At FiLMLaB, the experiment is you!

Tuesday night. You're in your pajamas, streaming the latest season of MASTER OF NONE. Or GILMORE GIRLS. Or--no judgement--POWER RANGERS: TURBO. About four episodes in, the "Keep Watching" box pops up. If it has been one of those weeks, click the button.

But if you've ever wondered what it is like being on the end of a television show, then this might be your year.

FiLMLaB, Willamette Writers Script to Screen Contest, is heading into its sixth year, and this year we're making some changes.


At FiLMLaB the winner is awarded the ultimate prize: getting their script made into a professional-quality film. But this year, inspired by our desire to see more winners involved in the final product (and by our own Netflix binges), we decided to take the contest to the next level.

This year, FiLMLaB is going to make a pilot for an episodic web series.

Don't know a thing about writing for TV? Don't have an idea for a show? We will help with that. The program will include a "Writing for Television 101" bootcamp, then we'll open for submissions and will select a winner and a writers room.

The winner will get the opportunity to workshop their own webisode concept into a pilot. The runner ups will work together with the winner in a "writer's room" led by a real-life, industry show runner to polish and focus the concept. Together, they will write the final pilot that will be shot by FiLMLaB.

Meet Showrunner F.J. Pratt

F.J. Pratt has been a television comedy writer for twenty-five years, starting on the writing staff for network shows including “Frasier,” which won an Emmy for Outstanding Comedy; “Ellen,” the “coming out” season; and ABC’s “Less Than Perfect.” For three years, he was the Executive Producer/Showrunner of “Sullivan & Son” on TBS. F.J. has developed shows for ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, CW, Dreamworks, Imagine Entertainment, and Disney. For the past five years, F.J. has been an adjunct professor at the John Wells Division of Writing for the Screen & Television at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts, and now F.J. has agreed to lend his talents to become FiLMLaB’s first “showrunner.”

Win and F.J. will coach you to a final product.

Announcing Kickoff Workshop of with Randall Jahnson.

The Kickoff Workshop of will be online and FREE. Spots are limited, so sign up now.


So, go ahead. Watch that next "Shadow Rangers" episode. But if you're ready to bring your own TV vision to life, click here to get involved.

Complete rules and guidelines for FiLMLaB are coming soon. Join us on our Facebook page to stay up-to-date.

From the FiLMLaB Blog

The 2016 FiLMLaB Quarterfinalists Announced

By Ruth Witteried | April 11, 2016

Willamette Writers is pleased to announce the 2016 FiLMLaB Quarterfinalists. These scripts (and writers) have made it through the first round of judging.

FiLMLaB Premier

By Gail Pasternack | March 29, 2016

FiLMLab’s Script­-to-­Screen Contest awards its winners with the production of their script into shorts with the aid of professional directors and actors. With the deadline for the contest coming tonight (Tuesday, March 29, 2016, 11:59 p.m. PT) we’re getting excited about the winner’s premier at the Annual Willamette Writers Conference. The past few years have blown us…

FiLMLaB Podcast Episode 3: Copyright

By Willamette Writers | March 20, 2016

FiLMLaB’s third podcast deals with copyright; a brief discussion with screenwriter Randall Jahnson, WW Visual Media Director Ruth Witteried, and attorney and FiLMLaB co-founder, Stefan Feuerherdt. [soundcloud url=”” params=”color=00cc11&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_artwork=true&visual=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

Willamette Writers Script to Scree FilmLab Open for submissions

The FiLMLaB Experiment 2016

By Ruth Witteried | February 28, 2016

“At FiLMLaB, the experiment is you.” No, really. We mean it. The FiLMLaB experiment 2016 is all about you, the writer, and what happens when you step into the lab. It is not easy being the subject of an experiment. Nor is it any fun having limitations placed on your creativity: seven pages, four characters, and…

FiLMLaB Contest Prompts 2016

By Ruth Witteried | January 11, 2016

If you braved the cold temperatures and came out to the FiLMLaB kickoff Tuesday night at TaborSpace, then you are probably already working on your story ideas for the 2016 short screenplay contest. If not, then read about the short screenplay writing prompts now!

film poster for 2015 FiLMLaB winning script Bug Eyed Bill

Will There Be A Bug Eyed Bill For 2016 FiLMLaB?

By Ruth Witteried | January 4, 2016

We are preparing for the 2016 FilmLab launch this Tuesday, January 5th, at Tabor Space! We’ve had lots of helpful suggestions as to what the contest should look like this year: shorten the page count to just four pages (because seven isn’t hard enough!); have two writing prompts instead of three; utilize the conference theme as…

FiLMLaB Turns Five

By Ruth Witteried | December 7, 2015

Being five is going to be so awesome! We should have a party. With cake. I suggest Tuesday, January 5th. Our regular hangout, The Old Church, is closed for remodeling, so we’ve booked the Copeland Commons room at TaborSpace instead. We’ll still open the doors at 6:30 and get things going at 7:00, which means I will…

2015 FiLMLaB Winner – The Return of Bug Eyed Bill

By Ruth Witteried | October 4, 2015

2015 Winning Script – “The Robbery” (renamed “The Return of Bug-Eyed Bill”) by J. Mark Scarbrough

Bug Eyed Bill Heads To The Portland Film Festival

By Ruth Witteried | August 31, 2015

Just over three weeks ago, THE RETURN OF BUG EYED BILL (our 2015 FiLMLaB winner) debuted at the 46th Annual Willamette Writers Conference to a packed house and an enthusiastic, inquisitive audience eager to see the winning short script and what we and director Mike Parisien had done with it. But if you missed it in…

Bug Eyed Bill Premiers At The WWC

By Ruth Witteried | July 27, 2015

As Willamette Writers heads into the last two weeks of organizing their annual conference, finalizing details for workshops, classes, pitches and celebrations; FiLMLaB, likewise, is putting the final editorial and post-production touches on winner Mark Scarbrough’s short film, The Robbery. Yes, it is a film now, his short script transformed by director Michael Parisien of…