Blue Sky Scriptwriting Contest
The $20,000 grand prize in Hollywood, Health & Society’s first Blue Sky Scriptwriting Contest has been awarded to writer Oriana Schwindt for her pilot for the series Merryville (“Love and Light”), about a murder mystery in a small utopian town in Pennsylvania that has served as a model of peace, prosperity and sustainability for 50 years.
Schwindt’s script was one of nearly 100 contest entries received, and among five finalists announced in October of last year after going through two rounds of judging by TV writers/producers and experts on the topics. Each of the finalists received a $7,500 fellowship. The contest was conducted in partnership with the Future of Life Institute, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Writers Guild of America East.
“This is amazing!” Schwindt said after being told that her story took the $20,000 grand prize. “My sincere thanks to everyone involved in this decision. It’s an immense honor.
In addition to Schwindt’s script, the other four fellowship finalists were:
- A Bright World According to Beto (episode “The Start of It All” ) by Gabriele Almon
- Ancestral Dreaming (episode “Eden Dreams”) by Marcella Guerriero
- Inflection Points (episode “Confront Nature") by Peter Andrews
- The Things We Harvest (pilot episode) by Nathan Patton
The submitted scripts passed through two rounds of judging. Entries were first reviewed by television writer/producers for the quality of writing that met all the criteria, reflecting themes of racial equity, climate change mitigation or adaptation, advancements toward peace, and incorporating the beneficial use of artificial intelligence (A.I.). The second round of evaluations were scored by experts on these topics. The Blue Sky competition called for pilot scripts set in a future world that we aspire to live in; one that is peaceful, environmentally sustainable and depicts a fair and equitable society, using artificial intelligence and other forms of technology to benefit humanity.