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Austin Film Festival, Final Draft Big Break, Nicholl Fellowship, Screencraft Screenplay Contest, Screenplay Competitions, The Page Awards, The Tracking Board, Tracking B Feature Competition -

This article is going to discuss the pros and cons of screenwriting competitions. Are they worth the price of admission? Which is the best? Should you enter? Note: I have no affiliation with any of these contests, I was not paid to plug any of them, this is based off my personal experience and the experiences of other writers I know who have done well in them. Let’s start with the biggest question: Should you enter screenplay competitions? I say, whole-heartedly, YES, but I want to qualify that a little. I think screenwriting competitions are particularly valuable for writers that...

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clarify, ego, notes, producer, re-writing -

OH ME. OH MY! If you are a writer, then you know half of being a writer is re-writing. And whether you are work-for-hire, staffed on a show, working at the studio level, or just implementing notes from your peers or writers’ group – we all know what it’s like to pull up notes, and try to incorporate them into an existing script. In this article, I want to point out helpful ways to approach notes and how to implement them in a way that doesn’t leave you bashing your head against the keyboard. First, and this is likely the...

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BIPOC, feature, pilot, pitch deck, series, series bible, showrunner, world building -

I get this question all the time from new writers, and often find that new writers pick the wrong format for the kind of story they are telling. More than that though, from a selling standpoint, they haven’t considered pros and cons of trying to sell a feature versus a pilot. In this article, I want to break down those two questions and offer advice on how to handle. To start, whether your story (or idea) should be made into a feature or a pilot essentially revolves around one key question: is your story contained or does it (can it)...

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block-buster comedy, dramatic stakes and beats, Josh Lucas and Scott Moore, Judd Apatow, THE HANGOVER, Todd Phillips -

I recently watched the 2009 buddy comedy THE HANGOVER, and I felt the need to write an article about it. If you haven’t seen the movie, some of this might be lost on you, but the core of what I want to talk about is the engine that keeps the movie running – and how masterfully it was executed – which does not require you to have watched it. Let’s dive in! Well, first – a recap of the plot: Three buddies wake up from a bachelor party in Las Vegas, with no memory of the previous night and the...

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big introductions, bolding slug lines, Brand, Chloe Zhao, Greta Gerwig, Guy Ritchie, Martin Scorsese, Quentin Tarantino, Ridley Scott, snappy dialogue, style, Taika Watiti, The Coen Brothers, Voice, West Anderson -

When it comes to the elite writer/directors, there is a level of style and flavor that all the greats have about their film(s). Quentin Tarantino, Martin Scorsese, The Coen Brothers, Guy Ritchie, Greta Gerwig, Wes Anderson, Chloe Zhao, Taika Watiti, Ridley Scott… each of these directors’ films feel completely different than the others on the list. Why is that? In this article I want to talk about style, also commonly referred to as voice, or brand, and hopefully get you to consider what your brand as a writer is; and identify what makes it unique different – and ultimately able...

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