DC APA Film Festival is launching a new type of short screenplay competition. Submit a short screenplay 10 pages or less to our 2017 Film Festival. The winning script will be produced in partnership with Dimension FX (dimensionfx.com) and OZ Productions, which will supply a professional crew, lights, and a Red Epic Dragoon camera package to bring the film to life.
We are looking for stories of any genre told through dynamic characters that can be produced within a budget of $4,000. So this means no elaborate space battles, CGI, stunts, explosions. Keep it simple. All locations must be set within a 25 radius of Washington, DC, excluding any national landmarks (i.e. washington monument, the white house, lincoln memorial). The top 3 scripts will be read in front of a live audience, where the winning screenplay will be announced at the end. The winner’s script will be produced during the summer of 2017, and once complete, the final film will be shown during the 2018 festival.
ABOUT APA FILM
DC Asian Pacific American Film was established to be the beacon of creative output of Asian and Asian American media arts through community outreach, social media platforms, collaborative efforts with other Asian Pacific American organizations, and a film festival.
The mission of the DC Asian Pacific American Film Festival is to bring attention to the creative output from APA communities and encourage the artistic development of Asian Pacific American films in the greater Washington DC metropolitan region.
Our mission embodies the following goals:
1. To raise public awareness of Asian Pacific American media arts
2. To encourage and promote the artistic development of Asian Pacific American media artists
3. To provide arts education opportunities, with particular outreach to Asian Pacific American youth and adults
4. To raise awareness and act as a catalyst for the discussion of issues affecting Asian Pacific American communities
5. To bring diverse people together, to promote artistic and social interactions
6. To sponsor a DC Asian Pacific American Film Festival annually
Awards & Prizes
The final prize is a film production of the winning script. DC APA Film, in partnership with Dimension FX and OZ productions will supply the $4K budget, gear, and base crew. There is no cash value. The end product is a completed short film with a guaranteed entry into the 2018 DC APA Film Festival as a World Premiere.
Rules & Terms
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: Do I have to be Asian to submit?
A: No. All races and ethnicities may submit. The only Asian requirement is that the Director and Lead Character must be of Asian heritage.
Q. How many winners are there?
A: Only one, the first place script will be deemed the winner. The top 3 finalists will have their scripts read in front of a live audience by local actors.
Q. Why must the film be set in the DC region?
A: For budget and logistic reasons, we only have the resources to produce the film in the greater DC area.
Q. Can I just take the cash and film it myself?
A: No. This is a special program designed to foster more APA talents onto the big screen. The majority of screenplay contests already offer cash prizes to the winners with few restrictions.
Q. When will filming take place?
A: Sometime during the summer of 2017. It all depends on the scope of the script, accessibility to locations, actors, etc...
Q. How is the winning script chosen?
A: We are looking for stories with strong Asian American leads, set within 25mile radius of DC that stays within the $4,000 budget. Try to keep it to a small cast (1-2 main characters and a few supporting characters). Story is king. We'll rank by best story first and then narrow down by most film-able under a $4K budget.
Q. Are you looking for stories with cultural Asian themes?
A: In keeping with the mission of DC Asian Pacific American Film Festival, we are seeking stories with a lead character who is Asian American. This does not mean the story has to be centered around the fact that the lead is an Asian. Too often in Hollywood, Asians are cast upon to fulfill an age old stereotype, we prefer stories that break those stereotypes.
Q. Is it okay if I wrote a race neutral script and just changed the lead to an Asian American?
A: Yes, this fits the bill. As long as the lead character is Asian American, the script qualifies.
Q. In addition to the $4K budget, what else will be available to produce the film?
A: Gear is provided by Dimension FX, which includes a Red Epic Dragon package, Full set of Schneider Xenon T2.1 cine primes, Ronin handheld stabilizer, DJI Phantom 3 drone, and a package of cinema lights and grip to film a short. DC APA Film will supply the base crew.
Q. After the film is complete, who will own the film,? Can I shop it around?
A: DC APA film and Dimension FX will own the rights to the film. You will be credited as writer and/or director and will be given a copy to use for your reel.
