With just a few days until we announce the Quarter-Finalists for our Spring competition, we’re excited to be opening up submissions for the next one! Ladies and gentlemen, the WriteMovies Fall 2019 Screenwriting Contest is now open!
There are several interesting things to note from the May 2019 Script Sales as reported by Script Pipeline, but what struck us the most was that there are several horror projects here.
This shows that no matter what, there’s always a core audience for this genre, making it a good target for screenwriters looking to get a production credit under their belt. The production costs are also often low for these kind of projects – always seen as a big positive by producers!
- DON’T GO IN THE WATER sounds like an interesting idea. Horror has produced plenty of iconic monsters and villains over the years, and it looks like they might be aiming for another one here as an alcoholic does battle with a tentacled monster in the lake. Yes, the idea of being trapped in an isolated cabin is a tired cliche – but the monster sounds like it might enliven things.
- Another year, another remake. This time it’s the classic HELLRAISER getting the treatment, set to be written by David S. Goyer. After ten films in the franchise already, you’d think that people might be getting tired of it; this is one that could either crash badly or breathe new life into the series.
- Speaking of remakes, how about a spinoff? Another series that seems to go on forever, SAW gets another instalment – which might not sound so surprising until you realize that the story concept is by Chris Rock. However this turns out, it should certainly be interesting!
On the other end of things, there are also several comedies being sold and set to star various stars including Chris Hemsworth – a welcome bit of news, given how well he plays comedic roles.
After a fantastic response to our one week deadline extension, the WriteMovies Spring 2019 Screenwriting Contest has now closed!
A big thank-you to everyone who submitted, both directly to this contest and to the WriteMovies Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award 2019. Judging is already underway, and we’re having a blast reading your scripts.
The first set of results is now just weeks away: the Quarter-Finalists are announced on July 19th, Semi-Finalists on August 2nd, and Finalists and Winners on August 16th.
And if you want to get ahead of the competition, why not buy a script report from us and get free entry to our next contest? Starting from just $89, you can get valuable feedback on your work from our industry experts, helping you take your script to the next level and find out what you need to do to succeed!
Thanks once again from the entire WriteMovies team! And keep an eye out – we’ve got more great things coming your way soon, including new contests and a new award for a different genre…
Wanted to enter our Spring 2019 Screenwriting Contest but missed the deadline? You’ll be pleased to hear that we’ve extended the deadline by one week, giving you an extra chance to submit!
We know how easy it can be to miss a competition deadline. Maybe you were trying to make those last minute adjustments to your script that you felt would take it another level, only to find that it’s a bigger task than expected. Or maybe life just got in the way – as it tends to do!
We’ve really enjoyed reading the scripts that have been entered into our contest so far, and we’re eager to see what else you might have on offer. As a result we made the decision to extend the deadline and give you a bit of extra time to enter!
There are major advantages to entering one of our contests. The Grand Prize for the top placed script is $2000, and the top three scripts all receive:
- A year of free script development worth up to $3200
- Guaranteed pitching to industry
- Exclusive previews of WriteMovies Academy, our unique Virtual Film School
- Exclusive prizes from InkTip
And if you need even more info on what’s on the line, click here to take a look at an article from last week in which we discussed how we help our winners develop their scripts and make them even better!
Don’t miss your chance. This is your last opportunity to get involved in our Spring 2019 Screenwriting Contest and take your first steps towards screenwriting success with WriteMovies!
The WriteMovies Spring 2019 Screenwriting Contest is heating up, with just one week to go until the final deadline on Sunday June 16th!
There’s a host of reasons to submit to this competition – not least of which is the Grand Prize of $2000, which is awarded to the script that comes in first place. Even more valuable, however, is the guaranteed pitching to industry and the year of free script development given to the top three scripts.
Any great writer knows that writing is rewriting. With help and advice from our industry experts, our winners can expect to see their script go from strength to strength. We’ll assess your work on elements such as concept, structure, characters, and more.
