Short Film Screenwriter Program

The & PROGRAM is a new initiative Ampersand Studios program that we will be rolling out over the up coming year as a way to support creative people and help make their vision and ambitions a reality.

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From Script to Screen

We are passionate about film, so to kick off this initiative we are launching &Screenwriters. Cinema is a captivating, complex and technological art, with the power to educate and inform the audience and we are fascinated by the process.

&Screenwriters was created to discover, support and help storytellers, from development through to the production and distribution of their projects. Screenwriters will be provided with the structure of a mentorship program from established writers and filmmakers, in an environment that fosters their full creativity.

South Florida has many emerging screenwriters with undiscovered creative ideas and untold stories and through this mentorship program, we hope to help them move from script, to screen.

Program

Collaboration and community are an essential part of this process, and that is why the program will include an intensive 12 days of workshops, with accompanying script feedback sessions. 

Screenwriters will be provided with the structure of a mentorship program from established screenwriter and producer Tom Musca. Tom has conducted MPA writing and producing workshops on four continents and has lectured at the Sundance Institute, UCLA, NYU, USC and AFI. He head the MFA Screenwriting Concentration at the University of Miami where he received the Robert and Christine Staub Faculty Excellence Award. See below for full bio. 

Each screenwriter will work in round table group sessions for the workshops and also have the benefit of one-to-one support via email, to further develop their project over the course of the program. Every semester the program will be open for new applications for 2 different genres: 

  • Drama 
  • Comedy 

8 screenwriters will be selected for each session.

Details

  • Participants will have a place to work from at Ampersand Studios. 
  • The program will provide writing software. 
  • The participant will have round table and workshop sessions with the Mentor(s). 
  • Ampersand Studios will provide any copyright documentation required to protect the author in case the project is produced, as well as a WGA West. 
  • Screenwriters will be trained to pitch their scripts to industry professionals. 
  • The Program will culminate with screenwriters being introduced to Producers for a pitch session.

Submission Requirements & Guidelines

  1. Applicants must submit one of the following: 
    • A synopsis with developed characters 
    • A work-in-progress script 
    • A 1st draft script 

(NB: Entry scripts must be the original work of one writer). 

  1. An artist
  2. An artist statement explaining the genesis of the story, it’s creative vision and intentions for the film.
  3. A cover letter (500 words max) explaining why you want to enter this program.
  4. A narrative directing sample, (if you plan on directing the film)
  5. A look book (optional) 

*All entrants must be aged over 18.

**All entrants must ideally have written at least one script previously

Important Dates

  • Submission closes: 7 February 2020 
  • Program Starts: 22 February 2020

"To make a great film you need three things the script, the script, and the script" [Alfred Hitchcock]

MAKE-LOVE-GREAT-AGAIN-Exec-Producer-Tomas-G.-Musca

Tom Musca Mentor

Tom Musca first captured attention as the producer and co-writer of Stand and Deliver. The Warner Bros film earned Oscar and Golden Globe nominations along with six Independent Spirit Awards and is preserved in the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress. 

Musca is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Rutgers and went on to earn his MFA at UCLA. This lifelong member of the WGA has written roles for an array of acting talent, including John Cusack, James Gandolfini, Andy Garcia, Raquel Welch, Lou Diamond Phillips, Michael Madsen, CCH Pounder, Cliff Robertson, Sidney Poitier, River Phoenix, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, and Benicio del Toro, among others. 

His produced feature film credits include Columbia Pictures’ Little Nikita; Samuel Goldwyn’s Imagen Award winner Tortilla Soup; Hollywood Pictures’ Money For Nothing; Flight of Fancy for Showtime; Race and Make Love Great Again for HBO. He has just finished writing & directing the comedy Chateau Vato 

Tom Musca has conducted MPA writing and producing workshops on four continents and has lectured at the Sundance Institute, UCLA, NYU, USC and AFI. Additionally, Musca is highly regarded as a script consultant and writes fiction about filmmaking for Hollywooddementia.com. He heads the MFA Screenwriting Concentration at the University of Miami where he received the Robert and Christine Staub Faculty Excellence Award.

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