Do you have a story that is perfect for the holiday season, something the entire family can enjoy, or both?
We are seeking entries in both the holiday and family genres. Could your story become a new family viewing tradition alongside ELF or GROUNDHOG’S DAY? Is it a clever take on a holiday, being the next GREMLINS or DIE HARD? Do you have a faith-based story that’s a fit for Disney or a narrative exploring underrepresented circumstances such as the series MODERN FAMILY?
Submissions can be in the Holiday or Family genre. Narratives do not need to fit both genres to enter. We have brought these genres together into one competition due to their frequent synergy, but we welcome all TV Pilot and Feature submissions.
Winners will have their projects shared with our list of mentors, partners, and industry connections for option or production consideration. Plus, the Top 10 will be considered for the ISA Development Slate. The Emerging Screenwriters Holiday & Family Competition is ready to celebrate all unique stories.
Grand Prize Winner
- $1500 Cash
- A Career Consultation with a Development Team Executive
- Consideration for the ISA Development Slate
- Custom Designed Movie Poster ($500 value)
- A 12-Month ISAConnect Membership
- Development Evaluation on a Different Script ($199 Value)
Finalists - Top 10
- 2 free classes from The Writers Store
- A 6-Month ISAConnect Membership
- Consideration for the Grand Prizes
Semi & Quarter-Finalists
- Laurels and Badges
- Consideration for Finalists & Top 10
Early: August 25 – $19
Regular: September 8 – $29
Final: October 20 – $59
Extended: November 3 – $59
During Covid and/or until further notice, meetings or consults will be virtual.
All writers from all countries are welcome to submit; however, all scripts must be submitted in English, and application fees must be paid in U.S. dollars.
Script must be the original work of the submitting writer and may not be encumbered by any third party.
Scripts that have been sold, produced for a profit, or are currently under option are not eligible.
Original full-length feature screenplays and TV Pilots only are accepted. Anything else, including but not limited to short scripts or web series, novels, short stories, stage plays, musicals, treatments, synopses, reality show concepts, documentaries, and/or spec scripts for existing TV series are not eligible. Script submissions must be an original screenplay or teleplay.
Screenplays adapted from the submitting writer’s own self-published books, plays, or other source materials are eligible if the writer retains all rights to the work.
Adaptations from other works are permissible provided the writer has written permission by the owner to adapt the material.
Adaptations of works in the public domain are permissible.
Co-written material will be accepted. However, any and all prizes issued will be based on a single applicant.
Multiple submissions are accepted by one writer, however if one or more screenplays of the same writer tie, only one screenplay (the decided “best”) will be selected to determine the chosen winner.
The writer understands that script feedback can take up to 90-days turn-around time and may not be received before the end of the final application deadline.
Emerging Screenwriters cannot guarantee feedback for your script will be received within enough time to resubmit during the same season.
Applicants must submit materials and payment online only.
Once a script has been submitted, substitutions of new drafts or corrections may only be accepted within 24 hours of the original application. A revised draft of a script may be accepted after 24 hours if it is entered as a new application with the appropriate fee.
Promotional discounts or waivers offered may only be utilized at the time of submission.
Promotional discounts or waivers offered may not apply on all submission platforms (i.e. FilmFreeway)
Writers under the age of 18 years old must have parent or legal guardian’s permission to participate.
Decisions of the Judges are final and may not be disputed. The Judges will adhere to our competition guidelines; however, the competition and its administrators may not be held responsible for any errors or omissions on the part of the Judges.
The writer understands that it is his/her sole responsibility to register material to be submitted with the U.S. Copyright Office and/or with the Writer’s Guild of America or the appropriate agency in his/her country.
Applicants awarded a placement understand and accept that the ISA will be free to use his/her name and likeness for advertising or promotional purposes without additional consideration.
Writers retain the rights to their screenplay.
Applicants are non-exclusive to this competition and may submit their screenplay to any other person, competition, producer, agent, publisher, and/or organization.
No transfer, substitution or cash equivalent for prizes is allowed.
The ISAConnect Membership prize may only be used within 90 days and may not be combined with any current free membership.
Length requirements are as follows: 1). Full-Length Features: 70-120 pages. 2). TV Pilots: Up to 70 pages.
If applicant orders feedback a $1 per page fee may be charged separately over 120 pages, not including the Title Page, or the reader may only read the first 120 pages.
Standard title pages should be included: listing the script title, name of author(s), telephone number, and email address.
Applicants will not be disqualified if it is not included.
Under no circumstances should the writer include name or contact information within the body of the script.
Emerging Screenwriters is not responsible for any applicant errors or omissions on any submitted application materials.
Synopses, casting suggestions, letters, resumes and photos will not be considered. TV Pilot submissions may include standard supplementary materials, such as lists of recurring characters and future episodes.
The writer accepts without reservation that the submitted logline and screenplay will be reviewed by Emerging Screenwriters staff and/or panel of Industry Judges for evaluation and that any one of these employees, or judges may have been or may be exploring ideas similar to the submitted material, and the applicant hereby waives any claim that the Emerging Screenwriters
Suspense Screenplay Competition, its staff or judges may have misappropriated any ideas or portions of the submission, logline or screenplay.
There are no refunds for any reason after 24 hours from submission.
The writer understands and accepts without reservation that he/she is an independent contractor and that EmergingScreenwriters Administrators are not responsible for withholding any taxes or payments to any government agency, at any level, be it state, local or federal.
By submitting to this competition, the writer's email address will be added to the contest database as well as the International Screenwriters’ Association newsletter for weekly updates, contest promotions and other notifications. The writer may unsubscribe at any time.
It is our full intention to fulfill all prizes as posted. However, due to an unlikely event, act of God or other, we reserve the right to update or edit prizes.
BY ENTERING THE CONTEST YOU ACKNOWLEDGE THAT YOU HAVE READ AND AGREE TO THESE RULES.