Cinequest was voted Best Film Festival by USA Today Readers. Set in the home of the world’s most influential media technology companies (Netflix, YouTube, Indiegogo, Apple, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.), Cinequest showcases premier films, renowned and emerging artists, and breakthrough technology—empowering global connectivity between creators, innovators and audiences. Cinequest presents a dynamic 13-day festival with 500+ screenings and events with over 700 artists, innovators, and professionals representing 50 countries. Over 100,000 attend the festival annually. Cinequest Film & VR Festival occurs March 3 – 15, 2020 in San Jose & Redwood City, California.

"I think the most important thing about Cinequest is it's definitely the first time I've ever come to a festival where my immediate reaction is, 'What do I have to do to be invited back?' and that's not normally my reaction. It's a perfect film festival in a glorious place."— Neil Gaiman, Maverick Spirit Award Winner

Amidst the energy and excitement of the festival, the Cinequest Screenwriting Competition empowers creative and innovative writers with the opportunity to interact with producers and industry professionals from around the world. Finalists will be honored during the Cinequest Writers Celebration, a day filled with a dynamic collection of Writer Meet Producer events, Business of Writing forums, Pitch Training, VIP Writers Lunch, and an awards ceremony announcing the winners of the competition.

ADDITIONAL TESTIMONIALS

"I've been submitting to Cinequest since 2013. The Cinequest judges' feedback and scorecards have always been top notch. I had a fantastic experience attending this year. The producers and staff do an amazing job. It's incredible...I'm over the moon to be working with Frank Grillo, Joe Carnahan, Myles Nestel and Lisa Wilson at The Solution, and with the crew at CAA. — Jeremy Rush, Feature Winner, WHEELMAN (Sold to Netflix in May 2016)"

"My cell was ringing with option interest before I even left San Jose. The Cinequest win helped me land representation in L.A., which resulted in attaching a seasoned producer who loves the script. I'm now being read by some of the most well-known production companies and all the major studios in Hollywood." — Bill Schreiber, SWITCHBACK

“Winning the Cinequest feature screenwriting competition gave me a chance to connect with other writers and filmmakers, and provided me with amazing opportunities to open some doors. A top-notch competition!” — Stacie Shellner, SAINT CHLOE

"Cinequest offers the creme' de la creme' of screenplay competitions! All of the events were professionally run, and as a Screenwriting Finalist, I encountered wonderful networking situations, well thought out educational opportunities, and a warm embrace into this vibrant community." — Ashia Chacko, BLACK BOX

"I saw the word "maverick" and took a chance on a lark that maybe this was a venue that could help foster my own vision. I graduated from the USC Graduate Screenwriting program...whatever happens in my career from this point on, I will consider [Cinequest] as one of the key factors in my development as a writer." — George Chumo II, THE ICONOCLAST and THE BRIDGE

“I can honestly say that Cinequest is one of the most writer-friendly film festivals I've ever been to. It was such a pleasure to meet everyone and, most of all, hear all of the stories. Here's hoping we all get a green light someday!” — Donna Laemmlen, SHEILA THE GILA MONSTER

"Everyone at Cinequest was great and I enjoyed the networking opportunities they provided. My screenplay is moving forward and we are seeking out investors to co-produce." — David Rich, THROUGH MARIA'S EYES

All submissions receive three lines of consolidated reader feedback upon request.

FEATURE-LENGTH SCRIPTS:

1st Place
(1) Receives $5000 USD cash prize. Winning script by more than one writer will have cash prize split evenly between members of the writing team. (2) Presented with an inscribed Crystal Award during Cinequest Film & VR Festival. (3) Amenities listed in Finalist sections.
Cash Award Value: 5,000 U.S. Dollar

Top Three Finalists
1) Opportunity to have script read by top level industry producers and writers (Jury will be announced in July 2019) 2) All of the amenities of the Top 10 Finalists

Top Ten Finalists
(1) Recognition (script title, genre and tagline) on Writers Celebration event page on Cinequest Film & VR Festival website. (2) Recognition (script title, genre and tagline) in printed Cinequest Film & VR Festival Guide (3) Invitation to Cinequest Film & VR Festival with two Artist festival passes (passes valued at $1,000). (4) Exclusive invitation to Writers Celebration (March 2020), which includes a BUSINESS OF WRITING FORUM, WRITER MEETS PRODUCER MIXER to connect with industry leaders, PITCH TRAINING & CHALLENGE to a panel of industry powerhouses, and an inspiring MAVERICK SPIRIT luminary event. (5) Special discounts and rates on accommodations during Cinequest Film & VR Festival.

SHORT FILM SCRIPTS:

1st Place
(1) Receives $1000 USD cash prize. Winning script by more than one writer will have cash prize split evenly between members of the writing team. (2) Presented with an inscribed Crystal Award during Cinequest Film & VR Festival. (3) Invitation to screen winning short at a future Cinequest Film & VR Festival. Film is limited to a 20-minute run time (maximum). Cinequest is not responsible for the production of the film. (4) Amenities listed in Finalist sections.
Cash Award Value: 1,000 U.S. Dollar

Top Three Finalists
1) Opportunity to have script read by top level industry producers and writers (Jury will be announced in July 2019) 2) All of the amenities of the Top 10 Finalists

Top Ten Finalists
(1) Recognition (script title, genre and tagline) on Writers Celebration event page on Cinequest Film & VR Festival website. (2) Recognition (script title, genre and tagline) in printed Cinequest Film & VR Festival Guide (3) Invitation to 2020 Cinequest Film & VR Festival with two Artist festival passes (passes valued at $1,000). (4) Exclusive invitation to Writers Celebration (March 2020), which includes a BUSINESS OF WRITING FORUM, WRITER MEETS PRODUCER MIXER to connect with industry leaders, PITCH TRAINING & CHALLENGE to a panel of industry powerhouses, and an inspiring MAVERICK SPIRIT luminary event. (5) Special discounts and rates on accommodations during Cinequest Film & VR Festival.

