FiLMLaBtv

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.

FILMLABtv Episodic web series

Introducing: FiLMLaBtv

This year, FiLMLaB is making 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 you with our web series bootcamp.

Submissions are open

When you're ready, we invite you to submit your web series pilot for our script to screen competition. The web series script should be 7 pages maximum, in standard screenplay format, with 1-4 speaking characters. The pilot should have a beginning, middle, and end, and be aimed at a general audience.

After an initial round of judging in Portland, Oregon, 10 finalists will be chosen by our industry professionals in LA. From those ten finalists, a winning web series script will be chosen.
But FilLMLaB.tv does not end there.
Those ten finalists will have the unique opportunity to join in a Writer’s Room, led by showrunner FJ Pratt. Pratt has been a writer for numerous series, including Ellen and Frasier, and was the show-runner for Sullivan and Son.
Pratt will guide our ten finalists through a post-table read with trained professionals and a polish of the pilot. Upon completion, and time permitting, the writer's room will collectively write episode #2 and map out the entire first season. Our finalists will then have the opportunity to participate as we take the web series into production.
With the help of a director, producer, and the writing team, the pilot of the web series will be shot in Portland, Oregon. In the end, the winner of the competition will have a produced film to their name, and everyone in the Writer’s Room will walk away with an IMDB credit, and an experience they will never forget. 

Benefits

With the help of a director, producer, and the writing team, the pilot of the web series will be shot in Portland, Oregon. In the end, the winner of the competition will have a produced film to their name, and everyone in the Writer’s Room will walk away with an IMDB credit, and an experience they will never forget.

General Guidelines

Judging: Scripts will be judged on their creativity and writing, as well as their ability to be successfully produced for FiLMLaBtv, as provided by the Production Guidelines below.

Submissions: All submissions should be written in English, typed in 12-pt Courier, or similar font, and in industry-standard screenplay format. Maximum of 7 pages (as normally formatted on standard 8.5x11 paper). Scripts should be converted to and exported as PDF files. Submissions over 7 pages will be rejected without refund.

Story: Scripts will be judged as self-contained stories, with a beginning, middle and end, but they should also hold the promise of the season to come. All genres accepted. The ideal script will reflect FiLMLaB’s “experimental” nature, and the web series medium. Scripts should be aimed at a general audience. No pornography or graphic violence. FiLMLaB and the Contest judges may disqualify a script from consideration if the subject matter or content of the script is, at the judges’ sole discretion, not suitable for screening at the FiLMLaBtv event at the Willamette Writers Conference.

Production Guidelines

Location: Script must take place predominantly in one, normally available indoor location accessible from within the Portland metro area. Consider that specific, public locations (libraries, schools, etc.) may need to be reproduced or substituted, depending on the availability and cost of required permits. Beware that additional or exotic locations are not disqualifying, but may be negatively considered by FiLMLaBtv and the Contest Judges.

Cast: Maximum of 4 main characters. Additional minor characters or “extras” are acceptable, but beware that scenes requiring a “crowd” may be un-producible.

Effects: Hey, Spielberg, we don’t have access to George Lucas’ studio, so consider that any special effects or makeup designs will be done with cardboard and Maybelline, if at all. Extensive wardrobe requirements may also be a detriment.

Travel: Finalists and winners are responsible for their own travel and accommodations.

Eligibility: Members and immediate family of the Willamette Writers Board, Committees, Staff, Program Chairs, Chapter Chairs, and FiLMLaBtv judges and personnel are not eligible to participate. Previous FiLMLaB Grand Prize winners are not eligible to participate.

Legal Information

By entering the FiLMLaBtv Competition, entrants affirm that the submitted script is their own work, and that the entrants have not previously sold, assigned or licensed any rights to the script. Entrants understand their submitted work will be distributed and viewed my multiple judges and FiLMLaBtv production personnel. Scripts will not be returned. Entrants agree to hold Willamette Writers Inc. (a nonprofit, 501(c)3 organization), the Willamette Writers Conference, and FiLMLaBtv production team harmless with respect to any claims (including, but not limited to, claims related to intellectual property, defamation, or any other tortuous acts) arising from the acts of any individuals not acting within the scope of their duties to Willamette Writers and its programming.

