Q: HOW ARE VERSES "ASSIGNED?"
A: For Speed Film entries, a list of Bible verses related to the theme of the year are selected, printed on strips of paper and attached to stones placed on a table. One at a time, during the Verse Assignment Event, a representative of a team chooses a stone, and the attached verse becomes the foundational verse for the film (photo above). This happens 10 days prior to production start. For Non-Speed Films, the producer chooses the verse from the Bible that fits the story they have to tell, preferably one that fits with the annual theme. Non-speed producers can begin production as soon as the entry is purchased. Chosen Non-Speed verses need to be forwarded to 168 before the date of Verse Assignment.
Q: DO I HAVE TO WAIT TO HAVE A COMPLETE PRODUCTION CREW BEFORE I SIGN UP?
A: No. You do not have to have it all together to sign up. In fact, many teams come together at the last moment. Most teams have people who wear many hats, some even do solo films.
Q: HOW DO I FIND CREW MEMBERS?
Our primary resource for filmmakers is the 168 Community Exchange at Groups.IO. Producers can list their projects (whether for the competition or for "real" work), and cast and crew members can respond to the opportunities. Or producers can scan the list of available talent and reach out to members willing to work. Producers can also put out an email call for cast/crew that all members will receive. Some producers advertise the 168 Experience on other social media or on local acting/film community bulletin forums. Many aspiring crew members are willing to work just for the experience. But, note: some communities may be offended by a solicitation for free work. It is always better to mention some form of compensation, even if it is only good food to eat.
Q: HOW MANY PEOPLE CAN BE ON A TEAM?
A: Include as many on your team as you wish. You can even go solo if you like wearing many hats. Most teams average around 10 people. If you like herding cats, you can have 100. All team members must sign a release form. Sample forms are provided once you sign up.
Q: WHAT RIGHTS DOES 168 CLAIM ON MY FILM?
Producers are required to sign an entry and licensing contract. This contract gives 168 Film a non-exclusive license to your film. The contract document is included with the Entry Agreement.
Q: DO I HAVE TO BE IN CALIFORNIA OR GEORGIA TO COMPETE?
A: No! We have entries made on location all over the world, including places like Israel, Kenya, and even Ohio!
Q: DO I HAVE TO MAKE AN EVANGELISTIC MOVIE?
A: No. Most of the 168 films are just good stories with a Biblical worldview, which can be summed up as "Love God and Treat Others as You Wanna be Treated." See our CONTENT RULES. You are free to communicate the Gospel of Jesus (and compete for the "Evangelista Award"), but this is not required.
Q: WHAT DOES IT COST TO ENTER THE CONTEST & HOW DO I PAY?
A: Team registration fees are listed Here. Pay by check or use a credit card. Fees go up as production week draws near, so hurry!
Q: WHAT KIND OF FILM CAN I PRODUCE?
A: When you sign up you will declare what type of film you intend to produce. This can be changed if needed. Film types are listed HERE Note: some film categories have different timelines and criteria for judging. Within each type you can choose any genre: comedy, drama, noir, sci-fi, action adventure etc., as long as you abide by the Rules.
Write of Passage (WP) and Alumni Films are the only types that allow existing scripts. For a WP script, you MUST contact us prior to starting to make sure the script is available. We are here to facilitate this and we want you to succeed! Inquire at [email protected].
Q: WHAT IS THE PROCESS IN A NUTSHELL?
A: The season starts with education and mixers to aid in team formation. For Speed Films, teams get a randomly-selected Bible verse which serves as the foundation for the story. No writing may occur before the verse is given. Verse Assignment marks the start of a 10-day pre-production period (writing, casting, locations, schedules etc). Cameras may roll at a specific hour and final films are due 168 hours later. For speed films, verse assignment is the same day (except for previously arranged student films). ALL films (except student) have the same turn-in time. See Rules for details. All films are judged by our internal programmers and the finalists go to the celebrity jury. All films will submit higher quality screening versions for screening.
Q: CAN I SHOOT A WRITE OF PASSAGE SCRIPT FROM THE WRITING CONTEST? HOW DOES THAT WORK?
