Rules for the International Movie Trailer Festival’s “Preview Your Screenplay” Movie Trailer Script Contest:

To enter this contest, you must:

  1. Complete the Entry Form.
  2. Pay the required fee using an online pay method accessed through the Entry Form.
  3. Upload your script in a PDF or Word file following the instructions in the Entry Form.
  4. Submit the Entry Form electronically.
  5. Agree to the following rules.

Entrant Eligibility

The International Movie Trailer Festival (IMTF) script contest is open to everyone around the world and throughout the universe except for the following individuals:

IMTF’s owners, paid staff, consultants, and the immediate families (siblings, spouses, children, parents) of the owners, paid staff, and consultants.

People living in places where local or U.S. law prohibits this kind of competition.

Note: Screenwriters of any age may submit entries, but if you are too young to make a legal contract (younger than 18 years in most U.S. jurisdictions), your Entry Form for this contest must include the name and contact information of a parent or guardian

Movie Trailer Script Requirements

Concept: The script must promote the screenplay for a feature-length fiction movie as yet unproduced

Genre: Your script may be for a story in any genre, for example, biography, comedy, drama, science fiction, horror, or thriller.

Script elements: The script should follow standard screenwriting conventions (see sample scripts) and must include a Title page that lists the script’s title, writer’s name, and writer’s or writers’ contact information. (We accept scripts written by two writers.) Some or all of following elements should be included:

  • Scene headings (Int. or Ext., name of location, time—day or night)
  • Action
  • Dialogue/narration
  • Title cards providing information in separate shots or superimposed
  • Transitions (fade out, fade in, etc.)

Length: Your script should be one to three pages—of a length that could be turned into a movie trailer that would run between one minute and three minutes.

Language: The script must be written in English.

Submission format: The script—to be uploaded with your online submission form—should be saved as a PDF or Word file.

Rating: The script must qualify for a rating of G or PG as defined by the MPAA ( This means that there will be no descriptions of explicit sex or violence, and adult language must be limited. There should be no racial, gender, or other slurs that would be offensive to a general audience. The rating applies only to the script. The screenplay represented by the trailer might have a different rating. Note: For purpose of this competition, the IMTF staff will determine if a script meets the rating qualifications. If you are unsure whether your script meets the rating qualifications and want approval before submitting, you may email your script to We will then review it and respond. If you don’t check with us and submit a script that does not meet our rating qualifications, your script will not be included in the contest, and you will not receive a refund.

Originality: Your script should be original with you and must not infringe on any copyrighted material in any form

Copyright clearance: If you use any material owned or copyrighted by someone else, you must have written permission to use that material. Owned and copyrighted material includes—but is not limited to—song lyrics and material appearing in books, newspapers, magazines, and websites.


All prizes listed here will be awarded:

  • Grand Prize: $1,000
  • Best script in each of the following genres—comedy, drama, science fiction, horror, action/thriller—$100.
  • Honorable mention (5): Script notes on the entry’s underlying feature screenplay

Other prizes may be added at the discretion of IMTF. In this case, announcements will be made on this website.

Judging the Entries

The IMTF staff will select approximately 40 semi-finalists. A jury of screenwriting experts will then choose the top winners after considering the following elements:

  • Idea (originality of the concept)
  • Story (including plot, actions, and dialogue/narration)
  • Persuasiveness (does the trailer script make the reader want to read the full-length screenplay or watch a movie made from it)

The judges will give extra weighting to persuasiveness and originality. All decisions made by the staff and the jury are final and may not be appealed.

Rights Granted to IMTF

By entering the IMTF contest, you agree to allow IMTF to publish brief excerpts from your trailer script in promotional materials and on our website.

All other rights will remain with you, including the rights to produce a movie using the ideas in your script, and using your ideas to create works in any and all other media, such as books, plays, photo novels, and radio shows. We recommend that you protect your intellectual property by registering your script with an organization such as the Writers Guild of America, West (


Deadline for entering the competition: Your Entry Form, including the fee and a copy of your script must be received no later than 11:59 pm on September 15, 2011 Pacific Coast Time (US). IMTF reserves the right to extend this deadline and will announce any extensions on IMTF’s website:

Deadline for announcing the winners: Names of winners will be posted on our website and announced to all entrants via email no later than November 30, 2011

Fees and Refunds

  • The fee is $25. If the deadline is extended, the late fee may be higher.
  • Payment may be made by PayPal or credit card. Cash and checks will not be accepted. Fees must be paid at the time you submit your Entry Form; a link for this purpose is included as part of the online Entry Form.
  • Multiple entries: You may submit more than one entry, but each entry must be submitted separately—this means, completing a separate Entry Form and paying a separate fee.

Representations and Warranties

You represent and warrant that all materials included in your submission shall be owned by you or lawfully licensed to you for the purposes intended under this agreement and that no claim shall be made against IMTF relating to same by any person or entity now and in perpetuity throughout the Universe.


If any action is brought against IMTF arising from any breach by you of any term, representation, or warranty under this agreement, you hereby agree to defend, indemnify, and make whole IMTF and its agents, employees, managers, owners, representatives, successors, and assigns against any and all damages of any description, including any attorneys’ fees incurred in defending against any such claim.

Governing Law

This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the internal laws of the State of California. The California state and the federal courts sitting in the County of Marin or the Northern District of California shall be the sole jurisdiction and venue for any actions brought to enforce the terms of this Agreement.


Any disputes that cannot be settled between you the entrant and IMTF will be resolved by binding arbitration using the services of the American Arbitration Association, with presentations being made in San Francisco, California, or at a place chosen by IMTF within 50 miles of San Francisco.


If you have questions about the rules or the contest, write: