Sarasota County Film & Entertainment Office

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Winners of Sarasota's TV ME! Pitch Contest to be Announced at Press Conference


Charles Meyer, TV ME! Contest Director, (941) 309-1200 x 102,

SARASOTA, Fla. – (March 14, 2011) The Sarasota County Film & Entertainment Office (SCFEO) will announce winners of its inaugural “TV ME!” pitch contest at a press conference at the Longboat Key Club & Resort on Monday, March 28 at 10:30-11:30 a.m. The press conference is free and open to the public.

“Out of more than 250 entries, 12 treatments made it through to the finals,” says Jeanne Corcoran, director of the SCFEO, a division of the Economic Development Corporation of Sarasota County. “Three rigorous rounds of judging took place over 90 days, getting progressively tougher from the first round, to the semifinals, to the finals. We are excited and eager to announce the winners.”

The TV ME! contest sought treatments or outlines, not scripts, so entrants did not have to be professional TV writers to compete.

The Grand Prize Winner for the best entry across all categories will travel to Los Angeles in June to meet with Hollywood decision-makers. The winner will have the opportunity to pitch and potentially sell their own, original TV concept. The SCFEO will provide airfare and hotel accommodations, plus the winner will receive a $350 cash stipend, a practice session with professional pitch coaches to prepare for the meeting, a one-hour consultation with each of three Sarasota County intellectual property/entertainment attorneys to discuss legal issues, a consultation with two Sarasota County marketing consultants to brainstorm marketing and social-networking strategies, a custom-designed TV ME! award and other gifts and prizes.

Each first place category winner for Scripted, Unscripted and Specials will receive a $250 cash award, a practice pitch session with professional pitch coaches, a custom-designed award and other gifts and prizes. Additionally, the concepts of the first place category winners will be sent to executives and decision-makers in the television industry for review and consideration. The second and third place winners in each of the three categories will receive recognition as well, including gift bags and other prizes.

Unlike ordinary competitions that require full-length scripts for television, the “TV ME!” competition accepts only short (five-to-15-page) “pitches” of a concept for television programming. It’s like a fast and forceful “elevator pitch” where the creator must give the most powerful and concise summary possible, Corcoran said.

Charles Meyer, executive director of The Scriptwriters Network, a Los Angeles-based organization with a 25-year history in the television and film industry, partnered with the SCFEO as contest director. “Regardless of their progress through the judging process, all entrants received written feedback to help them refine their treatments and recognize their strengths while addressing their weaknesses,” said Meyer.

The press conference is free and open to the public. It will be held in the John Ringling Room at the Longboat Key Club & Resort, 220 Sands Point Road, Longboat Key. The announcement will be followed by an invitation-only, private luncheon for contest honorees and sponsors, courtesy of the resort as presenting sponsor of the event.

The Sarasota County Film & Entertainment Office (SCFEO) is a division of the Economic Development Corporation of Sarasota County. It seeks to attract film, television, commercial, documentary and other media production to create content, produce and shoot on location in Sarasota County, as well as  to serve the region’s resident production community, improve and expand its resources, provide intergovernmental liaison and proactively market and promote Sarasota County’s assets to the entertainment industry as a whole. The SCFEO is a member in good standing of the Association of Film Commissioners International, Film Florida and other industry organizations.

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