Since launching in 2005, the NYTVF has served as the premiere platform for independent television, bringing the work of writers, producers and directors to the attention of the industry's decision-makers. Never before in the history of television has there been a greater demand for original, quality content and the NYTVF is dedicated to continue providing the opportunity to meet that demand.
The following is a list of questions most commonly asked about the NYTVF. Use the menu in the left column to jump to a specific section or just read them all.
Please note: if you have questions regarding a particular NYTVF initiative, please download the Official Rules that are specific to that contest. If you have any further questions, please contact us directly at ASK NYTVF.
Click on the questions below to read the answers!
A: The NYTVF is a pioneer of the independent television movement, connecting its community of over 15,000 artists with leading networks, studios, agencies, production companies, and brands. Year-round submission opportunities for TV and digital development culminate at the annual New York Television Festival each fall, uniting indie creators, industry decision-makers, and TV fans, alike.
A: You should submit for so many reasons! For one, the Festival’s flagship annual competition, the Independent Pilot Competition, has yielded a number of successes - both in shows being sold to networks and studios for further development as well as individual talent deals for artists to develop future projects at the network, production company and studio levels. Also, the NYTVF has been able to secure guaranteed deals for Festival artists through individual sponsored initiatives as well as embedded, Festival Development Deals (more info BELOW). All of these deals have provided nearly $500,000 in guaranteed development and production financing to independent television artists in the NYTVF community.
Additionally, the only way to access Artist Only benefits at the annual Festival is to become an Official Artist, and you can only do that by having a project named an Official Selection. These benefits include Development Chats, Executive Access, NYTVF Pitch, and more! You can find out all the info HERE.
A: It’s both, and stop pigeon-holing us! The annual New York Television Festival hosts screenings of the Official Selections competing in the Independent Pilot Competition, but it also features an exclusive program called Executive Access, in which Festival coordinators facilitate meetings between Official Artists and participating industry executives. Additionally, industry decision-makers participate in a number of events throughout the week through NYTVF Connect. So, submit and attend!
A: For information on submitting to the annual Independent Pilot Competition, NYTVF Scripts, or to one of our sponsored initiatives, please visit the SUBMIT section of our website.Each of our initiatives has different rules for submitting, so please read the rules of the initiative you are interested in very carefully. If you have any additional questions you can email us at email@example.com.
A: Absolutely not. Many of the creators, writers, and production companies that submit projects to the NYTVF do so without agency representation. In fact, many Official Artists without representation have gone on to find agents and managers at the Festival.
A: The only people that the NYTVF works for are artists. We collaborate with many studios, networks, and agencies to find talented people and ideas, but at the end of the day we are working to provide independent artists with as many opportunities as possible, be that networking, collaborating with executives or other artists, or learning more about the industry. We want artists to succeed - they’re our primary focus.
A: You can learn a lot by going to the ABOUT section of the NYTVF website, where you will find information on our mission, our history, and the people who work here!
For information on the NYTVF's flagship initiative, visit the IPC FAQ Page.
For information on the NYTVF Scripts competition, visit the NYTVF Scripts FAQ page.
While the following FAQs cover the basics of submitting to one of the many NYTVF Sponsored Initiatives, there are always specific guidelines laid out by the network, studio, or brand that sponsors each opportunity. For the most up-to-date and accurate information, please look to the individual initiative pages, which can be accessed via the SUBMIT section of the NYTVF site.
A: Throughout the year, the NYTVF partners with networks, studios, and brands to provide exclusive submission opportunities for indie creators to get into business with industry partners via sponsored development initiatives. These initiatives solicit content within the specifications outlined by the NYTVF, and the projects submitted are assessed exclusively with the partner in mind. In each case, the partner will guarantee a deal for at least one project selected.
The winning project will enter into an option deal with the corresponding network and the remaining finalists and/or semi-finalists will be eligible for NYTVF Festival Development Deals once the period of exclusivity with the original initiative sponsor has ended. In addition, all finalists and semi-finalists in sponsored initiatives will be named Official Artists for that year’s Festival.
A: Click HERE for a list of current and upcoming Sponsored Initiatives.
A: Each Sponsored Initiative contains different guidelines for eligible territories. In those cases where foreign submissions are not allowed, it is stipulated by legal specification on the part of the corresponding partner. While the Independent Pilot Competition does accept foreign submissions, each Sponsored Initiative is different. To find out whether an initiative accepts submissions from countries outside of the United States, consult the main pages of each initiative (accessible from the main SUBMIT section.
A: No. The only projects that screen at the Festival are the Official Selections from the Independent Pilot Competition. We do not screen projects from Sponsored Initiatives due to time and location restraints.
A: If you are not under contract with a network and if you did not sell the rights of your idea, you are eligible to submit your project to the NYTVF. However, be cognizant of submitting something to a Sponsored Initiative if you know the sponsor has already seen your work.
A: Due to the volume of submissions that the NYTVF receives, we cannot offer feedback to specific artists.
A: Yes, but only if the project is eligible for re-submission (for most initiatives, it is eligible as soon as your project is not named a finalist or semi-finalist). Consult the main pages of each initiative (accessible from the main SUBMIT section) for more information regarding exclusivity.
A: For almost all initiatives, you can submit multiple projects, but make sure to fill out separate paperwork for each submission. Consult the main pages of each initiative (accessible from the main SUBMIT section for more information regarding submission rules.
A: Adult content is allowed in your pilot, but be mindful of the restrictions the corresponding partner may have on adult content (broadcast networks and/or basic cable have different standards).
You may want to cater your pilot to the standards of the sponsor, but this is neither a requirement nor a guideline. Also, in the submission paperwork there is an area for disclosing whether your project contains adult content/themes.
