- Team SWA
- 26 February 2023
SWA SCRIPT LAB & PITCH FEST 2023
SWA SCRIPT LAB & PITCH FEST 2023
SWA SCRIPT LAB 2023 - TERMS & CONDITIONS
In order to apply to SWA Script Lab and Pitch Fest 2023, it is mandatory to abide by these terms and conditions.
ABOUT SWA SCRIPT LAB & PITCH FEST 2023
- The Screenwriters Association of India (SWA) is an association of screenwriters and lyricists. It is our continuous effort to encourage and educate emerging writers and help them to improve their craft.
- As a part of this endeavour, SWA conducted its first Script Lab in 2022. Six feature length scripts were selected from 601 entries to receive mentorship from professionals reputed for their work in the film industry. Each of the six finalists had one-on-one sessions with four out of six mentors. The mentors who helped the finalists with notes and feedback were Abhishek Choubey, Alankrita Shrivastava, Shakun Batra, Smita Singh, Sudip Sharma, and Vikramaditya Motwane.
- To add to this, 25 applicants were selected for a special event in which each one of them got a chance to pitch their films to as many as 20 producers, studio executives, and talent agencies from the industry.
- Following the phenomenal success of the Script Lab and the Pitch Fest in 2022, SWA now announces the next edition of both events, this time for Series (for OTT platforms).
- At SWA Script Lab 2023, screenwriters will be encouraged to submit their Series (Pitch Deck and Pilot episode screenplay). Up to six (6) finalists (subject to change at the absolute discretion of SWA) will be shortlisted after two rounds of selection (details below) for one-on-one feedback sessions with our mentors. Our endeavour with the Script Lab is to help the writers understand the scope of improvement in their own script/writing with these sessions, while also presenting them an opportunity to connect with these mentors.
- At SWA Pitch Fest 2023, up to twenty five (25) finalists (subject to change at the absolute discretion of SWA) will get an opportunity to pitch their Series to producers, studios and agents during an exclusive event organized by SWA. Once selected for the Pitch Fest, the writers will also receive a workshop to help them prepare for the event. Our endeavour with the Pitch Fest is to help the writers connect with industry professionals.
- Only those entries that have been applied for Script Lab 2023 will be eligible for consideration for Pitch Fest 2023.
- The participant must be an Indian citizen OR an NRI.
- The applicant must be at least 18 years of age on the date of application.
- Scripts of only Series shall be considered for evaluation. No feature film or short film script will be eligible for the contest. Also, anthology series, where every episode is an independent story, will not be eligible.
- For a series to be eligible for consideration, it must have a minimum of five (5) episodes and a maximum of twenty (20). The duration of the episodes can be anywhere between eighteen (18) and sixty (60) minutes. At this stage, however, we do not expect the writer to have written all these episodes. The details of submission requirements are given below.
- ALL SWA members and non-members are welcome to apply.
- Only scripts registered with a valid authority, such as SWA, WGA, or Copyright Office will be eligible for submission.
STAGE 1: Your application must include the following in English or Hindi. (In case you write in any other language, kindly translate your work to English or Hindi before submission.) The last date to submit is March 1, 2023. All submissions should be made online through the Google Form link mentioned below.
- A brief ‘Pitch Deck’ that must include (in a single PDF document):
- A series logline in not more than 40 words.
- A 500-word description of the world in which your story is set. It must include the location, the time, as well as the socio-political and cultural milieu of your story and your connection with / experience of the same, if applicable.
- Brief character descriptions of the primary characters (not more than eight) in your series along with their character arcs for Season One. Word limit: 200 words per character.
- A 500-word synopsis of the first season of your series. It must include the beginning, the middle, and the end of the first season.
- A 500-word synopsis of the pilot episode. It must include the beginning, the middle, and the end of the first episode.
- A short overview of the second season. Word limit: 300 words.
- A short bio about you and the co-writer, if any, in not more than 150 words per writer. (Note that only up to two (2) writers per project can participate regardless of how many writers have worked on the project).
- An undertaking by the participant, agreeing to the terms and conditions of the Script Lab and the Pitch Fest. At the time of making your submission, we will share a copy of the undertaking with you that you will be required to sign and send a scanned copy back to us.
