Pitch Competition: Terms & Conditions

 

ATX Television Festival
The Pitch Competition (2021)
Terms and Conditions

 

1. COMPETITION SPONSOR AND WEBSITE: The sponsor of the 2021 ATX Television Festival Pitch Competition (“Competition”) is ATX Television Festival, LLC doing business as “ATX Television Festival”, 11912 Cimaizon Drive, Austin, TX 78725 (“Sponsor”). The url for the Competition website is http://atxfestival.com/pitch/ (“Website”).
 
2. COMPETITION TIMING: The entry submission period for the Competition begins November 16, 2020 at 09:00:00 a.m. CT and ends on February 7, 2021 at 11:59:59 p.m. CT (“Entry Submission Period”). ALL ENTRIES MUST BE RECEIVED BY FEBRUARY 7, 2021 AT 11:59:59 p.m. CT. Sponsor’s computer is the official time-keeping device for the Competition. Unless otherwise indicated, all times in these Terms and Conditions (“T&C“) are expressed in Central Time (CT).
 
3. ELIGIBILITY: The Competition is open only to individuals who at the time of entry are legal residents of one of the fifty United States or the District of Columbia excluding Arizona and Alaska and who are the age of majority in their state (minimum of nineteen (19) years of age). Persons in any of the following categories are NOT eligible to participate: any person who, at any time on or after November 1, 2012, was or is a director, officer, or employee of ATX Television Festival or its parents, subsidiaries, divisions, or affiliated companies, dealers, or service agencies, independent contractors, web hosting or service or fulfillment providers, including, without limitation, Final Draft, Inc., Competition judges (collectively, the “Competition Entities”) and their immediate family (defined as spouse, parents and step-parents, siblings and step-siblings, and children and step-children or dependent or spouse of any of the foregoing) and household members (people who share the same residence at least three (3) months out of the year). Persons who are under contract with any person or entities that would prohibit them from submitting an entry, participating in any activity and/or granting the rights set forth herein in connection with their entry and/or entering into an agreement with Sponsor without additional compensation are also not eligible to enter or win. The Competition is subject to all applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations. Void in Alaska, Arizona, Puerto Rico and where prohibited or restricted by law. Participation constitutes entrant’s full and unconditional agreement to these Terms and Conditions (“T&C”) and Sponsor’s decisions, which are final and binding in all matters related to the Competition. Winning a prize is contingent upon fulfilling all requirements set forth herein, and solely based on skill.
 
4. HOW TO ENTER/ENTRY FEE:

  1. ENTRY REQUIRES PAYMENT OF FORTY DOLLARS (US$40.00) (“Entry Fee”) to Sponsor during the Entry Submission Period, together with submission of (1) a completed form, (2) a video, no longer than ninety (90) seconds in length, describing your original pitch for a scripted (non-reality) series (“Pitch”), and (3) a five to ten (5 – 10) page script sample from the series being pitched. The Website (http://atxfestival.com/pitch/) contains detailed instructions for payment of the Entry Fee and uploading of the completed form, video and script sample. The completed form, video and script shall constitute your “Entry” in the Competition. The script sample must be an original piece of writing by the Entrant. Any form of entry other than that described herein is void. Sponsor is not responsible for lost, late, incomplete, invalid, unintelligible, or misdirected registrations or entries, which will be disqualified.
  2. There will be three rounds (each, a “Round”) of evaluation based on the Judging Criteria for the selection of Semi-Finalists, Finalists, Runners-Up and Grand Prize Winner. Selection of the Grand Prize Winner from among the Finalists shall take place during the ATX Television Festival Season 10, which takes place in Austin, Texas June 10 – 13, 2021. Each Finalist will make a verbal presentation of his/her/their Pitch, not to exceed three (3) minutes (the “Live Pitch”).
  3. Entries may be submitted by individuals or by groups (each, an “Entrant”). A group may have no more than four individual participants. An individual may join more than one group. There is no limit to the number of Entries that a person may submit during the Entry Submission Period, but each Entry must be separate and distinct from any other Entries submitted by that Entrant and requires the payment of an additional Entry Fee (i.e., submitting three Entries requires payment of US$120.00). If an Entrant submits more than one Entry, only one of Entrant’s Entries can advance to the next level of the Competition. An individual who enters as part of a group may also submit one or more individual Entries. Each Entry will be deemed to have been submitted by the authorized account holder of the email address from which the Entry was sent. An email account holder shall mean the natural person assigned to such email account by the Internet access provider, online service provider or other organization responsible for assigning email addresses for the domain associated with such email account.
  4. If submitting as part of a group, each group shall appoint one individual (the “Representative”) to represent and act, including submitting the Entry, on behalf of said group. The Representative must meet the eligibility requirements for an individual Entrant and must be authorized to submit on behalf of the group. The Representative represents and warrants that he/she/they is authorized to act on behalf of the group; and that each member of the group agrees to abide by these T&C. In the event of a dispute, the Representative will be deemed to be the authorized account holder of the email address from which the Entry was sent. In the event an Entry submitted by a group is selected as a Semi-Finalist, Finalist, Runner-Up, or Grand Prize Winner, (i) each individual in the group must be an active participant in the Pitch AND credited as a co-writer/creators of the series, and (ii) each individual (satisfying the winner notification, verification, and documentation conditions set forth in these T&C) shall receive the applicable prize.

