For the past eight years, the Writers Guild Initiative’s (WGI) Michael Collyer Memorial Fellowship in Screenwriting has worked with a select group of film schools and universities to give students across the country the opportunity to develop a feature length script with a prominent screenwriter and receive a $10,000 stipend. Past winners have received accolades such as the Nicholl Fellowship and the Bahamas International Film Festival residency.
This year, the WGI has expanded the reach of the Collyer Fellowship, both in terms of the people reviewing scripts and the number of students who can submit them. Working with the Black List (blcklst.com), the WGI will now be taking submissions from around the country via the Black List website. Students who wish to be considered may submit their script and have it evaluated by the Black List (details below).
The submission window opens on Wednesday, October 5th and the deadline for submissions is Monday, November 28th.
Entrants must be current undergraduate seniors with a demonstrated interest in, and talent for, screenwriting as a profession. The winner will receive a $10,000 cash prize, and the opportunity to work on a specific project for one year with a professional screenwriter / mentor. The Collyer Fellowship is looking for students who have a passion for writing. Emphasis will be placed on feature film projects that are character driven and personal in nature. (No TV pilots at this time.)
To submit material to the competition, entrants should go to blcklst.com’s Collyer Fellowship Page, where they’ll find submission requirements and a submission agreement. There is a $100 fee for each entry ($25 to host and $75 for an evaluation). The evaluation will include feedback on the script’s greatest strengths, greatest weaknesses, and its commercial prospects. The first thirty entrants will receive free hosting and evaluation! (A FAQ for the competition can be found here.)
In early December, the Black List will choose 15 screenplays to send to the WGI selection committee for consideration. The Fellowship recipient will be selected by the WGI by the calendar year’s end. The winner may also have the opportunity to attend the Writers Guild Awards in New York City in February 2017.
Further questions can be directed to The Black List at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Black List website is an online screenplay database that allows writers from around the world to submit their feature length scripts and original episodic pilots, have them evaluated, and connect with film and television industry professionals ranging from agency assistants to studio presidents and working actors and directors. An extension of the annual Black List founded by Franklin Leonard in 2005, the website has helped hundreds of screenwriters find representation at major agencies and management companies and options and sales with major industry producers and film financiers. As of September 2016, five films have been produced from films discovered via the website, all of which have premiered at major festivals (including the upcoming KATIE SAYS GOODBYE, which premiered at TIFF 2016). The Black List is partnered with the Writers Guild of America East and West, the Writers Guild of Canada, the Writers Guild of Great Britain and multiple studios and producers including Warner Bros, Cassian Elwes, and James Schamus’s Symbolic Exchange. More information on the Black List can be found at http://www.blcklst.com.
The Michael Collyer Fellowship in Screenwriting is made possible through a generous grant from the King Family Foundation.