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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Screenwriting Discussion    Contests - Screenwriting and Filmmaking  ›  Nicholl Fellowship Moderators: Don
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  Author    Nicholl Fellowship  (currently 6561 views)
dogglebe
Posted: April 11th, 2013, 7:01pm Report to Moderator
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The final deadline for the Holy Grail of screenplay competitions is less than three weeks away.  Click here and enter now.

Don't let Breanne have all the fun.


Phil
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Mr. Blonde
Posted: April 11th, 2013, 8:44pm Report to Moderator
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What good are choices if they're all bad?

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I always tell myself I'll go and do it next year. Then, I never do. Maybe next year.


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Alex_212
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 1:58am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Mr. Blonde
I always tell myself I'll go and do it next year. Then, I never do. Maybe next year.


Next year never comes. It's always a year away.


PLEASE TAKE A PEEK AT SOME OF MY WORK:-

CLICK HERE: Please comment or PM me.
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Andrew
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 5:04am Report to Moderator
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This is the biggie! Good luck to everyone entering. Breanne set the benchmark with (2 is it?) upper echelon performances. Let's hope we get more SS representation for 2013.


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nawazm11
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 5:30am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Mr. Blonde
I always tell myself I'll go and do it next year. Then, I never do. Maybe next year.


Exactly this.
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khamanna
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 6:19am Report to Moderator
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I want to brag a little - not only I saw a Nichol fellow once but I touched him!

It was in a theatre, I was auditioning for a play, and he was there with one of his plays. They were staging it - it wasn't the one I was auditioning for but that's not the point.
I made sure to touch his sleeve. Or maybe I touched his sleeve by mistake, had to pass by him and he was blocking the way but that's not the point either.

And to those of you who are saying "big deal" now - have you touched a Nichol fellow? So, there!
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KevinLenihan
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 6:38am Report to Moderator
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Phillip Whitcroft made the semis last year with Dumb Animals. Breanne has had several quarterfinalists, she might have made semis one year too, I don't know.

They publish one judge comments every day, and this year there have already been some crazy good comments. One judge awarded a perfect score of a 100 for a script, extremely rare.
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Andrew
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 6:52am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from KevinLenihan
Phillip Whitcroft made the semis last year with Dumb Animals. Breanne has had several quarterfinalists, she might have made semis one year too, I don't know.

They publish one judge comments every day, and this year there have already been some crazy good comments. One judge awarded a perfect score of a 100 for a script, extremely rare.


Nice. I do recall the username pwhitcroft and the script sounds familiar. Must've seen the script thread, I guess.


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KevinLenihan
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 7:28am Report to Moderator
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I don't know if he ever posted here. I believe it may have begun years ago as an OWC, not sure. He has an improved draft entered this year.

Semi-finalist is like top 130 out of over 7000. So an impressive achievement. Breanne's multiples are equally impressive. Shows consistent quality.
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Andrew
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 7:40am Report to Moderator
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For sure, and they must have all 1/4s and semis flagged for subsequent entries, which hopefully improves chances for the step up to getting a fellowship, exactly because it shows that consistency.

Also, is it fresh judges each year (perhaps with a standard core), or the same 'academy' of judges every year?


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khamanna
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 7:47am Report to Moderator
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I thought Philip made the finals.

And, wasn't Shawn (Ledbetter) in too? I thought he made quater finals at Nichols. But let's wait for them to chime in.
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KevinLenihan
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 8:35am Report to Moderator
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What I know about the judging is limited, and they try to keep a lid on things. These things I know:

- judges score on a 100 pt scale. They seem to have categories, such as structure, characterization, originality, but not sure if these are informal guidelines or part of a scorecard. I suspect they are just guidelines, and the emphasis is on story.
- I believe originality tends to weigh for more in this contest than most.
- each script gets at least 2 reads. And they try to divvy it up so that each script gets one male and one female reader. They make an effort to make the contest gender neutral. It's an issue because male finalists far outnumber female finalists for some reason, and they get complaints. So they do what they can, and of course the readers know nothing about the gender of the writers.
- the perception seems to be that Nicholl's scripts tend to be after school special type dramas. I don't think that's accurate. I've looked at finalist scripts the last couple years, and they are very diverse in genre and style. Comedy, horror, sci fi...it's all there. As long as there is good story building within, the genre doesn't matter. That's why slash horror doesn't work, because there tends to be little characterization.
- most of the finalist scripts seem to violate someone's "rules" to a degree, whether  it's the Save the Catters insistence on certain plot points or the "proper" writing people. So I would not obsess over those things. Just make it a good story.
- and to repeat, originality seems to really matter. Give them something new.

