Universal Emerging Writers Program

Collapse

Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #16
    Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

    Originally posted by bmcthomas View Post
    Two months ago, I emailed (via the contact us link on the page) to inquire about the recommendations and what constituted an "industry professional". At the time, there was no FAQ on the site.

    I got a reply today, nearly two weeks after the deadline passed. And it just referred me to the FAQ.
    Me too. Bizarre.

    Some of the restrictions might have been nice to know ahead of time, like it was only available to domestic entrants. The "WGA-only" restriction on the copyright registration of screenplays also left me scratching my head.

    Anyway, I'll be very interested to see who (if anyone) qualifies for this, given the seemingly counter-intuitive hoops they have to clear.

    Comment


    • #17
      Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

      Originally posted by celticbeauty View Post
      Actually, they posted the FAQ page around September 14th--so the submission window was still open when they announced that. And yes--I agree that it sounds like dollar options would disqualify a writer.
      That still stinks though, that they imposed new conditions two weeks after they started accepting applications.

      Writers with representation are eligible. I wonder if a one dollar option could be rephrased as a shopping agreement?

      Comment


      • #18
        Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

        Originally posted by bmcthomas View Post
        That still stinks though, that they imposed new conditions two weeks after they started accepting applications.

        Writers with representation are eligible. I wonder if a one dollar option could be rephrased as a shopping agreement?
        No. That is disingenuous. An option is an option. A shoppers agreement is different. The language of the contract itself dictates what category the arrangement falls under. Don't lie about it if you're lucky enough to advance. What if they ask to see a copy of the agreement?

        And BTW--just because a writer has representation, doesn't mean they've sold or optioned anything. It makes sense that they'd allow that.
        celticbeauty
        User
        Last edited by celticbeauty; 10-16-2013, 08:34 AM. Reason: L

        Comment


        • #19
          Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

          Originally posted by celticbeauty View Post
          No. That is disingenuous. An option is an option. A shoppers agreement is different. The language of the contract itself dictates what category the arrangement falls under. Don't lie about it if you're lucky enough to advance. What if they ask to see a copy of the agreement?

          And BTW--just because a writer has representation, doesn't mean they've sold or optioned anything. It makes sense that they'd allow that.
          As disingenuous as waiting eleven days after the entry period began to mention that options make you ineligible?

          Anyone who entered before Oct. 14 might not even know that restriction exists. (Unless they too sent an email inquiry two months ago.) Does anyone think "hmm... I should check and see if that thing I applied for changed their criteria after I applied."

          I just think it's poor form to change the rules after they began accepting applications. At least it was free to apply, so nobody wasted any money.

          Comment


          • #20
            Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

            Originally posted by bmcthomas View Post
            As disingenuous as waiting eleven days after the entry period began to mention that options make you ineligible?

            Anyone who entered before Oct. 14 might not even know that restriction exists. (Unless they too sent an email inquiry two months ago.) Does anyone think "hmm... I should check and see if that thing I applied for changed their criteria after I applied."

            I just think it's poor form to change the rules after they began accepting applications. At least it was free to apply, so nobody wasted any money.
            Agreed. It's a matter of professionalism and wasted time. The wasted time it took to answer essay questions and applicants had to ask industry pros to take time out of their busy schedules to write recommendations for writers who find out two weeks later they are not eligible.

            I get that writers without options are probably ecstatic because it means much less competition. Some writers only have connections to industry pros through the scripts they've previously optioned. If a script's not strong enough to option, it's kind of tough to get a meeting with any industry pros as a writer.

            But it is a first year program so maybe in the future they'll have all their rules together before the application period opens and a lot less people's (writers and industry pros) time will be wasted.

            Comment


            • #21
              Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

              Originally posted by bmcthomas View Post
              As disingenuous as waiting eleven days after the entry period began to mention that options make you ineligible?

              Anyone who entered before Oct. 14 might not even know that restriction exists. (Unless they too sent an email inquiry two months ago.) Does anyone think "hmm... I should check and see if that thing I applied for changed their criteria after I applied."

              I just think it's poor form to change the rules after they began accepting applications. At least it was free to apply, so nobody wasted any money.
              Yes. Lying to a studio about the status of your projects is totally disingenuous. Don't do it or you'll risk your own reputation and your relationship with the people running the program. If they ask, just be honest about it and say that it was a dollar option. They probably won't care. If they do, oh well. You weren't eligible to begin with. Point is, don't outright lie. It's easy for them to find out whether you had an option or not. After all, you just posted it on a public online forum labeled "Universal Emerging Writers Program" for all to see. Wouldn't be hard for them to find that information out.

