Stage 32, Catalyst Studios Launch Social Impact Screenwriting Contest With Option Guarantee (EXCLUSIVE)

Stage 32, the entertainment industry social network and educational platform, and Catalyst Studios, a U.S. production company supporting female-fronted projects, are partnering to launch a screenwriting contest for feature films with a focus on social impact, the companies announced Friday at the Venice Film Festival.

Hosted on the Stage 32 platform, the contest is open to feature film scripts of any genre by women and non-binary filmmakers that “bring awareness to a current issue or progress society forward with innovative thinking that doesn’t fall into typical patriarchal views and conditioning,” according to a statement.

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The winning writer will receive a guaranteed $5,000 option for their script and is eligible for up to $3 million in financing from Catalyst to be produced. Additionally, the Catalyst team will work with the writer on development, Stage 32 will support the script development through education, and Berlinale managing director Mariette Rissenbeek has signed on to mentor the winner.

“It has been my mission as the managing director of Stage 32 to lift up, inspire and encourage real opportunities for women in the entertainment industry around the world through our community,” said Stage 32’s Amanda Toney.

“Stage 32 and Catalyst Studios share a passion and mission for discovering and promoting new voices in film. As such, this partnership is a no-brainer and one we’re extremely excited about,” said Stage 32 CEO Richard Botto.

“Catalyst Studios is trying to create a roadmap for systemic change and inclusivity in the entertainment industry and we want to inspire and support others to do the same,” said Catalyst Studios chairperson, Holly Anderson Levow.

“I couldn’t think of a better way to empower voices that have been too often silenced. This contest celebrates the strength and resilience of women and non-binary creators. I am sure this can bring to life stories that illuminate new paths, shatter old norms, and inspire us all to reach higher,” said Giulia Lupetti, director of marketing for Catalyst Studios.

As part of the announcement in Venice, Stage 32 and Catalyst Studios are holding a two-part panel called “Breaking Barriers: Empowering Women Through Film” on Friday at Hotel Excelsior, featuring executives from both companies along with key figures from Mujeres nel Cinema, Berlinale, Premio Solinas and Nastri D’Argento.

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