TELEPLAYS (60 MINUTES):

1st Place
(1) Receives $1,000 USD cash prize. Winning script by more than one writer will have cash prize split evenly between members of the writing team. (2) Presented with an inscribed Crystal Award during Cinequest Film & VR Festival. (3) Amenities listed in Finalist sections.
Cash Award Value: 1,000 U.S. Dollar

Top Three Finalists
1) Opportunity to have script read by top level industry producers and writers (Jury will be announced in July 2019) 2) All of the amenities of the Top 10 Finalists

Top Ten Finalists
(1) Recognition (script title, genre and tagline) on Writers Celebration event page on Cinequest Film & VR Festival website. (2) Recognition (script title, genre and tagline) in printed Cinequest Film & VR Festival Guide (3) Invitation to 2020 Cinequest Film & VR Festival with two Artist festival passes (passes valued at $1,000). (4) Exclusive invitation to Writers Celebration (March 2020), which includes a BUSINESS OF WRITING FORUM, WRITER MEETS PRODUCER MIXER to connect with industry leaders, PITCH TRAINING & CHALLENGE to a panel of industry powerhouses, and an inspiring MAVERICK SPIRIT luminary event. (5) Special discounts and rates on accommodations during Cinequest Film & VR Festival.

TELEPLAYS (30 MINUTES):

1st Place
(1) Receives $1000 USD cash prize. Winning script by more than one writer will have cash prize split evenly between members of the writing team. (2) Presented with an inscribed Crystal Award during Cinequest Film & VR Festival. (3) Amenities listed in Finalist sections.
Cash Award Value: 1,000 U.S. Dollar

2nd Place
1) Opportunity to have script read by top level industry producers and writers (Jury will be announced in July 2019) 2) All of the amenities of the Top 10 Finalists
Sponsor:Top Three Finalists

Top 10 Finalists
(1) Recognition (script title, genre and tagline) on Writers Celebration event page on Cinequest Film & VR Festival website. (2) Recognition (script title, genre and tagline) in printed Cinequest Film & VR Festival Guide (3) Invitation to 2019 Cinequest Film & VR Festival with two Artist festival passes (passes valued at $1,000). (4) Exclusive invitation to Writers Celebration (March 2020), which includes a BUSINESS OF WRITING FORUM, WRITER MEETS PRODUCER MIXER to connect with industry leaders, PITCH TRAINING & CHALLENGE to a panel of industry powerhouses, and an inspiriting MAVERICK SPIRIT luminary event. (5) Special discounts and rates on accommodations during Cinequest Film & VR Festival.

SCRIPT FORMAT

All genres accepted. Especially seeking drama, comedy, thriller/mystery, sci-fi, action, bio-pic, rom-com, horror, and highly original material.

Script must be submitted in English and must be properly formatted according to industry standards.

Length (not including title page):
• Feature-Length Scripts must be between 70 -125 pages
• Short Film Scripts must be 40 pages or fewer
• Teleplays (60 minute) must be between 45-70 pages
• Teleplays (30 minute) must be 45 pages or fewer

Only PDFs will be accepted for submission. Printed scripts are not accepted.

Script must be properly formatted according to industry standards.

Please include ONLY your script’s title on the cover page so that readers may remain unbiased in their decisions. Your FilmFreeway tracking number will automatically be assigned to your uploaded script.

Maintain your full contact information in your FilmFreeway registration. Do not include any contact information on your submitted script.

RESTRICTIONS

Once the entry is received no rewritten/corrected pages will be accepted.

Submission fees are collected by FilmFreeway. Cinequest does not accept payment by cash, check, or money order. There is no entry fee refund for any scripts submitted.

Winning scripts by more than one writer will have the prize split evenly between members of the writing team.

Any script that becomes purchased, optioned, goes into production, or is produced before the final Jury decision on February 19, 2020, will be eliminated from the competition with no entry fee refund. Scripts written as adaptations of other works must have secured rights before being submitted.

FEEDBACK & NOTIFICATIONS

Contestants will receive 3 lines of consolidated reader feedback on their script if requested.

Writers will be notified on their status in the competition via the email address provided at time of registration. Please include screenplay@cinequest.org in your contact lists to receive these notifications. See below for selection process:

• Top 50 and Top 10 notified in December 2019.
• Top 10 Finalists listed on Website end of January, 2020.
• Top 3 and Winners Announced in the March 2020 Festival Awards Press Release.

Authorization:
As the authorized representative for the above-mentioned script, I accept the conditions and rules described on this entry form. I attest to the fact that this screenplay submission has not been optioned or purchased, and is not in current production or post-production. Should the optioning, purchasing, or production status of the script change, I will contact Cinequest immediately in writing to have the script removed from competition.

If this script is selected as a finalist and / or prize winner of the Cinequest Screenwriting Competition, I grant Cinequest the right to use all writers' names and likenesses in conjunction with the promotion of the Cinequest Screenwriting Competition without additional / any competition. This includes, but not limited to, listing of finalists and prize winners on the Cinequest website; in Cinequest press releases and media coverage surrounding the screenwriting competition; and Cinequest Film & VR Festival occurring March 3-15, 2020 in San Jose, California.

Disclaimer:
Submitting to the Cinequest Film & VR Festival Screenwriting Competition is for competition purposes only and does not mean that Cinequest Inc., its employees, sponsors, or anyone associated with Cinequest will represent, produce, promote, or fund any project whatsoever. Cinequest is not responsible for lost screenplays.