 
5. GUIDELINES FOR ENTRIES:

  1. The script component of the Entry must be five (5) to ten (10) typed pages (not counting the title page), in English, and submitted as a pdf file via the Website.
  2. The video component of the Entry must be no longer than ninety (90) seconds, be presented (primarily) in English, and be submitted (via digital upload) pursuant to the instructions provided on the Website.
  3. The Entry must include the Entry Fee.
  4. For Finalists, the Live Pitch must be no longer than three (3) minutes and must be presented in English.
  5. No component of the Entry may contain material that violates or infringes another’s rights, including but not limited to privacy, publicity or intellectual property rights, including trademark, copyright infringement, or legal or moral rights of any third party, living or deceased (e.g., names, logos, symbols, slogans, quotes from other people, or parodies of other people).
  6. The Entry and Live Pitch must not disparage Sponsor, any Competition Entity, or any other person or party affiliated with the administration of this Competition.
  7. The Entry and Live Pitch must not contain material that Sponsor deems to be indecent, lewd, pornographic, obscene, hateful, tortious, defamatory, slanderous or libelous; or that Sponsor deems to promote bigotry, racism, activities that are unsafe, hatred or harm against any group or individual, or discrimination based on race, gender, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age.

Sponsor reserves the right (i) to disregard minor deviations from the guidelines in otherwise compliant Entries; and/or (ii) to obscure, remove, blur, or otherwise edit such elements; or to ask the applicable Entrant to obscure, remove, blur, or edit such elements in otherwise compliant Entries, and to consider any such edited Entries as eligible for the Competition.
 
6. SELECTION OF WINNERS:

  1. Judges. For each Round, a panel of 3 – 6 (or more) people selected by Sponsor (“Judges”) will evaluate the eligible Entries for the Round and will select the Entries to advance to the next Round. The Judges will consist of television industry writers, showrunners, executives, and other professionals.
  2. Judging Criteria. For each Round, the Judges will assign Entries a score ranging from a low of ten (10) points to a high of fifty (50) points for each of the following skill-based criteria (“Judging Criteria”):
      1. Series potential (would this be a TV show that audiences would like to watch?)
        • Episodic potential of series being pitched
        • Entrant’s success in proving this potential
      2. Description of characters/world
        • How clearly is the world explained (i.e. Can you picture “where” the characters exist based on the pitch?)
        • The description of the characters (i.e. Are you able to tell “who” the series is about?)
      3. Clearness/conciseness of the Pitch
        • The Entrant’s ability to clearly deliver the Pitch (Were they succinct?)
        • Were the concept, world, characters, etc. explained in a logical/effective manner?
      4. Style
        • Is the Entrant’s style engaging, provoking, interesting? Do you want to see/hear more about the series?
        • Is the Pitch original? Is it a new story or a familiar story with a fresh take?
      5. Script Sample
        • Does the script sample provided enhance the Pitch’s episodic potential? (i.e. Does the writing bring clarity to and/or reinforce the story’s world, characters, concept, and tone?)
        • Does the script sample provided showcase the Entrant’s ability to write the story being pitched?

