2020 Red & Blue Screenwriting Contest Winners


This spring, Penn’s Cinema & Media Studies Program held its first annual screenwriting contest and received over forty entries. Each script was read by several experienced Hollywood readers, and after a long and competitive process, the winners are listed below. All of the winners will receive cash prizes and opportunities to pitch their stories to Hollywood studios and production companies. We thank everyone for participating in this very successful inaugural year and look forward to reading your scripts next year!

Stanley Jaffe
Scott Lambert
Todd Lieberman
Alexandra Milchan
Michael Rauch
Rich Ross
Matt Selman
Nikki Silver
Lew Schneider
Stacey Snider
David Stern
Mark Waters



Winner: Intersection by Michael Learner, C'17
Commentary: "I thought the writer did a great job... the characterizations were great and really loved how the non-linear structure was used to make a point about evil and virtue and consequences. And I thought the premise - dealing with bad decisions that are made by good people - was powerful and well-timed to the zeitgeist.  All very confident and accomplished.” Stacey Snider

Runner-Up: Etty by Michael Kandel, C'15
Commentary: "The writer is extremely talented.  The dialogue is wonderful. As a character, Etty, is terrific - wonderful and rich. Whoever the writer is, he/she is ready to do very good work." Stanley Jaffe

Finalists (in alphabetical order):
Brimstone Blacktop by Matthew Borlik, C'20
A Spaceship for Graham by Morgan Herrmann, C'20
Devil Metal by Chris Powell, ENG'19


Winner: Welcome to My Mind Palace by Joe Miciak, C'15
Commentary: "Clearly a creative writer, very inventive and funny. The concept is very intellectual." David Stern

Runner-Up: Thoughts & Feelings by Jake Mattis, C'19
Commentary: “Dark and funny”. Matt Selman, and “The writer did a nice job setting up this dystopia – I identified with Jonah’s dilemma which is the core of the story.” Lew Schneider

Finalists (in alphabetical order):
Your Ugly Neighbor by Caleb Chodosh, C'18
Quarter Life Crisis by Katherine Cocherl, ENG'20
Mr. Hero by Jacob Stone, C'20

Cinema Studies Program
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