5th Annual Comedy Writing Contest

Contest Info

THE WINNER HAS BEEN ANNOUNCED! SCROLL DOWN TO SEE!!

Winner Flown to LA and set up on meetings with the producers of TED, Anger Management, Wedding Crashers, Van Wilder, Hot Tub Time Machine 2, and Blades of Glory, the Associate Producer of Catherine Reitman's "Workin' Moms", managers at Zero Gravity, along with "Two Broke Girls" and "Family Guy" Actor/Comedian Jonathan Kite!

All finalists' loglines will be sent out to over 500 industry executives in a Stage 32 look book! If an exec requests your screenplay or a meeting, we will facilitate!

 

So you think you're funny, do ya? Well your timing is spot on. Comedy screenplays are hot again!

Thanks to the success of such films as Game Night, the $10MM+ festival sales of indie comedies such as Late Night, The Big Sick and this year's Sundance record breaker Palm Springs, plus the pure fact that every major streaming platform is investing big dollars in the genre, comedy screenplays are back in high demand!

For the last 4 years, Stage 32 has helped uncovered some of the freshest new voices in comedy (success stories below). If you have a comedy feature or television screenplay ready for action, we want it!

Our panel of judges are not only experts in the field of understanding comedy writing, but are on the hunt for new comedy writers and material.

Our judges hail from such companies as Zero Gravity Management, Smart Entertainment (Ted franchise, Anger Management), Panay Films (Wedding Crashers, Van Wilder, CHiPS, Hot Tub Time Machine 2), Verite Entertainment (Two Broke Girls, Family Guy), and an Executive Producer and Co-Showrunner working with TBS and Ron Howard!

In short, Stage 32 contests offers screenwriters unprecedented access to some of the industries leading industry players who are launching careers and getting projects made!

The winning screenwriter will be flown to Hollywood for multi-day meetings with executives. 

ALL finalists will have their loglines sent out to our extensive list of executives who work directly with Stage 32. If an executive requests your screenplay or a meeting, we will contact you to facilitate!

 

Some Success Stories from our previous 4 Comedy Contests:

  • Our 2019 winner Greg Mania (Mania) met with over a dozen industry executives from companies including Zero Gravity, The Cartel, Schemers Entertainment, SMART Entertainment, Whitewater Films, and more! He is currently in discussion with various managers regarding representation and there is producer interest in his project! (More to come!)
  • Our 2018 winner Diana Wright (Roswell, Adjacent) signed with The Cartel and Abrams Artists Agency through meetings set up by Stage 32!
  • Our 2017 Anthony Guidubaldi & Keith Strausbaugh (Shorebreak) just finished filming their feature film Marathon and are in post! They are also going into development on a spec pilot with Panay Films! All this through meetings set up by Stage 32.
  • We set up our 2016 Comedy Contest winner, Kelly Anelons (Life's a Beaut) for meetings with two of the most respected comedy writer, director, producers in town: Jerry Zucker (Airplane, Naked Gun, My Best Friends Wedding) and Scot Armstrong (Old School, The Hangover II, Road Trip)

 Our finalists scripts have been requested by WME, Cross Creek, Mandalay, Echo Lake, Madhouse Entertainment, Amasia Entertainment, Good Fear Film + Management and more!

 

 

WHAT KIND OF SCRIPTS CAN I ENTER?

We’re looking for any and all original comedy based screenplays and teleplays. 

Feature Length Screenplays:

Everything from broad comedy to rom coms to parodies to dramedies to horror comedy to indie comedies and beyond will be accepted!

Teleplays:

30 or 60 minute Original Comedy Pilots. Please no spec scripts based on existing shows. 

 

 

FEEDBACK OPTION

For an additional fee of only $49 (50% savings!) you can receive full coverage from our industry readers on your screenplay or teleplay. Just check "coverage" upon checkout. Coverage will be sent out after the winners are announced.

 

"I found Stage 32’s contest coverage far better than some other services I have used in the past, where I felt almost assaulted. Please thank him or her for a well-done job. It was my first try with Stage 32 but it will not be my last." - Bob C.

