SYFY Story to Screen: A Digital Pilot Project
Create a trailer for the popular Wattpad story 'Expiration Date'.

Due July 23rd, 2018 - Imagine a world in which you know the exact day you’ll die – and that you know it because that very date is imprinted on your arm at birth, a constant and terrifying reminder of your inescapable fate. For 18-year-old orphan IRIS LEVINE, that date has always been the day of her 19th birthday. Yet, when the clock finally strikes midnight, a mysterious man appears and snatches her away from her imminent death. What happens next is the epic story of EXPIRATION DATE, a wildly popular science fiction adventure with over 16 million reads on Wattpad.

Outliving her expiration date has marked Iris as “Expired” and made her a dangerous threat to The Society, the secretive organization that runs everything. Her only hope now is the mysterious man, who reveals himself to be none other than ERIK BLACKWOOD, third-in-command of The Society itself. Erik wants to end expiration dates, and thinks Iris may be the one to help him do it. Soon Iris finds herself thrust into a life-or-death struggle between warring factions and revolutionaries, caught in an unlikely love triangle between the man who saved her, and his brother JONAS BLACKWOOD, the charismatic leader of The Society, who has his own surprising motivations…

This is where you come in: SYFY, Wattpad, and Tongal want to transform Expiration Date from Story to Screen as a digital pilot, and they want to start by having you create a thrilling Trailer that will get the fans excited, and tee up the adventure, the danger, the drama, and yes, the romance, that plays out within Expiration Date’s pages. SYFY gives science fiction fans of all kinds a universe to call home by celebrating the genre in all its forms – from premium original programming to imaginative digital and social content – so it’s a natural home for a story like this.

You’ll find a synopsis in the Assets on the main contest page for this project, but be sure to check out the full story on Wattpad too.

The goal of this project is to create a Trailer up to 2 minutes in length to get audiences hyped about a potential digital pilot based on Wattpad’s thrilling sci-fi adventure Expiration Date. Your Trailer will have to introduce the main characters, capture the voice, look, and feel of your potential digital pilot, and tee up the narrative that would drive a series forward.

Three Filmmakers will each receive a budget to produce a Trailer, with potential for one Trailer to be greenlit for a short form digital pilot episode with additional budget. After the Trailers are finalized, fans will be invited to SYFY.com to watch all three and vote on their favorite one to help determine which Trailer gets greenlit to a digital pilot. Once a digital pilot is produced, SYFY and Wattpad, at their own discretion, will have the opportunity to further develop the digital pilot into a full series.

A crucial element in developing your Trailer is first thinking about how you’ll adapt the story for a scripted short form digital format. Put thought into how you’d be able to sustain a story across multiple episodes, and what you might need to do (or change) to create a compelling serialized narrative with clearly defined characters and a fully developed world. Use Expiration Date as the foundation of your narrative, but feel free to expand upon what’s included in the original story and take creative license in your adaptation. Don’t forget the fans or ignore the elements that made the original story successful, but don’t feel rigidly locked in to the original narrative, either.

You should also keep in mind that if you plan on creating a digital pilot with lots of mystery, betrayal, romance, and action, your Trailer needs to include those elements so the audiences know what they’re in for.

Your Trailer can be live action or animation, but it shouldn’t be a rip reel or composed of scenes from other shows/movies. Treat your Trailer like your digital pilot’s already been greenlit– and look to cast talent that can be in the actual digital pilot itself, since they’ll be as important to your work’s potential as your vision, style, and storytelling. Diversity in storytelling makes your narrative more relatable and realistic, so build your cast and crew accordingly!

Click the link below for Official Rules and more details.


Pitch Awards (Due 7/23/18)
The 3 most compelling Pitches will each receive $4,000 to help create a Trailer.

Video Awards (Open only to Pitch winners, due 9/6/18)
Each Filmmaker that goes into the Video Phase will earn $4,000.

Open to Tongal community members (it's free to register!), ages 13 and older.

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