GUNPOWDER & SKY IS A FAST-GROWING INDEPENDENT ENTERTAINMENT STUDIO, a trusted tastemaker with leading content brands in horror (ALTER) and sci-fi (DUST) reaching 50M+ audience monthly across OTT and social channels.
ALTER & DUST rely on an incredible community of filmmakers and creators to provide visionary horror and sci-fi stories. We aim to seek out these creators, connecting them with audiences around the world.
Once your short film is accepted, a member of the team will be in touch with more information for your showcase. See the Rules and Terms for more information.
The DUST & ALTER family is an ever-expanding collective of the world’s freshest voices and most daring new creatives. If you’re a filmmaker or creator, we’d love to hear from you!
WHAT WE DO:
We give your voice a place to be heard. ALTER & DUST are available worldwide on social media (YouTube, Facebook and Instagram, etc), internet connected televisions (Roku, Samsung TV, etc), critically acclaimed podcasts, and even our very own DUST app (available wherever you download your apps).
We have deep relationships within the industry, with great connections to festivals, programmers, and press. With our 75M+ audience, your film will launch on the internet’s number one destination for genre films, where our dedicated community will become your new fans!
As a major studio with digital brands, we’re best equipped to support fresh talent. We work with management powerhouse Circle of Confusion and the world-famous Creative Artists Agency (CAA) to provide filmmakers management and agency options by championing those who have signed with ALTER and DUST. Filmmakers signed to Circle of Confusion via ALTER & DUST include:
● Bryian Keith Montgomery Jr. (Good Guy With A Gun)
● Erica Scoggins (The Boogeywoman)
● Hana Kazim (MAKR)
● Jody Wilson (Indigo)
● Matt Harlock (Deep Clean)
Our filmmakers have gone on to make incredible features, series and podcasts with major studios like Paramount, Sony, Amazon, Netflix, Marvel, Disney, Amblin, A24, IFC, Peacock (NBC), Blumhouse, Atomic Monster, and Shudder.
Here are just a few of the projects that were originally released on ALTER and DUST that are now in active development with the Gunpowder & Sky development team:
● The Time Agent by Jude Chun (Black Label Media)
● The Masseuse by Tan Ce Ding (Miramax)
● Bad Peter by Zach Strauss (Escape Artists)
● The Color of Your Lips by Annick Blanc (Atomic Monster)
WHAT FILMMAKERS SAY:
The results speak for themselves - releasing a film on DUST and ALTER can change a filmmaker’s career. Opportunities, both creative and financial, are one of the things we’re most proud of.
Here are what creators have to say about their partnership with DUST, ALTER, and GUNPOWDER & SKY:
● “It gave it credibility, and also a legitimate place to call home.”
● “The exposure of my short film has opened so many doors, it's unbelievable how many people got to see it.”
● “I've been able to develop 2 short television series with different high level companies just because they came across the short on [this] platform.”
● “A legitimate brand you can tout in industry conversations.”
● “I got representation after a manager saw my short on ALTER. That was huge for my career.”
● “The producer for my current project came to me after watching my short on DUST.”
● “Having all of the fans commenting ‘we need a feature version of this’ gives me ammo to take to producers.”
● “Being on the platform has given me way more visibility than any film festival.”
● “Best place on the internet for short horror and sci-fi, representing the highest quality of storytelling & technical filmmaking skills.”
● “There’s simply no other way to find as large and targeted an audience for sci-fi or horror film than these two channels.”
● “The film looks great in the YouTube upload, I watched it in 4k. I love the speed credits with the extra Dust-y kind of stuff at the end, feels like Netflix. You and your team did a fantastic job.”
● “ALTER’s YouTube audience is so much more delightful and positive than I expected... before releasing on YouTube, other filmmakers advised me NOT to read the comments for the sake of my self esteem... but I’m glad I ignored the advice because the reaction from ALTER’s fanbase is exuberantly supportive.”
● “I love that my short film has found an audience and continues to all this time later. Then comment make me so happy, as I truly didn’t realize the film with resonate with so many.”
WHAT ARE OUR RULES:
● Availability & Premiere Status: We do not require exclusivity or premiere status, but it is an added bonus if ALTER/DUST can be your premiere launch site. Still on your festival run? We can shelve your film until you’re ready for debut, so don’t wait to submit!
● All Rights Secured: We require films to have all necessary rights and releases secured in order for us to feature them, including music. Please do not submit to us if your film has music that you do not have the license to use.
● Short Film Runtime: The longer the short film, the tougher the judging will be. We have a preference for films with runtimes in the 15-20 minute range, and require a 5 minute minimum runtime.
● Series: Acceptance of a web-series or serialised show does not guarantee funding for another season, nor does it guarantee the showcasing of any future seasons.
● Feature Films: Please note we do not accept feature films. If you intend for a feature to be released as a series, please specify.
● Payment: By submitting (uploading & purchasing a submission) your project to ALTER and/or DUST via FilmFreeway, you acknowledge that you are not eligible for a refund. There are no refunds for double submissions or submissions that are not accepted. No refunds will be given for any submission for which a withdrawal has been requested, regardless of reason.
IMPORTANT: Please be advised that Gunpowder & Sky, ALTER, DUST, any affiliates, or their respective executives do not read or consider any unsolicited literary material, including, without limitation, scripts, musical compositions, product ideas, lyrics, concepts, ideas or suggestions. For the avoidance of doubt, any written materials you submit will not be read, and will be immediately deleted.
WHAT WE WANT (OR HOW TO INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF BEING SELECTED):
What We Look For:
You can get a good sense of our taste by looking at what we have curated in the past. Be sure to check out our programming before submitting.
● Story first: We are looking for short films that have great characters and world-building; stories that go above and beyond, with remarkable craftsmanship; films that surprise us, affect us emotionally, or impress the hell out of us.
● Remember: DUST is science fiction, ALTER is horror. Submit accordingly. Though horror and sci-fi are the main genres we look for, we are always open to genre-blending films with elements of thriller, midnight, and fantasy.
What We Avoid:
The following points outline the type of content we are not interested in. Our content filters, however, are ever-evolving, and we know there are occasionally exceptions to the rule.
● Special effects reels/proof of concepts; Our audience expects great characters, effective world-building, and a satisfying ending. The story doesn’t need to be completely buttoned up, but often proof of concept films can be too light on plot or resolution. Remember: story first.
● Non-genre films; We are open to documentaries if they are specifically about genre film and/or use the visual style of the genre cinema. We also avoid purely promotional pieces and timelapse photography videos.
● Extremely abstract/experimental films: While we may personally love them, our audience enjoys a story they can follow.
● Punchline shorts; This typically means short films in the 1-3 minute range, such as comedies that rely on one final joke, and horrors that lead to one jump scare.
● When should I submit my film? You can submit your film whenever suits you, but we suggest submitting it as soon as it is completed. This way, you can start planning your online release to coincide with the end of your festival run.
● My film is several years (or even decades) old; Is it still eligible? Absolutely.
● Do you require exclusivity? No! All of our films are non-exclusive, which means your film can be showcased on ALTER and DUST, as well as on other platforms.
● When will my film launch? Upon acceptance of the film, a member of the curation team will be in touch with our showcase agreement. Once signed and the assets have been delivered, your film can be placed in the schedule. We release a film a day, Monday through Friday, and as such schedule our releases several months in advance. If you’re looking to launch at a certain time, make sure you have allowed enough time for it to be reviewed, accepted, delivered, and programmed :)
● Will my film go viral? Unfortunately, that is never something that can be guaranteed, but our team does everything they can within the constraints of each platform to have a successful release.