- Apart from these documents, you also need to submit the first ten pages of your pilot screenplay (with dialogue) based on the following specifications:
- Fully formatted PDF document, registered with any valid authority such as SWA, WGA, or the Copyright Office.
- The script must be typed out. Handwritten and/or scanned scripts will be ineligible.
- The submission must be in Courier Font, Size 12 (formatted as per industry standards.)
- DO NOT submit your full-length screenplay at this stage. Only the first ten pages of the screenplay need to be submitted.
Important: For the sake of anonymity, none of your documents, except the bio, should bear your name or any other personal information. Each page of all your documents must only bear the registration number (reference number/transaction id in case of SWA) in the footer, along with the date of registration.
Here's how to do it.
1. Get your Pitch Deck and first ten pages of pilot episode script registered separately.
2. Note down the transaction ID/reference number from the registration certificates.
3. Make new PDFs of your Pitch Deck and first ten pages of pilot episode mentioning the respective transaction ID/reference number and the date of registratuon in the footer.
4. Make sure that these two documents do not bear your name anywhere before submitting.
5. Visit the Google form https://forms.gle/iaB2aMn8kCB7Mm3eA and submit your entry.
STAGE 2: If you are shortlisted for this stage, you will be informed of the same latest by 15th April, 2023. You will then be required to submit the following documents by 31st May, 2023.
- Your pilot screenplay (with dialogue). It can be anywhere between 18 and 60 pages in length (formatted as per industry standards).
- Brief outlines of all episodes of the first season. The season should have a minimum of five and a maximum of twenty episodes. Word limit: 300 words per episode.
- Do not submit any other document such as your research work for the script, casting preferences etc. Make your submission strictly as per the requirements mentioned above.
- You may attach reference pictures, sketches, illustrations to your document, if you think it improves your pitch.
- To register yourself as an SWA member please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
OTHER IMPORTANT CRITERIA:
- If you have an ongoing case at SWA’s Dispute Settlement Committee or any other authority including the Court of Law regarding copyright infringement claims on a script, you will not be eligible to participate with that particular script.
- Multiple entries are allowed, given that each entry is submitted using a separate form and fee.
- Scripts in all genres will be eligible.
- If you have submitted your entry to any other script lab that legally forbids you to submit the script to any other competition or lab, please do not apply with that script.
- We expect a large number of submissions and hence will not be in a position to give any reason for the non-selection of an entry.
- Allocation of mentors will be at the discretion of SWA.
- There will be no cash prize.
- Failure to submit the full script after selection, or failure to attend the Script Lab/ Pitch Fest after being adjudged among the winning scripts may result in barring the participant from the next three editions of SWA Script Lab and Pitch Fest, unless the writer has a valid reason, and has officially been excused (in writing) by SWA well in advance.
- The six finalists of the Script Lab must ensure that in case their script is produced for the screen in any form, SWA will receive due credit as “Script Mentored at SWA Script Lab 2023”. This credit will be accompanied with the SWA logo. The winner shall sign the contract with the producers capturing this term.
- The twenty-five finalists of the Pitch Fest must ensure that in case their script is produced for the screen in any form, SWA will receive due credit as “Script Selected at SWA Pitch Fest 2023”. This credit will be accompanied with the SWA logo. The winner shall sign the contract with the producers capturing this term.
- Last Date for Submission: 1st March 2023
- Declaration of 30 shortlisted entries: 15th April 2023
- Last Date of Submission for the Final Round: 31st May 2023
- Script Lab mentorship program commencement: August 2023
- Pitch Fest: September 2023
The deadlines may change at the discretion of SWA.
SUBMISSION ENTRY FEE:
INR 1000/- inclusive of GST for applications submitted on or before 1st March 2023, 11:59 PM IST.
Click here to submit your entry
PARTICIPANTS’ REPRESENTATIONS, WARRANTIES & INDEMNITIES
- The Participant represents and affirms that the Participant is at least 18 years of age as of the date of submitting the Submission and has read and understood the entire content of the Terms and accepts the same. The Participant is fully able and competent to enter into the terms, conditions, obligations, affirmations, representations, and warranties set out herein, and to abide by and comply with the same.
- The Participant represents and undertakes that works forming part of the Submission are submitted to the Script Lab and Pitch Fest and is original and does not violate any statutory rights, common law rights, third party rights, title or interest, including but not limited to intellectual property rights including copyright, proprietary rights, or any other rights of any person or entity.
