Types of Projects

Q: What stage should the projects that are still in edit be?

A: For narrative work, it’s advised that you’ve completed principal photography. Ideally the film or episode(s) being submitted are well on their way through postproduction. For documentary work, you have at minimum a scene assembly, all the way through to a completed film or episode(s).

Q: How far along should my screenplay be?

A: If it’s a first draft, we won’t tell you no, but we encourage work that has been through more than one substantive revision. If you have questions about whether to submit, reach out and together we’ll figure out what’s best.

Q: My film is not at the fine cut stage yet, should I submit?

A: If you feel the work is at a developed enough stage to benefit from Breakthrough, then we encourage you to consider submitting your project. We are happy to have a conversation with you to help you determine if this year is the best time to submit.

Q: May I update my submission after I’ve already applied.

A: We encourage you to apply once your piece is in the state you want the judges to consider it in. It is not guaranteed that updated cuts will be viewed by the panel.

Q: Can I submit a video or visual installation?

A: Sounds cool. This is, however, probably not the event to best feature that kind of work.  

Q: Are VR projects accepted?

A: Yes, provided the piece has a narrative thrust. If you’re thinking of submitting something, let us know, and we will help you determine if your piece is appropriate. Get in touch with us at breakthrough@thefilmshop.org.

Supplementary Material

Q: What is the procedure for submitting supplemental material?

A: Supplementary material should be emailed to breakthrough@thefilmshop.org and must include your name and the submission title in the file name (e.g., “JaneSmith_MyProject.pdf”). For media files, you must submit a link. Please use the subject heading “SUPPLEMENTARY MATERIAL Jane Smith, My Project", making sure your name and submission title appear in the email.

Q: Can you submit a proof-of-concept short with a feature script?

A: A proof-of-concept short would be considered supplemental material. While the judges may consider it in making their selections, please be aware it is not guaranteed to be reviewed.

Q: Can I submit a pitch deck along with a script?

A: A 1-page treatment is required for consideration in the screenplay category. Should you desire to submit supplementary materials, have them ready to send as an accessible link or separate file with the naming convention indicated above. Supplementary materials are not guaranteed to be reviewed by judges, but may be considered.


Q: If I’m not currently enrolled in a workshop chapter, may I still submit?

A: Yes, if the project was workshopped during one of the seasons indicated. If your project was workshopped before Fall 2015, get in touch with us at breakthrough@thefilmshop.org.

The Event

Q: How will the event itself run?

A: While the exact structure is being worked out, we intend to hold a daylong event with three separate sessions, one for each submission category. Selected projects will be presented during these sessions, along with a conversation between the filmmakers and a panel of industry guests. Further details will be announced in the coming months. Stay tuned!