"Stage 32 contest coverage is even better than some of the industry coverage I received. Thank you for these invaluable notes!" - E. Robinson

"The insight from my coverage from the Stage 32 contest helped me improve my script's dimension exponentially. I had looked at the script so much that I can't believe I missed a major plot point. Thank you!!" - S. Persons

Winners

TITLEWRITER
LOVE, CHELSEA JENNY RAUCH

Finalists

TITLEWRITER
90S KIDS PATRICK BECHTEL
CRACKED ACES JEFF ZAMPINO
FATHER OF HIS COUNTRY JOE DZIKIEWICZ
LOVE, CHELSEA JENNY RAUCH
STAYERS (PILOT) TEDDY GILMORE & MAT DANN
SUCH A DRAG JEREMY PADOW
THE FURTHER ADVENTURES OF JIMMY LYNCH ROBERT F ROSSETTI
THE MYTHICAL GOLDEN TROUT CRAIG PETERS
THICK AS THIEVES BRANDON SILBERSTEIN
ZENDA PAUL A. MENDELSON

Semi Finalists

TITLEWRITER
#MONSTERSQUADGOALS JEREMY PADOW
50 MELISSA MCGLENSEY
90S KIDS PATRICK BECHTEL
A HARD DAY'S HEIST NICK BOOCOCK
A MEETING IN SEVILLE PAUL MENDELSON
A SPY ON EVERY CORNER BOB CANNING
ALL IN! MICHAEL GREENE
BIG, SCARY ANIMALS ANDY GILCHRIST
BIRTHDAY MAGIC GEORGE SPICER
BREAKING IN SHELLY MYLES WARDEN & CAPRI SAMPSON
CRACKED ACES JEFF ZAMPINO
DANCING WITH DEFEAT DAN HART
DARWIN ANNAMARIE DAVIDSON
ELIZABETH KLINE HAS NO FRIENDS EMILY WAHLUND
FATHER OF HIS COUNTRY JOE DZIKIEWICZ
FRIDAY NIGHT DEATH SLOT CONNOR TKACHUK, JASMINE ELIST
FROSTY DEBRAH NEAL
HARD FELT JAY FILM-MAKER TREMBLAY
HONEY CHILD JUNE ESCALANTE
HOT TODDY SCOTT COX
HOTFLASH BARBIE DESANTIS
KIDNAPPING BECKY GABE FONTENOT
LOVE YOU MORE JENNA MCCARTHY
LOVE, CHELSEA JENNY RAUCH
MY CUZ, THE KING A GARAU
OAKSTERDUM - FIREDORKS (PILOT SCRIPT) NEMANJA COLOVIC
ON THE LINE MATT HYAMS
PUBLIC ACCESS KATIE SCRIVNER
RAILS CRAIG MILLER
SEXUAL HEALING JENNIFER MEDVIN
SMILING INSIDE THOMAS BRIAN SCOTT
STAYERS (PILOT) TEDDY GILMORE & MAT DANN
SUCH A DRAG JEREMY PADOW
SUPERBUG GIO FORLENZA
SWEET OLD MAN ANDREW MESCHER
TEENAGE CANNIBALS STEVEN JOSEPH BOLIA
THE BIG PIG GB HAJIM & JERI KLEIN
THE BOARD ANDI BEE
THE BOX WENDY BRAFF
THE FURTHER ADVENTURES OF JIMMY LYNCH ROBERT F ROSSETTI
THE LAST GREAT ANKLE CONTEST JUNE ESCALANTE
THE LAST LOST BOY MIKE COCHNAR
THE MYTHICAL GOLDEN TROUT CRAIG PETERS
THE VANDERBOLTS LOUIS FERRANTE
THICK AS THIEVES BRANDON SILBERSTEIN
THIS LAND IS YOUR LAND ROBERT F ROSSETTI
TO LIVE, PRESS 1 STEPHEN HOOVER
TRAUMALAND HANALA SAGAL
WINGMOM KELLY SHANLEY
YEAST PAUL DE HAVILLAND & TOM PEARSON
ZENDA PAUL A. MENDELSON