A: Details on making a Write of Passage Spotlight Film are found in the WOP FAQ page.
Q: CAN I MAKE MORE THAN ONE FILM THIS SEASON?
A: Yes. Producers may complete a Non-Speed entry(Write of Passage, Documentary, etc) prior to Verse Assignment, and then do a Speed Film within the 168 timeframe. Some have entered two or more Speed Films, at the same time. We discourage that, as it will tax your resources badly. Multiple entries are required if doing more than one film.
Q: I CAN'T DO THE COMPETITION BECAUSE THE DATES DON'T WORK WITH MY SCHEDULE. ARE THE DATES FLEXIBLE?
A: Only if you are a student, who has a documented exam week conflict. Otherwise no the dates are NOT flexible. Remember, Student Films compete only with other student films for Best Student Film and are ineligible for most other honors.
Q: WHAT IS THE REFUND POLICY?
A: Refunds will be pro-rated on the following schedule: More than 90 days out (from Verse Assignment) 100% will be refunded. 60 days out 50%, 30 days out or less, no refund. Team fees are not transferable.
Q: WHAT ARE THE DATES OF THE COMPETITION?
A: See the Film Project page.
Q: WHAT DOES IT COST TO MAKE A FILM?
A: Production budgets vary greatly (that's like asking, "How much does a house cost?"). Teams spend from $250 to $15,000 with the average being around $2,500. All teams are responsible for their own budget, cast and crew.
Q: HOW DO I FINANCE MY FILM?
A: Beg, borrow and squeal, starting with your friends and family. Kickstarter or other crowd funding sources are options. If you can affiliate (or are affiliated) with a church or other nonprofit, you may be able to offer tax benefits to donors. All producers are responsible for financing their own films.
Q: WHAT DO I GET FOR MY ENTRY FEE?
A: Entry Fees include two (2) All Festival Tickets, passes to the mixers, and a chance to be seen by our VIP Jury and to exhibit at the Festival. You also get: Team Promotion, Verse Assignment Night, and 6 months free access to the Library and Training resources. Your team members can have 3 months free access to the resources by using a special code. Entry fees do not cover the whole cost of a production season and festival. Encourage your friends to donate to168.
Q: I'M NOT A PRODUCER - HOW DO I JOIN A TEAM
A: Find a 168 producer and ask! The first place to go is to the 168 Community Exchange. You can list your talents and availability so that producers and casting directors can find you. Or you can reach out to producers near you who have listed their projects (whether for the competition or other paid work.) 168 also provides in-person and online mixers where you can meet people who have production needs. Very few teams will refuse your excellent, free help. You can also come to our live/online events in L.A. or Georgia.
Q: THERE'S NOBODY NEAR ME DOING A FILM AND I WANT TO BE INVOLVED. NOW WHAT?
A: You can always travel to where someone is doing one, but is this your call to do a film? With your entry, you have access to hours of training on visual storytelling and production techniques. Then find someone who can write, someone with a camera and someone else with an editing rig, pray and see what direction God will send you. It can be life changing!
Q: I'M AN ACTOR, HOW CAN I ACT IN A FILM?
A: We sometimes facilitate casting in L.A., but all casting decisions are up to the producers/directors on the teams. Teams in other locales often hold open auditions. These are sometimes announced on Facebook, Twitter,Craig's List, local newspapers, etc. You can also list your availabilitly in the168 Community Exchange.
Q: CAN I VOLUNTEER FOR 168?
A: Yes, we love our volunteers! Inquire about positions. If you're simply curious about us, register at our free level and receive our email newsletter. This is our primary mode of communication. You can also purchase an advanced registration and have access to our library of films. We use the most volunteers at the 168 Festival for everything from usher to stage tech. Contact us if you are want to help at this red carpet, gala affair.
Q: MAY I SUBMIT MY FILM TO OTHER FESTIVALS, PROMOTE AND SCREEN MY FILM BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER THE 168 FILM FESTIVAL?