        In the event of a tie for a Semi-Finalist, Finalist, Runner-Up, or Grand Prize Winner, the potential winner as between any Entrants will be the Entry with the higher score for criterion one – Series Potential. Thereafter, if a tie still remains among any Entries, the potential winner will be selected based on the highest score for the subsequent criteria until the potential winner is determined – with the subsequent order of tie-breaking criteria to be as follows: criteria two-Description of the characters world; then criteria three-Clearness/Conciseness of the Pitch, then criteria four-Style, and then criteria five-Script Sample.

  3. Evaluation Rounds
    1. Round One. Open Submissions. Selection of Semi-Finalists. Each eligible Entry submitted during the Entry Submission Period shall be evaluated by the Judges using the Judging Criteria, and on or about March 5, 2021, the Judges will select fifteen (15) Entries (“Open Submission Selectees”) to advance to the Semi-Finals Round of the Competition.
    2. Round Two. Selection of Finalists. Using the Judging Criteria, on or about April 16, 2021, the Judges will select ten (10) Potential Finalists from the pool of thirty (30) Semi-Finalists. The pool from which the Judges shall select the Potential Finalists consists of the Open Submissions Selectees from Round One, as well as (i) ten (10) entries selected through The Black List Competition, and (ii) five (5) Entries selected through the Sundance Institute Episodic Program, based on their respective, skill-based evaluation systems. To become a Finalist, the Potential Finalist must confirm attendance at the Festival and return other Finalist Documents no later than thirty (30) calendar days after attempted notification. Sponsor reserves the right, but is not obligated, to invite a Semi-Finalist(s) to replace any Finalist(s) who is/are unable or unwilling to attend the Festival or who does not confirm by the stated deadline.
    3. Round Three. Selection of Grand Prize Winner and Runner-Ups. Selection of the Grand Prize Winner will take place during the Festival from June 10 – 13, 2021, in Austin, Texas. Finalists will be invited to the ATX Television Festival to present their Live Pitch in front of the Judges and a live audience. Using the Judging Criteria, the Judges will evaluate the Entries and Live Pitch of the Finalists, and select one (1) Grand Prize Winner, and up to two (2) Runner-Ups.
  4. Winner Lists. Each Semi-Finalist, Finalist, and Grand Prize Winner may be called a “Winner.” Winners’ names will be listed on the Website as follows: Semi-Finalists on or about March 5, 2021; Finalists on or about April 16, 2021; and the Grand-Prize Winner and Runners-Up on or about June 13, 2021.
  5. Winner Notification, Verification, and Documentation. Sponsor will notify each potential Winner using the contact information included as part of the potential Winner’s Entry. Potential Winners must continue to comply with all provisions of these T&C, and award of a prize is contingent upon fulfilling all requirements. Sponsor reserves the right to ask each Potential Semi-Finalist and Potential Finalist to present proof of eligibility and satisfy other conditions provided in these T&C to be declared a Finalist, Grand Prize Winner, or Runner-Up and to be awarded a prize. Potential Semi-Finalists and Potential Finalists must execute and deliver to Sponsor requested documents via e-mail within five (5) calendar days following an attempted notification. Such documents may include: (i) affidavits confirming eligibility and compliance with these T&C, (ii) liability releases, (iii) publicity releases (where permitted), (iv) license in which the Entrant warrants that he/she is the owner of the Entry (and all the intellectual property rights in therein), and (v) such other documents and personal information as may be reasonably requested by Sponsor. Failure to execute and deliver any required documents to Sponsor by the specified deadline may result in disqualification from the Competition, forfeit of the prize, and selection of an alternate potential winner. Sponsor is not responsible for suspended or discontinued Internet or wireless phone service that may result in a potential Winner or alternate not receiving a notification. A Potential Winner’s non-receipt of a message from Sponsor for any reason shall not impose any liability on Sponsor.

