SERIESMAKERS – hereby also referred to as the ‘Program’ – is a TV series development program initiated and conducted jointly by Series Mania Forum and BETA Group which focuses on feature film directors who venture into the world of scripted TV series.
SERIESMAKERS will allow ten selected teams with an idea for a scripted TV series to participate in a tailor-made training program focused on developing a full pitch deck. A-list directors, showrunners, writers, and producers will guide new series creatives in online workshops. Additionally, the development process will be supported by mentors.
The objective is to support talents working on a new scripted TV series and offering two awarded teams a € 50,000 (fifty thousand Euros) award each, the Beta Development Award.
The two awarded teams will be presented at the Series Mania Forum 2024 and will develop a pilot script and a bible for the awarded projects with further creative support. ln 2025, the two awarded teams will then participate in Series Mania Forum.
Further, a third team will be awarded with an award of €20,000 (twenty thousand Euros) as courtesy of the Kirch Foundation in collaboration with HFF/ University of Television and Film Munich (the Kirch Foundation Award).
1. THE PROGRAM
This Program targets teams consisting of two creatives, either a director and a producer or a director and a writer (see eligibility of teams pursuant to clause 6.1).
The selected teams will participate in two three-day online workshops over the period of four months. The workshops consist of masterclasses lectured by international industry professionals such as writers, producers, broadcasters, showrunners, etc. ln addition, the development process will be supported by mentors.
The Program’s next and main step is to create a full pitch deck for each selected project including a logline, synopsis, characters’ development, season’s outline, creator’s note, tone and style.
Out of all selected teams, a jury will award two teams with the Beta Development Award each to develop a pilot script and a bible with additional creative support in particular by BETA FILM’s content division. The two awarded teams will be presented at the Series Mania Forum 2024 and will develop a pilot script and a bible for the awarded projects with further creative support. ln 2025, the two awarded teams will be given the opportunity to participate at Series Mania Forum 2025 to present their projects to the industry’s most important decision-makers, broadcasters, platforms, co-producers, and financiers.
Further, the jury will award a third team with the Kirch Foundation Award in collaboration with HFF (University of Television and Film Munich) to further encourage the development of the project.
2. EQUAL OPPORTUNITY
SERIESMAKERS recognizes the benefits of a diverse workforce and is committed to providing a creative environment that is free from discrimination. The Program will seek to promote the principles of equality and diversity and encourages creatives of all nations, genders, disabilities, sexual orientations, religions, or beliefs to apply.
The schedule for the current Program is as follows:
- Submission period: March 22 – June 15, 2023
- Submission deadline: June 15, 2023 at 5:00 pm (CET)
- Announcement of participants: by end of October 2023
- First workshop (online): November 7 – 9, 2023 (3 days)
- Second workshop (online): January 23 – 25, 2023 (3 days)
- Award ceremony of the two awarded teams at the Series Mania Forum 2024
All selected teams must be generally available for the two workshops as well as for weekly meetings with their mentors in between the workshops and development work (see section 11 for further details). The awarded teams shall remain available also for Series Mania 2024 and Series Mania 2025.
The schedule above may be subject to change.
The communication language of the Program is English. Therefore, all materials during all steps of the Program are required to be provided in English language. Translation costs, if any, are not borne by the Program.
The language of the submitted project can be written and produced in English or any other language.
Submission and participation in the Program are free of charge.
The three awarded teams are invited to Series Mania Forum 2024 which includes coverage of expenses for accommodation in Lille and accreditations for Series Mania Forum giving access to all Forum and festival activities (conferences, premieres, pitching sessions, networking events, etc.).
Travel costs will not be covered.
6. SUBMISSION WINDOW
Submission to SERIESMAKERS is open from March 22, 2023 until June 15, 2023 at 5.00 pm (CET) at the latest, to be made via the Program’s website only.
6.1 Eligibility of teams
The criteria for the teams’ eligibility are the following:
- Consisting of two creatives, either a director and a producer or a director and a writer.
- The directors are required to have min. one feature film (fiction only) screened in the official selection of an A-list film festival (proof must be provided in the Application Form, i.e. invitation letter from the respective festival, IMDb website, or festival website with the relevant information).
- Directors may apply with one project only, whereas writers and producers may apply with one or more projects.
- The participants must be committed to creating a scripted TV series. If selected, all participants are obliged to sign a written approval of commitment to the Program (see section 11).
6.2 Project requirements
The requirements for submitted projects are the following:
- Category scripted TV series based upon an original idea or secured underlying property.
- First season only.
- Number of episodes: min. 4 episodes, max. 12 episodes.
- Length: min. 30 minutes, max. 60 minutes per episode.
- Genres: All genres, e.g., drama, comedy, period, crime, sci-fi, except for kids/young adults.
- Development stage: early stage.
