"little films, BIG VISION"

2014 Screenwriting Competition - *COMPETITION NOW CLOSED*

Update Jan 28th 2014: Thanks to all writers who entered this year's competition. We received a mammoth 45 entries! The six shortlisted screenplays will be chosen by Hollywood reader and Huff Post blogger Julie Gray (author of "Just Effing Entertain Me - A Screenwriter's Atlas") following feedback and a workshop by film and TV writer Anne Marie O'Connor (creator of Sky One's hit comedy 'Trollied'). Writers will receive notification of the six finalists by Monday 17th Feb.

This year sees additional support from Isle of Man Film and the Arts Council


Get writing NOW, as the initial deadline is midnight (GMT) January 24th 2014.

And at the end of 2013, we finally secured support – both creative and financial – from Isle of Man Film for three brand new film projects for 2014. This new support goes along with confirmed continued support from the IOM Arts Council and existing support from PokerStars (for workshops) and is something we’ve been working towards since 2010, and will make a considerable difference to the way we’re able to run the scheme.

We’ve already asked Emily Cook (Reel Visions Films) and Rosie Grahame to come on board and help us run the administrative side of the scheme, something that will enable us to run more workshops, update the website and focus more on training.

It’s great timing, as the Island is to be branded “Island of Culture 2014” – celebrating the Island “through dance, music, theatre, the visual arts and literature, cultural festivals, film and digital innovation” (source:http://www.islandofculture.im/) All of these talents and creative areas- and many more - are essential to the filmmaking process, and we have grand plans to add to the calendar of events for IOC2014.

But like all great movies, it all begins with a great screenplay.. and that’s where YOU come in! At the start of December we announced a new screenwriting competition, and there’s still time to enter. We are looking for:

  1. short, original scripts by Manx (or Isle of Man resident) writers, that will
  2. produce no longer than 15mins screentime
  3. Narrative Fiction only (*see below ref animation and documentary*)
  4. the three winning projects must be made on the Island to qualify for the creative and financial support of the MannIN Shorts scheme (and the funding available from Isle of Man Film).
  5. PLEASE READ OUR TERMS & CONDITIONS BEFORE ENTERING - click the link to view the PDF - don't worry, they're not epicly long!

Screenplays submitted to the 24th Jan deadline will receive feedback/brief notes, returned to the writers on Jan 31st (all scripts will be read by professional filmmakers with success and experience under their belts); there will be a writing workshop with Anne Marie O'Connor the following day (Feb 1st) so writers can talk through their notes and any questions they have, then they will have a few week to amend as and where they feel necessary before resubmitting by Feb 7th; all entries will be sifted and shortlisted to a final 6, which will be announced on Monday 17th Feb.

Those final 6 projects must then be submitted to our Final Juding Panel a few weeks later (exact date tbc), along with:

  1. Budget Top Sheet Summary and Costs Breakdown (we can provide templates for this)
  2. Shoot-ready script in standard format (e.g title page, standard font and size, scene numbers, 1 screen minute per page - check out Celtx screenwriting software, for instance)
  3. Project Outline (message, themes or objectives). This could be presented as Director’s Vision. Artwork/Moodboard optional
  4. One-line synopsis and Short Synopsis (no more than one side of A4)
  5. Plan of Action for Marketing and Distribution (intended festivals etc)
  6. A schedule for pre-production, production, post-production and delivery should be evidenced.

(Don't worry, we are on hand to help with all of the above! We will also be holding Directing and Producing workshops during the weeks leading up to the deadline.)

The above material is to be presented in person to the panel by the Writer AND their Director AND/OR their Producer, so that any questions the Panel might have about the project/material can be answered straight away.

Based on the screenplay and the above information, our panel will choose three successful projects.

WHAT YOU WIN. Producers from each of the three winning projects will seek to have up to 50% of their budget up to £7.5K provided by the scheme via Isle of Man Film, with Producers then sourcing the other 50% as part of their training. They will be made in conjunction with a series of monthly workshops to get crew/cast up to speed in all areas of the industry, alongside mentoring from industry professionals from London to Hollywood. The shoots themselves will be the final part of the 'training' for 2014, each to be run with an element of shadowing from industry professionals.

Previous winning screenplays - 'Closet', 'Solace (in Wicca)', 'I Do', 'Hide & Seek' and 'Barry Brown' - have now all been completed and are touring the international film festival circuit - we are expecting laurels and more than a few accolades, they are all extremely high quality!

*ANIMATION & DOCUMENTARY SHORTS* As our scheme is currently focussed on developing writing, casting and crewing skills and learning multiple crafts within the industry, we are not looking for solely animated projects for this competition. Projects may contain an element of animation within the story, if necessary. Likewise with documentary - although we are documentary makers ourselves, and so wholeheartedly encourage the format and medium, it would be very difficult to judge a documentary project against a fiction screenplay. Please note: there will, however, be both 'Animation' and 'Documentary' categories in the 2014 Isle of Man Film Festival competition, so keep a look out for information about entry dates/deadlines/prizes etc. Please contact dave@manninshorts.com if you have any questions about this.

TO ENTER, send your screenplay - preferably in PDF format, to christy@manninshorts.com by JANUARY 24th 2014.

In the meantime, here are some photos from on set during production of just two of the successful projects from our 2012 screenplay competition, to inspire you into getting your own ideas down and paper and hopefully on to the big screen!

Closet - A Short Film Will Sutton Closet A Short Film James Hills Closet A Short Film Sam Waters
Will Sutton as 'Bobby', and DP John Craine on camera (fore)
James Hills, Assistant Camera with Emma Poyntz, continuity
Sam Waters clapping the Closet

Behind scenes pics from first day of 'Solace' shoot

Solace in Wicca Solace in Wicca

Writer Nat readies for Shot 1 Take 1; Liam, Daniyel & Bruno prep the shot; Andy(Dir) & Andy (AD) ponder the heavens...

MannIN Shorts - The Story So Far...

MannIN Shorts - From SCRIPT to SCREEN and BEYOND! from Dave Armstrong on Vimeo.

Welcome to MannIN Shorts!

“MannIN Shorts”, based on the Isle of Man, is a new initiative to provide a platform for hopeful filmmakers of any age to build their skills, develop their ideas and make films right here on the rock.

To find out how you can be a part, get involved, learn from the scheme etc, visit 'the scheme' page.

Also, if you're an aspiring filmmaker, visit our 'tips&tools' section for links to useful resources on everything from scriptwriting to directing actors to special fx.

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Associated Links: DAM Productions / Isle of Man Arts Council / “MannIN Shorts” by Juan Moore