Friday, April 4, 2008

Got a finished script? Lucky for you, the 2008 PAGE Awards extended their deadline!

I've already discussed The 2008 PAGE International Screenwriting Awards competition a little while back (here's the link), but I just got a note from them and I thought I'd pass it on to you because if anyone's got a finished script laying around that they don't know what to do with, it's you. Also, since I wrote my last post, I had a chance to speak with Jennifer Berg, the Administrative Director and she did tell me that horror scripts tend to do alright and there's definitely a demand for them. So, dust off that finished script that you've got laying around and throw it in the mail, what have you got to lose? Also, I'm thinking that if you wrote a script, then went out and shot it yourself and you're either self-distributing it or you have a very limited DVD release, there's no reason you can't enter the script. I don't know if there's a rule against entering scripts that have been produced and, to be honest, I didn't really read the fine print on there, but... are the guys who read these really the type of guys who would go out and rent low-budget, shot of DV horror? I kinda doubt it... so, chances are they'd have no idea that it's actually been shot already.

Anyhow, here's the note they sent me...

Just in case you haven’t already entered this year’s contest, I wanted to remind you that the Late Entry Deadline for the 2008 PAGE International Screenwriting Awards competition is just a few days away -- Tuesday, April 15th. Don’t miss it! This year our judges will once again be presenting a total of 31 awards in ten different genre categories. The winning screenwriters will receive over $30,000 in cash and prizes, including a $10,000 Grand Prize, along with Gold, Silver and Bronze Prizes in all ten categories.

Over the past four years the PAGE Awards competition has become one of the most important sources for new screenwriting talent within the Hollywood community and worldwide. Since receiving their Awards, many of our past winners have gone on to land script assignments, secure representation, and sign option agreements on their work, and several now have movies in various stages of production and release. You can read the latest news from our winners on our website:

Due to the success of our winning screenwriters, the PAGE Awards competition has become extremely popular, and we receive many entries each year. However, the way the PAGE Awards is structured, it actually operates as ten small, highly-focused contests, so in the First Round of competition your screenplay is only competing with a few hundred others in the exact same genre category. And because we want to give full consideration to as many scripts as possible, each year the judges advance the top 25% of all entries to the Quarter-Final Round, where your screenplay will be given a second read by another judge. Next we announce the top 25 Semi-Finalists in each category. Then the top ten Finalists in each category. Then this September all of our Finalists in all ten categories will be competing for the Grand Prize. It's all designed to give your script the maximum possible attention and the best possible shot at an Award.

But now let me tell you the real reason to enter the PAGE Awards contest. It’s not just about the winners. Ultimately, this is a wonderful opportunity for everyone who participates.

First and foremost, at each level of competition your work is reviewed by industry professionals – people who have the connections and the ability to represent, promote and/or produce your script. So, win or lose, just by getting your material into the hands of these Hollywood insiders you have the chance to launch your career. In fact, several of our past Finalists and Semi-Finalists have gained representation or sold options to the judges who read their scripts during the contest. And our judges and staff have been instrumental in promoting many of our contestants’ screenplays to other industry contacts, as well.

Also, when you enter the contest, you will have the opportunity to request Feedback from your First Round judge. If you order Feedback, your judge will write you 3-5 pages of notes specifically designed to help you develop your screenplay: explaining how he/she scored your script, describing your script's strengths and weaknesses, and offering any suggestions for improvement. It's a great way to see how an industry professional evaluates your script.

You want know the best part of my job? It’s getting all the wonderful emails from past contestants who, whether they won a prize or not, are making huge progress in their careers. Here’s a sample of one message I received a few weeks ago. (And as I’m sure you can imagine, this one really made my day!)

“I was a Quarter-Finalist last year with my script CLYDE THE GLIDE, THE BOY WHO TRIED, a family comedy. That was nice, but what was great was the input I got from my judge. He gave me pages of help on formatting (most of which I did not know) and lots of encouragement about the good points of the screenplay. How if it was cleaned up format-wise and otherwise fine-tuned it would be marketable and memorable. It was well worth the little bit of money I paid to get some advice and pats on the back from a savvy industry veteran.

“I did all that he advised, and also did some reading about screenplays in recommended books, and then started sending inquiry letters to various independent film companies in L.A., to which I got no response. Not even an acknowledgment that they had received my inquiry and they weren’t interested thank you very much. Finally I started going out of Hollywood with my inquiries, and a production company in Canada agreed to look at the script (it was the first one that did). They loved it. We have exchanged letters of intent and plan to produce it in spring/summer 2009. Funding looks good and we are already looking for a director, a star, etc. So there you go.

“Your contest is the classiest, best organized, and deserves the great rep it has. You all have been a tremendous help to me and I will forever be grateful for that.”
Bret Kofford
Imperial, California

All of us here at PAGE H.Q. are very proud that so many of our past contestants are now realizing their dreams, and we’re very happy that we’ve been able to encourage and assist in their success. And of course, we’re very excited about this year’s fifth anniversary competition. I hope you plan to participate!

If you’ve already submitted your script, thank you very much! And if you haven’t yet entered this year’s contest, please make sure to get your entry postmarked or submitted online by midnight on April 15th.

For more information and access to our easy new online entry forms, please visit us at:

We look forward to reading your script!

Best regards,
Jennifer Berg
Administrative Director
The 2008 PAGE International
Screenwriting Awards

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