September 20, 2013

Contest: Get Your Pitch Read by the Weinstein Company

The Weinstein CompanyAn interesting thing is happening in this digital age of filmmaking. On one hand, the transition from film to digital has made filming, editing, and distributing so much simpler than it once was. On the other hand, the competition is fierce between filmmakers to gain viewers to add to their audience. And we've all heard that knowing someone is at times more important than having a good film. Well, the Weinstein Company has partnered with Film.com and NextMovie to bring you their Master Storytelling Contest, in which one winner will have the opportunity to have their pitch or film treatment read by one of the company’s Development Executives. Read on for the details.

You might think, "What's the big deal? So, they read it. That doesn't mean I'm signing a deal or getting my film made." True. However, what this contest does is puts your pitch/treatment at the top of the heap to be read by someone whose job it is to find stories to be made. That could very well mean getting your foot in the door.

And the great thing about this contest is that it takes little to no effort on your part if you've already written, rewritten, and re-rewritten your pitch/treatment. It's as easy as cut and pasting it into the field provided. And if you haven't written one yet, maybe this would be a good catalyst to get it done. It's definitely worth a shot, since you essentially have nothing to lose and a whole lot to gain.

Each pitch will be judged based on its "merits of its creative vision, its originality, and the viability of the idea as the germ of a movie that could actually be made."

So, here's what you do: "like" The Weinstein Company or NextMovie on Facebook, click on their Master Storytelling tab near the top of the page, and fill out the form, which includes your name, DOB, email, and your treatment (1000 word max.) Agree to the terms and conditions and then click submit. That's it.

Here are a couple of tips and technical requirements for the contest:

Helpful Hints

  • Write a film treatment for your favorite genre or about something that interests you.
  • Think about what your main character wants or needs to resolve, and what obstacle(s) stand in their way.

Technical Requirements

  • Eligible submissions must be written treatments between 200 and 1,000 words in length. Pitches have to be completely original ideas that have never been publicly published or submitted to any prior contests.

The Master Storytelling Contest closes at 11:59 am (EST) on October 3rd, so you've got less than two weeks to polish up those pitches and treatments.

Links:

Your Comment

19 Comments

So this guy quits his job and starts living in the trees right? Well not trees but the woods and like a cave or something. He builds this weird cottage and makes a friend with this wolf thing... And he... He goes hunting and stuff. Meanwhile, this businessman dude is looking for him and is actually his friend but you don't know that till the end of the movie... So he's trying to sleep and his dog/wolf starts barking at the door. He like turns and a shadow moves past the window with scary music. He turns around the door is open... And his wife is like standing there with his lucky golf club!! Crap! I forgot he killed his wife in the beggining... With the golf club... And his friend like knows... You know??? Like what do you think?

September 20, 2013 at 8:49PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

1
Reply

Plz

September 20, 2013 at 9:52PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
avatar
Micah Van Hove
Writer
director, producer, dp

yeah plzz take a course on building interest. this sounds like castaway raped by the syfy channel

September 20, 2013 at 10:37PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
yeahRight

Lol. Julian, I enjoyed it.

September 21, 2013 at 1:48AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

2
Reply
Jonesy

Consider!

September 27, 2013 at 7:54PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

1
Reply
QuixoticArts

That's the kind of contest which seems not good at all, knowing the history of the Weinstein.

September 20, 2013 at 9:34PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply

I might have been interested in this, but I'm one of those dumb hicks from Oklahoma that is too stupid to understand a Korean sci-fi picture presented as intended by it's director.
No thank you, I'll work on getting my material distributed in a way that respects both it and my audience.

September 20, 2013 at 9:36PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

2
Reply
Gene Locke

So basically this is free marketing b/w stealing any idea if there is actually any decent ideas from people who know how to write in structure and come up with compelling stories?

yeah Right

September 20, 2013 at 10:06PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

3
Reply
yeahRight

Anything that requires a "like" on Facebook SCREAMS shady, even for the Weinsten Company. To think they will actually go through the hundreds of thousands of submissions with any sense of optimism is almost laughable.

September 21, 2013 at 11:43AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

1
Reply
egghead

I'm from Brazil and can't participate of the competition, maybe it's only for US citizens, it made me think about something, the industry is always in trouble to get good stories to tell, but in order to have the chance to show your story, first of all you must get an agent and if you're living outside the US it becomes almost impossible, maybe it's time for the industry to reinvent this path of production.

