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Fresh Voices Screenplay Competition

Fresh Voices Original Screenplay Competition

Contact

6857 Franklin Ave.
Hollywood, Ca 90028
(310) 871-2249 (voice)
+13108712249 (fax)

Web: Click here
Email: contact@fresh-voices.com

Contact: Seth Reynolds, Contest Coordinator

Report Card

Overall: 4 stars4 stars4 stars4 stars (4.2/5.0)
Professionalism: 4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars (4.3/5.0)
Feedback: 4 stars4 stars4 stars4 stars (4.0/5.0)
Signficance: 3.5 stars3.5 stars3.5 stars3.5 stars (3.6/5.0)
Report Cards: 51    
Have you entered?
Please submit a Report card.

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Objective

Since 2009, Fresh Voices has been proud to provide a microphone to exciting new voices that deserve to be heard and memorable stories that must be told.

Now celebrating our big 10th Annual Screenplay Competition, we are grateful to have had the opportunity to help guide dozens of talented writers to secure literary representation, option agreements and other writing assignments, providing the stepping stones and advancing the careers of many of our winning writers.

Through our generous industry sponsors, Fresh Voices is pleased to offer over $20,000 in cash & prize packages including script development, career consultation, plus memberships and subscriptions to services, all designed to support your career and maximize the exposure of your big win. Show More

Deadline/Entry Fees

Deadline Date Entry Fee Days till Deadline
Early August 13, 2019 $60 features; $60 pilots;$45 shorts; $50 resub.
Regular September 10, 2019 $65 features; $65 pilots;$50 shorts; $50 resub.
Late October 8, 2019 $70 features; $70 pilots;$55 shorts; $50 resub. 17
Final November 7, 2019 $75 features; $75 pilots;$60 shorts; $50 resub. 47

Celebrating our big 10th Annual Screenplay Competition in 2019!

WinningScripts Pro $5 Off Coupon

Notification: 4/6/2020

Rules

Standard rules and eligibility requirements apply. Check website for details.

Awards

Prizes include:
  • $20,000 Cash & Prizes
  • Screenplay & Career Consultation
  • Consideration from leading Hollywood Production Companies
  • InkTip Prize Package
  • TV Writers Vault Prize Package
  • iPitch.tv Membership Package
  • Moviebytes Subscription
Six genre categories spotlight the most entertaining and commercially viable material.
  • Comedy, Rom-Com
  • Action, Adventure, Comic Book, Graphic Novel
  • Family, Animated, Musical
  • Drama, Historical, Biographical, Period
  • Sci-Fi, Fantasy,
  • Thriller, Psychological Thriller, Horror
PLUS
  • 1 hr TV Pilots
  • ½ hr TV Pilots
  • 1 hr & ½ hr TV Samples
  • Short Scripts
Ten Spotlight Awards reward special achievements in screenwriting.
  • Best Role Written for a Male Lead
  • Best Role Written for a Female Lead
  • Best Dialogue
  • Best Ensemble Cast
  • Best First Ten Pages
  • Best Script Written outside of the US
  • Diversity & Inclusion Award
  • Culture & Heritage Award
  • Humanitarian Award
  • Courage & Fortitude Award
*RECEIVE PROFESSIONAL FEEDBACK – Add-on your Judge's Scorecard & Feedback for only $50 w/ entry. You may also choose to receive an extended 5pg Script Analysis with your entry for $149.

Fresh Voices Original Screenplay Competition

Contact

6857 Franklin Ave.
Hollywood, Ca 90028
(310) 871-2249 (voice)
+13108712249 (fax)

Web: Click here
Email: contact@fresh-voices.com

Contact: Seth Reynolds, Contest Coordinator

Report Card

Overall: 4 stars4 stars4 stars4 stars (4.2/5.0)
Professionalism: 4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars (4.3/5.0)
Feedback: 4 stars4 stars4 stars4 stars (4.0/5.0)
Signficance: 3.5 stars3.5 stars3.5 stars3.5 stars (3.6/5.0)
Report Cards: 51    
Have you entered?
Please submit a Report card.

Related Contests

Contest Comments

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Fresh Voices Original Screenplay Competition

Contact

6857 Franklin Ave.
Hollywood, Ca 90028
(310) 871-2249 (voice)
+13108712249 (fax)

Web: Click here
Email: contact@fresh-voices.com

Contact: Seth Reynolds, Contest Coordinator

Report Card

Overall: 4 stars4 stars4 stars4 stars (4.2/5.0)
Professionalism: 4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars (4.3/5.0)
Feedback: 4 stars4 stars4 stars4 stars (4.0/5.0)
Signficance: 3.5 stars3.5 stars3.5 stars3.5 stars (3.6/5.0)
Report Cards: 51    
Have you entered?
Please submit a Report card.

