Tag Archives: screenwriters

Say Hello to Screenwriting Competition Season!

Get ready to mark your calendars, folks. Many indies have gotten their big break from the following competitions, labs and fellowships (Benh Zeitlin & Lucy Alibar, Destin Cretton, Dawn Porter, Lucy Malloy and Edward Ricourt). What’s the worst that could happen? You spend $50 and turn that idea you’ve been working on FOREVER into an actual script you can shop around or even produce yourself? Sounds like a win-win to me.

If you have any others to add, leave a comment below and I’ll gladly update the list.

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So What’s The Deal With…Applying for Filmmaker Workshops?

BTS Erin Li_Kepler-X47_Photo by Randy Blohm_118

Writer/director Erin Li (Photo: Randy Blohm)

I first met Erin Li when both of our films screened at Urbanworld Film Festival in 2011. Her intriguing short “L.A. Coffin School” and vibrant passion for filmmaking convinced me she was definitely one to watch. I recently reached out to Erin because I wanted to pick her brain about her successful experience with filmmaker workshops. As a 2012 Film Independent Project Involve Fellow she directed and co-wrote  “To The Bone”, which played at LA Film Festival and Slamdance. “To The Bone” was chosen as a Vimeo Staff Pick and recently featured on Upworthy. She’s now in post-production on “Kepler X-47” as part of AFI’s Directing Workshop for Women. You can also catch her on Twitter at @MsErinLi. A big thank you again to Erin for sharing her insight! — Christina B.

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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: David Mamet

“[Screenwriting’s] all about working on it and working on it until it comes out even. There’s really no magic to it.”
– David Mamet, Screenwriter (PHIL SPECTOR)


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APPLY: theOffice’s Fellowship Comes With Your Own Writers Cave (Enter by Mar. 15th)


theOffice Fellowship (2013 Edition)

Deadline: March 15th (by midnight PST)

(1) Winner receives 6 months of free access to theOffice in LA (a quiet communal workspace in Santa Monica, CA). This is equivalent to a Premium Membership, the highest level of membership we offer, worth upwards of $2500. 
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Will Smith Wants to See Your Family-Centered TV Scripts (Enter by Mar. 21st)


Search for America’s Newest Scriptwriter Contest

Deadline: March 21st (1pm PST)

James Lassiter and Will Smith of Overbrook Entertainment have joined forces with the ANA Alliance for Family Entertainment—a group of leading national advertisers intent on finding and supporting exceptional family content—to find the most talented undiscovered TV scriptwriters in the country. Overbrook Entertainment’s vision, together with the Alliance, is to produce and support extraordinary family entertainment. Because family entertainment means different things to different people make sure your script is unique and emotionally relatable to today’s family.
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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: Buck Henry

“Writing is keeping secrets, even from yourself in a way; until they absolutely need to be unveiled.”
– Buck Henry, Screenwriter (THE GRADUATE)


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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: Nora Ephron

“I don’t care who you are. When you sit down to write the first page of your screenplay, in your head, you’re also writing you Oscar acceptance speech.”

– Nora Ephron, Screenwriter (JULIE AND JULIA, WHEN HARRY MET SALLY…)

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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: Lawrence Kasdan

“Write and write until you just can’t write anymore.”


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Screenwriting Competition Season Is Officially Open. Are You Ready?

The worst feeling as an indie just starting out is hearing there’s a great opportunity to jumpstart your career, only to find out the deadline already passed. Well get ready to mark your calendars, folks. Let’s make 2013 the year of starting, finishing AND submitting our dream scripts. 

  • Outfest Screenwriting Lab

2013 Deadline: February 11th

“What began as a screenwriting competition has expanded into a dynamic three-day, mentor-led workshop in Los Angeles for selected screenwriters. The authors of five screenplays will be invited to participate in an intensive laboratory during which they will work closely with Lab Mentors — established writers who will critique and encourage their work.To be held in June 2013, with a follow up event during Outfest Los Angeles 2013, the lab will include sessions with other industry professionals, structured career development opportunities and participation in ongoing festival events.”


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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: Eric Roth

“I always go back to the first page every day.”

– Eric Roth, Screenwriter (FORREST GUMP)

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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: Charlie Kaufman

“That’s something I always ask myself: ‘Is this a movie that I would go to see?’ ”



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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: Peter Hedges



“The process of finding the story you have to tell is wondrous, frustrating, humiliating, and joyous. It is an all-encompassing experience.”

– Peter Hedges, Screenwriter (ABOUT A BOY, WHAT’S EATING GILBERT GRAPE)




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THR’s Writers Roundtable or That Time I Learned To Take Judd Apatow Seriously



It wasn’t exactly a shocker that Ben Affleck would included in THR’s Directors Roundtable (ARGO was superb), but I definitely rubbed my eyes in disbelief at seeing Judd “40 YEAR OLD VIRGIN” Apatow sitting alongside award-winning scribes Mark Boal (ZERO DARK THIRTY) and Michael Haneke (AMOUR). I’ll watch KNOCKED UP when it’s on TV, but after FUNNY PEOPLE. I kinda felt “meh” about the guy himself. Apatow held his own, though. As the only comedy writer on the couch, I was expecting him to interject on every question ala Tarantino, but that wasn’t the case. Another reason why I love watching these interviews every year. Forget the frat-boy Apatow persona you think you know and meet Judd, a man brave enough to cast a movie with his wife and daughters in story pretty much taken directly from his own life.

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4 Fests You Should Enter This Week

New York Screenplay Contest

Next Deadline: December 20th

Entry Fee: $30

“The New York Screenplay Contest is a global screenwriting contest designed to launch careers and provide recognition and network opportunities to the world’s best new voices in screenwriting for film and television.  The New York Screenplay Contest awards its winners with cash, prizes, sponsorship packages, and meetings with leading industry professionals.”

Accepts Features, Shorts, Stage Plays, TV pilots & Treatments

website: http://newyorkscreenplaycontest.com/submission
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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: William Goldman

“Writing is finally about on thing: going into a room alone and doing it. Putting words on paper that have never been there in quite that way before.”

– William Goldman, Screenwriter (MISERY, THE PRINCESS BRIDE)


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Read The Indie Screenplays That Could Win Oscar Gold

It’s finally here! Awards season is my favorite time of the year. Indie film has never felt stronger to me and I think that there are quite a few little guy (and gal) contenders for Best Original Screenplay and Best Adapted Screenplay noms.

With each Oscar season, it seems like studios are growing more comfortable with audience transparency. This is a huge advantage for us aspiring screenwriters. Now the words of today’s most talented scribes are right at our fingertips. A big thanks to Scott Myers of Go Into The Story  for reblogging the script catalog from Brad Brevet’s Rope of SiliconMy favorite thing to do is read scripts of films that I’ve already seen (LOOPER, BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD, MIDDLE OF NOWHERE) and discover the story changes from page to screen.

PDFs of those films and many more are waiting for you HERE. Gotta do something productive until February 24th, right?

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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: Aaron Sorkin

“Good writers borrow from other writers. Great writers steal from them outright.”



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