Pitch festivals have gained popularity in attracting screenwriters in to one tent in order to pitch their material.
I would recommend writers participate in pitch festivals only when they have at least two completed screenplays to pitch. The reason to wait until you have at least two scripts is because you, as the writer, never know what the companies are looking for. If you go in with only one project and they are not interested in it, you are done. You should also come prepared with your one page leave-behind, which includes your contact information, as well as the title, genre, and a summary of your plot.
The big advantage to participating in a pitch festival is two fold. The first is that writers get to pitch to 20 or 30 production companies and agents in a single setting. You should definitely research the companies that will be attending before the event. That way, you’ll know in advance which companies to target. Do your homework so you can pitch your material to companies that have produced similar material to what you will be pitching.
The second advantage to writers participating in this forum is that they get intense practice in pitching and will be able to fine tune their pitching skills.
The pitch festival format is as follows: You have a strict five minutes to pitch as many projects as you can. That should be two scripts. In order to do that, you need to practice your loglines in advance.
The bottom line for prepping for pitch festivals is: assess your market and practice, practice, practice. Then, hope they like what you have to offer.
* * *High Concept Screenwriting Pitch Festivals Steve Kaire Steve on Screenwriting