The New York Screenwriters Workshop is a weekly intensive that runs from late March through August 2020. The Workshop is for early-career, greater New York City-based screenwriters who are under-represented in the film industry and have demonstrated a rigorous commitment to their craft. Up to eight writers will be provided with both a screenwriting mentor and an executive mentor, as well as seminars, receptions, and other introductions, as they develop a new feature length screenplay during the Workshop. The Workshop will culminate with table reads of the participants’ works and an exclusive dinner with leaders of the New York film industry. The goal of the New York Screenwriters Workshop is to diversify the writers who have access to the meetings and projects that offer career sustainability.
The New York Screenwriters Workshop is a partnership between FilmNation Entertainment and the Writers Guild of America, East, as they continue their championing of industry inclusion and fostering communities of writers. The Workshop marks FilmNation’s and WGA East’s commitment to serving diverse, emerging talent and supporting New York City as a thriving hub of the entertainment industry. Final Draft is serving as the sponsor of the 2020 Workshop and will provide Workshop participants with software and other promotional materials.
The program will require in person attendance at seminars and group writing sessions a minimum of two evenings per week for the duration of the program (March through mid-August) at either the WGA East office or the FilmNation Entertainment office in New York City. Writers who cannot commit to attendance at these events should not apply.
Applicants of the workshop must meet the following requirements:
- Applicants must be at least 18 years of age
- Applicants must have completed at least one feature length screenplay and not have more than one produced work, which cannot exceed a budget of $5 million.
- Applicants should be based in the New York City area and able to attend events 2 nights a week (this program is not for people who travel frequently)
- Applicants should be aware of the need for industry inclusion and mindful of the spirit of the program
- Unless the applicant is applying through the Lottery Application described below, he/she/they must be referred by one of the following organizations:
1. Austin Film Festival
2. Alumni of Barry R. Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema at CUNY Brooklyn
3. The Black List
4. Blackhouse Foundation
5. The Dramatists Guild
6. Emma Bowen Foundation
8. Screenwriters Colony
9. The National Black Theatre
10. NYWIFT Writers Lab
12. Urbanworld Film Festival
13. WGAE Indie Caucus
The program will accept up to 100 applications, until November 30, 2019, on a first come first served basis. Applicants who do not have relationships with any of the referring organizations set forth above should feel free to apply to the program through the Lottery Application. A limited number of submissions will be randomly selected from Lottery Applications to ensure that the program is accessible to all.
The application process will proceed in three rounds. All applicants will be required to submit
(1) a maximum 400-word artistic statement on the focus of the writers work, career highlights and the significance of this program at this career stage;
(2) a maximum 400-word essay on a film or television project that played a formative role in shaping the writer’s work and commitment to industry inclusion;
(3) a resume;
(4) a completed WGA-registered feature screenplay and summary; and
(5) a WGA-registered treatment for the project that writer would like to work on during the fellowship.
All required uploads must be put in the FILES & ATTACHMENT section of your PROJECT FILE PAGE in PDF Form
It MUST be labeled The Workshop and File Name as followed for each upload.
For your Resume: The WorkshopResume.pdf
For your WGA-Registered Featured Screenplay: The WorkshopScreenplay.pdf
For your WGA-Registered Featured Screenplay Summary: The WorkshopSummary.pdf
For your WGA-Registered Treatment: The WorkshopTreatment.pdf
Applications that do not follow stated eligibility requirements, directions, and standards for feature screenplay formatting and length will not be considered.
During the Round 1 blind review period, 100 screenplays will each be scored by two WGA screenwriters. The top 40 applications will be reviewed by program staff to determine the 20 screenplays that will progress for Round 2.
Round 2 will consist of a blind review by WGA screenwriters of the sample script and summary, as well as the treatment for the Workshop project. Up to 12 applicants will be named finalists and invited to interview in March 2020 with Workshop staff for up to eight fellowship seats.
Application status notifications will be provided when the participating Workshop writers are determined in March 2020.