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Old 03-31-2016, 05:01 PM   #1
Terri
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Question Sundance Screenwriters Lab -- much confusion

OK, although I'm intrigued by SSL... and interested... I'm afraid I don't quite get what they are looking for.

I would be entering solely as a screenwriter. But it almost seems like they're looking for screenwriters who will be directing their own films (screenwriter/directors) or people who are very close to production. Am I wrong to think this?

I mean, it's only 5 days. I assumed at first that what you'd be doing is polishing up your script with input from the pros and making it the best it can possibly be. And then you're free to SELL your script.

But after the lab, what? Will they be keeping tabs on your script/project? Are you expected to make it into a film yourself or GIVE your script to one of the directors in the Director Labs? (I saw the bit in FAQs about giving Sundance credit in your film and also giving them 1/4% of the budget exceeding $1M.) -- What if your film never gets made?

In the FAQs, it states that it doesn't matter if you don't have film experience. Your talent speaks for itself. THAT makes it sound like everything I wrote above about expectations of going into production ASAP are false.

Also, I've read on this forum about an interview. Is that one of the steps to get picked? It's not mentioned in the FAQs or instructions.

They don't go into much detail on their site. It's all very esoteric. I've been combing over it all last night and am left completely confused about what the point of the Lab is. It almost sounds more like a Pre-Production Lab as opposed to a purely Screenwriting Lab.

Anyone here actually go?
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Old 03-31-2016, 11:12 PM   #2
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Default Re: Sundance Screenwriters Lab -- much confusion

I made it to the final round but know a guy who actually got in.

If you have a script that fits Sundance (indy world)... don't hesitate. It's def worth it. First, you'll submit the first 5 pages of your script. If they like it, you go to the second and final round where you send your entire script. Then, they select the few that end up going to the lab. (You don't have to want to direct to enter the screenwriting lab).

There's a few interviews out there about what you do on those 5 days at the Sundance Lab. As far as what happens afterwards... If you're smart, you will make great contacts. And if your script has legs, trust me, things will happen for you.

But the most important thing is, if you make it in, it opens a huge door into the indy world. Because then you can make a short film or a feature and you will have those contacts that will help you get in to places. (again, this is mostly within the indy world).

This is not like a screenwriting contest... Agents or managers won't come running to sign you if you get in -- unless of course, you get lucky, end up making your movie and then you win Sundance. But still, getting in will definitely help your career.

Not sure if that helps but those are my 2 cents.
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Old 04-01-2016, 02:35 PM   #3
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Default Re: Sundance Screenwriters Lab -- much confusion

Yes, gs1979, that definitely helps!
I may enter. I think my scripts can swing either way: indy or non-indy depending on how the director approaches the script.

Last edited by Terri : 04-01-2016 at 07:51 PM.
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Old 04-02-2016, 10:04 AM   #4
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Default Re: Sundance Screenwriters Lab -- much confusion

I only made it to the 2nd round but I noticed that that made a big difference as far as getting people interested in working with me on indie projects. It can lend toward credibility, etc. So I can only imagine what happens if you get in.
Check out who has gotten in: they're all amazing.
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Old 04-03-2016, 05:34 PM   #5
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Default Re: Sundance Screenwriters Lab -- much confusion

Quote:
Originally Posted by cvolante View Post
I only made it to the 2nd round but I noticed that that made a big difference as far as getting people interested in working with me on indie projects. It can lend toward credibility, etc. So I can only imagine what happens if you get in.
Check out who has gotten in: they're all amazing.
I'm excited!
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Old 04-17-2016, 08:48 AM   #6
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Default Re: Sundance Screenwriters Lab -- much confusion

The script I'd like to submit isn't finished yet, even though I'm giving it days and nights... I wonder how much time I would have between applying and them asking for the whole screenplay? Does anyone know?
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Old 04-17-2016, 07:59 PM   #7
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Default Re: Sundance Screenwriters Lab -- much confusion

Quote:
Originally Posted by goldmund View Post
The script I'd like to submit isn't finished yet, even though I'm giving it days and nights... I wonder how much time I would have between applying and them asking for the whole screenplay? Does anyone know?
It varies. I've second-rounded three times, and each time it's been a little different. If I recall correctly, the first time it was on the last possible day that they let me know (so I had from May 1st until mid-August), and then I had three weeks to get the screenplay to them.

This last time it was fast, something like three weeks to notification and a week and half to get it in.
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Old 04-18-2016, 05:01 AM   #8
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Default Re: Sundance Screenwriters Lab -- much confusion

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Originally Posted by Squigtone View Post
It varies. I've second-rounded three times, and each time it's been a little different. If I recall correctly, the first time it was on the last possible day that they let me know (so I had from May 1st until mid-August), and then I had three weeks to get the screenplay to them.

This last time it was fast, something like three weeks to notification and a week and half to get it in.
Ah sweet, thank you!

So that means they even give you some time to send it once they request it?
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Old 04-18-2016, 12:00 PM   #9
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Default Re: Sundance Screenwriters Lab -- much confusion

The FAQs mention an application fee for submitting to the first round, but I don't see any information on how much it is. Does anyone know, have a link?
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Old 04-18-2016, 12:03 PM   #10
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Default Re: Sundance Screenwriters Lab -- much confusion

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Originally Posted by castilleja32 View Post
The FAQs mention an application fee for submitting to the first round, but I don't see any information on how much it is. Does anyone know, have a link?
It's $40, you get the details on the online submission form once you register. That's for international, don't know if it's different for locals.
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