance Film Festival in Park City, Utah (January 2015)
• The top three screenwriters in the Feature and Horror category are eligible for membership in the Writers Guild of America’s Independent Writers Caucus.
• The winning Short/Webisode and winning Feature screenplays will receive $2,500 in legal services from Pierce Law Group, LLP.
• The top three screenwriters in each category will receive merchandise from the Slamdance SHOP (T-shirts, beanies, etc.).
• The top three screenwriters in each category will be included in the 2015 Slamdance Film Festival program which is distributed to industry professionals in Park City and year round.
• Production companies, studios, top agencies and managers request to read our top scripts.

EXPLANATION OF SERVICES:

Feedback Service:
Everyone who submits a screenplay to Slamdance will receive concise online feedback from our Readers, three to five sentences in length. The object of our Feedback Service is to provide you with constructive criticism about your work. The feedback includes a logline, genre suggestion and three to five sentences outlining the strengths and weaknesses of your screenplay. The Feedback is very brief and basic compared to the extensive notes provided with our Coverage Service, which is available for an additional fee.

Standard Coverage Service: The object of Slamdance’s online Coverage Service is to provide you with extensive constructive criticism about your work. The Coverage Service includes a brief plot synopsis and then offers an in-depth analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of your screenplay. The Coverage Service also offers the screenwriter some recommendation as to what "the next step" could be with their screenplay and writing. This may address media, films and screenplays, production companies and agencies the writer should be aware of, as well as any words of wisdom from one of our Readers. Slamdance’s Coverage provides you with an insight into the mind of a Reader who reads hundreds of independent screenplays each year. Our Readers' goal is to assist you in crafting your submission into something that can advance in competition and impress agents, managers and producers. The Standard Coverage will be available within two months from the time you submit your work. A notice will be sent to the e-mail address you provided in your screenplay application form when your Coverage is available.

Express Coverage Service:
Slamdance’s online Express Coverage is an added benefit for those that would like to receive coverage within 21 days of your screenplay submission arriving at the Slamdance office.

One on One Screenplay Consultation Services:
As a service separate from the screenplay competition, we also offer year-round, one on one screenplay consultation services. This gives writers a chance to meet with one of our readers to discuss in depth the strengths, weaknesses, and methods for improving ones script. The sessions last an average of 90 minutes and cost $250. The majority of this fee will go directly to our reader, who prepares extensively before each consultation. For writers not located in the Los Angeles area, we could set up a skype meeting for you and a reader. For further details please call the Slamdance office: 323-466-1786.

Slamdance Readers:
Slamdance Readers are industry professionals and all have a combination of the following qualifications: professional coverage background, production and development background, and/or are professional writers, Slamdance alumni, playwrights and journalists. Readers’ Competition decisions are final.


SCREENPLAY COMPETITION FAQ:

Q: What is script registration, and why is it mandatory?
A: Slamdance only wants to look at copyrighted material. All writers should be concerned with protecting their work. Copyrighting can be as easy as sending yourself a copy in a sealed envelop, and as all-inclusive as registering with the WGA. We accept all forms of registration and copywriting.

Q: Should I include a title page?

A: Cover pages are optional. If you decide to use one, it would ideally include just a title, author name, WGA registration number and Copyright information. The cover page does not count towards the overall script page count.

Q: Can I enter the same script two years in a row?

A: We encourage screenwriters to resubmit, but we also want you to use our coverage service and edit your script. Your script should be as tight as possible before you resubmit.

Q: What kind of scripts are you looking for? If my screenplay is very unconventional or experimental will it be overlooked?
A: We are always looking for outrageous scripts that do not follow the rules! Look at the top ten from the past ten years; we have awarded everything from epic period pieces to low-budget indie gems.

Q: Is there an age requirement to submit to Slamdance?

A: No! You can submit if you're 10 or 110 years old. We at Slamdance are not ageist and encourage work from a variety of age groups.

Q: Can I also enter other competitions?
A: Definitely. We encourage you to get your script into the hands of as many people as possible. Because we are for first-time writers only, we are a good competition to start with. There is a section of the FAQ below, dedication to competitions we endorse.

Q: Does Slamdance sell or trade e-mail lists?
A: No, we do not. Please include your e-mail because we contact quarter-finalists and semi-finalists by e-mail before the official announcement. You have the option to stay off of our e-mail list and will not be contacted after the competition is over.

Q: Do you accept adaptations?
A: Yes. Generally you must own or acquire permission to the rights to another person's work before you can sell it. There are a few exceptions, such as 'Public Domain' (you have to look into the legalities of this).