A: The NYTVF’s eligibility rules follow standard US Copyright Law, and the Festival will not be able to accept (as Official Selections) pilots that contain music, images, video, or other materials that infringe on another's copyright. As a producer, you’ll want to follow best practices to clear all copyrighted material in your project.
Copyright clearance and Fair Use are often subjective matters, and the easiest way to avoid the risk of copyright infringement is to avoid un-cleared material altogether. This link leads to a helpful primer on the fair use of copyrighted materials in online video: www.copyright.gov.
A: A Festival Development Deal is a guaranteed option deal offered by a Festival Development Partner.
NYTVF Festival Development Partners provide a creative brief outlining the development objectives for projects, including pertinent goals, audience information, and additional points for consideration by submitting creators. Producers and content creators are eligible for the Festival Development Awards if their pilot is an Official Selection of the Independent Pilot Competition, their script is an Official Selection of NYTVF Scripts, or they are a semi-finalist or finalist in any other Festival initiative, including Sponsored Initiatives.
A: You can see the current list of NYTVF Development Partners and Deals HERE.
A: Producers and content creators are eligible for the Festival Development Awards if their pilot is an Official Selection of the Independent Pilot Competition, their script is an Official Selection of NYTVF Scripts, or they are a semi-finalist or finalist in any other Festival initiative, including Sponsored Initiatives.
A: If you win a development deal, the money associated with that deal is guaranteed to you. Each deal is specific to its corresponding partner, and this payment will often come with a contract that stipulates what the payment does and does not cover.
A: Open exclusively to Artists whose projects have gotten them into the Festival as part of NYTVF Connect, Pitch is a unique opportunity for Official Artists to submit NEW SHOW CONCEPTS based on creative briefs provided by participating networks and studios. To read more about Pitch and NYTVF Connect, visit the Artist Experience page HERE.
A: NYTVF Official Artist designation is applied to the creator(s) of projects named Official Selections in the IPC, Official Selections in NYTVF Scripts, finalists and semi-finalists in our Sponsored Initiatives and Alums who apply for the NYTVF+ program.
A: NYTVF Connect is the collection of Artist Only programs that connect NYTVF Official Artists with top-tier TV development executives, buyers, agents, and other decision-makers through scheduled meetings, pitches, and informal chats. For more information on NYTVF Connect, visit the Official Artists page HERE.
A: Official Artists cannot request meetings with executives during the Festival. NYTVF Staff will contact you directly if an executive wishes to meet with you. However, if you do not get a meeting with a specific partner, there will be Artist Only Development Chats throughout the week, where you can ask questions and meet with many development partners.
A: The only way to attend Artist-Only events is to be named an Official Artist (see above for more info). All Artist-Only events occur at the Festival in the fall, and you need to be physically present at the festival to attend them.
A: The good news is that Artist Only events are free to attend, but you need to be an Official Artist in order to attend them. The best way to guarantee that is to SUBMIT.
A: The NYTVF facilitates meetings with agents, but these meetings are exclusively requested BY agents and are for specific projects that they would like to meet with. If you would like to meet an agent, we have several Artist-Only events (including Mixers and Development Chats) that are designed to get you in the same room with industry decision-makers.
A: If your project is an Official Selection, your work will be available for NYTVF partners/sponsors to view through a private online viewing suite. We do not publicly release your work without your permission, and we will not showcase your work privately if you opt out.
A: Artist Hub is our main site for Official Artists once their projects are named Official Selections. This site is private and is used to connect Artists and share information on NYTVF Pitch, Festival deliverables, and meeting requests through Executive Access. Once you are an Official Artist, Artist Hub is where you will get most of your information.
A: NYTVF+ is a special Alumni program that allows Alums of the NYTVF to participate as Official Artists. NYTVF+ participants enjoy the exclusive benefits of the NYTVF Connect program, including participation in NYTVF Pitch and access to Artist-Only events during the week of the Festival.
A: To participate in NYTVF+, you must be the creator of a previous award-winning NYTVF Official Selection. More specific information will be shared with eligible parties as the Festival approaches.
For general information on getting involved with the NYTVF as a sponsor or partner, please visit our main INDUSTRY page or download the Partnership Guide.
The following are questions regarding attending the Festival as a member of the General Public. If you would like to attend as an Artist or as an Industry sponsor, please visit HERE or HERE. If you are a business that is interested in partnering with the NYTVF, please refer to the the last question of this section.
A: The annual New York Television Festival takes place in New York City. Though our venues change from year-to-year, most Festival events take place in Chelsea.
A: Members of the general public can view and reserve tickets to public events when we open our online Box Office (typically a month before the actual Festival). If you’re interested in attending all public Festival events, including Passholder Only events like daily Happy Hours, you might want to consider purchasing a Festival Pass, which will be available HERE about a month before the Festival.
A: The schedule of events is usually announced the month before the Festival, but for the most up-to-date scheduling, sign up for our newsletter HERE.
A: The specific dates of the Festival change from year-to-year. The next Festival will take place from:
A: Yes. As a rule, we only sell venues TO CAPACITY, so there is always the chance that people who RSVP will not show up. If you arrive early and are nice to the people running the stand-by line, there is a good chance you can get into the event.
A: Unless a screening or panel is part of a ‘Family’ block of programming, we recommend that people 18+ attend screenings, as the pilots screened do not necessarily adhere to broadcast rules. This includes screenings that are listed as ‘Animation.’ However, we do not police screenings and attendance is at your discretion and standards.
A: In theory, we’d love to have you. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
A: The NYTVF hosts numerous events throughout the year in New York City and in major cities around the country. Be sure to check HERE for the most up-to-date events in your area!
A: Do you have an organization or group that would like to participate in a launch event or host NYTVF in your city? Email us at email@example.com!