 
7. PRIZES: Prizes are non-transferrable, and no substitution will be made except as provided herein at the Sponsor’s sole discretion. Winners are responsible for all taxes and fees associated with prize receipt and/or use.

Semi-Finalists (10): Each Semi-Finalist that is not selected to be a Finalist will be entitled to receive one (1) festival badge in the Semi-Finalist’s name to the ATX Television Festival (June 10 – 13, 2021) (“Festival”) at no charge (travel and related costs not included).

(Total Approximate Retail Value (ARV) of each Semi-Finalist Award Package is US$350.)

Finalists (10): The ten (10) Finalists will each receive:

  • One (1) Festival Badge in the Finalist’s name to the Festival, and one (1) ticket to the Festival Closing Night screening and after-party.
  • The most recent version of Final Draft software courtesy of Final Draft, Inc., allowing Finalists to write the treatment and pilot script for their Pitch using the best writing software on the market.
  • One (1) month of free hosting on THE BLACK LIST for their script.
  • An invitation to apply directly to the second round of consideration for the 2021 Sundance Institute Episodic Story Lab with application fee waived.

(Total Approximate Retail Value (ARV) of each Finalist Award Package is US$670.)

Runners-Up Winners (2): Up to two (2) runners-up will each receive:

  • One (1) general advisory meeting or phone call with a studio/network executive or showrunner to provide guidance on developing their idea, pitch, and script.
  • Two (2) months of hosting on THE BLACK LIST for their script;
  • One (1) script evaluation on THE BLACK LIST.
  • One (1) Industry Badge to ATX Television Festival, Season 11 (2022).

(Total ARV of each Runners-Up Prize Award Package is US$485. Runners-Up will also have received the Semi-Finalists and Finalists Award Packages.)

Grand Prize Winner (1): One (1) grand prize winner of ATX Television Festival’s The Pitch Competition will receive:

  • A mentor meeting with one of our judges (based on the show’s genre/judges’ availability) to explore the winning pitch idea and gain notes to better develop the series.
  • After the pitch is honed, the Grand Prize Winner will receive a pitch meeting with one of our studio/network partners (dependent on the show’s genre and style) to try and sell their pilot.
  • Three (3) months of hosting on THE BLACK LIST and
  • Two (2) script evaluations to help fine-tune that pilot script.
  • One (1) Industry Badge to ATX Television Festival, Season 11 (2022).

No specific studio or network is guaranteed to hear pitch.

(Total ARV of Grand Prize Winner Award Package is US$715. Grand Prize Winner will also have received the Semi-Finalists and Finalists Award Packages.)

Nothing set forth herein shall be construed to require Sponsor to produce the Festival or any subsequent festival or event at any particular time, or at all. If, for any reason, the Festival does not occur, Sponsor may substitute the Festival component of the prize with a prize or experience of similar quality and/or cash equivalent. Some prizes to be awarded have no cash equivalent.

Odds of winning a prize depend on the number of eligible entries received during the Entry Submission Period as well as the number of entries received in the Black List Competition and the Sundance Episodic Lab Competition. As explained in Section 6(c)(ii), twenty five (25) entries from the Black List Competition and Sundance Episodic Lab Competition will be evaluated in Round Two of the Competition to compete for advancement to Round Three. Any Entrant in the Competition may also enter the Black List Competition or Sundance Episodic Lab Competition.
 
8. NAME AND LIKENESS RIGHTS: Except where prohibited by law, participation in the Competition constitutes each Winner’s consent to Sponsor’s and its designees’ use of Winners’ names, likenesses, photographs, and/or personal information for promotional purposes in any media, worldwide, without further payment or consideration.
 