September 21, 2013 at 8:05AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

5
Reply

Check out http://www.blcklst.com/

Many scripts are being bought directly from this website. No representation needed. You just need a good script.

September 21, 2013 at 11:48AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

2
Reply
Mike

Should i try and get a copyright on my idea before submitting it? or is that not necessary?

September 21, 2013 at 3:48PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
jerod

HIlarious.

September 21, 2013 at 6:08PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

5
Reply
maghoxfr

Hey Jerod,

From my understanding, it's not possible to actually copyright an *idea*. What is possible is to copyright a screenplay/treatment/some substantial form of the story that contains the idea.

A simple way to quickly (though not completely) protect your intellectual property while trying to get a copyright is to mail it to yourself so that you have a sealed envelope postmarked with the date you sent it. But the important thing is to not share your valuable ideas, especially in the form of a pitch, if you have no way of protecting them if someone were to rip them off.

maghoxfr, I sincerely hope that every crew member or collaborator you ever work with will be more helpful to you than your response was to this question.

September 22, 2013 at 3:35PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
George

Assumes you are on Facebook. FAIL.

September 26, 2013 at 3:12PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

4
Reply
Z

I hate contests like this. Thousands of entries, hundreds of good or potentially workable new ideas, and one "winner" who gets nothing but a nod from the W gods.

Meanwhile, the entries are read by a staff of (probably) volunteer interns, the diamonds sifted from the rough, categorized and dropped into a spreadsheet, and finally handed to the bros. W, who look over the content and muse on the possibilities.

Genius? I think this is a sign that they are running dry, and this a pathetic attempt to essentially pickpocket the writing public.

Crowd Mining at it's best. Don't fall for it.

"It's GOLD Jerry....GOLD!"

"What? you claim that was *your* idea that you sent to us in a "contest"?? We have no idea what you are talking about. We never read your script, and we came up with these script ideas completely independently."

Ungh. (Sticks finger down throat)

September 27, 2013 at 8:26AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Marcus

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
As of 8:05 PM EST September 29, 2013, I am copyrighting following scenario of for an introduction to my pitch to Weinstein Co, cartoon/fiction/crime/sci-fy/rtv/full length/thriller/suspense/epic/oscar/etc = "Da Cold Gold!" - a story of highly elaborate and brilliantly executed crimes stealing artifacts, loves, and bank accounts.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Intro:
Main character - Marcus. Marcus is a well-rounded character but in the opening scene and thereafter only parts of Marcus's fingers are shown that type in one of the blogs:
"I hate contests like this. Thousands of entries, hundreds of good or potentially workable new ideas, and one “winner” who gets nothing but a nod from the W gods.

Meanwhile, the entries are read by a staff of (probably) volunteer interns, the diamonds sifted from the rough, categorized and dropped into a spreadsheet, and finally handed to the bros. W, who look over the content and muse on the possibilities.

Genius? I think this is a sign that they are running dry, and this a pathetic attempt to essentially pickpocket the writing public.

Crowd Mining at it’s best. Don’t fall for it.

“It’s GOLD Jerry….GOLD!”

“What? you claim that was *your* idea that you sent to us in a “contest”?? We have no idea what you are talking about. We never read your script, and we came up with these script ideas completely independently.”

Ungh.
(Marcus sticks finger down throat)....and vomits...and as he vomits his vomit turns into rivers of gold transforming into Oscar....with sparkling in simple sapphire-purplish letters title and my name as director/screen play writer/copywriter/ etc etc etc following the name of the movie...
----------------------------------------------------------------------
End of introductory scene and story begins from...
-----------------------------
(Note: quote "It's GOLD Jerry...GOLD!" could be NOT one of Mr. Bannia original quotes and legal search is in process but just in case if it is than his legal reps welcome to have some crumbs, though it sounds to me entirely different).

September 29, 2013 at 8:07PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

2
Reply
Wise1

Looks like they own the rights to your story forever if you submit a pitch. Otherwise I'd do it on a lark, but seems a bit dangerous.

October 2, 2013 at 4:16PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Stuart

This response is to Marcus who left a message on 09.27.13 @ 8:07PM, I totally agree 100% with you Marcus...these production companies are running dry and now their looking for other ways to steal ideas from poor and sometimes uneducated people who are not business savvy. I would suggest to anyone whose thinking about entering this contest, have your content/material/idea copyrighted first, talk to a entertainment lawyer and do not sign no agreement until you've had the chance to speak to a lawyer. This is a scam! As the saying goes, buyers beware, well, contestants beware!

December 6, 2013 at 7:06AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Tyler