- The Participant represents and undertakes that the Submission has been submitted for the Script Lab and Pitch Fest on a voluntary and confidential basis.
- The Participant represents and undertakes that the Submission does not contain any confidential information relating to any third party.
- The Participant agrees and confirms that SWA and/or the organizers of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest receive numerous entries from different participants during Script Lab and Pitch Fest and other events that SWA may organize. Further, the organizers of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest being creators themselves, professionally create several literary and dramatic works. These materials are independently made without referring to the Submission (“Independent Materials”). These Independent Materials may have incidental/generic or idea-level similarities with the Submission. Such similarities shall not obligate SWA and/or the organizers of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest to the Participant in any manner whatsoever. Provided, SWA and/or the organizers of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest have independently developed or legally obtained/accessed the same either from any third party heretofore or hereafter autonomously or exclusively from sources other than the Participant. Further, if the Submission or part thereof is in the public domain and/or does not constitute protectable property and/or is not original, the Participant shall not have any claim if SWA and/or the organizers of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest are associated with a similar subject material at any time.
- Nothing contained herein or otherwise, imposes an obligation on SWA, to accept or utilize the Submission or part thereof and SWA reserves the right to accept or reject the Submission or part thereof at its sole discretion.
- Submitting the Submission and/or participation in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest does not entitle the Participant to receive any compensation, monetary or otherwise from SWA under any circumstances whatsoever.
- The Participant represents and undertakes that the Submission is not in violation of any applicable laws and the Participant shall ensure full compliance with applicable laws and regulations throughout the process of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest.
- The Participant has complete authority and right to submit the Submission for the Script Lab and Pitch Fest as per the Terms, is not under any disability preventing the Participant from participating in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest or submitting the Submission, and is not bound by any other agreement (whether executed prior to or during the participation in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest) which adversely affects the Participant’s participation in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest. The Participant has not granted any right, title or interest in the Submission or any part thereof, to any third party and the Submission is free of any charges, liens, or other encumbrances.
- By participating in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, the Participant agrees and confirms that in the event the Participant has co-authored the Submission with any other writer(s), such co-author(s) shall also be equally bound by all the Terms contained herein.
- The Participant represents and undertakes that the Participant has not submitted the Submission to any other script lab or screenwriting competition which forbids the submission of the Submission to the Script Lab and Pitch Fest or any other script lab or screenwriting competition.
- The Participant shall not behave in such a manner as to prejudice the reputation of SWA or restrict/prevent the successful completion of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest.
- The Participant agrees and confirms that the Participant does not have any ongoing dispute pertaining to the Submission with the Dispute Settlement Committee (DSC) of SWA or before any other authority, including any action, claim or proceedings pertaining to the Submission before any court of law. The Participant agrees and accepts that if the Participant shall not be eligible to participate in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest with the Submission in such case.
- The Participant agrees and confirms that the Submission or any part thereof does not violate the statutory rights of, or the right of privacy, or constitute a libel or slander against any person, firm, corporation, association or entity whatsoever, or violate any other rights not herein specifically enumerated. The Participant further represents and confirms that the Submission or any part thereof is not defamatory or constitute contempt of court or breach of contract, or breach of any provision of statute, nor hurt the sentiments of religious groups.
- By participating in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, the Participant takes full responsibility of the pitching done to the prospective producer and fully releases SWA of any liability or claim in relation to the use of their work or any such partly similar idea or material or portion of the work, by the Prospective Producer, or any third party, in any of their future projects.
- By participating in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, the participant agrees to share the complete work with the prospective producer on their sole discretion and will be free to approach the Prospective Producer independently with the work, after the completion of the Script Lab & Pitch Fest.
- Upon selection, the participant agrees to take care of all travel, boarding or lodging costs to attend the Script Lab & Pitch Fest.
- The participant agrees to pitch only the script/s shortlisted during the process of Script Lab.
- The participant agrees to follow all rules/regulations of the event and to also strictly adhere to any/all instructions of the Pitch Fest officials/organizers, at all times.
- The participant agrees that the meeting with the prospective Producer will be subject to Prospective Producer(s) availability & time constraint.