Q. Do I have to be present to win and/or do I need to be on location during the shoot?
A: Yes, new for 2017, the screenwriter will also direct his/her film. DC APA Film will be providing guidance and required pre-production element for the writer/director before moving onto production.
Q: If I live outside the Washington, DC region, can I still participate?
A: Yes, but only if you can arrange to be in the DC area during the days of the filming. You must provide your own travel arrangements.
Q. Is the winning script subject to changes and edits?
A: It depends on the script. During the script breakdown process we may need to modify a few things to accommodate the budget/locations available, or the director may adjust something to better translate on screen. Any changes will be made in conjunction with the writer to ensure the intent of the story remains true to the writer's vision.
Q. I've never made a film before and not sure what a $4K budget entails?
A: Typically something at this budget are stories rooted in characters, plots, and ideas. No period pieces with fancy costumes and exotic locations, set dressing and visual effects. This does not mean the script needs to be dialogue heavy. Don't forget that film is a visual medium. The more that can be told visually the better. Think 2-3 locations, 1 main character, 1 main idea/concept.
RULES AND TERMS
DC APA FILM SCRIPT-TO-SCREEN COMPETITION
Please read this agreement carefully before you submit your film. By submitting your film, you expressly acknowledge and agree that you shall be bound by the terms of this agreement.
GUIDELINES FOR ALL SCRIPTS.
Scripts must not exceed 10 pages in length, excluding cover page. All non-English language screenplays must be translated and submitted in English. A separate entry form and additional entry fee must be submitted for each script.
ENTRY FORM AND PREVIEW MATERIALS FOR ALL FILMS.
Screenplays must be formatted in standard screenwriting style and exported as an Adobe Acrobat .PDF, or as a ".fountain" format and be uploaded with your online application. Incomplete applications, failure to include payment, or submitting materials we are unable to read will disqualify your entry. Submissions may not be withdrawn from the Festival once they have been entered, except at the sole discretion of the Festival directors. There are no refunds for entries with incomplete entry forms, or incorrectly formatted scripts.
REVIEW AND SELECTION PROCESS.
DC APA Film will review scripts in their entirety. Scripts will be read and reviewed by members of the Selection Committee, a volunteer group of DC-area filmmakers, film enthusiasts and critics.
Three finalist will have their script read in front of a live audience. The first place script will be award the production prize to produce his/her script. The purpose of the competition and production prize is to empower more APA actors and stories to be seen. All film/video shooting must take place after the award presentation. Prizes are subject to change, and updates to the prize package will be posted online at apafilm.org.
DC APA Film and OZ Productions retains the rights as a producer and owner of the film while the script writer retains rights over the script.
DC APA Film does not send physical mail — please make sure the email address in your entry form is accurate. Changes of email address can be sent firstname.lastname@example.org. DC APA Film is not liable for emails delayed by spam filters, server rejections, outdated email addresses or any other technical or human error.
PUBLICITY AND MARKETING.
All selected films and scripts may be excerpted for publicity purposes. DC APA Film reserves the right to promote any film or script to print, broadcast or internet media as required to market the Festival or our parent organization.
CONTROLLING LAW, VENUE AND SEVERABILITY.
This License shall be governed by the laws of the United States and the District of Columbia without consideration of conflicts of laws provisions and principles.. All claims between the parties, regardless of legal theory and whenever brought, shall be resolved in the state or federal courts of the District of Columbia, USA, and you stipulate that you expressly submit to the personal jurisdiction of such state and federal courts, and you further agree that any judgment may be entered in any court having jurisdiction thereof. If for any reason a court of competent jurisdiction finds any provision, or portion thereof, of this Agreement to be unenforceable, the remainder of this License shall continue in full force and effect.
This License constitutes the entire agreement between the parties with respect to the use of films and supersedes all prior or contemporaneous understandings regarding such subject matter. No amendment to or modification of this License will be binding unless in writing and signed by an authorized representative of DC APA Film Festival. Nothing in this Agreement constitutes a waiver of DC APA Film’s rights under the United States of America patent and copyright laws or any other Federal or State law, nor of any of DC APA Film’s rights under the rules or laws of any country, territory, republic, and/or province. DC APA Film reserves the right to remove a script from the festival program for any reason or for no reason and shall not be liable for any refund or claims of any kind arising out of such removal.