49th Annual

Nashville Film Festival Screenwriting Competition

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161 Rains Avenue
Nashville TN 37203
Phone: 615-742-2500

CLOSED FOR THE SEASON • Information may be outdated. Add this event to your Watch List and set a Remind-Me if you want to be notified when the next Call For Entries is posted.

Drama Feature Screenplay
Drama Short Screenplay
Comedy Feature Screenplay
Comedy Short Screenplay
Music Inspired Feature Screenplay
Action/Adventure Feature Screenplay
Family/Animation Feature Screenplay
Historical Feature Screenplay
Science Fiction Feature Screenplay
Thriller/Horror Feature Screenplay
60 Minute Pilot
30 Minute Pilot
Young Screenwriter Short Screenplay
A screenwriting category for those creatives 18 and under.
Inspirational Feature Screenplay
Tennessee Feature Screenplay
Entrant must be a resident of the State of Tennessee and provide proof by emailing a scan of a driver's license or state ID to screenwriting@nashfilm.org.
Tennessee Short Screenplay
Entrant must be a resident of the State of Tennessee and provide proof by emailing a scan of a driver's license or state ID to screenwriting@nashfilm.org.
Thriller/Horror - Short Screenplay
Other Genre - Short Screenplay
This category is for short screenplays that don't quite fit into Comedy, Drama, or Horror/Thriller. So, if your short is for Animation, Westerns, Historical/Biographical or just about any other genre - enter it here.


The Nashville Film Festival (NashFilm) Screenwriting Competition runs through midnight January 12, 2018. It is an international competition, welcoming screenwriters from around the world to compete in all categories, except the Tennessee Screenwriter Category, which is reserved for in-state writers. The awards presentation will be held at the
49th Nashville Film Festival, May 10 - 19, 2018..


Founded in 1969 as the Sinking Creek Film Festival, the Nashville Film Festival (NashFilm) is one of the longest-running film festivals in the country and one of the most acclaimed festivals in the South. For years, film-goers and filmmakers alike have come to experience the big city festival atmosphere and the laid-back Southern hospitality here in Music City. In the last few years, NashFilm has expanded to include several new competitions, including an Episodic Competition, Song Competition, and the reason you are here…. The Screenwriting Competition!

The Screenwriting Competition is entering its 5th year and has been met with great enthusiasm by our festival-goers and emerging screenwriters. Last year, we received over 1300 entries and awarded nearly $50,000 worth of cash and and in-kind prizes, and got to know some amazing screenwriters from all over the world. We’re positive that with your help, the 2018 Screenwriting Competition will be our best one yet!


Robin Robinson (Competitions Coordinator)



1. Original Content: All entries submitted to the Nashville Film Festival (NashFilm) Screenwriting Competition must be original works by the applicant.

2. Submissions: Submissions must be made online. No mailed or emailed entries are accepted. NashFilm does not allow changes to the categories after submission. All submissions are final, and NashFilm does not issue refunds. Each submission will be sent a confirmation email once payment is processed.

3. Formatting: Screenplays must be formatted according to industry standards. Pages must be numbered and typed in 12 point Courier font. All entries must be submitted in English. Include title only on title page. The author’s name should NOT appear on the title page or anywhere on the script, to preserve anonymity and fairness. MovieMagic Screenwriter, Final Draft, and Celtx are suggested programs.

4. Length:
• Feature Scripts: 40 – 130 pages
• Short Scripts: 1 - 40 pages
• Teleplay (30 minute pilot): 1 - 30 pages
• Teleplay (60 minute pilot): 31- 60 pages

5. Revisions: NashFilm considers all entries to be complete. You may send in revisions after the screenplay or teleplay has been submitted, but the revised copy will only be used going forward. Any scoring already complete will remain the same, based on the
original submission. In addition, we will not accept a script for a feature that is under 40
pages with a notice: “to be continued.”

6. Ineligibility: The NashFilm Screenwriting Competition does not accept novels, short stories, stage plays, treatments, synopses, reality show concepts, scripts for existing TV
series, or works that are not original. Scripts also must not have been sold or currently
be under option prior to 4/20/17. NashFilm employees, including seasonal staff, board
members, sponsors, and their immediate families, are not eligible to submit in any category.

7. Judging: Scripts will be judged numerically on 10 different criteria (including, but not limited to, structure, premise, and entertainment value.) Awards, selections, and decisions of NashFilm are final.

8. Winner Notification: Semi-finalists and finalists will be notified by late March. Winners in each category will be announced at the Screenwriting Competition Awards Ceremony during the festival in May 2018.

9. Co-Authors: If a screenplay has more than one author, it is up to the authors to decide how many authors to list on the application and who will be the primary contact e-mail. Awards are given per entry, not per author. Therefore, groups of authors associated with one entry are responsible for the division of awards, including laminates. NashFilm does not assume responsibility for arrangements with regard to laminate or cash divisions.

10. Young Screenwriters Category: To enter, applicant must be 18 or under on April 20, 2018. Young screenwriters are subject to all NashFilm Competition Rules.

11. Tennessee Category: The writer must have been born in Tennessee, or currently reside in Tennessee. The entrant is responsible for the authenticity of this claim and any
inquiry regarding that authenticity. You may be asked to provide proof of residence at any point during the duration of the contest.

12. Copyright: All entrants are encouraged to register their screenplays with the Writers’ Guild of America, East or West: www.wgaeast.org/script_registration, or www.wga.org/registration/index.html, and with the U.S. Copyright Office.


By submitting my screenplay to the Nashville Film Festival, I:

1. Recognize that NashFilm, its representatives and files are replete with ideas and
stories for theatrical motion pictures and television programs and that new ideas for motion pictures and television programs are constantly being submitted to NashFilm. I also recognize that many stories and ideas are similar and often different stories and ideas related to one or more common underlying themes.

2. I agree to indemnify NashFilm and its representatives, including its judges and readers, against any and all claims, expenses, losses or liabilities that may be asserted against NashFilm and its representatives at any time in connection with said Material, or any use thereof, including without limitation those arising from any breach of the warranties and promises given by me herein.

3. I hereby release and discharge NashFilm and its representatives, including judges and readers, from any and all claims and demands and will not assert, maintain, or assist
any party in asserting or maintaining any claims or demands against NashFilm arising out of, or in connection with the Materials, including without limitation, any and all claims for libel, rights of publicity, theft, or misappropriation of ideas or trade secrets or infringement of copyright or other intellectual property rights.

4. I warrant I am the sole owner and author of the Material submitted.

5. I agree that any part of the submitted Material which is not novel or original and not legally protected may be used by NashFilm without any liability on NashFilm.

6. NashFilm shall not be under any obligation to me with respect to the submitted material except as may later be set forth in a fully executed written agreement between us.

7. I have retained a copy of the Material and agree that NashFilm shall not be obligated to return the Material to me.

8. I acknowledge that NashFilm is under no obligation to use the Material in any manner. I warrant it is original to me and that I am the author and owner of the Material.