23rd Annual

Slamdance Screenplay Competition


Horror Screenplays (121-150 pages)


Deadlines & Entry Fees

All fees will be charged in U.S. Dollar

Online Services Offered
Entry Form
Fee Payment
Submission Copy
Earlybird Deadline
April 9, 2018
Regular Discounted
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) 65.00 60.00
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) + Standard Coverage (Available in 60 days) 145.00 140.00
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) + Express Coverage (Available in 21 days) 185.00 180.00
Regular Deadline
June 12, 2018
Regular Discounted
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) 75.00 70.00
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) + Standard Coverage (Available in 60 days) 155.00 150.00
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) + Express Coverage (Available in 21 days) 195.00 190.00
Late Deadline
July 23, 2018
Regular Discounted
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) 90.00 85.00
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) + Standard Coverage (Available in 60 days) 170.00 165.00
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) + Express Coverage (Available in 21 days) 210.00 205.00
WAB Extended Deadline
July 30, 2018
Regular Discounted
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) 90.00 85.00
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) + Standard Coverage (Available in 60 days) 170.00 165.00
Screenplay Submission (121-150 pages) + Express Coverage (Available in 21 days) 210.00 205.00

Discounted fees apply to projects with pre-purchased Discount Packs, on entry fees greater than 30.00.

Category Details

September 17, 2018

Submission & Exhibition Format Requirements

Text Files
  Paper (Printed Hard Copy)
  PDF (.pdf)

Prizes & Awards

This category is a competition.

Winner in Feature, Horror, TV Pilot, or Short category
The winners in Feature, Horror, TV Pilot, and Short categories will receive $2,000 in cash, each. (4 prizes total)
Cash Award Value: 2,000 U.S. Dollar

Grand Jury Prize
The Grand Jury Winner, regardless of category will receive $8,000.
Cash Award Value: 8,000 U.S. Dollar
This prize is shared with other categories.

Best Horror Feature and Feature
The winning Horror feature and Feature screenplays will receive $2,500 in legal services from Pierce Law Group, LLP
Sponsor:Pierce Law Group, LLP
Value of Goods/Services: 2,500 U.S. Dollar

Category Rules


September 17th, 2018 - Announce Quarter-Finalists - in no particular order
September 24th, 2018 - Announce Semi-Finalists - In no particular order
October 1st, 2018 - Announce Top 12 scripts - In no particular order
October 11th, 2018 - WGAW Party for Finalists - Announce Winners


By entering Slamdance Screenplay Competition, you agree to follow its rules and guidelines.


- Scripts submitted to the competition must NOT have been previously optioned, purchased or produced at the time of entry.
- If a submitted screenplay becomes optioned or purchased between the time of submission and the end of the judging period, the applicant must notify us and that screenplay will no longer be eligible for an award.
- Scripts submitted to the competition must not have received awards from other competitions over $1,000 at the time of entry.
- Screenwriters who have had previous feature screenplays produced and distributed by non-independent means are ineligible.
- Screenwriters who earn their living writing for television are ineligible.
- No adaptations of other written work will be accepted unless the writer owns the rights to the original material, unless the udapted work is in the Public Domain.
- No specs will be accepted for the TV Pilot category.

Submission Guidelines

- Screenplays must be in English, formatted according to the current industry standards in 12-point courier font.
- Screenplays must have a clean cover page. This means the title only on the cover, no author’s name/contact information.
- If the script is based on a true story, that should be noted on the title page.
- Slamdance is not responsible for screenplays or coverage stolen or lost in transit.
- All entries must be mailed or uploaded by the appropriate deadline.
- No refunds.


- The first round of reading is done by individual readers. If your script is advanced to the next round, the script will be read and scored by multiple readers to determine whether it gets into quarterfinals and semifinals.
- If your script makes it to semifinals, it will be discussed at the deliberations where readers will determine finalists and winners.
- If your script did not make it into quarterfinals, it will not advance to further stages of the competition.
- No judging decision will be included with the feedback.
- Slamdance notifies winners only. Entrants are advised to check our website and e-newsletter for judging announcements.
- The Slamdance Screenplay Competition readers’ decisions are final.
- Multiple authorship is acceptable. Slamdance divides awards equally among co-writers.