Q: What format/font should I use?
A: Stick with Courier 12 point. This is industry standard, and every script you write should be in this format.

Q: My script is really, really long - at least 200 pages. Bigger is better, right?
A: No. Feature length screenplays should be between 90 and 120 pages; short screenplays under 20 pages (and please number the pages). Scripts between 120 and 150 pages will be charged extra in the submission fees. EDIT. Edit for grammar, exposition and excess. While there are a few exceptions, scripts should be as tightly edited as possible. Screenplays over 150 pages will be disqualified from the writing competition.

Q: What if my check bounces?
A: Checks returned to us for whatever reason will incur a standard $25 fee on top of the original entry. It may take up to a week for your check to be deposited (depending on when it arrives in the office), so keep that in mind.

Q: Can I call to check if my script has arrived yet?
A: No. Please do not call the Slamdance office to check if your script has arrived. You can check your Withoutabox submission status, as soon as it's received this will change to "In Consideration"

Teleplay Questions:

Q: What is a Teleplay? And what is the difference between an original pilot and a “spec” script?
A: A teleplay is another way of saying “television script”. An original pilot is the first episode of an original series or the first hour-length episode of a miniseries. A “spec” script is written for existing shows.

Q: Do you accept “spec” scripts?
A: No. We will only accept original pilots for this year’s competition.

Q: When you say to submit additional story ideas with subplots and resolutions, are you looking for any particular length? Or any particular number of them?
A: You can include as many additional storylines as you like, and the descriptions should be short, no longer than 10 lines. Just make sure the supplementary materials you submit with your teleplay does not exceed 3 pages.


Short Questions:

Q: What is the advantage of entering a short?
A: The winning short will be produced by Slamdance and will premiere in Park City. Writing short screenplays is a great way to showcase your talent and use as a piece of sample

Q: Who is looking for shorts at Slamdance?
A: Slamdance is a great place to submit short scripts because our festival screens roughly 40 short films a year, and those filmmakers are always on the lookout for new projects.

Q: What are the page requirements for a short screenplay?
A: Short screenplays can be as short as five pages, and as long as 20 pages. We accept all short screenplays that fall between these page requirements.

Coverage Questions:

Q: What is coverage?
A: Coverage is written feedback that is a blunt, honest reaction from a reader that reads hundreds of scripts a year and wants to help you avoid the common pitfalls of screenwriting. The aim of every piece of coverage is to constructively help you develop your script into a final draft.

Q: Who are your readers?
A: Our readers are comprised of Slamdance alumni, past winners, filmmakers, journalists, playwrights, screenwriters and other writing professionals, some of whom also do development coverage for major studios.

Q: What is the advantage of submitting early?
A: Check out the deadlines. The sooner you submit, the sooner you will receive your coverage. The coverage will not indicate if your script has moved on, but it will give you a sense early on, of the scripts strengths and weaknesses (in the eyes of one reader). And, it's cheaper to submit early, the submission fees increase with each deadline.

Q: What if I am extremely unhappy with the coverage I receive?
A: Please let us know by e-mailing submissions@slamdance.com. We will review the coverage, and work with you to solve the problem. In most cases that means getting someone else to read it at a discounted price (there are no refunds).

Q: How long should I wait until I call about missing coverage?
A: Two weeks. If there is a delay, we will let you know ahead of time. Except when you request rushed coverage. In those cases e-mail submissions@slamdance.com right away.

Q: What should I do if I get the wrong coverage?
A: Please e-mail submissions@slamdance.com right away.

Q: Am I able to contract the reader who did my coverage?
A: Yes. Please e-mail submissions@slamdance.com. We will forward your message on to the reader, and they will respond directly to you.

PLEASE CALL US IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS:
If you have any problems while submitting, or any questions about the submission process just e-mail us or call our offices: 323-466-1786

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

Please read the following terms and conditions in connection with your screenplay entry to the 2014 Slamdance Screenplay Competition. (SSC). As the author of the screenplay I/we have submitted to SSC, I/we warrant as sole and exclusive owner/s of all legal right and title thereto have absolute authority to submit the screenplay to SSC. I/we will indemnify and hold harmless SSC, its judges, sponsors and partners, individually and collectively, from and against all claims, demands, losses, damages, costs, liabilities and expenses including legal expenses arising out of or in connection with any and all third party claims based on scripts submitted to SSC. SSC winners will permit SSC to use their name and/or likeness in post-competition publicity. By signing this form I/we understand and agree to all the terms and conditions of screenplay entry. I have read through and agree to the 2014 Slamdance Screenplay Competition Entry Procedure, Rules, Guidelines, and all Terms and Conditions.