WriteMovies is able to add a massive amount of value to any script, no matter how far along it is. Don’t forget that you can get our help on your screenplay by buying one of our Script Reports, starting with Judging Feedback from $89 up to the more comprehensive Development Notes at $149.
And once our winners scripts are in the best possible shape – that’s when we start taking them out into the world and pitching them to the industry! Don’t miss out on your chance to win these great prizes and start your screenwriting journey with WriteMovies.
We first launched the WriteMovies Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award because we wanted to be transported to amazing, fantastical new worlds – and boy, did you guys deliver! Our entrants spanned the deepest reaches of space, magical lands, and all of time: past, present, and future!
The imagination is a writer’s most powerful weapon, and it was on full display here. Well done to everyone who entered; the quality was so consistently high that you made it extremely difficult for us to pick a winner!
Some of the things that helped us make our choice include:
- Originality of concept – giving us something truly unique instead of something we’ve seen before
- Depth and complexity of worldbuilding – making the universe of the story feel like a real, lived in place
- Impressive visual elements – taking full advantage of these genres’ strengths
- Great characters – ensuring that the human element doesn’t get lost!
So here it is… The first ever winner of the inaugural WriteMovies Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award is…
By Mark Flood
A big congratulations to Mark, who has won guaranteed pitching to industry, two sets of Development Notes, and continued script development from us! Well done also to all of our Honorable Mentions, who you can find listed below.
|OMEGA POINT, James Bingham||ENDANGERED SPECIES, Mark Flood||GODLESS SKIES, Joshua David Harris|
|FABLE OF THE JADE TIGER, Jason Fisher||SHIRO, Pascal Kulcsar||THE LAST PRISON, Richard Geiwitz|
|THE REVOLT OF THE WHALES, Michael Rhodes||MARS GENESIS, Don Ternyila||RACE MUSIC, Eric Weber|
Writing a script is hard work, but getting a script turned into an actual movie can be even harder. There are all sorts of obstacles standing in the way, not least the key decision-makers and producers who will actually be responsible for the whole project. So how do you get these people to say yes to your work?
One of the most important things that a lot of writers forget about is making sure that their script is commercially viable. Caught up in so many great ideas, they write whatever comes to mind with no thought for cost – but if the film unlikely to make a profit, then a producer is unlikely to want to back it. After all, their job may well be on the line!
Here are some tips to make your script more commercially viable…
- Ask yourself who is going to go and watch your film. Who is this going to appeal to? Who is your target audience? These are the kind of necessary questions that producers ask all the time; if you find that you’re not certain of the answer, then it might be time to have a rethink.
- Reduce the number of locations. By having all the action take place in only a few places, you’re massively reducing costs. A great example of this is RESERVOIR DOGS, which was predominantly set in an empty warehouse.
- Another way to reduce costs is to tone down the action. You might have some great set pieces planned out in your head, but every stunt takes time and money to plan and perform. Can you cut the helicopters out? Can you have only one explosion instead of three? The scene doesn’t have to always to be loud to be exciting!
- On a similar note, cut down on the crowd scenes. Extras have to paid and fed – each and everyone of them is costing the production money. If possible, even having a small cast of two or three is even better – that means paying even fewer actors!
- A lot of Hollywood blockbusters seem to be overloaded with special effects these days, but they don’t come cheap. They might be an unavoidable cost in science-fiction and fantasy, but see if you can find a way to cut down on them.
In short, when the budget is small and there’s a clear audience, producers are much more likely to say yes to your work. A small cast, a handful of locations, small-scale action (or none whatsoever) are all things that can help on this front, and give your script the best chance of thriving in a competitive industry.
PARANORMAL ACTIVITY is a great example of film that does this well. There is always an audience for horror films, and by keeping its costs so low, it became the most profitable film ever made based on return on investment, making an impressive $193 million off a budget of just $15,000.
So when you sit down to write, make sure you think first about the commercial side of things – specifically, whether there’s enough of an audience for your script to claw back the money that will be used to make it. That’s part of the key to making your way as a successful screenwriter!