Quarter Finalists

TITLEWRITER
#MONSTERSQUADGOALS JEREMY PADOW
50 MELISSA MCGLENSEY
90S KIDS PATRICK BECHTEL
A HARD DAY'S HEIST NICK BOOCOCK
A MEETING IN SEVILLE PAUL MENDELSON
A SPY ON EVERY CORNER BOB CANNING
ADDICTS MAIA HENKIN
ALL IN! MICHAEL GREENE
BECKY IS OUR GOD TULICA ALICE SINGH
BIG, SCARY ANIMALS ANDY GILCHRIST
BIRTHDAY MAGIC GEORGE SPICER
BREAKING IN SHELLY MYLES WARDEN & CAPRI SAMPSON
CARE LESS JASON ODELL WILLIAMS
CHOSENVILLE JESSICA KANE
CRACKED ACES JEFF ZAMPINO
CRANKEY VILLAGE RETIREMENT COMMUNITY ALAINA WARREN ZACHARY
DANCE-BROS MATT LEWIS
DANCING WITH DEFEAT DAN HART
DARWIN ANNAMARIE DAVIDSON
DAUGHTER OF GOD WILDER CARNES
DEF SHEPPARD ALEXANDRA KEISTER
DIRTY MATS MARY GRIFFITTS
DOMMES RICHARD SLOGGETT
DON'T BLOW YOUR TOP PHIL BURDETTE
DON'T YOU WANT ME - PILOT: "SHALL WE?" BRANDON LERO
DOUG HELPER SUZAN AVERITT, JEFF G PETERS
ELIZABETH KLINE HAS NO FRIENDS EMILY WAHLUND
EMPTYNESS ROBERT HARLEY
F SHARP JOHN DAY
FATHER OF HIS COUNTRY JOE DZIKIEWICZ
FOREVER HOME SARAH SHOOK, SCOTT GOLDSTEIN
FRIDAY NIGHT DEATH SLOT CONNOR TKACHUK, JASMINE ELIST
FROSTY DEBRAH NEAL
FUDDY DUDDIES CRISTI RUMPZA
GOING STEADY ROBYN PARIS
GUMRUNNERS JEFF CROSS
HARD FELT JAY FILM-MAKER TREMBLAY
HAULING ASH DEREK WIGHTMAN
HOLLYWOOD ENDING MICHAEL WICHMAN
HOLY HARRY ZACH WITT
HONEY CHILD JUNE ESCALANTE
HONOUR RICHARD SLOGGETT
HOT TODDY SCOTT COX
HOTFLASH BARBIE DESANTIS
I KILLED MORGAN FREEMAN DONALD UPTON & PAUL G NEWTON
IDGAF BOB GIORDANO
JONNY BLU MARK LOUGHLIN
KIDNAPPING BECKY GABE FONTENOT
LOVE YOU MORE JENNA MCCARTHY
LOVE, CHELSEA JENNY RAUCH
MAXIMUM BEAUTY BRIAN MICHAELS
MCBRIDES ERNA MUELLER
MCBRIDES ERNA MUELLER
MERMAIDS OF MEDIA, PENNSYLVANIA CAROL ANN A SABIK-JAFFE
MURPHY'S LAWN KEVIN NAUGHTON
MY CUZ, THE KING A GARAU
MY SEX LIFE ROSALYN ROSEN
OAKSTERDUM - FIREDORKS (PILOT SCRIPT) NEMANJA COLOVIC
OFF THE LEASH GREG JACKSON
ON THE LINE MATT HYAMS
PLEASE DON'T LET ME DIE IN NEW JERSEY! TOM CAVANAUGH
POKER FACE MIKE BENCIVENGA
PUBLIC ACCESS KATIE SCRIVNER
RAILS CRAIG MILLER
ROMPER ROOM APRIL HARTMANN
SEXUAL HEALING JENNIFER MEDVIN
SILVERFINCH WARREN BOUCHIER
SLOGRAMMERS TEJU PRASAD
SMILING INSIDE THOMAS BRIAN SCOTT
SPEAKING OUT LAWRENCE DAVIDSON
STAYERS (PILOT) TEDDY GILMORE & MAT DANN
SUCH A DRAG JEREMY PADOW
SUPERBUG GIO FORLENZA
SWEET OLD MAN ANDREW MESCHER
TEARIN' UP THE COUNTRY JACK W RIEDINGER
TEENAGE CANNIBALS STEVEN JOSEPH BOLIA
THE AFTERLIFE OF EROTICA EVANS HARVEY Z. YAZIJIAN
THE ANDRES ZACHARY ZOPPA
THE ANTI-COMIC STEVE SAVITZ
THE BIG PIG GB HAJIM & JERI KLEIN
THE BOARD ANDI BEE
THE BOX WENDY BRAFF
THE BURIED TRUTH ELIZABETH J. MUSGRAVE
THE FACTS IN THE CASE OF L. LOVELACE ANDREW MESCHER
THE FURTHER ADVENTURES OF JIMMY LYNCH ROBERT F ROSSETTI
THE LAST GREAT ANKLE CONTEST JUNE ESCALANTE
THE LAST LOST BOY MIKE COCHNAR
THE LAST MAN ON EARTH STUART CREQUE
THE MYTHICAL GOLDEN TROUT CRAIG PETERS
THE RED REBEL BEER RALLY KIERA GIORDAN
THE RIGHT MR. WRONG MARK STOUFFER
THE TRUE STORY OF THE S.S. REX PAULA DIXON
THE VANDERBOLTS LOUIS FERRANTE
THICK AS THIEVES BRANDON SILBERSTEIN
THIS LAND IS YOUR LAND ROBERT F ROSSETTI
TO LIVE, PRESS 1 STEPHEN HOOVER
TOKEN IDIOTS MATTHEW LUTZ
TRAUMALAND HANALA SAGAL
WINGMOM KELLY SHANLEY
YEAST PAUL DE HAVILLAND & TOM PEARSON
ZENDA PAUL A. MENDELSON