Related Contests

Contest News

An Interview with Academy Award Nominated Screenwriter Hossein Amini: Headline Judge of the 2015 Fresh Voices Screenplay Competition

Hossein Amini courtesy of BAFTA/ Photographer Stephen Butler Hossein Amini may not be a household name, but in the business of screenwriting, Hoss as he is known in the industry, is a name both recognized and highly respected. When you earn an Academy Award nomination for your second film, it certainly sets your career in the right direction. With such screenwriting credits to his name as Drive starring Ryan Gossling, Snow White and the Huntsman, Ronin 47, Killshot, Four Feathers, Shanghai and an academy award nomination for his adaptation of The Wings of the Dove, Hoss has recently directed his first film, which of course he also wrote. It is the adaptation of Patricia Highsmith's novel, The Two Faces of January, starring Viggo Mortensen and Kirsten Dunst.

Born in Iran, Hossein Amini moved to England age 11. His career as a screenwriter began with the 1994 British TV production of The Dying Light for which he won his first BAFTA Award. He followed it up in 1996 when he adapted the book Jude the Obscure, Jude directed by Michael Winterbottom. The Wings of the Dove directed by Iain Softley followed and led to Hossein Amini receiving an Academy Award Nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay.

Hoss was soon snapped up and signed to an exclusive deal by Miramax Films. Since then, the old adage people want what they can't have has paid off well. Hoss has been a very busy in demand writer, choosing the projects and assignments he takes on carefully, only where he feels he can bring something fresh to the material.

Hossein Amini stands out in this industry, not just because his path to Hollywood is unusual but because he has developed a long and successful career of lending his unique voice to a wide array of projects from the most commercial of Hollywood films to the most fiercely independent. He has made a name as one of the go to screenwriters to adapt major novels into screenplays, and for rewriting projects so that they get to where they need to go, whether that's a pass to lock in talent, or to bring a fresh take to a flawed script, Hoss brings that little bit of polish that will not only bring a script to life, but can get it greenlit.

Said Fresh Voices Chairman Joel Mendoza, "We are so proud to have Mr. Amini as the Fresh Voices headline judge this year. There is an immense amount of screenwriting knowledge to learn from Hoss and we are so pleased to bring his experience and input to the process this year."

In being named the 2015 Fresh Voices Headline Judge, Hossein Amini said, "I am honored to be judging the competition this year and working with Fresh Voices to discover the next generation of unique and inspiring screenwriters."

Fresh Voices: Can you tell us a little bit about the path you took to become a screenwriter and now a director, especially not living in Los Angeles? How did that journey begin and was that a natural evolution for you?

Hossein Amini: I didn't go to film school. I wrote and directed a short film at University then kept writing spec screenplays after that. Five years and many rejection letters later I got my first paid job as a screenwriter. The script never became a film but at least I'd got my foot in the door. I was lucky with my first produced script to get nominated for a TV BAFTA award and that gave me another step up. That's how it worked for me. Every time I was about to give up some little break or stroke of luck happened to give me the confidence to keep going. I think careers in movies are like that. It's never an upward curve. Failure is an intrinsic part of the business for everyone and I believe it's how you pick yourself that determines how well you do and how long you last. The film I directed took nearly twenty years to get made. Then Viggo Mortensen suddenly read the script by chance and we got financing. Luck plays a very big part. I visit LA a lot for work but don't live there. Being there is a huge advantage in terms of contacts and opportunities but I like the fact that I live in a city where no-one has a clue what a screenwriter does.

FV: You are known for bridging that gap between artistic expression and commercial sensibility. How are you able to strike and maintain that balance in your work, especially when you are brought onto a project in its later stages? Does it come naturally, or is it a struggle to inject your vision into other people's work?

HA: Rewrites are tough but I never take them on unless I feel there's something in the original scripts that I can get excited about. You have to get up every day and write and if you're not passionate about it that's exhausting. The money helps too. You often get paid more for a rewrite than an original script. Sometimes a rewrite isn't that different to an adaptation. You get inspired by certain things in other people's work, whether it's a book or a script, and try to expand on it. The balance between art and commerce tortures me. Before I directed my movie or before the scripts I've written got released, I always craved artistic success more than commercial success. Then when no-one shows up to watch the film I feel heartbroken. You want both but that's very hard to achieve. I sometimes worry what audiences like and what critics like are diametrically opposed and then a rare great movie comes along and you think it's possible to have both.

FV: What draws you to a particular idea when it comes to choosing subject matter? And what do you look for in a script or an idea when considering rewrite assignments.

HA: Passion for that subject. I love the research phase of screenwriting so if it's a story that allows me to read lots of fascinating books about a subject then great. I love writing different genres for example because it allows me to explore all the great films and literature in that genre. I'd like to do a horror film or sci-fi next so I can explore all the masterpieces I'm unfamiliar with. I guess I'm a frustrated student at heart. I'm drawn to characters mostly. The more real and human and tragic they are the more I'm drawn to them. I like writing villains too, especially complex, contradictory and oddly moving ones.

