Thursday, July 05, 2007

Red Planet Prize

UPDATED ** LIST OF RULES, see bottom

You should all know by now. 5 grand. A TV commission from Tony Jordan. And an agent. The Red Planet Prize. Come get some.

On Tuesday, the legendary Mr Jordan launched this amazing prize at the Screenwriters' Festival (which I'm helping coordinate, that's me sitting next to Tony on the video blog). It really is an exciting and inspiring opportunity. There's no entry free and it's open to everyone, so there's no excuse not to enter.

As you'll see from the website, the first round only asks that you send in the first ten pages of a script. This could be half hour, one hour or a spec feature film. Basically, it should be a script that best demonstrates your abilities as a writer.

In the links on the right (top 10 popular posts), I've written about The First Ten Pages and The Top 10 Cliched Ways to Begin Your Script, so you may want to check them out as the tips may (or may not) be useful. I wrote these when the blog started 2 years ago, so I'll probably do an updated version soon.

Anyway, below are the official details of the prize. It's gonna be good!


Red Planet Pictures shows its on-going commitment to finding new screenwriting talent with the creation of an annual prize for the best and brightest. The final judging panel sees Tony Jordan joined by Julie Gardner (Head of Drama Wales and Drama Commissioning at the BBC), writer and actor Mark Gatiss, and Stephen Fry.

The winner will receive:

• £5000
• Representation
• A script commission for Red Planet Pictures

The finalists will all spend a workshop day with Tony Jordan and receive mentoring from Red Planet Pictures.

How to enter:

Your entry should consist of no more than 10 pages of your screenplay, and a covering page about yourself - including a half-page synopsis of your work. (Please note, sending complete screenplays will disqualify you.)

All entries must be in English and in screenwriting format. They must also be original and the sole property of the applicant.

Entries should be sent to

Should you make it through to the next round, we will request the complete screenplay.

Closing date for entries is 1st September 2007

Good luck!



All scripts must be in English and in screenwriting format.

Scripts must be original and the sole property of the applicants.

For the first round, only the first ten pages of the script, a half page synopsis of the script and a half page biog of the writer are required (Please note, sending complete screenplays for the first round will result in disqualification).

Entries should be sent to redplanetprize @

Only one entry per person.

Deadline for entries is 1 September 2007.

Full scripts will be requested by Red Planet Pictures in October 2007.

The final short listed candidates will be contacted in December 2007 for a workshop day and the winner will be announced following the workshop.


Anonymous said...

Hi, when you say a screenplay do you mean a feature film-script, or can it be the first 10 pgs of a 60 minute tv drama script?


B Hall

Lucy V said...

My understanding is it can be first ten pages of anything that's not a short - right Danny?

So, who's the agent? Or is that top secret??

Andy Phillips said...

This is great, Danny, and I'm going to write something specially. Thanks to everyone involved. I really liked Tony's talk. He seems like a cool guy.

Dominic Carver said...

One entry per person??? You mean I have to choose one script???? Damn and blast!!!!!

Gareth Michael Turpie said...

Hi Mr Stack, Sir!
I think this is a very inspiring opportunity to put into practice all the insights I have (hopefully) learned from your excellent, informative blogs.

Great idea, it gets writers writing, something great will come out of it for someone and at the very least it'll get me another rejection email...

and another 10 page script to work on again...

Anonymous said...

Hi Danny,

This looks a great opportunity and I will be entering. I've just graduated from uni (yesterday) and am now looking for work. I have found your blog a very useful read as am quite new to screenwriting. I've had a look at the Red Planet Pictures site. Can I ask or request that at some stage some good sample profesional scripts (yours, anyones) to have a gander at, on that site or on this blog.



rob said...


You'll find a lot of useful contemporary scripts at this address;

In fact for advice on getting started you can't go far wrong with Writers Room.

This competetition is a very exciting opportunity. Heartfelt thanks to Tony Jordan, Danny Stack and Red Planet Productions.



Danny Stack said...

Hi All

I think the post has all the relevant info now, but if you're unclear, just holler. Tony's organising the agent, I don't know the details. Also, I'd recommend looting Drew's Script-o-Rama or any of the download script sites, and then read the first 10 pages of films you know, or like, or have been made. Alternatively, if you go to my website, there are 3 excerpts from my humble efforts.

Good luck to everyone who enters the competition!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for that Rob and Danny

Anonymous said...

Still a bit confused, it says on the website 'screenplay' which would seem to insinuate a feature film script. If Red Planet are looking for tv series ideas then can you also submit a script which is the first ten pages of an episode for a proposed series? And if so should the half page synopsis be for that episode or what you envisage an entire series to be?

Lucy says it can be the first ten pages of 'anything', so would this include say the first ten pages of a sitcom? The rules aren't exactly very clear, there's some debate about this on shooting people too.

B Hall

Danny Stack said...

An episode of a proposed series is acceptable, as is a one-off half hour/one hour drama (or comedy, sitcom etc). The half page synopsis should be of the script you're submitting, not a series overview. The prize is to find a writer and give them a commission, not make their winning script (unless it really blows Tony and the judges away!).

Anonymous said...

Can think of a couple of scribos who will blow Tony and the judges away.


Anonymous said...

Should have said - would.

Tim Clague said...

Bloody hell Danny - could you look any more shifty sitting in the corner there. Jeez! lol

martin said...

Hi Danny,

Great meeting you last week, and great comp. And you should tell the nice people how the comp came about!

for ed or anyone else, in addition to writers room, the BFI has a list of links to script sites.