Contest Prizes

GRAND PRIZE WINNER

Will be flown to Los Angeles to meet privately with the contest judges! But that isn't all! The Grand Prize winner will also meet with executives from:

  • Panay Films
  • Smart Entertainment
  • Schemers Entertainment
  • Cohn/Torgan Management
  • MetaMorphic Entertainment
  • Energy Entertainment Management
  • The Cartel Management
  • Art/Work Entertainment
  • Untitled Entertainment
  • Good Fear Film + Management
  • Zero Gravity Management

 

ALL FINALISTS

Stage 32's executive team will send out your screenplay title, logline & writer bio to over 500 development executives, producers, managers & agents in an exclusive Stage 32 Lookbook! 

Our Track Record

 

Unprecedented access. Better exposure. More reads. Real success!

 

The Stage 32 Comedy contest has resulted in numerous success stories for our winners and finalists!

Last year's winner Greg Mania met with managers from Zero Gravity, The Cartel, Art/Work Entertainment, Cohn/Torgan Management, Schemers Entertainment and executives from Smart Entertainment, Whitewater Films, and more! 

Check out his video here:

 

Our 2018 winner Diana Wright was signed to The Cartel and Abrams Artists Agency!

Check out her video here:

 

 

Our 2017 winners, Anthony Guidubaldi & Keith Strausbaugh (Shorebreak), were flown to LA and sent on a whirlwind of meetings with executives and production companies resulting in:

  • Amasia Entertainment requested their horror comedy script and a mockumentary they produced.
  • Lionsgate's LOL Network requested their animation pilot and asked for a sketch packet.
  • Big Beach Films requested their short film Baby Grand.
  • Panay Films is going into development on a spec pilot written by Keith & Anthony!

 

 

Contest Judges

Lisa Benedetto

Lisa Benedetto - Associate Producer, Workin' Moms

Lisa Benedetto is an Associate Producer on the hit Netflix comedy series, "Workin' Moms" from creator Catherine Reitman. The series, now in its 4th season, follows four very different thirty-something working mothers and friends as they try to balance their jobs, family life and love life in modern day Toronto, Canada.