- The participant agrees to sign the ‘Standard Release Form’ with all the relevant documents including synopsis before pitching the script to the Prospective Producers during the Pitch Fest.
- By participating in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, the Participant agrees to release and hold harmless SWA, as well as its employees, representatives, committee members, organizers of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, mentors and panel of evaluators of the Submission (collectively, the “Released Parties”) from and against any and all losses, damages, rights, claims and actions arising out of participation in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest.
- By participating, in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, the Participant agrees to grant to SWA, its employees, representatives, committee members, organizers of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest as well as mentors and panel of evaluators of the Submission, the right to use the Participant’s name, likeness, image, photograph, voice, performance, signature, and/or biographical data, in any media, manner, technology or content delivery mechanism now known or hereinafter devised, for any purpose, including, without limitation, in connection with the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, its administration, judging and evaluating the Submission, advertising and/or publicity of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, without the necessity of further consent or additional consideration.
- SWA reserves the sole right to refuse evaluation and/or selection of the Submission in the event of a Participant’s fraud, dishonesty or non-entitlement to participate in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest under these Terms.
- SWA and/or its committee members, employees, representatives and the organizers of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest shall not be responsible for any loss of the Submission due to any technical problems for such Submissions received after the deadline as a consequence of computer service delays, interruptions, electronic failures or overloads, or for lost, misdirected or misplaced Submission. SWA reserves the right to its sole discretion to change the platform and /or the mechanism or deadline of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest and/or to cease acceptance of Submission, in any manner it may deem fit and necessary. The Submission shall be deemed void if unreadable, inaccurate, incomplete, damaged, tampered with, falsified, mechanically reproduced, not in prescribed format, irregular in any way or otherwise not in compliance with these Terms. SWA and/or its committee members, employees, representatives and the organizers of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest shall not be responsible for any lost, late or misdirected computer transmission or network, electronic failures of any kind or any failure to receive the Submission owing to transmission failures or due to any technical reasons.
- By participating in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, each Participant agrees to follow these Terms and is deemed bound by any decisions made by SWA in its sole discretion, including any interpretations of the Terms.
- The Participant agrees that the information provided by the Participant may be used by SWA for internal purposes and to send in the future to the Participant any promotional information pertaining to the future activities undertaken by SWA. In the event the Participant wishes not to receive such future communications, the Participant can opt-out of the same by writing to SWA on the same email ID from which he/she receives such promotional information.
- SWA shall keep all the personal data collected from the Participant confidential. SWA shall ensure that the Participant is contacted by SWA directly and SWA shall not share the Participant’s personal data so collected, with any party, save and except for the purpose of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest. The Participant hereby consents to the collection, storage, use, disclosure, transfer, of the Participant’s personal data which may be collected by SWA for the purposes of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest. The Participant hereby agrees and acknowledges that the collection, storage, use, disclosure, transfer, of Participant’s personal data by SWA is for a lawful purpose and is necessary for facilitating the Participant’s participation in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest.
- SWA has the right to amend (add, delete or modify) the Terms governing the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, prospectively or retrospectively, at its discretion and without prior notice.
- SWA reserves the right to disqualify any Participant if it has reasonable grounds to believe that the Participant has breached any of these Terms.
- Under no circumstance, unless due to wilful misconduct or gross negligence, shall SWA and/or its employees, representatives, committee members, organizers of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest as well as mentors and panel of evaluators of the Submission be liable to the Participant and/or any third party for any lost profits or lost opportunity, indirect, special, consequential, incidental, or punitive damages whatsoever. Without prejudice to the aforesaid, SWA’s liability, arising whether out of contract, law, tort or otherwise shall be limited to INR 1000/- only. The Participant specifically waives any right to seek injunctive relief against SWA as well as its employees, representatives, committee members, organizers of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, mentors and panel of evaluators of the Submission to the maximum extent permitted by law.
- SWA reserves the right to withdraw or discontinue and/or terminate the Script Lab and Pitch Fest at any stage without prior notice and without any liability whatsoever to the Participant.
- Your participation in the Script Lab and Pitch Fest by way of submitting the Submission will be deemed as an acceptance of the Terms herein.
- Nothing contained herein shall be deemed to create a partnership, joint venture, agency, or an employer-employee relationship between the Participant and SWA.