Legal Information for the Winning Script

Editorial Control: The Entrant agrees that, if entrant’s script is produced into a film or series, the resulting film or series may vary in form or content from the submitted script, owing to artistic choices by the director or to production needs and limitations. Entrant understands and agrees that Willamette Writers, through its production team, will have final artistic and editorial control over the resulting film or web series.

Ownership: In exchange for the expense and effort expended by Willamette Writers, Inc. and the production team in producing the film or web series based on the Entrant’s script, Entrant agrees to fully assign and transfer Entrant’s ownership and copyright interest in the winning script to Willamette Writers, who shall be the owner of the completed film or web series. Entrant understands Willamette Writers may exhibit and promote this Film or web series on an ongoing basis, at film festivals, Willamette Writers events, and the Film may be available for viewing online.

Submit to FiLMLaBtv

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 submit.

From the FiLMLaB Blog

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…

The Cast Of 2015 FiLMLaB

By Ruth Witteried | June 29, 2015

The cast of 2015 FiLMLaB assembled on Sunday, June 28, to breath life into Mark Scarbrough’s winning script, The Robbery. After months of work planning, promoting and executing the Willamette Writers annual FiLMLaB Contest, I got to sit on my ass and watch other people work as they combined their many talents to bring Mark’s…

FiLMLaB Announces 2015 Director

By Ruth Witteried | June 22, 2015

Every year as the FiLMLaB Contest wraps up in May we have to pivot quickly and get busy with preproduction; or more accurately, find a director and production team to do it for us. As a nonprofit, Willamette Writers is not in the business of making films, but we can, through FiLMLaB, help aspiring screenwriters…

How to Lose FiLMLaB and Win BlueCat: An Interview with Susan Fleming

By Ruth Witteried | June 5, 2015

As the 2014 Film Coordinator for the Willamette Writers Conference, I was also in charge of overseeing the FiLMLaB competition. Round after round of judging took place until five scripts elevated to the coveted “finalists” stage. Those five finalist scripts were sent to Hollywood for our celebrity judge’s review. Susan Fleming’s SIX MONTHS OF WONDER…

FiLMLaB Has A Winner!

By Ruth Witteried | May 25, 2015

After seven weeks, four rounds of judging and one rewrite, our 2015 experiment in writing has come to a conclusion: FiLMLaB has a winner! It was not an easy task for the Producers Circle who met last week to consider and debate the pros and cons of each finalist’s script. One script, however, to rose…

Navigating the Notes

By Randall Jahnson | May 21, 2015

Getting notes on your screenplay is never fun. Thirty years of writing scripts for studios, producers, and directors has taught me that. The reason is simple: They only address what’s wrong with your work. Rarely do they applaud what you’ve done right. In fact, they can be so devoid of praise that by the time…

Welcome To The Producers Circle

By Ruth Witteried | May 18, 2015

If you caught our blog last Thursday, then you know we gave our five finalists one last task: to rewrite their short script. With notes they received from the Celebrity Judges, and with FiLMLaB mentor Randall Jahnson to guide them, they were given five days to improve their scripts, with a deadline of midnight tonight.…

2015 FiLMLaB Finalists!

By Ruth Witteried | May 14, 2015

Oh, boy are we excited! After six weeks and three rounds of judging, we have our 2015 FiLMLaB Finalists! A very competitive set of eight scripts went through our Celebrity Judging panel where they were evaluated based on six questions for a possible 30 points (or 90 cumulative): On which page were you ‘hooked’ by…

Final Draft Signs On As Official FiLMLaB Sponsor!

By Ruth Witteried | May 11, 2015

Willamette Writers is excited to announce that screenwriting software giant, Final Draft, has signed on as an official sponsor for the 2015 FiLMLaB Contest!  As such, all eight of our semifinalists have each won a gift certificate for a free downloadable version of Final Draft 9, valued at $250! “For over twenty years now, Final…