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Ergocinema / Drehbuchpreis

Screenplay Award

The Ergocinema Screenplay Award is intended to build a bridge for all of us, a bridge to the time after the pandemic. It should give hope for a real restart of culture and for a stable future in which we can plan film projects properly again and meet in real life without restrictions. The award ceremony will take place in 2023 as part of the INDEPENDENT DAYS | International Film Festival Karlsruhe. The screenplay award is supported by the Filmboard Karlsruhe e. V., the sponsor of the Independent Days.

My firm belief is that we need to help and build each other up. That’s why this event doesn’t run like the big festivals, where Brad and Angelina let the limo pull up and dance up the stairs to thunderous applause from the crowd, only to disappear into the hall alone. No, you’re at the forefront and you’ll hear everything, because at this price, excerpts from the script are read and analyzed in public. The interested audience is therefore part of the process and can vote for their favourites,

Screenplay Award History

What began at the beginning of Corona with the video series “We read scripts” and the “Writers Room” – the latter made it into the magazine FREUNDIN (formerly FILM REVUE) as the most popular lockdown activity – is now finally culminating in this German script prize . I’ve been meaning to donate a prize for a long time, but this time everything just comes together: you submit your material and after a pre-selection we read the scripts together on YouTube in the live stream..

The Audience decides who gets nominated

As for the nomination, you are the jury. Everyone can comment, share and like what the stuff holds. The more of you who participate, the more fun the action will be and scriptwriters will finally get the visibility they deserve. The five most successful books will be nominated by you for the award and the winner will be honored by me at the Independent Days.

Of course, I realize that the idea of ​​a public reading puts many off. However, I believe that we can all become bolder. Especially in a digital world that is changing faster and faster and more and more networked.

How the submission works

Do you see yourselves as youngsters or as old hands? No matter where you stand, this award is not about the prejudices of others or the glory of the past. It is intended to advance the current screenwriting trade and therefore invites all screenwriters to participate, regardless of age, gender or origin. It doesn’t matter whether you’re from Emden, Salzburg or Berlin, Hesse, North Rhine-Westphalia or Baden-Württemberg, whether you’re from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, even France, the USA or Russia – this screenplay prize is international and inclusive. The most important requirement is that the script was written in German.

In the end, it’s all about finding the best story that’s best translated into script form. Freely adapted from Mark Twain: A good story well told. Diversity is in the foreground, which is why every genre is welcome and the submission of action, adventure, fantasy, horror and science fiction is expressly desired.

Ergocinema Drehbuchpreis Logo

Conditions of Participation

There are also a few formal conditions for the submission of the scripts:

  • Everyone is only allowed to enter with one script
  • We are only looking for feature film screenplays (80-120 pages in PDF format)
  • A logline must be submitted with the script (1-2 sentences, maximum 50 words)
  • You must own all rights to the script and agree that the logline and script excerpt may be read publicly

All other information such as submission deadlines, prize money, etc. can be found on Filmfreeway. You can submit your script there exclusively:

I wish you every success and have fun writing. May the best win!

– Sven Eric Maier