The prize

“The competition that goes on giving” is how Rob McLellan described The Pitch after he had won and taken his film to the US. We like to think this is true for all of our finalists and thanks to new sponsors we can offer enhanced prizes for the best 10 pitches as selected by our panel of Judges. This page will give you details on our masterclasses, residential course, runners up fund and of course our outstanding £30,000 fund for the winning film to be made. We think this makes this the most generous short film offer around, but don’t take our word for it – check out the interviews below as well.

The Residential Course

As a top 10 finalist, you will attend a residential course led by an industry professional. The course will take place between Sunday 8 December 2019 and Tuesday 10 December 2019. 

The Live Pitch at National Film and Television School

As a top 10 finalist, you will spend the day at National Film and Television School, pitch your film to the panel and meet the judges. After a presentation to all finalists, you will discover if you have been selected as one of this year's winning Pitchers. If you are, you’ll get the chance to go away and hone your pitch, based on feedback from the panel, before coming back to do a final pitch. All Pitchers are invited to network and meet the judges at a reception in the evening. 

Ten for Ten Years

Usually we invite the top three Pitchers to stay overnight on the Saturday. But this year all ten finalists will be invited to stay overnight on Saturday 18 January. The top three finalists will have the chance to talk to the panel again on the Sunday 19 January, looking in more depth at the strengths and weaknesses of their ideas. The other seven finalists will attend a special presentation.

The Runners up Fund

Subject to sponsorship, we will continue to offer additional support to the runners up. The panel will look at the best next step for our runners up. They will recommend the allocation of available funds to best support them move forward. This could be funds to create a smart and sharp version of the Pitch idea for a designated short film festival, it could be to pump prime the full short film or some other deliverable. Alternatively it may be allocated to further training or personal development. All of this will include further help and support from The Pitch team and is certainly a prize worth pitching for!

The Winner

Your apprenticeship will be with industry professionals, including script writers, producers, directors, actors, camera operators or directors of photography and post-production experts. During this time, you will be mentored and given advice on how best to turn your pitch into a short film.

The Film

You will get to make a short film based on your pitch. The production and technical support you will receive has an estimated value in excess of £40,000 and at its heart lies a £30,000 cash fund. We believe in investing in people. We want you to have the best possible career boost from this opportunity and we want your film to showcase our competition to the world (we have an important and growing international presence). Our process begins by focussing on the story and characters to develop the strongest script possible. Working alongside leading industry professionals you will have a unique opportunity to experience top level development input.

Film making is a collaborative process and there are times when you will have to defer to our professional judgement. And there are times when we will defer to your artistic vision. The final decision is based solely on what story choices move the heart, what story choices make for the most powerful emotional experience, and how well does the story serve the richness of the underlying source material? You will have to dig deep and reach high. It won’t be easy. Everyone involved checks their ego at the door and does what serves the story best. This will be a great learning experience that will serve your entire film making career. And yes, there will be tears!

Although the exact production schedule will be built around your particular project and circumstances we aim to move into production and shoot by early – mid summer. We hope to have a film to take to LA in time for early November and certainly to premiere at the finals of The Pitch – in January 2021.

The Hollywood experience

You will be flown to Hollywood in Autumn 2020 for a week. During this trip you will have a private meeting with Producer Ralph Winter (Adrift (2018), X-Men, Fantastic Four) who will watch and give feedback on your short film. You will also get to meet other industry professionals. During your stay there will be free time to see the sights and sounds of Hollywood.

The future

Your film will be entered into at least one film festival to be decided by The Pitch team. This will give additional exposure to your film and provide you with the opportunity to network with other film makers. Past winners have had invitations to accompany experienced directors on set, gained managers or agents, and even seen their ideas move into development as feature film ideas.

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