Prior to her work on "Workin' Moms", Lisa worked on the AMC series "American Gods." 

Jared Iacino  (Judge)

Jared Iacino (Judge) - Senior Vice President of Film & TV Development, Panay Films

Jared Iacino is the Head of Films and Television Production at Panay Films. Jared has been involved with the development and production of projects including HIT & RUN starring Kristen Bell, Dax Shepard and Bradley Cooper, HOT TUB TIME MACHINE 2 starring Craig Robinson, Rob Corddry and Adam Scott, and the family adventure film EARTH TO ECHO, MASTERMINDS starring Zach Galifianakis, Kristen Wig and Owen Wilson, and the recent CHIPS starring Michael Peña and Dax Shepard. Panay has produced WEDDING CRASHERS starring Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson, VAN WILDER starring Ryan Reynolds, and SERENDIPITY starring John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale.

These productions have given Panay Films the opportunity to work with other major companies including:

  • Paramount
  • Warner Bros.
  • Relativity Media
  • Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM)
  • Open Road Films

Prior to his time at Panay Films, Jared worked in development and production at Walt Disney Studios, Red Wagon Entertainment, Storyline Entertainment and Fox Studios - affording him the opportunity to work on a diverse slate of award-winning and critically-acclaimed Film and Television projects including: THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA, JUNO, HAIRSPRAY, THE BUCKET LIST, A RAISIN IN THE SUN, THE PROPOSAL, and THE MUPPETS.

 

Jonathan Kite

Jonathan Kite - Actor, Writer, Comedian,

Jonathan Kite is an American actor and comedian from Skokie, IL and has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Theatre from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Best known as "Oleg," the hilarious, lovable, sex-crazed Ukrainian cook, opposite Kat Dennings and Beth Behrs on the CBS hit comedy, "2 Broke Girls," Kite credits Wilt Chamberlin and Ukrainian porn star Vlad, the Impaler as major influences when he created his character. In addition, he has been seen in a number of notable supporting roles on television including FOX's "Family Guy", "American Dad", "Raising Hope", and the Jamie Foxx produced sketch show "In the Flow with Affion Crockett", Netflix's "Boss Baby" and "Cleopatra In Space", and Adult Swim's, "Black Dynamite: The Animated Series" where he voiced many of the color impaired characters. 

Aside from a busy acting career, Kite is an expert impressionist boasting over 120 celebrity impressions that include: Tom Hanks, Anthony Bourdain, Ryan Reynolds, Vince Vaughn, Seth Rogen, Adam Driver, Christian Bale, Jeff Bridges, Robert Downey Jr., and John Lithgow.

He is also a national and international headlining comedian having performed in top clubs all over the world. He recently filmed his first stand up comedy special,"Jonathan Kite's Back to School Special" at his high school alma mater Niles North, where it all began.

Travis Mauk (Judge)

Travis Mauk (Judge) - Creative Executive, Smart Entertainment

Travis is the Creative Executive at Smart Entertainment, a production and management company based in Los Angeles whose projects have grossed over a billion dollars. Most recently the company produced the wildly successful Ted franchise, with Seth MacFarlane and Mark Wahlberg, Blades of Glory starring Will Ferrell, Jenna Fischer and Amy Poehler and Anger Management starring Adam Sandler, Jack Nicholson and Marisa Tomei.

Recently, Smart Entertainment branched into thrillers producing the smash hit, The Boy Next Door starring Jennifer Lopez.

These projects have given Smart Entertainment the opportunity to work with other amazing companies including DreamWorks, Paramount, Disney, Universal, Blumhouse, Fuzzy Door Productions, Bluegrass Films

Prior to Smart Entertainment, Travis worked at CBS where he worked on shows including "Price is Right", "American Idol", "Baby Daddy" and "Melissa & Joey," before moving to the industry-leading talent agency Innovative Artists.

