From an original field of over 750 writers and after three intense challenges, 25 finalists were challenged to create a 5 page screenplay in 48 hours based on the following assignment:


Genre: Open

Location: A crater

Object: Pepper spray


The top screenplays overall are listed below.  Congratulations to the winners, to the finalists for making it through each challenge along the way, and to everyone that participated for creating so many amazing screenplays this year!


#1 - ''Love After the Apocalypse: A Helpful 'How To' Guide'' by Teresa Bass LOGLINE: A desperate young woman seeking post-apocalyptic companionship learns how to summon a demon spirit into a human cadaver in this handy-dandy instructional video.

#2 - ''Tough Guys'' by Ted Janet LOGLINE: Three boys recount stories of bravery and heroics in war torn Aleppo.

#3 - ''The Sighting'' by Taylor Toole LOGLINE: Business is slow at Arizona's largest crater.

#4 - ''Old Growth'' by Jamie Adams LOGLINE: In which we are made to consider once more the extent to which man rules the Earth.

#5 - ''Dr. Creeper'' by Dena McKinnon and Kevin Lenihan LOGLINE: A girl with cancer, heartbroken by the suffering of her family, seeks out a mythical figure to help with a permanent solution.

#Honorable Mention - ''#solidarity'' by Adrienne Frank LOGLINE: The news media descends on a demonstration at a nuclear test site to report on protesters, police, and celebrities, with one glaring omission.

#Honorable Mention - ''Soak'' by Eli Black LOGLINE: Ernie's relaxing soak in a hot spring becomes anything but...

#Honorable Mention - ''HE'S GONNA GET IT'' by Jason A. White LOGLINE: Goaded by his best friend, a high school teen asks out his crush, the hot exchange student, but discovers this romance may be more than he bargained for.

#Honorable Mention - ''Impact'' by Helen Vivienne Fletcher LOGLINE: A woman travels to the site of her son’s death, planning to die there herself, but an unexpected encounter helps her to find peace.

#Honorable Mention - ''Until the Stars Stop Singing'' by Brien Gorham LOGLINE: Beatrice confronts a strange crone living in a growing crater in the woods. The crater will engulf her house if she can't find a way to satiate the creature.



The Short Screenplay Challenge is a competition that challenges writers around the world to create short screenplays (5 pages max.) based on genre, location, and object assignments. Each writer will participate in at least 2 writing challenges and as many as 4 depending on how well they place in each challenge.  When the competition begins, writers are placed in groups where they will be judged against other writers within their same group.  Each group receives its own unique genre, location, and object assignments (see past examples here).  After 2 challenges, the top 5 writers that score the highest advance to the next challenge (#3).  In Challenge #3, writers are placed in new groups and given a new genre, location, and object assignment.  The top 5 writers from each of the groups in Challenge #3 advance to the fourth and final challenge of the competition where they are given the final genre, location, and object assignment and compete for over $13,000 in cash and prizes.  Sound like fun?  Register below or click here for a more detailed description of how the competition works.


Never written a screenplay before?  Click here to check out an article going over the basics.



Registration is now closed.


Official Rules & Participation Agreement



View the 2nd Round Results!

View the 1st Round Results!



  Early Entry Deadline September 29, 2016
  Final Entry Deadline October 27, 2016
  Challenge #1: October 28-30, 2016
  Challenge #2: December 16-18, 2016
  Challenge #3: January 27-29, 2017
  Challenge #4: March 3-5, 2017



Not only does every writer receive feedback from the judges for every screenplay that is submitted, but a special review forum is available for the participants to submit their screenplays for review from fellow writers throughout the competition.  During the last Short Screenplay Challenge, there were over 1,700 comments made on the 160+ screenplays submitted on the forum.  Click here to visit the forums.



Stephen W.
Wellesley, MA, USA
“This was a fantastic challenge. Had to make a script using Suspense on a high speed train. Just a blast!”
Amy L.
Oakland, CA, USA
“That was the first screenplay I've ever written! I've been meaning to for a long time, and finally decided I needed a deadline. Looking forward to the next one.”
Sergio S.
Bournemouth, GB
“A great challenge! My script is done and it is amazing what you can do within 5 pages! Mentally and artistically stimulating! Thank you!”
Shia S.
Oakland, CA, USA
“Submitted my Round 2 script. I whined the entire time. I will be all nerves until we get results. I LOVE this process. I can feel my growth as a writer/creative/human. Good luck to us all!”
Maria C.
Malden, MA, USA
“First Suspense script for me...It was tough!!!! Really not my thing...But thanks for the new experience, NYC Midnight! Hoping for a Romantic Comedy next time.”
Randy B.
Portland, OR, USA
“That was a great exercise! It came really fast and then just the tweakin'. 5 pages, it has to be TIGHT.”
Debra H.

(Lambton, Australia)
"Exhausted. The challenge is real and the relief of having completed it is awesome.”
David W.

Royersford, PA, USA
“Script submitted with just 2 minutes to spare. Had a blast!”
Tammy M.

Bolingbrook, IL, USA
“First time trying this. I loved the creative challenge. Came out to 5 pages exactly.”








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