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Virginia Screenwriting Competition Accepting Submissions


The Virginia Film Office’s  2019 Virginia Screenwriting Competition is now open for submissions.  The film office established the competition, now in its 31st year, to provide Virginia screenwriters with a forum for their work and an opportunity to present their scripts to professionals in the motion picture and television industry. The deadline for submission is May 27, 2019.

The competition does not require an entrance fee.  Distinguished past winners include Breaking Bad creator Vince Gilligan, who won in 1989 for his screenplay Home Fries, and Megan Holley, who won in 2003 for her screenplay Sunshine Cleaning.

The competition is open exclusively to Virginia residents or students currently enrolled in Virginia schools.  Each script submitted must take place in Virginia, or at locations that can reasonably be filmed in Virginia.

Feature film scripts must be approximately 90-120 pages in length.  The competition also accepts scripts made for one-hour series pilots, a reflection of the high-caliber of writing found in today’s television and new media programming.  Series pilots must be approximately 45-65 pages in length.

All scripts must be typed and submitted in a standard screenplay format, with numbered pages and a title page without any personal information.  All scripts must be saved in a non-editable format such as a PDF.  All screenplays must be e-mailed to screenplay@virginia.org.  An accompanying application must also be filled out on the film office website.

Screenplays are first read by Virginia judges, and finalists are selected and submitted to a second panel of judges who are currently working professionally in the entertainment industry.  Three winning screenplays are then selected, and the winning writers are each recognized before a spotlight screening at the Virginia Film Festival in Charlottesville and awarded a prize of $1,000 per winner.  This year’s festival will take place October 23-27, 2019.

The winners of the 2018 Virginia Screenwriting Competition are:  Caroline Hoover for The Long, Black Veil, Eric Carlson for The Audition, and Ramona Taylor for Blind Justice.  More information on past winners and their scripts can be found on the Virginia Film Office website.

For additional information, visit www.filmvirginia.org