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Upcoming Contests & Festivals

Hey, screenwriters--

Moviemaker Magazine, one of the best resources out there for independent filmmakers, recently compiled lists of upcoming contests and festivals. Here are highlights from their lists... some are searching for entries, others are just great places to see interesting new work... check 'em out...

2008 BLUECAT SCREENPLAY COMPETITION: Now in its 10th year, BlueCat discovers more successful writers and provides more support through our analysis to more writers than any screenplay contest in the world. Sony just picked up the distribution rights for our 2005 winner, Balls Out: The Gary Houseman Story, starring Seann William Scott and Randy Quaid. Lance Hammer, 2004 finalist, recently picked up two awards at Sundance. Every screenplay entered in BlueCat receives over 600 words of analysis. Winner receives $10,000; $1,500 to four finalists. LATE DEADLINE: April 1 ($60).

Tickets on sale now! The 10th Annual CALIFORNIA INDEPENDENT FILM FESTIVAL will take place in Northern California's Livermore Valley Wine Country Wednesday, April 16 through Sunday, April 20th, 2008. Over 60 feature films, shorts, music videos and documentaries from all over the world will be screened during the five-day event, where several Hollywood legends will be honored for their work in independent motion pictures. For more information about the event, visit the festival site at

The 8th annual installment of the CONEY ISLAND FILM FESTIVAL hits the shores of Coney Island Friday, September 26th through Sunday, September 28th. This annual festival features over 80 films from around the world; a stunning array of high and lowbrow fare, as diverse as the neighborhood it represents. The festival kicks off with an opening night party featuring performances from The Coney Island Sideshow and Burlesque Performers. An annual screening of The Warriors runs Saturday night where the audience is encouraged to talk back to the screen! For details go to or contact Rob Leddy at 718/907-3409 or

Short films under 20 Minutes and screenplays under 15 pages ACCEPTED NOW. MovieMaker Magazine calls DC SHORTS “one of the nation’s leading short film festivals.” Filmmakers enjoy fabulous parties, city tours and are provided with housing, meals and transportation. But most importantly, they enjoy the opportunity to meet and learn from other filmmakers—an experience that comes from the premier showcase dedicated to short films and the people who make them.

FIRSTGLANCE 11 PHILADELPHIA is calling for entries for Philly’s only festival that celebrates the truly indie filmmaker from down the street and across the globe! Open to professional, first time and student filmmakers with any budget, for North America’s premiere truly indie festival whose mission is to exhibit, promote and reward the best national and international talent in all genres in a competitive casual atmosphere bringing together emerging filmmakers, film enthusiasts, critics, distributors and indie film lovers. Named one of the best film festival investments and one of the Top 40 Indie-Friendly Businesses in the world, FirstGlance continues it mission by offering an online companion at this year's event! Submit through or logon to and apply online. Deadline: April 11, 2008. Over $50,000 dollars in prizes to be awarded in 2008.

Since the NEW HAMPSHIRE FILM FESTIVAL’S debut in 2001 as the NH Film Expo, it has grown in leaps and bounds. These days, heavy hitters such as Avid and Regal Cinemas provide sponsorship, while industry leaders from Emerging Pictures, Film Threat and Philly Fests participate on panels and in workshops. Alumni film credits include national distribution, Academy Award nominations and screenings at major festivals worldwide. For more information about their upcoming event check out or email

Co-hosted by MySpace Film, the NOW FILM FESTIVAL advances the exposure of short film to thousands of viewers every week for 25 weeks. To submit your short film check out their website at <> or check to watch the featured videos. Contact Sean Hackett at if you have any questions.

PALM SPRINGS SHORTFEST—August 21-27, 2008. Now in its 14th year, the Palm Springs ShortFest has become known world-wide for the extraordinary community of filmmakers it attracts and the quality and scope of its programming. This is the largest festival of its kind in America, showcasing over 350 short films from more than 40 countries, with a library of more than 2,200 films available to film buyers, industry and press in the Film Market running concurrently with the festival. Included are seminars, technological demonstrations and 'one-on-one' meetings with industry experts and filmmaking professionals, free to all participating filmmakers:

One of MovieMaker Magazine's "20 Film Festivals Worth the Entry Fee," the ROME INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL is one of the best film festivals in the southeast. Each year RIFF features more than 100 films from more than 30 countries, including shorts and features in the categories of documentary, narrative, experimental and animation. Jury awards are presented for best narrative feature, documentary, narrative short, experimental film and animated short. Audience awards are presented for best feature and best short. RIFF is always the weekend after Labor Day in early September. Located in historic downtown Rome, Georgia, all festival venues are within walking distance. The festival also includes the Southeastern Film Industry Expo, a film industry convention featuring representatives from throughout the southeast. For more information, visit

8th Annual SCREAMFEST HORROR FILM FESTIVAL & SCREENPLAY COMPETITION takes place Oct. 10th–19th at the prestigious Grauman’s Mann Chinese 6 at Hollywood and Highland in the heart of Hollywood. Call For Entries deadlines are approaching for new horror feature films, shorts and feature length screenplays. Film submission deadlines: Early—July 15th, Final—August 15th. Screenplay submission deadlines: Early—June 15th, Regular—July 15th and Final—August 15th. Winning screenplay receives $1,000 cash and Movie Magic softwar
e. Screamfest is sponsored by Boost Mobile, Write Brothers, Inc. and InBaseline. For more info or email

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