BBC Studios Writers' Workshop
Terms & Conditions
Eligibility criteria in more detail
1. To be eligible to apply for the BBC Studios Writers’ Workshop 2020 you must meet the following criteria:
• You must be aged 18 years or over on 1 July 2020.
• You must be a resident of the UK, Channel Islands, Isle of Man, or Republic of Ireland.
• You must not be employed by, be in a financial relationship with or be, a live-in partner or immediate relative (i.e. mother, father, son, daughter, brother, sister) of somebody employed by the BBC, by one of the participating independent production companies, or any person connected with the BBC Studios Writers’ Workshop.
Proof of age, identity and eligibility may be requested. BBC Studios’ decision as to the eligibility of individual entrants will be final and no correspondence will be entered into.
2. All entries must be the original work of the entrant and must not infringe the rights of any other party. The BBC accepts no liability if entrants ignore these rules and entrants agree to fully indemnify the BBC against any claims by any third party arising from any breach of these rules.
3. If the submitted script has been through a development process with a production company, agent, training scheme etc. then this must be declared in the entry application accompanying your script.
4. Novels, short stories, poems and short film scripts are ineligible and will be not be considered. Short film scripts shall be considered to be any script that is less than 30 minutes duration.
5. The BBC reserves the right not to read the candidate’s application if the candidate and/or submission is in breach of any of these terms and conditions and/or fails to meet the eligibility criteria.
Submission and Application Process
6. Entrants must submit:
o This should be full-length, 30 minutes or longer (minimum 30 pages).
o It can be an original pilot script (this must be separate from the pitch) or an episode of an existing drama series you’ve written for. You may submit the script of an episode for which you have a professional TV writing credit, or any other script of your choosing. The script must be a minimum of 30 pages in length.
o Please only submit one original drama script – for a returning series, only submit the pilot episode.
o Genres other than drama and comedy-drama are not accepted.
A drama series pitch
o The pitch must be an original idea for a new drama or comedy-drama series.
o There is no required format for this submission, though it should be between 1-2 pages in length.
o If you are selected for the Writers’ Workshop, the series you develop with us may end up being entirely different from this pitch – the pitch is partly an exercise to gauge your ability to come up with a compelling series concept.
o The CV should highlight any produced writing credits and agent details, if applicable.
All material must be saved as PDF and submitted via the BBC Writersroom E-Submissions System
• Submissions open on Monday September 7th and close on Friday September 25th.
• Your application must be legibly typed, formatted and written entirely in English.
• Writing partnerships consisting of two people (max) may apply. Any scripts submitted must be written by the partnership.
7. All submissions must be received by 12 noon on September 25th. Entries received and/or submitted after this date shall not be reviewed and will not be eligible for consideration for the BBC Studios Writers’ Workshop.
8. All entrants will be notified of the outcome of their submission via the details provided on their E-Submissions account. Unfortunately, we shall not be able to give individual feedback on unsuccessful submissions.
9. By applying for the scheme, entrants warrant that they have legal capacity to enter the scheme and agree to be bound by these terms and conditions.
10. The selection process will run from September 28th. It will proceed as follows:
All submissions will be reviewed by a panel of experienced script readers and BBC Studios staff, who will assess and discuss the applications.
In the first round of reading, we will read all submitted drama scripts in full.
In the second round, original series pitches will be read.
Once all submissions have received at least a minimum of two full script reads, and pitches have been reviewed, a longlist of potential successful applicants shall be created.
Unsuccessful applicants will be notified via the Writersroom E-Submission System.
Each longlisted writer will be called to an interview, where they will have the opportunity to discuss their pitch in more detail.
After the interviews, 10 writers will be selected to participate in the BBC Studios Writers’ Workshop 2020.
11. BBC Studios’ decision as to who is selected for the BBC Studios Writers’ Workshop 2020 shall be final. For the avoidance of doubt, the written submissions of any applicants who are not selected to participate in the BBC Studios Writers’ Workshop shall not be used or exploited by BBC Studios.
BBC Studios Writers’ Workshop Engagement
12. Upon signing their Writers’ Workshops contracts, successful applicants (“Writers”) will be paid a fee of £7,000 – equal to half their fee for the final pilot script.
13. Upon receipt of the first complete draft of their pilot script, Writers will receive a fee of £2,500.
14. Upon receipt of the final draft of their pilot script, Writers will receive a fee of £2,500.
15. Upon receipt of their series mini-bible, Writers will receive a fee of £2,000.
16. In addition to payment of the Fee, travel expenses will be paid to Writers (in line with BBC Studios reasonable expenses policy, a copy of which is available upon request) based outside of London who need to travel into London for any in-person meetings or activities, should these be required. The BBC shall not be responsible for any other expenses incurred unless agreed in writing in advance.
17. BBC Studios will have an exclusive option on the rights to that project for 6 months starting from the date the final draft of the pilot script is delivered. If that period elapses without further work being commissioned, all rights will return to the writer.
18. For the following year (starting from the delivery date of the pilot script) all selected writers will be under a first-look agreement with BBC Studios and its independent partner companies. This is a non-exclusive agreement – it simply means that all new scripted ideas must be shown first to BBC Studios. If BBC Studios and its independent production partners pass on an idea (after a period of up to 14 days consideration), writers are free to pitch the idea to any other production companies.
19. All writers selected by the BBC Studios Writers’ Workshop shall be asked to participate in advertising, publicity and promotional events arranged by the BBC (the “Publicity”) in connection with the BBC Studios Writers’ Workshop. By submitting your application, you agree and consent to participating in any Publicity reasonably requested by the BBC and consent to having your picture taken and/or being interviewed by the BBC when participating in the BBC Studios Writers’ Workshop. You grant us the perpetual and worldwide right to use your name, likeness, photograph, interviews and the Publicity, in whole or in part, in or in connection with the promotion of the BBC Studios Writers’ Workshop in any and all media.
20. BBC Studios reserves the right to disqualify any submission which breaches any of these terms and conditions.
21. BBC Studios reserves the right to disqualify applications that are inconsistent with the BBC Editorial Policy Guidelines or which may bring the BBC into disrepute.
22. If you have any convictions other than spent convictions under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (as amended), this information must be disclosed in your application. Furthermore, you must notify us immediately if there are any criminal charges brought against you after the date of your submission, during the application process and/or (for successful applicants) during the Writers’ Workshop – as we reserve the right to disqualify your application.
23. BBC Studios reserves the right to cancel or alter the scheme at any stage, including members of the interview panel if deemed necessary in its reasonable opinion, and if circumstances arise outside of its control (such as fire, flood, fire, acts of terrorism, or acts of god). In this event, a notice will be posted on this website.
25. BBC Studios as a data controller is responsible for handling personal data you provide, including your contribution, in accordance with data protection law. BBC Studios has a legitimate interest in using your personal data for journalistic, artistic and literary purposes and in the public interest and also using your personal data for the performance of your contract with BBC Studios. For more information please visit: www.bbc.co.uk/contributors/privacy-notice (which has been adopted by Company as its own to the fullest extent possible).
26. The BBC reserves the right to amend these terms and conditions at any stage, including changes to eligibility and the selection process.