A: 168 reserves the right to premiere your film. You must wait to release your film to the public in any form (no YouTube, Facebook, other festivals, etc.) until after the Festival premiere. You are encouraged to submit your film to other festivals as long as their premiere is AFTER the 168 Film Festival. Then you are free to do as you like with your film, with regard to your contract with 168 Film.
Q: IS IT HARD TO START A TEAM?
A: That depends on you. Are you willing to talk to everyone you know to get help, finances and prayers? Editors, Directors of Photography, Gaffers, and other technical positions are always in great demand, so hug an editor today-you'll be glad later.
Q: CAN I ENTER MY COMPLETED SCREENPLAY?
A: For Speed Films, No. This is an original production competition and so pre-existing screenplays cannot enter. All 168 Signature Speed Films are to be created during the same time period. No writing will occur before the Verse Assignment or the team is disqualified. Prior to verse assignment you may formulate ideas about genre and characters based on your available resources, but no writing may commence until you have received your verse. Exceptions: If you wrote a Write of Passage script or bid and win permission to produce one, you may produce it as a Write of Passage Spotlight Film. If you are a 168 Alumni, having previously produced a film for the competition, you can enter a new film based on an existing script in the Alumni Film category, which will compete with other Alumni films for honors.
Q: WHAT IF I WANT TO BASE MY STORY ON AN EXISTING WORK (BOOK, MOVIE, TV SHOW, OR EVEN WRITE OF PASSAGE SCRIPT)?
Almost every high concept has been done and as the Good Book says, there is nothing new under the sun. All works are derivative of something, so what can you write on? Are spoofs/parodies ok? Yes! Is taking a script that is already written ok? No. Be original as possible. You must have a proper license for all books, media or life rights. You are free to borrow liberally and without a licenses from the best selling book of all time, the Bible.
The “origin” field in the Film Information Database is for you to disclose the inspiration for your film. It should not be any unlicensed book, story film or TV show unless it is a parody or spoof. It should be an original idea. If it is an exact copy of a pre-existing storyline, you are out of bounds, not only with us, but also copyright holders.
Q: WHAT IS OUR PHILOSOPHY ON THE COMPETITION?
A: The 168 Film Project primarily about process and individual growth. Secondarily, it is about awards and competition. You are expected to abide by the rules and to conduct yourself in a way that is honoring to God and to your peers. The spirit of this competition is that you would trust that inspiration for the story will be provided based on your theme and verse. Scriptural Integration (how well your film expresses the original meaning and intent of the verse) is weighted heavier than any other judging category, so you would do well to study and understand your verse and its context. A "spiritual advisor" is a good idea to help with the verse. Prayer is encouraged. We will gladly help you with both.
Q: HOW CAN I PREPARE IF I CANNOT WRITE UNTIL I GET THE VERSE?
A: Think of your speed film production as an artist's palette. Your assets (or colors) are people, places and things you have access to: gear, set pieces, locations, actors, and crew members. Use these raw materials as colors to apply to your canvas once you receive the foundational verse. You are free to brainstorm and perhaps choose a genre based on the resources available (e.g..western, urban, sci-fi), but no writing of script may occur before the verse is randomly selected.
Q: WHAT BUDGET LIMITATIONS ARE THERE?
A: There are no restrictions on budget. We are all learning and it is an honor for newcomers to work and compete with pros, and vice versa. Creativity and an excellent story will hold up very well, even against a big budget. Good producers are known for budgeting according to their resources and being frugal. A smaller budget will naturally expand your creativity and skills to become a better producer. The playing field is never level, and the bar should be high.
Q: WHAT ABOUT MUSIC?
A: You can use production libraries, buy-out music or even commercially-available music IF you can get clearance to use it (see below). No rights, no use. Regarding Awards for Best Song or Best Original Score: we have removed composition and performance date restrictions.
Q: WHO IS THE "SIGNING PRODUCER?"
The "Signing Producer" is the person who purchased the entry. We will assume that this is the owner of the Copyright unless you tell us different. This is the one we will deal with in all matters and he or she must then talk to any other producers. Note: only one login will access the Producer Dashboard. You may share your login with those you delegate to fill in the forms, but guard your entry by only using trusted partners with your data. Change your password as soon as you are able (not during crunch time!).