Submissions 2016

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The 2016 WGSA MUSE AWARDS are now closed!

JUDGING

The judging process is jury based and multi-phased:

  • each script is judged by three judges and all scripts are anonymous
  • the three finalists in every category will be the three persons who scored on average the highest points, provided that their average scores are above 60%.

The judging panel/s will be selected by the MUSE Awards Committee. They will consist of local and international film & television professionals.
Any judge who has a direct or an indirect interest in an entry or category (for example, the judge may be a writer who has an entry in a particular category) has to declare such interest and will be excluded from judging in that category.

Any decision made by the MUSE Awards Committee shall be final and binding and no correspondence will be entered into. The MUSE Awards Judges Panel will be overseen by an overall chairperson, who shall be the WGSA Executive Officer. The WGSA Executive Officer may not participate in the awards.

All results will be verified by the WGSA appointed Auditors. A panel of independent judges selected by the WGSA MUSE Awards Committee will be looking for the following:

CONCEPT AND THEME

  • Is the concept original?
  • Is the main story idea strong and unique?
  • Is it compelling and engaging?
  • Is the idea timely?
  • Will the theme, as it is revealed through the protagonist’s journey, visual elements and dialogue, grab the audience?

CHARACTERISATION

  • Are the characters distinctive, compelling, multi-layered and well motivated?
  • Do the protagonist and antagonist, or ensemble cast, have clear and active goals?
  • What is the protagonist’s internal conflict? Is the overcoming of their internal conflict addressed at the crisis point at second act climax, or early in the third act, and resolved so that the character may fulfil the external goal?
  • Alternatively, if the script does not follow a three act structure is it well structured with rising tension and reversals building to a satisfying climax?
  • Will the audience identify with the protagonist(s)?
  • If the writer has created an unlikeable protagonist is s/he so fascinating that the audience will be compelled to watch the character?
  • Is the characters’ behaviour consistent with human nature?

GENRE

  • How well has the writer applied the conventions of the genre(s) in this screenplay/stage play/documentary?
  • If the writer mixed genres has this led to a fresher, more interesting and less predictable outcome?
  • Has the writer demonstrated an understanding of the nature of the protagonist and antagonist for the genre chosen?
  • Has the writer applied the narrative style and dramatic arc expected for the genre?
  • If the project is not a genre film, do the storytelling and characterisation work on their own terms to create a compelling art or specialist/niche film?

LANGUAGE AND STYLE

  • Is the writing distinctive and cinematic?
    Does it effectively convey the mood or “feel” of the story? Is there a strong visual quality to the screenplay? Does it convey that the writer has an understanding of image systems/semiotics and is able to use them imaginatively?

STORY AND STRUCTURE

  • Does the screenplay reflect an understanding of how a story should be structured to achieve an emotionally satisfying experience for the audience?
  • In other words, has the writer been able to combine a subjective story with the structure of the objective story?
  • Is there a clear, balanced and original central conflict that will play out in a cinematic way?
  • Is the story unpredictable?
  • If the project has a non-linear structure, has the writer given the story a thematic unity to maintain our interest?

PACE

  • Does the plot raise a series of increasingly difficult obstacles (progressive complications) to test the characters on their journey to the climax and resolution and raise dramatic questions to maintain the audience’s interest?
  • Does the writer manage to maintain dramatic intensity in each scene?
  • Is the pace appropriate for the genre chosen?

DIALOGUE

  • Is the dialogue natural, succinct, and unique to each character?

PROFESSIONAL FORMAT & PRESENTATION

WGSA MUSE AWARD CATEGORIES

The categories for which entries will be accepted for the 2016 WGSA MUSE AWARDS.

Produced or unproduced scripts may be entered for any category. Any unproduced work not registered with a script registry will be disqualified.

  1. SCREEN
    1. Feature Film (A minimum of 75 and maximum 130 page. Anything shorter could be a made-for-television drama and anything longer will be disqualified.)
    2. Short Film (The range of these films can be anything from a couple of seconds to 45 and 50 minutes. The scripts could be between 5 and 30 pages.)
  2. TELEVISION (If unproduced it must be the pilot episode.)
    1. Drama
    2. Soap / Telenovella
    3. Sitcom / Comedy
  3. DOCUMENTARY
    1. Feature
    2. Series (If unproduced it must be the pilot episode.)
    3. Short
  4. STAGE PLAY
  5. RADIO DRAMA
  6. ANIMATION
    1. Feature
    2. Series (if unproduced it must be the pilot episode)
    3. Short
  7. GAMES
  8. WEB SERIES
The MUSE Awards Committee reserves the right to add, subtract or change categories at their discretion, or not to grant an award in a category if, for any reason, they deem it reasonable not to do so. Should there be less than 5 entries within a category, the category will be scrapped

RULES AND PROCEDURES

CERTIFICATES & TROPHIES

  • Every Finalist will receive a personalised Finalist Certificate.
  • Each Winner will receive a personalised Winners Certificate and a WGSA MUSE Trophy.