9. REPRESENTATIONS AND WARRANTIES:

By submitting an Entry, each Entrant warrants and represents the following:

  • The Entrant is the exclusive owner and sole author of the Entry (including the video and script therein) and all components thereof are Entrant’s original creative work (and/or the entrant has obtained prior written authorization to act on behalf of any co-creators) and the Entrant’s submission thereof will not infringe, misappropriate, or violate the copyrights, trademarks, rights of privacy, publicity or other intellectual property rights or other rights of any person or entity.
  • Acceptance of the T&C and participation in the Competition, including submission of the Entry, will not conflict with or violate any term or condition of any other agreement to which Entrant is a party, including but not limited to any union or guild regulation.
  • The Pitch is not based on an existing film and is not substantially similar to a pitch Entrant has previously presented to a network or other industry professional.
  • There are no threatened, pending, or current claims, actions, or lawsuits in connection with the Entry, and Entrant agrees to notify Sponsor immediately upon his/her notification of any such claims, actions, or lawsuits.
  • No component of the Entry has been previously published, produced, sold, or optioned by or to anyone, at any time.
  • No component of the Entry has won previous awards.
  • Entrant is submitting the Entry voluntarily on a non-confidential basis.
  • Publication or other use by Sponsor of the Entry via various media including web posting, will not infringe on the rights of any third party.

Entrant will indemnify and hold the Competition Entities harmless from and against any and all claims to the contrary and any demands, actions, causes of action, damages, costs or expenses brought against or suffered or incurred by the Competition Entities, or any of them arising out of or in connection with the participation by the Entrants in this Competition, or the use, in whole or in part, by any Competition Entity of any Entry (or portion thereof) submitted by the Entrant in this Competition.
 
10. CHOICE OF LAW; DISPUTE RESOLUTION: These T&C shall be deemed to have been entered into and shall be construed and enforced in accordance with the laws of the State of Texas as applied to contracts made and to be performed entirely within Texas, without giving effect to the state’s conflicts of law statute. Any controversy, dispute or claim arising out of or related to the T&C or your participation in the Competition shall be settled by an arbitrator, within Travis County, Texas subject to the rules and regulations of the American Arbitration Association then in effect, except that such arbitration shall be handled by a single arbitrator selected in accordance with such rules and regulations. The arbitrator shall be well acquainted with the entertainment business, and the arbitrator’s decision shall be final and binding. Each party to any arbitration shall bear its own costs, including attorney’s fees. Failure to appear at any arbitration hearing entitles the arbitrator to proceed ex parte.

THE EXCLUSIVE JURISDICTION FOR ANY DISPUTE ARISING OUT OF OR CONNECTED WITH ANY PRIZE AWARDED SHALL BE IN THE FEDERAL OR STATE COURTS LOCATED IN DALLAS COUNTY, TEXAS.
 
11. INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS: Each Entrant retains ownership of his/her Entry. Sponsor claims no ownership rights in any Entry other than the non-exclusive licenses and permissions necessary to evaluate and judge the Entries for participation in the Promotion as set forth in these T&C. By accepting Entries, Sponsor in no way grants Entrants any additional rights therein or otherwise expands the scope of rights under applicable copyright laws. Entrants are solely responsible for protecting their rights in their Entries, including without limitation, for filing or registering any components of the Entry with the Writers Guild of America and/or the United States Copyright Office. Notwithstanding the foregoing, if the Pitch (in any form) is subsequently produced by a Competition Entity (including, but not limited to producer, judge, studio/network), ATX Television Festival, LLC. shall be credited as a “Producer” of said content in substantially the same manner as other producers of such content and shall be entitled to a gross profit participation to be negotiated in good faith and in accordance with industry customs considering the content’s budget and cast. Entrant acknowledges and agrees that Sponsor and/or any participating independent judges may independently access or develop creative concepts and/or works which resemble the Entry or incorporate similar concepts, themes, formats, plot lines and characters to those in the Entry and that Entrant is not entitled to any compensation and has no rights of any kind in connection therewith.  Entrant acknowledges and agrees that: (a) Sponsor, and Competition Entities may have access to and/or may create literary, film, tape and/or other materials, ideas and concepts which may be similar or identical to Entrant’s Entry, ideas, and/or concepts; (b) Entrant will not be entitled to any compensation or other consideration because of the use by Sponsor, Competition Entities or any other Competition participant of such similar or identical material, ideas and/or concepts; and (c) Sponsor’s, Competition Entities’ or other participant’s use of material containing elements similar to or identical with those contained in Entrant’s Entry shall not obligate Sponsor to negotiate with nor entitle Entrant to any compensation or other claim.
 