- Exclusivity: the project is not and will not be submitted to any other program, workshop, training initiative, market event or funding institution during the Program. Further, neither the project nor any derivative project (such as a prequel, sequel, spin-off and remake) have been submitted to a previous edition of the Program.
- Disclosure: all partners and talent already attached to the project as well as the participation in any program, workshop, training initiative market event or funding institution need to be fully disclosed in the Application Form.
- Ownership: controlling of rights into the submitted project by participants pursuant to section 9.
6.3 Applicants requirements
Applicants must meet the following criteria:
- Submission only as a team (no separate submissions by the participants) pursuant to the eligibility criteria pursuant to clause 6.1.
- Fill in the online Application Form for submission.
- Upload all required documents including but not limited to a short pitch deck of the series (in English language and max. 10 pages total) consisting of logline (max 2 sentences) and synopsis, characters, story arch, creators’ note, tone and style, filmographies of applicants; visuals are optional and are included in the 10 pages.
- Please consider the mandatory formatting: A4, Calibri, 12 pt, 1.15 line spacing, margins min. 2.0 cm all sides.
lncomplete applications may not be considered.
Neither Series Mania nor BETA Group will be responsible for any costs related to the submission (translation, graphic design, etc).
7. SELECTION PROCESS
7.1 Selection committee
All submissions meeting the criteria in section 6 will be reviewed by the SERIESMAKERS selection committee.
The selection committee will further strive for diversity of genre (crime, period drama, comedy, etc) and characters among the submitted projects.
Decisions by the selection committee are final.
8. THE AWARDED PROJECTS
At Series Mania Forum 2024, two projects will be awarded by a jury with a Beta Development Award, as defined in the Preamble each.
The two awarded teams will achieve further support such as script consulting and packaging offered by BETA Group’s Content Division to develop a pilot script and a series bible. The award and the development package will be subject to a development and distribution agreement between BETA Group and each of the two teams upon terms and conditions to be negotiated in good faith and in accordance with industry standard.
Further, a third team will be awarded by a jury with the Kirch Foundation Award, as defined in the Preamble.
ln case of completion of production, the awarded projects will be submitted to Series Mania Festival in priority.
9. INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY
9.1 Submitted projects
Applicants must control all rights to their submitted projects. In the event, the applicants apply for the Program with a production company as part of a team all copyright needs to be secured by such production company. In the case of an adaptation of underlying property, the applicant will need to prove by written documentation that rights to the underlying property are either obtained or may be obtained through the execution of an existing option in order to develop and produce the project.
9.2 Selected projects
The selected participants will not dispose of their copyright into their projects until the end of Series Mania 2024 and will confirm this in the written approval commitment towards SERIES MANIA pursuant to section 11. For further clarity: The selected participants commit themselves to not assign or otherwise transfer any copyright in their project to any third party (such as production company, distributors, broadcaster etc.) until the end of the Program. Correspondingly, if the selected participants enter the Program with a production company that owns copyright into their project, the selected participants ensure that the production company will not assign or otherwise dispose of such copyright to a third party until the end of Series Mania 2024.
9.3 Awarded projects
The two awarded projects awarded with a Beta Development Award will each enter into a development agreement with BETA FILM upon terms and conditions to be negotiated in good faith and in accordance with industry standard.
All other projects (including but not limited to the project awarded with the Kirch Foundation Award) are entitled to freely continue and dispose of their rights into their projects.
All other participants are entitled to freely continue and dispose of their rights into their projects.
10. PRESS RELEASES, CONFIDENTIALITY AND MARKETING
All press releases or other public communication about the selected projects during the program are subject to SERIESMAKERS’ prior written approval.
Documents supplied for submission are strictly confidential and are not for publication.
The selected projects must supply information for marketing purposes such as its website, catalogs, and flyers. A list of the selected participants and the titles of their projects may be used for marketing and press purposes.
Materials submitted by the participants will not be returned.
11. PARTICIPATION AND CONFIRMATION
The Program requires all selected participants to sign a written approval of commitment with SERIES MANIA within seven (7) days from notification of the selected participants, which includes but is not limited to a commitment stating the general availability to participate in the workshops and the ongoing development of the projects for a duration of up to 4 months. For further clarity, the availability applies to each selected participant.
If the commitment should not be signed within such seven (7) days period, participation in the current Program will no longer be possible.
SERIESMAKERS will be credited in the on-screen credits in all completed series developed under the Program as follows: “This series was developed within the SERIESMAKERS program 2023.” The logo of SERIESMAKERS will be provided to the participants and shall be included in the credits.
The selected participants whose projects should not get awarded but picked up by a third party agree to pass on the aforementioned credit obligation to such third party.
For technical assistance and further inquiries please contact the Series Mania team at email@example.com.
Rules and Regulations may be subject to change. This version of Rules & Regulations has been updated on March 29, 2023.