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Script Pipeline
First Look Project
2021
Active Since 2012
The First Look Project fulfills the requests of studios, production companies, and top managers by finding high-concept screenplays and pilots.
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About

Winners Receive:
$15,000 split amongst 6 winners
industry exposure | development assistance


The 10th Annual First Look Project fulfills the requests of studios, production companies, and top managers by finding unique, high-concept material across two main categories:


  • Screenplay - divisions for Action/Sci-Fi, Comedy, Drama, and Horror/Thriller
  • TV Pilot - divisions for Hour and Half-hour original pilots, any genre


One winner in each division receives a share of $15,000, industry circulation, and long-term development assistance from Script Pipeline’s executive team. A minimum of one runner-up is also chosen for each category.


Supported by Zero Gravity Management (Ozark), QC Entertainment (Get OutUs),  Bellevue Productions (Infinite), Destro Films (Lizzie), Kaplan/Perrone, and other Script Pipeline partners, the competition introduces the best scripts to major companies.


Unlike Script Pipeline's main Screenwriting and TV writing competitions, entries for First Look are judged equally on writing ability and commercial potential, as well as the originality of the concept and a strong understanding of genre and marketplace trends. 


Over $8 million in screenplays and pilots have been sold by Script Pipeline writers, with numerous scripts produced since 1999. In September 2020, Legendary picked up finalist screenplay Bring Me Back by Crosby Selander for seven figures, and over the last few years alone, Script Pipeline winners and finalists have optioned screenplays, sold shows, or were staffed on streaming and network series, including Writers Guild Award-winner Howard Jordan Jr. (Family ReunionThe Unicorn), Tripper Clancy (Die HartI Am Not Okay With This), and Laura Bensick (Everyday Insanity). Many others connected with representation, such as the 2021 Screenwriting and TV Writing winners finding reps at Bellevue, Screenwriting winner Helen Gaughran signing with UTA, and several more finalists landing managers at Kaplan/Perrone, Writ Large, and Zero Gravity.

Benefits


CATEGORIES + INDUSTRY REVIEWING

Screenplay

Action/Sci-Fi - Kaplan/Perrone
Drama - Destro Films
Horror/Thriller - QC Entertainment / Kaplan/Perrone


Half-hour
Hourlong


SCREENPLAY


Winners (4): December 15th, 2021

  • $10,000 awarded. $2,500 to the winner of each genre category (Action/Sci-Fi, Comedy, Drama, Horror/Thriller)
  • Circulation to select production and management companies for first look


Runners-up (4; one in each category): December 15th, 2021


The Screenplay winners and runners-up receive:

  • Long-term facilitation to Script Pipeline's industry network of producers, agents, and managers seeking features.
  • Development assistance from Script Pipeline's senior execs on both the screenplay and pitch
  • Additional script reviews and consideration of other material for industry exposure
  • Invitations to writer/industry events hosted by Pipeline Media Group

TV PILOT


Winners (2): December 15th, 2021

  • $5,000 awarded total. $2,500 to the winner of each category (Hour and Half-Hour)
  • Circulation to select production and management companies for first look


Runners-up (2; one in each category): December 15th, 2021


The TV Pilot winners and runners-up receive:

  • Long-term facilitation to Script Pipeline's industry network of producers, agents, and managers seeking original pilots.
  • Development assistance from Script Pipeline's senior execs on the pilot and series pitch or bible
  • Additional script reviews and consideration of other material for industry exposure
  • Invitations to writer/industry events hosted by Pipeline Media Group

Writer Success

Announcements

Dec 20th
Winners

Rules

RULES + GUIDELINES

Please review the following prior to submitting:

  • For Screenplay and TV, the script must not be under a representation, option, or shopping agreement at the time of entry.
  • The same script cannot compete in multiple categories.
  • Writers who have sold, optioned, or produced scripts in the past are eligible; however, the material submitted must not have been produced as a feature or TV series at any time in the past.
  • Judging criteria equally emphasizes both writing ability and marketability, unlike our main Screenwriting and TV Writing competitions, which are centered on writing ability. Preference may be given to material intended for a broader, mainstream audience.
  • The material must be wholly original. For adaptations, the story must be in the public domain, or you have retained the adaptation rights to a particular work.


For screenplays, no page length restrictions, as long as it's intended to be a feature film. Mixed genre screenplays are fine, but writers must submit to only one category--would recommend selecting the primary genre of the script.


For TV, all genres accepted, including animation. Half-hour pilots should be between 25-35 pages (longer is fine if it's for animation), and hourlong pilots should fall around 50-70.


FAQS

HOW IS FIRST LOOK DIFFERENT FROM SCRIPT PIPELINE'S OTHER CONTEST?

Main difference would be the judging criteria. Our annual Screenwriting and TV Writing Competitions are critiqued almost exclusively on their writing ability for film and television.

The First Look Project, however, focuses equally on both writing ability and marketability. A unique concept in line with current trends and industry preferences--something relevant that twists the genre or hits on relatable themes--will most likely fare well.

Writing ability is still critical, but the script needn't be "circulation-ready" if it leans on a commercial premise. All winners and runners-up will go through an in-house development process with Script Pipeline execs prior to circulation, if necessary. We want promising writers with big, fresh ideas. Those who we can work with now and in the future.

IF I PLACE AS A RUNNER-UP OR WINNER, DO I RETAIN THE RIGHTS TO MY SCRIPT?

Yes. All rights to the material remain with the writer, regardless of whether they place.

SHOULD I PUT CONTACT INFO ON THE COVER PAGE?

Cover page should include the title, but remove any contact information (name, email address, etc.) from the script. Logline and genre on the title page as well is preferred, but not required.

CAN INTERNATIONAL WRITERS ENTER?

Yes, applicants outside the US are welcome to enter ANY Script Pipeline contest.

ARE NOTES INCLUDED?

Written feedback is not included on entries, but entrants may add general notes as an optional service during registration, for a reduced rate. Feedback is kept separate from judging—meaning you'll have a different executive reviewing your contest entry, and the notes have no bearing on the judging process.

View sample here

CAN I SUBMIT TO OTHER CONTESTS OR COMPANIES AFTER ENTERING?

Yes. There are no restrictions on submitting to other writing competitions, or sending your script elsewhere while entered in the contest.

WILL YOU ACCEPT SHORT SCRIPTS OR PITCHES?

Only full-length feature and TV scripts are accepted. Pitches may be submitted to our Idea Competition. Short scripts may be submitted to Film Pipeline.

Contact our contest coordinator with any other questions.