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS, RULES AND REGULATIONS

By submitting an entry, each entrant:

  • agrees to accept and abide by all rules and entry requirements as laid down from time to time by the MUSE Awards Committee.
  • accepts that all decisions made by the MUSE Awards Committee or its agents are final, and
  • warrants that their script is eligible to be entered into the selected category in accordance with these Rules and Regulations.
  • submissions from writing teams must all be members of the WGSA and must enter by submitting the names of all interested parties. If only one of the partners is a WGSA member, they must submit a letter from the other parties giving permission that they agree to the submission. Should the team become one of the finalists / win – only one trophy will be awarded, but all parties will be mentioned.
  • agrees to pay the WGSA an entry fee of R100.00 per script entered.

ELIGIBILITY

  • Only scripts written by paid-up members of the WGSA are allowed to enter the WGSA Muse Awards.
  • Scripts previously entered into any other competitions are eligible.
  • Produced scripts previously entered into the WGSA muse awards are not eligible.
  • Produced feature film, long form animation and stage scripts must have been publicly exhibited, released to the public on DVD or broadcast in South Africa between the 1st October 2015 and the 30th of September 2016
  • Produced TV category scripts must have been publicly exhibited or broadcast in South Africa between the 1st October 2015 and the 10th of October 2016
  • All unproduced scripts must be registered with the WGSA script registry. In cases where these scripts are not totally unencumbered (i.e. the writer does not still own the script and all the rights contained therein), the writers must obtain written permission to enter these scripts.

MARKETING AND PUBLICITY

By submitting an entry, all entrants grant the muse awards committee all the rights necessary for them to;

  • Use excerpts – no longer than two pages each – from their entry to market and publicise the WGSA muse awards,
  • Use excerpts from their entry at an awards event, and
  • To retain two copies of every entry in its library for archival purposes.
  • The scriptwriter agrees that the Muse awards committee may approach the producer and/or license holder for clips from the production to use for publicity and other purposes connected with the Muse Awards, and by entering, assigns all the rights that they may hold for this to take place to the Muse Awards Committee.
  • By submitting an entry, all finalists for an award grant to the Muse awards committee and all appointed media partners including broadcasters all the rights necessary for them to use the following phrases in their marketing and publicity campaigns; “finalist in the WGSA Muse Award 20…” &/or “finalist in the  WGSA Muse 20… Award for best (insert category here) script”.

WGSA CEREMONIES

  • Entrants agree that should they become a finalist in a category, they will make every effort to attend the awards event or they will ensure that a suitable recipient is in attendance to accept the award on their behalf.
  • The Muse Awards Committee will inform the finalists of their selection at the e-mail address supplied by them in their entry form.
  • THE WGSA MUSE AWARD CEREMONY will take place on 11 FEBRUARY 2017 at the MARKET THEATRE, Johannesburg

THE MUSE AWARDS COMMITTEE

  • The Muse Awards Committee is an advisory panel which guides the administration of the awards.
  • All Muse Awards Committee decisions are final and binding and no correspondence will be entered into.
  • The Muse Awards Committee and their agents are not responsible for any loss or damage of material submitted for entry.
  • Entries are made at an entrant’s own expense and the Muse Awards Committee, its agents and staff shall not, under any circumstances, be liable to reimburse any expenses incurred in submitting an entry.

COMPLAINTS AND GRIEVANCES

All complaints or grievances are to be lodged in writing with The MUSE Awards Committee at admin@writersguildsa.org

HOW TO ENTER

If it is an unproduced work – register your work by contacting admin@writersguildsa.org. Upon receipt of your registration number, enter it on your script.

Then, follow the steps below

  1. Download the entry form, fill out and return to admin@writersguildsa.org together with the following documentation:
    1. Proof of payment of the R100 non-refundable entry fee
    2. Your script in pdf format – the script must have a title, and must contain your WGSA MEMBERSHIP NUMBER. All your personal contact, including your name must be removed from the script to ensure a free and fair judging process. If it is an unproduced work, it must contain your WGSA Registration number.
  2. There is no limit to the number of entries an entrant may submit, however, in the case of a series or serial, only one episode from that series by the same writer may be entered per category
  3. Entry deadline: 10 October 2016

WARRANTY

  1. The entrant warrants that:
    1. they are the author of the script,
    2. by entering the awards, the entrant agrees to abide by the rules and regulations and the entry requirements,
    3. the information entered on the Online Entry Form is correct,
    4. they are authorised to enter the script by the rights holder, and agree to hold the WGSA, the MUSE Awards Committee, its agents and staff blameless, and indemnify them entirely from any and all lawsuits, fees and/or other settlements, which might arise out of any dispute whatsoever, including but not limited to copyright violation.
  2. The entrant accepts that incorrect information on an entry form or any other deviation from the rules will automatically result in disqualification of that entry.
  3. By submitting an entry, all winners of an award grant to the MUSE Awards Committee and all its agents the rights necessary for them to use the following phrase in their marketing and publicity campaigns: “Winner of a WGSA MUSE Award” and/or “Winner of a WGSA MUSE Award for best (insert category here) script”

KEY DATES AND DEADLINES

  • Closing date for submissions:  10 October 2016
  • First round judging:  15 October to 15 November 2016
  • Final round judging:  16 November to 15 December 2016

Muse awards ceremony:  11 February 2017

QUESTIONS AND QUERIES

Any questions regarding the running of the WGSA MUSE AWARDS, the rules, categories or the judging process should be submitted in writing to admin@writersguildsa.org. Please include all your contact details in the correspondence.

SUBMISSION

The submission period is now over.

Be on the lookout for news about the nominees!