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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Screenwriting Discussion    Contests - Screenwriting and Filmmaking  ›  2017 Screenplay Competition Experiment Moderators: Don
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  Author    2017 Screenplay Competition Experiment  (currently 2052 views)
Dustin
Posted: December 18th, 2017, 2:02pm Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients


Action speaks louder...

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Quoted from Shakey

I mean, I know that *some* things always float to the surface. Just not sure if they're always the good things.


I can tell you for a fact that they're not always the good things. We need only look at some of the ultra low budget British gangster films that gain distribution. A lot of the time it's down to who you know... well, that and your ability to make people's lives very unpleasant if they don't do as you've politely asked them to.


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JohnI
Posted: December 18th, 2017, 2:16pm Report to Moderator
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gonna apply to page and nicholls - want two others - what would you suggest?
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eldave1
Posted: December 18th, 2017, 2:43pm Report to Moderator
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Shore, Scriptapoolza, Austin are fine IMO


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Don
Posted: December 18th, 2017, 3:56pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Paul,

This is resource gold.  Thank you for posting this information.  I get a lot of requests to promote contests, but I don't get much feedback on the efficacy of them.

John,

Also, one can look up reviews of the contests at MovieBytes: https://moviebytes.com/directory.cfm

Very good resource.

Don




Visit SimplyScripts.com for what is new on the site.


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Rimgaudas
Posted: December 18th, 2017, 4:19pm Report to Moderator
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Very interesting experiment.
And what about sending query letters to hundreds of produces?
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MarkRenshaw
Posted: December 19th, 2017, 4:40am Report to Moderator
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For more of my scripts, stories, produced movies and the ocassional blog, check out my new website. CLICK
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Colkurtz8
Posted: December 24th, 2017, 9:45am Report to Moderator
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I've only entered Bluecat and Reel. The former offered some semi decent notes while the latter had so many pedantic rules and regulations, mainly related to formatting, that I didn't make much headway.

Has anyone ever entered Reel? I would be interested to hear other testimonials.


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pauljwilliams9
Posted: December 30th, 2017, 6:39pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from MarkRenshaw
Thanks for doing this experiment Paul and for posting your notes. This very much clarifies what I already suspected, that these competitions are very much a lottery. Just like the lottery, it's run like a business to make money. It's a pity there isn't a non-profit organisation out there who genuinely want to encourage creativity.

I never pay for coverage notes but if they come free, I will gladly accept. I've noticed with my BlueCat entries so far, the feedback is brief and they try to put a nice spin on things but I've not found anything they've mentioned particularly useful.  

Oh, and just thought I'd mention this. At the London Screenwriting festival I attended last year there was a session with a bunch of agents. They admitted the only writers they check out from competitions are the winners/finalists of the Nicholl Fellowship.


I'm sure the agents in London are representative of most: they'll only check out winners or finalists in the top three, maybe five, competitions. But, I have a friend who was a Nicholl finalist years ago that didn't result in anything, and friend of a friend was a winner several years ago and nothing became of that either.
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pauljwilliams9
Posted: December 30th, 2017, 6:44pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from khamanna
Nicholls says on their site that only 5 percent of all entries reach the quarters with just 2 the semis. And I've heard that for Page it's 10 percent but not sure. Don't know about the others.

I also always thought that Nicholls had the lowest fee of all. The starting fee used to be $35 which is pretty low. Austin has good fees as well.

Interestingly they all receive a similar number of entries. Nicholls doesn't have more in than say BlueCat. Maybe in the past, it did, but now it evened out more or less.


Each year, it seems, more and more scripts are registered, and contest entries always increase. I found it interesting that Nicholl and Austin charged the lowest fees.
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pauljwilliams9
Posted: December 30th, 2017, 6:48pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Shakey
That is really interesting - thanks for sharing.

I had a conversation with a friend (IRL) about this. He said the same is true of films, let alone scripts.

The filtering process by which the work is judged is far weaker than the work itself.

That is, there's some great films out there that never got distribution even after getting through to a first edit. Lots of reasons... not the right actors attached, director without known credentials, production entity loses focus, out of money, etc., etc., etc.

Withnail & I, for instance, could have been ditched early on. Now a cult classic.

Sigh. Do good things float to the surface? I mean, I know that *some* things always float to the surface. Just not sure if they're always the good things.

Hard work is still the only way... obvs. Oh, and nepotism.

... and some other stuff. Possibly.


Yeah, I've heard this, too: films are getting produced, most with high production and story quality, but can't find any distribution outlets. Even if they're screened at festivals, still no interest. Sign of the times, I suppose.
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pauljwilliams9
Posted: December 30th, 2017, 6:50pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from JohnI
gonna apply to page and nicholls - want two others - what would you suggest?


Austin Film Festival, definitely. Whether you advance or not, making the trip to Austin is worth it, too. But, truth be told, I was a semifinalist there this year and not much has become of it.
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pauljwilliams9
Posted: December 30th, 2017, 6:53pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Don
Paul,

This is resource gold.  Thank you for posting this information.  I get a lot of requests to promote contests, but I don't get much feedback on the efficacy of them.

John,

Also, one can look up reviews of the contests at MovieBytes: https://moviebytes.com/directory.cfm

Very good resource.

Don





Thanks, Don, and you're welcome. I had the privilege of meeting Frederick Mensch, who runs MovieBytes and is a screenwriter himself, at Austin Film Festival this year. He was a humble, helpful guy.

If you have any questions about this "experiment", please let me know.
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pauljwilliams9
Posted: December 30th, 2017, 6:57pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Rimgaudas
Very interesting experiment.
And what about sending query letters to hundreds of produces?


I did the query letter thing (literally with envelopes and stamps) years ago and nothing became of it. I might send out a query email to a company that accepts unsolicited material every now and again, but not too often. I attended a panel with agents and managers at Austin Film Festival this year, and all said they won't consider any new writers unless introduced by a current client.
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pauljwilliams9
Posted: December 30th, 2017, 6:58pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Colkurtz8
I've only entered Bluecat and Reel. The former offered some semi decent notes while the latter had so many pedantic rules and regulations, mainly related to formatting, that I didn't make much headway.

Has anyone ever entered Reel? I would be interested to hear other testimonials.


I'm not familiar with Reel, but I'm very familiar with BlueCat.
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MarkRenshaw
Posted: December 31st, 2017, 7:23am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Colkurtz8
I've only entered Bluecat and Reel. The former offered some semi decent notes while the latter had so many pedantic rules and regulations, mainly related to formatting, that I didn't make much headway.

Has anyone ever entered Reel? I would be interested to hear other testimonials.


I got to the Finals of Reel in 2015 for a short script and ended up with a Top Pick award. The organisers contacted me to say they would be sending my script out to 100 production companies. I asked them to send me a copy of the cover letter so I'd have a template I could use for my own queries, which they agreed to but they never did and I didn't get a single query email from anyone. I don't know if this means they didn't do it or the 100 production companies all passed on my script but I've not entered since.



For more of my scripts, stories, produced movies and the ocassional blog, check out my new website. CLICK
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