EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — The Plaza Classic Film Festival’s screenwriting competition returns for its second year with a few new twists.

The winner and top 10 screenplay finalists will be announced at the Plaza Classic Film Festival which will be held on Thursday, July 20 through Sunday, July 30.

First place will receive $500, second place $250 and there will be a “pitch fest” for the finalists.

The 16th annual Plaza Classic Film Festival will feature more than 90 movies at the Plaza Theatre. This year’s titles include “Casablanca,” “When Harry Met Sally” and Buster Keaton’s “Steamboat Bill Jr.”

The first-place winner will be announced Sunday, July 30 on the final day of the film festival. In addition to the $500 prize, they will receive a consultation with El Paso writer-director Lucky McKee and a table read of their screenplay.

More prizes will be announced.

The following are the rules to enter:

  • 18 years or older.
  • A feature-length script of no more than 120 pages.
  • No genre restrictions.
  • Screenplays must be submitted in PDF format.
  • The cover sheet should only include the screenplay’s title; the entrant’s name and contact information will be included on the submission form.

The competition will feature a point system that will be used to grade the submissions, with a 50-point maximum.

Scripts will be awarded up to 10 points each for premise, plot, characters, dialogue and the script’s potential prospects.

Finalists will also have the opportunity to pitch their screenplay at the first-ever Plaza Classic Film Festival Pitch Fest. The pitch fest will be at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, July 26 at the International Bar located on 114A Mills Ave.

Contestants will have 90 seconds to pitch their screenplay. Hector Gallardo of El Paso’s Subharmonic City Productions will select a screenplay and offer a $300 first prize that will go towards the production of a short film.

Call (915) 533-4020 or email local@plazaclassic.com for more information about the contest.