- Any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with the Script Lab and Pitch Fest, as well as these Terms or their subject matter, validity, termination or enforceability (including non-contractual disputes or claims) shall be governed by and construed in accordance with Indian law and the courts in Mumbai, Maharashtra shall have exclusive jurisdiction.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQS)
- I am not a member of SWA. Can I participate in SWA Script Lab and Pitch Fest?
- Ans. Yes, you can.
- My SWA membership has expired. Can I apply for the Script Lab and Pitch Fest?
- Ans. Yes, you can.
- My script has an ongoing case under SWA’s Dispute Settlement Committee or any Court of Law. Will I be eligible to participate?
- Ans. In case you have an ongoing case at SWA’s DSC or any Court of Law for a copyright infringement claim, you will not be eligible to participate with that particular script/impugned Script. However, if you wish to participate with any other script, you are welcome to apply.
- Can I submit multiple entries?
- Ans. Yes, you may submit multiple entries but you will have to submit a separate form and fee for each entry. However, we encourage you to submit your best work according to you.
- Will my script be produced by SWA after selection?
- Ans. No. SWA is a trade union for screenwriters & lyricists and SWA Script Lab and Pitch Fest is an initiative to help writers. Production of films is not a part of this initiative.
- Do I need to submit references or recommendations by people from the Industry?
- Ans. No. The selection is based on the quality of the script only.
- Is the Script Lab and Pitch Fest genre-specific?
- Ans. SWA Script Lab and Pitch Fest is open to all genres. The finalists will be selected irrespective of genre.
- Can I submit my script for a feature film, short film, TV series or any other format?
- Ans. No. SWA Script Lab and Pitch Fest 2023 is exclusively for Series for OTT platforms. Scripts for any other format will not be accepted.
- Can I submit my script in any other regional language?
- Ans. No. The scripts must be written in English or Hindi. In case your script is in any other language, please translate them to English or Hindi before submission.
- How will I be intimated about my selection?
- Ans. Whether your script is selected or not, you will be intimated about the same. All communication concerning SWA Script Lab and Pitch Fest 2023 will be done through email.
- Is a project written by multiple writers eligible for submission?
- Ans. Yes. A project written by multiple writers can be entered. However, only up to two writers per project will be eligible to attend the Script Lab and Pitch Fest on selection.
- Can I submit a script that has been previously submitted to other Script Labs or Pitch Fests?
- Ans. Yes, you can, unless the labs you have submitted your script to forbid you to do so.
- Can the director of my project attend the Script Lab?
- Ans. No. The Script Lab is designed only for screenwriters. Directors can participate only if they are one of the writers.
- Can I apply if my project is based on a real-life personality?
- Ans. Yes, you can. However, you must have the written consent/relevant agreement of the person and/or family in case of a biopic.
- What if my project is based on a novel/short story/play? Can I still apply?
- Ans. Yes, provided you have the written consent/relevant agreement of the copyright owner in case of a book adaptation.
- If my project is a remake of an existing IP; will I be eligible to apply?
- Ans. Yes, provided you have the written legal consent/relevant agreement of the copyright owner of the original script.
- Will I receive any notes with reasons for my non-selection?
- Ans. Sorry. We won’t be able to send reasons for non-selection as we are expecting a large number of entries.
- When will the Script Lab and Pitch Fest take place?
- Ans. The Script Lab will be conducted in August 2023. The Pitch Fest will be conducted in September 2023. The exact dates will be intimated to the finalists.
- If I am one of the finalists, do I get to choose my mentor?
- Ans. The allocation of the mentors for each finalist will be done at the sole discretion of SWA.
- Will there be any prize money on the final selection?
- Ans. No. There is no cash prize.
- Will there be any penalty for non-submission upon selection or non-attendance of the Script Lab and Pitch Fest?
- Ans. If one fails to submit the script after selection or fails to attend SWA Script Lab or Pitch Fest, he/she may be liable to be barred from the next five Script Labs and Pitch Fests.
- Can I pitch or sell my script to producers/production houses while my project is selected for SWA Script Lab and Pitch Fest?
- Ans. Yes, the work on the project, including rewrites, pitching, sale, pre-production, etc. can continue as scheduled.
In case you have any query that is not already covered in the above FAQs, please feel free to write to us at email@example.com
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