There are 10 finalists, and they are all basically winners who get flown to Hollywood for a week of seminars and stuff. All of the quarter finalists and semi finalists are listed publicly, so they get contacted by everyone from studio readers, small producers and directors to agents. I got contacted by about 20, and while I had a few ongoing discussions, nothing came close to going anywhere.

My script was a seriously flawed thing, and it made quarters. You really just have to get lucky with a judge. Breanne being able to do it consistently seems to be exceptional. I did see one poor guy had TWO scripts in the semis last year, but didn't make finals. That's rough.
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Ledbetter
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 9:55am Report to Moderator
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This will be my first year entering the Nicholl and I'm stoked.

In fact, I wrote my entry with this contest in mind.

I have no real expectations but I do enjoy the anticipation.

khamanna, I quarter finaled in the PAGE AWARDS last year which was really exciting as well. Thanks for remembering.

Shawn.....><

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Ledbetter  -  April 12th, 2013, 4:28pm
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Andrew
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 1:00pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from KevinLenihan
What I know about the judging is limited, and they try to keep a lid on things. These things I know:

- judges score on a 100 pt scale. They seem to have categories, such as structure, characterization, originality, but not sure if these are informal guidelines or part of a scorecard. I suspect they are just guidelines, and the emphasis is on story.
- I believe originality tends to weigh for more in this contest than most.
- each script gets at least 2 reads. And they try to divvy it up so that each script gets one male and one female reader. They make an effort to make the contest gender neutral. It's an issue because male finalists far outnumber female finalists for some reason, and they get complaints. So they do what they can, and of course the readers know nothing about the gender of the writers.
- the perception seems to be that Nicholl's scripts tend to be after school special type dramas. I don't think that's accurate. I've looked at finalist scripts the last couple years, and they are very diverse in genre and style. Comedy, horror, sci fi...it's all there. As long as there is good story building within, the genre doesn't matter. That's why slash horror doesn't work, because there tends to be little characterization.
- most of the finalist scripts seem to violate someone's "rules" to a degree, whether  it's the Save the Catters insistence on certain plot points or the "proper" writing people. So I would not obsess over those things. Just make it a good story.
- and to repeat, originality seems to really matter. Give them something new.

There are 10 finalists, and they are all basically winners who get flown to Hollywood for a week of seminars and stuff. All of the quarter finalists and semi finalists are listed publicly, so they get contacted by everyone from studio readers, small producers and directors to agents. I got contacted by about 20, and while I had a few ongoing discussions, nothing came close to going anywhere.

My script was a seriously flawed thing, and it made quarters. You really just have to get lucky with a judge. Breanne being able to do it consistently seems to be exceptional. I did see one poor guy had TWO scripts in the semis last year, but didn't make finals. That's rough.


It's interesting to see the trends of winners over the years, and I'd be intrigued if there's any correlation with the types of scripts that rate in The Black List; which in theory gives an easily accessible indication of what's selling, in addition to the subscription-based tools out there.

Can understand why they keep the judges and criterion under wraps. Do they compile any kind of analysis/summary of the scripts received, beyond the written roll call of winners?


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Andrew
Posted: April 12th, 2013, 1:00pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Ledbetter

This will be my first year entering the Nicoll and I'm stoked.

In fact, I wrote my entry with this contest in mind.

I have no real expectations but I do enjoy the anticipation.

khamanna, I quarter finaled in the PAGE AWARDS last year which was really exciting as well. Thanks for remembering.

Shawn.....><


Good luck, mate. Fingers crossed for you. Ping it over if you need any additional eyes on it.


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