The 12th Annual First Look Project searches for higher-concept material across multiple categories:

Screenplay - Action & Sci-fi, Comedy, Drama, and Horror & Thriller
TV Pilot - 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 Bellevue Productions (Infinite), Divide/Conquer (M3GAN), QC Entertainment (Get Out, Us), Destro Films (Lizzie), and additional Script Pipeline partners, the competition introduces the winners and runners-up to these and other companies.

Unlike Script Pipeline's Screenwriting and TV writing competitions, entries for First Look are judged on both writing ability and commercial potential, in addition to the originality of the concept. In other words, for this particular contest, your script could be a little rough around the edges and still have a good chance to win, if we feel the story itself could stand out in the current landscape. Finalists and winners receive extensive development post-contest prior to industry circulation.

"I am in awe of this incredible honor—which would not be possible without the help of the Script Pipeline team. They saw something in Court 17 and collaborated with me to make sure we were maximizing its potential. I love the First Look competition because it leans into the collaborative process that is storytelling … No other contest will ever match up to them." - Elad Ziv, First Look Project Winner (signed with Bellevue, #2 on the 2022 Black List)

Over $8 million in screenplays and pilots have been sold by Script Pipeline writers as well as numerous scripts produced since 1999, such as studio releases Stuber by Tripper Clancy and Snow White and the Huntsman by Evan Daugherty. Pipeline Screenwriting finalist Bring Me Back by Crosby Selander sold to Legendary for seven figures—one of the biggest spec sales in years. And Helen Gaughran's winning script Visitation began production in 2023, starring Olivia Cooke (House of the Dragon) and Isla Johnston (The Queen’s Gambit). Several Pipeline writers have made The Black List, with Cauliflower by Daniel Jackson (2021) and Pure by Catherine Schetina (2022), both landing at the #1 spot. While winners Daniel Jackson (Screenwriting), Elad Ziv (First Look Project), and Brian T. Arnold (First Look Project) landed at Bellevue over the past couple seasons, many others have signed at UTA, Kaplan/Perrone, Alibi Management, and more after Script Pipeline introductions. View notable success stories.
The First Look Project selects six winners, with at least one runner-up in each category, who receive the following:

- $15,000 awarded to winners ($2,500 in each genre category)

- Long-term facilitation to Script Pipeline's industry network of producers, agents, and managers seeking features.

- Development assistance from Script Pipeline's execs on both the screenplay and pitch

- Additional script reviews and consideration of other material for industry exposure

- Invitations to private events and Symposium panels hosted by Pipeline

View notable success stories: https://scriptpipeline.com/success-stories

More on the First Look Project: https://scriptpipeline.com/shop/first-look-project

To add discounted feedback ($95 for Screenplays; $75 for Pilots), email our coordinator at entry@scriptpipeline.com.

CATEGORIES + INDUSTRY REVIEWING

Screenplay

Action & Sci-Fi - Bellevue Productions
Comedy - QC Entertainment
Drama - Destro Films
Horror & Thriller – Divide & Conquer / Alibi Management

TV Pilot – Hungry Man
Half-hour
Hourlong

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. If it's half and half ... your choice.

For TV, all genres accepted, including animation.

The First Look Project focuses primarily on connecting the winners with production and management companies.

One winner and one runner-up are selected for each category.

AWARDS

Screenplay

Winners (4): December 15th, 2023

- $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; expanded circulation afterward

Runners-up (4, at least one in each category): December 15th, 2023

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 execs on both the screenplay and pitch

- Additional script reviews and consideration of other material for industry exposure

- Invitations to private events and Symposium panels hosted by Pipeline

TV Pilot

Winners (2): December 15th, 2023

- $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; expanded circulation afterward

Runners-up (2; one in each category): December 15th, 2023

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 and new TV writer clients.

- Development assistance from Script Pipeline's execs on the pilot and series pitch or bible

- Additional script reviews and consideration of other material for industry exposure

- Invitations to private events and Symposium panels hosted by Pipeline

Please review the following prior to submitting:

- For both Screenplay and TV, the script must not be under a representation, option, or shopping agreement at the time of entry (if after, that's absolutely fine!).

- 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 and released as a feature film or TV series at any time before the end of the season.

- Judging criteria emphasizes both writing ability and concept, unlike our Screenwriting and TV Writing competitions, which are centered almost exclusively on writing ability. Preference may be given to higher-concept material intended for a broader audience.

- The material must be wholly original. For adaptations, the story must be in the public domain, or you have retained the adaptation rights.

Email our contest coordinator with any other questions on guidelines or judging criteria.

View complete rules and guidelines: https://scriptpipeline.com/the-first-look-project-official-rules-2023

Overall Rating
Quality
Value
Communication
Hospitality
Networking
  • Nick Roth

    Can't recommend enough. Within weeks of my pilot
    Power Suit" winning Best Half-Hour I signed with a great manager who is now also developing the show. We attached a veteran showrunner and are currently out to studios. In other words: exactly what you want in a writing contest.

    August 2020