Submission Guidelines/FAQ

How to submit a project for consideration
Newcity wants to make a feature film, but does not have a project yet. Do you have one we should consider?  Please read on for guidelines on what we’re looking for, and what we’re not.

This is not a contest. 
We don’t have rules, money to award or a specific deadline. We might look at hundreds of ideas, but if someone sends us the perfect project tomorrow, we might just move forward with it. Think of us as a producer you might send a project to, rather than a contest you’d enter.

We’ll respond to you, but won’t offer a critique.
We’ll let you know as soon as we can if you’ve sent something we’d like to get to know more about, or if it is simply not for us. But if it’s the latter, we don’t have the time or resources to tell you why. It’s probably perfect for someone else, anyway.

We don’t have any money for this (yet).
We’re in the  publishing business, remember? Our financing strategy will be determined once we identify a project and craft a budget. We might crowd-fund it; we might raise angel money, or even something larger.  But think indie.

You’ll be in a kind of spotlight from day one. 
This is also a journalism project and we’ll be documenting all steps of the process, starting from the outset. Though we’re certainly not going to publish whole scripts without permission, we’ll possibly write about several projects we’re considering, to show the decision-making process. By submitting a project to us, you acknowledge that we might write about it in print or online. If you’re not open to that, make sure you state it explicitly in your cover letter, but know that the likelihood of your project getting chosen is greatly reduced.

We’re looking for features. 
Not docs. Not shorts. Not experimental art projects. We love them all, but this is not about them.

This project needs to be “made in Chicago.”
This means a few things. You, the screenwriter, need to be of Chicago. What does that mean? It means you live here, or you’re from here and still spend a meaningful part of your life here, even if you’re mailing address is somewhere else. Make sure you address this in your cover letter as well.

This also means the story can’t be specifically set somewhere else. No rom-com romps through the rainforest. No action pictures spelunking through the caves of Eastern Europe. No intergalactic horror stories, unless mission control is in Chicago.

But the story need not be explicitly set here, either. It can be set in an anonymous apartment anywhere, etc.

How to get involved.
To pitch an idea, email us at chicagofilmproject@newcity.com. Send a cover letter discussing your background and your project, and any specific thoughts you have about the realization of your vision that you’d want us to consider. Include a synopsis of the screenplay and its first five pages. (Don’t send other work, other screenplays, etc. If we want to see more of anything, we’ll ask.) Do not send a hard copy of any materials, and do not call unless you’ve been called first. If you have not heard back, that means you’re still in the running.

If you’re not a screenwriter, but an actor, line producer, cinematographer, etc.
See “How to get involved above” and do everything except send a project. In other words, send an email that tells us about yourself. But know that all other personnel decisions will follow the project selection.

Sign up for our email updates and check this site.
We’ll post regular updates on where we are in the process.

Let’s have some fun, and create something wonderful.