              Beyond that, posting a FAQ clarifying the rules while the deadline is still open isn't disingenuous. They didn't lie to you. They are just in the first year of the fellowship and clearly are still working out the kinks--specifically the information posted on their website. It doesn't sound like they changed the rules-they just realized they hadn't properly clarified them. Is it poor form, maybe. But it's not disingenuous at all.

              Here's the bigger point: it's their program. They can make whatever rules they want. If you're ineligible, too bad. There are other programs out there. Apply to one that you are eligible for.

              Comment


              • #22
                Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

                Originally posted by celticbeauty View Post
                Yes. Lying to a studio about the status of your projects is totally disingenuous. Don't do it or you'll risk your own reputation and your relationship with the people running the program. If they ask, just be honest about it and say that it was a dollar option. They probably won't care. If they do, oh well. You weren't eligible to begin with. Point is, don't outright lie. It's easy for them to find out whether you had an option or not. After all, you just posted it on a public online forum labeled "Universal Emerging Writers Program" for all to see. Wouldn't be hard for them to find that information out.

                Beyond that, posting a FAQ clarifying the rules while the deadline is still open isn't disingenuous. They didn't lie to you. They are just in the first year of the fellowship and clearly are still working out the kinks--specifically the information posted on their website. It doesn't sound like they changed the rules-they just realized they hadn't properly clarified them. Is it poor form, maybe. But it's not disingenuous at all.

                Here's the bigger point: it's their program. They can make whatever rules they want. If you're ineligible, too bad. There are other programs out there. Apply to one that you are eligible for.
                I never suggested it wasn't their program or that they couldn't make whatever rules they wanted (making them up as they go, apparently).

                We'll just have to disagree on clarifying vs placing new restrictions that were never mentioned before.

                I never said I had an option, btw. I said I wondered if a dollar option could be considered a shopping agreement. Theoretically, what if a writer has been offered a dollar option and needs to consider whether they want to wait until however long it takes Universal to get around to notifying people about the next round before accepting it? For all we know there will be more rules about never accepting options for the entire duration of the program or something. And based on the way they've operated so far, who knows when we'll find those out.

                I promise, if I advance, I won't lie about the status of anything.

                Comment


                • #23
                  Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

                  No. A dollar option isn't a shopper's agreement. Again, it's the wording of the contract itself that establishes whether it is an option or shopper's agreement. You can't change that after the fact.

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

                    I just got a response to the email I wrote them on AUGUST 19!

                    What is WITH these guys??

                    Among other things, the original announcement left out vital facts like whether the program was on site and how much it paid.

                    It looks to me like the program was hastily cobbled together after Warner and The Black List announced their program.

                    But good luck to those who applied!
                    "People who work in Hollywood are the ones who didn't quit." -- Lawrence Kasdan

                    Please visit my website and blog: www.lauridonahue.com.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

                      I got another email too--same form email directing me to the FAQ page--for a follow-up email I sent a week after my first email to them in August. Weird.

                      Definitely not the most organized program. My biggest issue with the rule changing was the whole genre-switching that went on. First, it was just comedy, romcom, and action, and thriller. Then, the submission window opened on 9/3, and the drop-down menu on the application had animation and sci-fi listed as possible entries, but the page didn't say they allowed those genres, so I submitted a comedy. Then, the next day (9/4) they said animation scripts and sci-fi scripts would be accepted. I was totally bummed because I would have submitted an animated script instead. Good thing I didn't, though. As soon as the FAQ page went up--they took animated scripts off the acceptable genre list, but kept Sci-Fi. However, I noticed the drop-down menu still had animation as an acceptable genre.

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

                        So...they said they'd notify semifinalists in mid-November. People should be notified this week or next. Anyone hear from them yet?

                        Hope some DDers make the semis!

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

                          Haven't heard anything yet. Today is a holiday so maybe tomorrow they start contacting people

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

                            any word at all about this, anywhere?

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

                              Haven't seen anyone post updates on this...anywhere. I'm guessing notifications are going out next week.

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Re: Universal Emerging Writers Program

                                I've been checking their Twitter (@UniEWF) and Facebook pages (www.facebook.com/uniemergingwriters)... nothing.
                                http://thebeeka.com

                                Comment

                                Working...
                                X