Where can you submit your script / screenplay in the UK? It’s a good question and as a UK script consultant I get asked this a lot.
There are literally hundreds of productions companies in the UK – large and small, many of these productions companies produce drama or comedy for broadcasters like the BBC, CH4, ITV and Netflix/Amazon. But, very few of these companies accept unsolicited scripts.
They don’t accept script submissions for a couple of reasons, some simply don’t have the resources to read submissions. Others don’t accept unsolicited screenplays for very sound legal reasons. They worry, if they read your script, and they’re developing something similar that you’ll take legal action at a later date – claiming they stole your idea – this has happened a lot to production companies. So, there’s a kind of blanket – no unsolicited material approach across the industry.
But most good production companies are happy to receive scripts and submission that come from writers with representation by a legit literary agent. So, you need an agent first to really get your work out there.
However, for new writers starting out, there is the BBC Writersroom. The BBC Writersroom accepts scripts in various genres – comedy, drama and even by region. The BBC Writersroom has specific set windows for accepting scripts.
The Writersroom’s main remit is to find new writers and develop them for BBC shows, so that they can become professional script writers working for the BBC – on regular shows like Eastenders and Casualty first off. It’s a great way to break into the industry, get regular commissions and land an agent.
When you submit a script to the BBC Writersroom, an agent, or a script writing competition, in the first instance, your script will be read and assessed by a professional script reader or script consultant (like myself). That person will put together a report on the strengths and weaknesses of the script – this report will decide if your script progresses to the next stage or not.
Often, script readers will an enormous pile of submissions will not read longer that the first 10/15 pages if they sense that the script and the writer isn’t up to professional standard. Sometimes, this is obvious on the very first page.
So, I’d always suggest that before you submit your script anywhere you pay for a professional script report or script coverage service. That way, you can get an immediate idea of any changes you need to make to the script before submission.
Unlike some professional writers, I don’t charge an arm and a leg for my script coverage service either. Prices are:
- Short film script report £50
- TV drama up to one hour script report £80
- Feature film script report £120
Before you pay for a script report or coverage, always make sure you know WHO is reading the script and what PROFESIONAL experience they have in the film and TV industry. I would be very wary of anonymous readers. A partial list of my script writing credits is here on the IMDb
If you’d like to enquire about my script coverage service please contact me on – firstname.lastname@example.org
Matthew Cooper has been a scriptwriter for hire, UK Script editor and UK script consultant for over 20 years. He’s written for most of the UK soaps, including writing award-winning episodes of Emmerdale, EastEnders, Hollyoaks and Family Affairs and has been BAFTA shortlisted and Royal Television Society nominated as a script writer. His UK script coverage service, Script reading service and script development service are highly sought after.
You can find some of his broadcast credits on the IMDb.