12. DISQUALIFICATION: Any person may be disqualified from the Competition (including, but not limited to, terminating the person’s participation in the Live Pitch, cancelling the Runners-Up or Grand Prize Winner’s meetings, and terminating other applicable experiences early, in whole or in part) if Sponsor in its sole discretion determines that person has done any of the following: failed to satisfy the requirements for eligibility; provided Sponsor with untruthful, inaccurate, or misleading information; used robotic, macro, automatic, programmed or like methods to enter the Competition; violated any provision of the Terms and Conditions, abused, tampered, or interfered in any manner with the Competition or the Website; acted in an unreasonable, non-sportsmanlike way; acted in any manner to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass Sponsor or any other person; given or agreed to give anything of value to any person associated in any manner with Sponsor or its agents to advance in the Competition or win any prize; or accepted or agreed to accept anything of value from any person to promote any product, service, or venture during the course of the Competition.
 
13. RIGHT TO CANCEL OR MODIFY: Sponsor reserves the right in its sole discretion to modify these T&C or to cancel, terminate, modify, or suspend the Competition for any reason or for no reason in its sole discretion.  Possible reasons include but are not limited to ineligibility of Entrants, infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures, or any other causes which, in the sole discretion of Sponsor, corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity, or proper conduct of the Competition. If Sponsor decides to reconvene the Competition after a suspension, the determination of Winner(s) will be made from among all eligible, valid, non-suspect Entrants, in the sole discretion of Sponsor. In the event that any legal or regulatory authority challenges the Competition, Sponsor reserves the right to discontinue or modify the Competition, or to disqualify Entrants residing in the affected geographic areas, and in such event, Sponsor shall have no liability to any Entrants who are disqualified due to such an action other than refund of the Entry Fee.
 
14. RELEASE; LIMITATION OF LIABILITY; AND INDEMNIFICATION: By participating in the Competition and submitting an Entry, each Entrant agrees to (a) be bound by these T&C and the decisions of the Sponsor, which are binding and final in all matters relating to the Competition; (b) waives any and all claims against Sponsor, and all other Competition Entries for any injury, damage or loss that may occur, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, from (i) participation in the Competition; (ii) printing errors or any errors made in the advertisement of the Competition; (iii) lost, late, illegible, incomplete, misdirected, damaged, destroyed or mutilated Entries or for errors, omissions, interruptions, deletions, defects, delays in operations or transmissions, theft, destruction, unauthorized access to or alterations of entry materials or failures in transmission of Entries; (iv) errors in the administration of the Competition or the processing of Entries; or (v) any electronic traffic congestion, or any lost, interrupted, or unavailable connections with server, network, Internet service provider, or telephone; and (c) indemnifies and holds harmless the Sponsor and Competition Entities from any and all claims, damages, expenses, costs (including reasonable attorneys’ fees) and liabilities (including settlements), brought or asserted by any third party against Sponsor or other Competition Entities due to or arising out of Entrant’s Entry, or Entrant’s conduct in creating a Entry or otherwise in connection with this Competition, including but not limited to: claims for trademark infringement; copyright infringement; violation of an individual’s right of publicity or right of privacy; or defamation, threatened or actual injury, loss, or damage to any person, including death and disability; and damage to or loss of property, arising out of such Entrant’s participation in the Competition or receipt or use or misuse of any prize. Entrants further agree that in any cause of action, Sponsor and the Competition Entities aggregate liability will be limited to the cost of entering and participating in the Competition, and in no event shall the Competition Entities be liable for attorneys’ fees. Entrants waive the right to claim any damages whatsoever, including, but not limited to, punitive, consequential, direct, or indirect damages. Sponsor’s failure to enforce any provision of the T&C shall not constitute a waiver of that provision.
 
15. ENTRANT’S PERSONAL INFORMATION: All uses of a Winners’ information and Information collected from Entrants is subject to the Sponsor’s Privacy Policy, which is available here: http://atxfestival.com/atx-policies/.