To protect your script, we strongly suggest you register your work with the Writers Guild of America, West (www.wga.org or call 323.782.4500) and the US Copyright Office (http://www.copyright.gov).


A total of $16,000 in cash prizes will be awarded to the winners this year.

The Grand Prize winner will receive $8,000 in cash.

The winners of the Feature, Horror, TV Pilot, and Short categories will receive $2,000 in cash, each.

The top three screenwriters in each category will receive prize packages that include Festival Passes good for all screenings and parties at the Slamdance Film Festival in Park City, Utah (January 2019)

The top three screenwriters in the Feature and Horror category are eligible for membership in the Writers Guild of America’s Independent Writers Caucus.

The winning Horror feature and Feature screenplays will receive $2,500 in legal services from Pierce Law Group, LLP

The top three screenwriters in each category will receive merchandise from the Slamdance SHOP
(T-shirts, beanies, etc.).

The top three screenwriters in each category will be included in the 2018 Slamdance Film Festival program which is distributed to industry professionals in Park City and year round.

Production companies, studios, top agencies and managers request to read our top scripts.


Everyone who submits a screenplay to Slamdance will receive concise online feedback from our Readers. The object of our Feedback Service is to provide you with constructive criticism about your work. The feedback includes a logline, genre suggestion and a small paragraph outlining the strengths and weaknesses of your screenplay. The Feedback is very brief and basic compared to the extensive notes provided with our Coverage Service, which is available for an additional fee.


The object of Slamdance Coverage is to provide you with extensive constructive criticism about your work. Coverage includes a brief plot synopsis and then offers an in-depth analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of your screenplay. Coverage also offers the screenwriter some recommendation as to what "the next step" could be with their screenplay and writing. This may address media, films and screenplays, production companies and agencies the writer should be aware of, as well as any words of wisdom from one of our Readers. Slamdance Coverage provides you with an insight into the mind of a Reader who reads hundreds of independent screenplays each year. Our Readers' goal is to assist you in crafting your submission into something that can advance in competition and impress agents, managers and producers. The Standard Coverage will be available within two months from the time you submit your work.


If you are on a deadline and need coverage ASAP, Slamdance Express Coverage will help! It will be available within 21 days from the time you submit.


If you like the coverage you received and want more insight, reach out to our readers directly through the Screenplay Clinic.
Whether you’re writing the first draft of your first script or are a seasoned scribe in need of fresh eyes, Slamdance Screenplay Clinic can help you. Our readers Heidi Hornbacher and Noel Lawrence will give your story the attention it deserves.

As a service separate from the screenplay competition, the Screenplay Clinic gives writers a chance to receive extended written feedback followed by an in-person discussion about strengths, weaknesses, and methods for improving your script.

For more details please visit the Screenplay Clinic page here: http://bit.ly/2svB0Gk


Slamdance Readers are industry professionals and all have a combination of the following qualifications: professional coverage background, production and development background, and/or are professional writers, Slamdance alumni, playwrights and journalists. Readers’ Competition decisions are final.


Q: What is script registration, and why is it mandatory?
A: Slamdance only wants to look at copyrighted material. All writers should be concerned with protecting their work. Copyrighting can be as easy as sending yourself a copy in a sealed envelop, and as all-inclusive as registering with the WGA. We accept all forms of registration and copywriting.

Q: Should I include a title page?

A: Cover pages are optional. If you decide to use one, it would ideally include just a title and WGA registration number. The cover page does not count towards the overall script page count.

Q: Can I enter the same script two years in a row?

A: We encourage screenwriters to resubmit, but we also want you to use our coverage service and edit your script. Your script should be as tight as possible before you resubmit.

Q: What kind of scripts are you looking for? If my screenplay is very unconventional or experimental will it be overlooked?

A: We are always looking for outrageous scripts! Look at the top ten from the past ten years; we have awarded everything from epic period pieces to low-budget indie gems.

Q: Is there an age requirement to submit to Slamdance?

A: No! You can submit if you're 10 or 110 years old. We at Slamdance are not ageist and encourage work from a variety of age groups.

Q: Can I also enter other competitions?

A: Definitely. We encourage you to get your script into the hands of as many people as possible. Because we are for first-time writers only, we are a good competition to start with. There is a section of the FAQ below, dedicated to competitions we endorse.

