|Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences||Writing||Fellowship||Worldwide||Worldwide|
Each year, the Academy Nicholl screenwriting competition awards up to five $35,000 fellowships to amateur screenwriters. To enter, submit a feature length screenplay and entry fee via the online application when the competition is open for submissions. Fellowship winners are invited to participate in awards week ceremonies and seminars and expected to complete at least one original feature film screenplay during the Fellowship year.
Screenwriters who have not earned more than $25,000 writing fictional work for film or television.
Entry scripts must be the original work of one writer, or of two writers who collaborated equally, and must be written originally in English. Adaptations and translated scripts are not eligible.
There are three deadlines for 2020: early is March 6 ($48 entry fee), regular is April 9 ($63 entry fee), and late is May 1 ($88 entry fee). The online application form must be completed and a PDF version of the script uploaded by 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time on May 1.
Full-time students at an accredited college/university are eligible for a discount on their entry fee in 2020. Indicate your status in the demographic section of your online application. The discount will be offered in the payment section.
Up to five $35,000 fellowships are awarded each year to promising new screenwriters. From the program’s inception in 1986 through 2019, $4.58 million has been awarded to 176 writers.
Up to five fellows in the Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting competition will be invited to participate in awards week ceremonies and seminars in November.
Fellowship recipients will be expected to complete at least one original feature film screenplay during the fellowship year.
Fellowship payments will be made quarterly subject to satisfactory progress of the recipient’s work, as judged by the Academy Nicholl Fellowships Committee.
The Academy reserves the right to grant no awards if, in the opinion of the Academy Nicholl Fellowships Committee, no entry is of sufficient merit.
- Original feature film screenplay (no shorter than 70 pages and no longer than 160 pages) in PDF format only
- Completed online application form
- Early entry fee of US$48 (by 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time on March 6) or regular deadline entry fee of US$63 (by 11:59 p.m. PT on April 9) or late deadline entry fee of US$88 (by 11:59 p.m. PT on May 1).
Register and Apply
Writers may create an online account at the Nicholl website at any time. When the competition opens each year, they should use that account to enter, following the links to the Log In page. The Nicholl website allows entrants to fill out the required online application form, submit a PDF version of their script and pay the entry fee with a credit or debit card. It also allows entrants to confirm receipt of their entry and to update their contact information at any time during the competition.
Only online applications will be accepted.
An entrant may submit a maximum of three scripts in the current competition.
Script should be no shorter than 70 pages and no longer than 160 pages. The recommended length is 80 to 125 pages.
Writers must create an account at the Nicholl website to enter the competition. PDF scripts must be uploaded and all other requirements met no later than 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time on May 1, 2020.
The entry fee must be paid online via credit card or debit card.
7,302 entries were received in 2019. All scripts are read at least twice in the competition. About 15 percent are read a third time. About 5 percent of entries advance to the competition quarterfinals, about 2 percent advance to the semifinals and about 10-15 entries reach the finals.