Originally Posted by DaltWisney
All else being equal, I think you're going to do better with straightforward dramas and thrillers than you are with comedies or crazy sci-fi/fantasy stuff. I also think the committee nature of the judging process means you're going to want to skew risk-averse. A script that gets a 7/10 from 10 random readers is going to fare much better in a competition like this than a polarizing script that gets a 10/10 from 2 readers and a 4/10 from the other 8. The Nicholl is not the ideal platform for your "Tim and Eric Awesome Show", "Eric Andre Show", or "Hobo With a Shotgun" type of material. You're going to want to think more in terms of hitting all four quadrants.
As for the subjectivity, I've submitted the same script three times with minimal changes. One year it got top 10%. The next year it got top 15%. The next year it didn't even make the top 20%, though it was noted to have received at least one positive review. For the sake of comparison, this is a script that averaged slightly below a 7 overall when I put it up on the Black List and got a bunch of evaluations.
There's a crapshoot aspect to the competition, but I do think there's a general correlation between quality and results. I've really pivoted towards TV writing and pilots, but I may barf something out in April just to chuck into the Nicholl since it's such a great opportunity for exposure if you happen to run deep.
interesting. another aspect i considered is the comment in the guidelines where they say "do you think the writer has the potential
to be a professional writer." all along i thought they were judging against
pro level, so that was new news.
i've run through a number of the loglines and i don't consider them 4-quad movies at all. they aren't going to hit the under 25 male and female. typically 4Q are tentpole Pirates of the Caribbean, Lion King, Titanic, Armageddon, Men In Black, Jurassic Park, Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and not all big budget, for example, The Sixth Sense was a knock out-- i think of that as 4Q.
i think you're smart to move into TV writing, probably a good idea for any feature writer to show that they can do both, and they are different from each other. I'll be working on a new pilot later this year myself.