FV: Do you prefer to develop your own ideas? How do you bring your original voice to rewrite work?

HA: It's hard to get your own ideas made, especially as a screenwriter. I've wasted a lot of time and energy pursuing my own ideas which is why I tend to concentrate on commissions rather than spec screenplays. Most of the ideas that become movies come from the studios, which is fine with me. I enjoy finding my voice in other people's work if that makes sense. For me adaptation is trying to capture the singular and unique experience of reading a book or a script for the first time. I try to capture all the emotional highs and lows I experienced while lying on my sofa turning the pages. I think as screenwriters we're inevitably drawn to material that reflects our own thoughts and our own voice. Also, when we write, that voice, however subconscious, asserts itself and influences the work, even if one is adapting a book. You inevitably focus on what interests and moves you in someone else's work.

FV: What is the best advice you can give to new writers on developing your voice and breaking out as a writer?

HA: Don't give up. Survive the knocks. Keep writing. You'll get better with every script and increase the odds of someone picking it up and making it. You'll also find and refine your voice with time. Persistence is so important. So is dealing with rejection. It happens throughout your career in some form or other so it's good to get used it and to be able to move on. It's really hard to go to your desk and write after a rejection letter or bad review but you have to do it. And after a good day's writing you always feel a little better.

FV: What is a Fresh Voice to you?

HA: For me a fresh voice is something we all have. It's our unique view of the world and our unique emotional response to it. The tricky thing with screenwriting isn't necessarily how to find that voice but how to free it from all the other acquired voices in our head. That's not to say being influenced by other people's work is bad, just that our inspiration from that work should also be fresh and singular. Nobody reads a book or watches a film in the same way. Tarantino's writing is hugely influenced by other filmmakers yet it still feels original.

Derivative writing and clichés are what stop our voices feeling fresh. Often the first idea we have when we write a scene is an inherited one. It takes concentration and self-reflection to come up with something original. For me the best writing is when a writer's insight into a moment or event connects with an audience in a way they've never felt before. The conundrum for a screenwriter is the size of that audience. Some fresh voices connect with a small art house audience, others connect to a much wider public.

As screenwriters I think we have to accept our own voice, however begrudgingly. There's no point writing a happy ending if your world view is bleak. The best advice I've read recently about writing was from Richard Linklater on Boyhood. He said he took scenes from his own experience and trusted the truth in them would connect with an audience. I think that's the case even with genre movies and blockbusters.

If you write a space chase or zombie escape and still find some emotional detail from your life that resonates with an audience it will always enhance that scene and make it fresh.

FV: Can you tell us more about FilmAid and why the organization is important to you? FilmAid

HA: It's such a clever charity because it uses film, a medium I and millions of others love, to make a real change in people's lives. They screen movies in refugee camps, teach people through the medium of film, teach those people to make films themselves to educate their peers. We all know the transformative effect of watching a great movie and I don't think anyone should be deprived of that. Films have given me so much joy in my life, cheered me up when I've been depressed, inspired me. I know there's an argument that food and health and science are so much more important than art, but without wanting to sound too cliched, movies nourish the soul. Those moments of joy and entertainment are precious too. So is education. I think FilmAid takes an inspiring and unpatronising approach to helping others and I would encourage everyone to look at their site and contribute in whatever way they can.

Updated: 06/03/2015
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Fresh Voices Original Screenplay Competition

Contact

6857 Franklin Ave.
Hollywood, Ca 90028
(310) 871-2249 (voice)
+13108712249 (fax)

Web: Click here
Email: contact@fresh-voices.com

Contact: Seth Reynolds, Contest Coordinator

Report Card

Overall: 4 stars4 stars4 stars4 stars (4.2/5.0)
Professionalism: 4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars4.5 stars (4.3/5.0)
Feedback: 4 stars4 stars4 stars4 stars (4.0/5.0)
Signficance: 3.5 stars3.5 stars3.5 stars3.5 stars (3.6/5.0)
Report Cards: 51    
Have you entered?
Please submit a Report card.

Related Contests

Interviews

MovieBytes Interview:Screenwriter Stephen M. Hunt

An interview with screenwriter Stephen M. Hunt regarding the Fresh Voices Feature Writing Competition.

Updated: 03/14/2013

MovieBytes Interview:Screenwriter Jim Schweitzer

An interview with screenwriter Jim Schweitzer regarding the Fresh Voices Feature Writing Competition.

Updated: 04/13/2012
Contest Winner? Let's talk. If you've finished first, second, or third in the Fresh Voices Screenplay Competition, MovieBytes would like to interview you.

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