Write of Passage Screenwriting Competition Official Rules & Terms

Updated on: December 13, 2022

Writers enter the contest using the official online entry form, paying the entry fee, and agreeing to the following terms. Writers must also sign a licensing agreement. 

  1. WP entries are typically from one writer. The entrant will be required to sign the contract and licensing agreement before the verse is assigned.
  2. If you are entering as a two+ writer team: you must list all writers in the Manage Entry > Personnel section. The person submitting the entry form must be listed as the managing partner/prize recipient (Author of Record). All writers must sign the contract and licensing agreement. If a writing team wins a cash prize, disbursement of prize monies will be to the Author of Record only, who will be responsible for taxes (if any) and sharing prize money with co-writers. 
  3. Writers will receive a foundational verse based on the theme published on 168film.com. The verse will be emailed to the writer, and will be published on 168film.com the day of verse assignment. Writers get exactly 168 hours for a script of no more than 12 pages. There is no minimum length.
  4. Development Executives (DE’s) facilitate the Write of Passage Screenwriting Contest Regional Competitions, including the first round judging. DE duties include reading submissions, giving feedback, judging and reporting results.
  5. The number of writers entering the contest may be limited by the number of Development Executives available.
  6. DE Feedback: During the writing week, writers will submit their “work in progress” to their DE for feedback several times. The story outline and at least one (1) draft should be critiqued and notes given before the final draft is submitted.
  7. Meetings between writer and DE should be scheduled for the 3rd and the 5th days if possible. In person/phone is preferred, but electronic is acceptable. All writers will get a final, constructive critique by DE. Standard forms will be used for critique.
  8. DE’s will give constructive criticism and notes to improve the script, including insight into the Scriptural Integration (see below).
  9. DE’s should enlist a local spiritual advisor (friend, pastor or church rep) to help explain the verse and pray. Contact 168 Film for help with this.
  10. WRITING BEFORE VERSE ASSIGNMENT = DISQUALIFICATION. Writers should pray & trust that inspiration will be provided.
  11. Scriptural Integration is how artfully the story is built on the foundational verse and its intended meaning. Writers MUST understand the verse and integrate it well to excel. This is not always a literal representation of the verse. Subtlety can be exhilarating! 
  12. CONTENT: Overtly Christian characters are not required. However, authentic Christian characters are encouraged versus one dimensional Christian caricatures. Heroes should come to be aligned with truth, goodness, God and the Bible. As Jesus is our redemption, redemptive stories are ideal, even if it's just a hint of redemption. If artists write a tragedy, there must be real consequences for sin. Winking at or poking fun at hell, taboos and sin is a bad idea for this contest. No swearing or using the word “God” or “Jesus” as an expletive. No gratuitous sex, violence, drug use or blasphemy (disrespect to Jesus, God or the Spirit of God).
  13. Writers will submit scripts to the DE’s by the deadline. Late scripts and/or scripts turned in with incomplete paperwork are ineligible.
  14. DE’s will work to ensure paperwork (contract) is sent before the start of the contest. Late, incomplete paperwork and/or unpaid fees will result in disqualification.
  15. DE’s will submit the top third as finalists, 2 of 6 (or 1 of up to 5 writers). This may vary from year to year depending on entries.
  16. 168 Film is the sole authority in contest eligibility and rules.
  17. Each writer's final draft will be sent via email to the entrant's DE (mentor). The time stamp of the email (adjusted for the DE's time zone) shall be the determining factor of an on-time entry. This will be a PDF file. DEs will report any late entries to 168 as disqualified from judging.
  18. DE’s will submit finalists’ scripts via email. Finalists will be posted at 168film.com.
  19. Writers should receive notes from their DE. DE’s are evaluated anonymously by writers.

After the Competition

  1. All screenplays are eligible for production by 168 Film Project producers as Write of Passage Spotlight Films.
  2. Under no circumstances shall any films based on an Write of Passage screenplay be exhibited publicly before their original premiere at the 168 Film Festival.
  3. All writers agree to allow producers in the 168 Film Project a first look option to use their screenplay. All rights revert to writer after the 168 Film Project's last entry deadline for that year. Finalist writer contact info will be offered to interested producers. Screenwriters will be retained as the top credited writer and will be consulted for rewrites. The winning DE shall be “attached” to the script/project as a Development Executive or similar title. The DE level of engagement is to be determined by the producer.
  4. Un-optioned/un-produced films remain property of the writers. Writers retain all character and story rights for future development in all media.
  5. Writers and/or DE’s may produce their script or another from this or previous Write of Passage contests for the 168 Film Project competition. If there is competition for the story, the best production team shall be awarded the license by Write of Passage management.
  6. Writer grants a non-exclusive license to students for use in producing a film by which they can learn the art of filmmaking (starting with an excellent story). Writers will receive credit on the film (if it is desired). Students shall consult with writers and will change the title of the short film to an acceptable title if the writer so desires. The film shall be credited as “A 168 Write of Passage Student Film.”
  7. Write of Passage Film Producers will make their case for the option of any script they wish to produce. Screenplay license will be awarded based on producer application. 168 Film will manage this process to attempt to ensure a successful production. Per 168 Film approval, these producers will then produce the films.
  8. No producers are guaranteed the license of a script. It is awarded at the sole discretion of the 168 Film staff with input from the writer.
  9. Resulting films will be possible inclusions for online media or in other public media offerings.
  10. “168” Producers may produce Write of Passage films at their leisure with a Non-Speed Film entry. However, they must observe all rules and film specifications. Turn-in deadline is the same as for Speed Films.
  11. All finished film copyrights are the property of the funding producer(s). 168 Film will receive a perpetual, limited license to screen the film at festivals and in all media including the film’s premiere at the 168 Film Festival. These films will be produced according to the contract and licensing agreement for the 168 Film Project. An uncompensated, non-exclusive license of the film is also granted.

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