Q: Does Slamdance sell or trade e-mail lists?

A: No, we do not. Please include your e-mail because we contact quarter-finalists and semi-finalists by e-mail before the official announcement. You have the option to stay off of our e-mail list and will not be contacted after the competition is over.

Q: Do you accept adaptations?

A: Yes. Generally you must own or acquire permission to the rights to another person's work before you can sell it. There are a few exceptions, such as 'Public Domain' (you have to look into the legalities of this).

Q: What format/font should I use?

A: Stick with Courier 12 point. This is industry standard, and every script you write should be in this format.

Q: My script is really, really long - at least 200 pages. Bigger is better, right?

A: No. Feature length screenplays should be between 40 and 120 pages; short screenplays up to 40 pages (and please number the pages). Feature/Horror scripts between 120 and 150 pages will be charged extra in the submission fees. Short scripts between 11 and 40 pages will be charged extra in the submission fees. EDIT. Edit for grammar, exposition and excess. While there are a few exceptions, scripts should be as tightly edited as possible. Screenplays over 150 pages will be disqualified from the writing competition.

Q: What if my check bounces?

A: Checks returned to us for whatever reason will incur a standard $25 fee on top of the original entry. It may take up to a week for your check to be deposited (depending on when it arrives in the office), so keep that in mind.

Q: Can I call to check if my script has arrived yet?

A: No. Please do not call the Slamdance office to check if your script has arrived. You can check your Withoutabox submission status, as soon as it's received this will change to "In Consideration"

TV Pilot Questions:

Q: What is the difference between an original pilot and a “spec” script?

A: An original pilot is the first episode of an original series or the first hour-length episode of a miniseries. A “spec” script is written for existing shows.

Q: Do you accept “spec” scripts?

A: No. We will only accept original pilots for this year’s competition.

Q: When you say to submit additional story ideas with subplots and resolutions, are you looking for any particular length? Or any particular number of them?

A: You can include as many additional storylines as you like, and the descriptions should be short, no longer than 10 lines. Just make sure the supplementary materials you submit with your teleplay does not exceed 5 pages.

Short Questions:

Q: Who is looking for shorts at Slamdance?

A: Slamdance is a great place to submit short scripts because our festival screens roughly 40 short films a year, and those filmmakers are always on the lookout for new projects.

Q: What are the page requirements for a short screenplay?

A: Short screenplays can be as short as five pages, and as long as 40 pages. We accept all short screenplays that fall between these page requirements. Please note different payments apply for scripts between 1 and 10 pages and scripts between 11 and 40 pages.

Coverage Questions:

Q: What is coverage?

A: Coverage is written feedback that is a blunt, honest reaction from a reader that reads hundreds of scripts a year and wants to help you avoid the common pitfalls of screenwriting. The aim of every piece of coverage is to constructively help you develop your script into a final draft.

Q: Who are your readers?

A: Our readers are comprised of Slamdance alumni, past winners, filmmakers, journalists, playwrights, screenwriters and other writing professionals, some of whom also do development coverage for major studios.

Q: What is the advantage of submitting early?

A: Check out the deadlines. The sooner you submit, the sooner you will receive your coverage. The coverage will not indicate if your script has moved on, but it will give you a sense early on, of the scripts strengths and weaknesses (in the eyes of one reader). And, it's cheaper to submit early, the submission fees increase with each deadline.

Q: What if I am extremely unhappy with the coverage I receive?

A: Please let us know by e-mailing submissions@slamdance.com. We will review the coverage, and work with you to solve the problem. In most cases that means getting someone else to read it at a discounted price (there are no refunds).

Q: How long should I wait until I call about missing coverage?

A: Two weeks. If there is a delay, we will let you know ahead of time. Except when you request rushed coverage. In those cases e-mail submissions@slamdance.com right away.

Q: What should I do if I get the wrong coverage?

A: Please e-mail submissions@slamdance.com right away.

Q: Am I able to contract the reader who did my coverage?

A: Yes. Please e-mail submissions@slamdance.com. We will forward your message on to the reader, and they will respond directly to you.

If you have any problems while submitting, or any questions about the submission process just e-mail submissions@slamdance.com or call our offices: 323-466-1786