 

Sarah J. Cornelius (Judge)

Sarah J. Cornelius (Judge) - Creative & Production Executive, Whitewater Films

Sarah Cornelius is the Creative and Production Executive at Whitewater Films, an independent production company spearheaded by veteran producer Rick Rosenthal. Whitewater Films recently completed their feature Standing Up, Falling Down, starring Billy Crystal & Ben Schwartz with first-time director Matt Ratner.

Rick Rosenthal has more than 100 credits including, Bad Boys, "Transparent", "Beauty and the Beast", Halloween 2, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and"Smallville".

Whitewater has produced numerous notable films which have won Independent Spirit Awards, the Sundance Directing Award, a Primetime Emmy, as well as collecting nominations for an Oscar and the Sundance Grand Jury Prize.

Whitewater has produced projects for Paramount Classics, The Orchard, Showtime, CNN Films, Netflix, IFC, and Samuel Goodwyn Films.

 

Joe Ferrante

Joe Ferrante - Development Producer,

Joe Ferrante is the Development Producer at Verite Entertainment.

Joe got his start in entertainment in Japan where he wrote and produced two shows for Fuji TV. He has developed for series with Comcast, MTV Networks and Warner Bros. He has sold projects and developed series with Bernero Productions, as well as writing several award winning scripts.

Verite has worked on projects with Disney, Warner Bros., Dreamworks, Nickelodeon, and Amazon. They have produced high quality work for a long list of clients in Hollywood and around the world.

This executive has also worked in the Diversity Department of the Writers Guild of America, where he helped produce a Pitch Learning Program with the National Hispanic Media Coalition. The program became a model for teaching writers the skills needed for pitching.

Elisha Yaffe (Judge)

Elisha Yaffe (Judge) -

Elisha Yaffe is an award-winning actor, writer, producer, and director. As an Executive Producer and Writer, he's been commissioned to write 1/2 hr comedy pilot scripts for TBS and Super Deluxe. He was the Co-Showrunner on an 8 episode 1/2 hr comedy series for go90 and Complex Networks. He's developed shows for Warner Bros. Studio 2.0, Warner Horizon, Ron Howard's NewForm, MSN, as well as an interactive show for Eko Studios. Currently, Elisha's an Executive Producer on a studio comedy project being taken out to cable networks. As an executive producer, he's found success developing and executing short films and web series with the aim of having them double as proof of concepts for long-form projects.
 
As a development executive, Elisha works with writers to sharpen their take on each project with a focus on plot and character development. He's also a highly sought after pitch coach, specializing in performance and copy editing.
 
In the short-form space, Elisha's been nominated for a YouTube Comedy Award, been awarded 5 Vimeo Staff Picks, and featured on the prestigious website "Short of The Week" twice.
 
Joe Riley (Judge)

Joe Riley (Judge) - Manager/Producer, Zero Gravity Management

Joe Riley is a Manager and Producer at Zero Gravity Management. 

Zero Gravity Management is a progressive entertainment company whose strength lies in the development and representation of screenwriters, directors, and actors. Zero Gravity maintains a list of some of the industry's most established professionals in all arenas.

The firm is also a well-respected full-service production company handling the development, finance, execution and sale of projects in film, television and new media. Zero Gravity works with all the major and mini-major studios on a consistent basis, producing feature films and TV series, selling spec scripts, and sourcing open writing, directing and acting assignments.

In the literary world, Zero Gravity’s reputation has been built upon its hands-on development process, working intimately with their clients to generate the most elevated and unique material possible. After twenty-five years of building relationships in the entertainment sector, Zero Gravity has the distinctive skills, experience, and connections to package, produce and finance projects.

They have a tremendous track record of bringing clients’ scripts to screen, and possess a relentless commitment to the projects and people they believe in. 

Winner Announcements

May 01
Quarter-Finalists Announced
on Stage 32
May 15
Semi-Finalists Announced
on Stage 32
Jun 01
Finalists Announced
on Stage 32
Jun 12
Contest Winners Announced
on Stage 32
* Announcement dates subject to change.
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