Atlanta Film Festival

2011 ATLFF Screenplay Competition

Two Weeks until the Regular Deadline

The Atlanta Film Festival Screenplay Competition looks to discover high quality screenplays and then help the writer further develop and refine their script through an intensive workshop retreat (December 9-11, 2011) with professional writers and filmmakers.

SUBMISSION DEADLINESNate Kohn mentoring Screenplay Retreat Winners
Earlybird Deadline: CLOSED
Regular Deadline: August 15, 2011
Late Deadline: September 19, 2011
WAB Extended Deadline: September 26, 2011

Find submission fees, including ATLFF member and student discounts, for each deadline on and

Three (3) winning screenwriters will be invited to participate in a weekend retreat (December 9-11, 2011) where they will workshop their screenplay with industry professionals. Value of Goods/Services: 2,500 U.S. Dollar Twelve to Fifteen finalists will be named, from which the three winning screenplays will be chosen.



Michael is a writer, director, producer and consultant with twenty years experience creating film, television, animation and digital media.  He began his career writing and directing television commercials in college in Boston.  Soon after, he landed in Los Angeles working in production on series for ABC, NBC, CBS and HBO before taking a job as assistant to Steven Spielberg at Amblin Entertainment on feature films Indiana Jones & the Last Crusade, Arachnophobia, Joe Vs. The Volcano, Always, Back To The Future II & III and Jurassic Park.  He went onto work in creative affairs at Hollywood Pictures, helping develop the movies Crimson Tide, Terminal Velocity, Taking Care of Business and Straight Talk. 

Michael then embarked on a career as a screenwriter, penning more than twenty feature screenplays for Paramount, Disney, DreamWorks, Fox and Universal, including Vampire In Brooklyn, Home On The Range and Spirit, which was nominated for Academy Award in 2002 as best animated feature. He also served as screenwriter on the animated sequels to Mulan, Lilo & Stitch, Emperor’s New Groove and 101 Dalmatians. An opportunity to consult on the development of an online comedy network for Turner Entertainment took him home to Atlanta in 2007. He joined non-fiction production house, Crazy Legs Productions, in 2009 as a production partner where his network writing, directing and producing credits now include Animal Planet, Cartoon Network, DIY, History, Discovery, MSNBC, Travel Channel and TBS. He currently serves as the president of Lucky Dog Filmworks, the creative director for Health Watch MD and as a guest lecturer at Emory University. Michael is represented by CAA.

More TBA


The Atlanta Film Festival has a 4 decade long history of discovering and nurturing new filmmaking talent, including showing early works by Robert Rodriguez, Spike Lee, and Victor Nunez. The Atlanta Film Festival Screenplay Competition offers the winners the opportunity to workshop their script with industry professionals at a weekend retreat. Past Mentors have included Kent Osborne (HANNAH TAKES THE STAIRS, SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS), Morgan J. Freeman (HURRICANE), Anne Hubbell (THANKSGIVING), Carly Hugo (PETER AND VANDY, HOT COFFEE), Stephen Israel (SWIMMING WITH SHARKS), J.T. Petty (THE BURROWERS, SPLINTER CELL: CHAOS THEORY), Joel Zwick (MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING) Amy Dotson (Producer & Managing Director for IFP NY), and Rob Long (CHEERS, GEORGE & LEO). The retreat brings the writers of the winning screenplays together not only with established writers, but also with producers and directors who can provide a different perspective on the script and advice on how to move forward towards getting the project produced.

Comments from participants in the Screenwriter’s Retreat:

“Attending the Screenwriters Lab was invigorating and made me feel completely alive as an artist!”

“This competition offers you what very few can, a personal and relaxed atmosphere to meet with professionals who are willing to take the time to not only get to know your writing but you as a person.”

“Not only did I absolutely have a blast down there, as we were all treated like VIPs for the weekend, but more importantly, the workshop proved to be invaluable, as I received a lot of great notes and feedback that should definitely help me in making this next draft even more compelling.”

“The writer’s retreat, meeting all of the mentors and the amazing ATLFF staff continues to stand as a highlight in my career as a screenwriter.”

Feature screenplays must be 60 to 140 pages long in standard screenplay format with 12-point courier font. Screenplays longer than 140 pages will not be accepted. Entrants must submit one hard copy version of the screenplay or an electronic copy, as a Word Document and/or PDF file, available for judging. For your own protection, we recommend that you copyright or register your work. Finalists must be available for a phone interview during the week of October 17th, and please note that the award for winning the competition is a trip to Atlanta for a Screenwriting Retreat the weekend of December 9-11, 2011. Travel (from within the United States) and lodging will be provided for the weekend.