To give this industry its best chance of success we need strong and new ideas. We need stories that resonate. NZWG believe in facilitating diverse pathways for developing these stories. We need to allow writers space to find their voices. NZ Film Commission funded Seed grants are for writers only and provide unencumbered development funding for feature film scripts.

The Seed Advanced is aimed at reducing competition between upcoming writers and more experienced writers, as well as providing new opportunities for the latter, in the Seed pathway. The advanced grants provide accomplished writers with a higher grant level and flexibility around development costs to reflect their greater experience.

For 2019 NZWG Seed Advanced Grants are offered over two rounds with a total of four grants of $12,500 (+ any applicable GST) each for the development of feature film scripts. Included in the total is $2,500 (+ any applicable GST) for a broad development process – possible development tools / processes can be (but are not limited to) workshops, table reads, research and multiple script consultants.

Seed Advanced grants represent an opportunity for writers to be innovative, to be brilliant, and to be excited about the chance to create something they own.


NZWG Seed Advanced Grants aim to:

  • Create an opportunity for writers to experiment with new ideas and to develop a strong draft of a feature film screenplay before parting with any rights or presenting the work to producers or production companies.
  • Reduce competition, in the Seed pathway, between upcoming and more experienced writers.
  • Provide more experienced writers with a higher grant level and more flexibility in development.
  • Provide development funding specifically for writers only to create a feature film script.
  • Create a unique facet of independent script development.
  • Facilitate the creation of industry-ready feature film scripts.


  • These grants do not reflect in any way a purchase price for a draft. They are a contribution to the writer’s own investment of time and skill in a project they retain the rights to.
  • These grants are for feature film projects only.
  • The writer must still own the rights within their work to apply i.e. no producer or production company is attached to the script.
  • The script sample must be from the same feature film which is being applied to the Seed grant with.
  • This grant is a subsidy, not a debt against the production. This means successful applicants receive $10,000 of unencumbered development funding.
  • These grants are for New Zealand citizens or permanent residents only.
  • An additional feedback service is available for $100 + gst at the time of applying online.
  • All assessment is via a double-blind read: the assessors will be anonymous, assessors will not know whose work they are reading – decisions will be made on the strength of ideas and writing only.
  • Assessors are independent. Each assessor will be an experienced industry practitioner with strong knowledge of script development.
  • NZWG staff provide administration and the NZWG Board provide oversight to ensure clear, fair, and transparent processes.
  • NZWG staff do not select recipients. The Board of the NZWG do not select recipients, unless they are appointed as assessors in their independent professional capacity.
  • NZWG Board members are eligible to apply for any round of Seed funding and will in such cases remove themselves from any discussion of that round of the grant.


  1. The Applicant understands that the NZ Writers Guild Seed & NZ Writers Guild Seed Advanced Grants are part of the Seed Scheme run by the NZ Writers Guild with funding from the New Zealand Film Commission and is for feature film projects only.
  2. No relationship of agency is established between the NZ Writers Guild Seed Grants or the NZ Writers Guild or the New Zealand Film Commission and the Applicant by the submission of this application.
  3. The Applicant acknowledges and agrees that :
    1. The NZ Guild and the New Zealand Film Commission receive many ideas, scripts and projects for consideration or assessment and it is possible that some of the ideas, scripts and projects already under consideration or submitted after the date of this application may be similar or identical to some or all of the project submissions; and
    2. The Applicant will not hold the NZ Writers Guild or the New Zealand Film Commission liable in any way for the use of ideas of a general or generic nature contained in the submission (including, without limitation, any idea, theme, situation, geographic area and/or period in history).
  4. All rights in the submission remain the property of the Applicant.  The NZ Writers Guild may copy the submission for assessment, however will not otherwise copy or distribute the submission without the prior consent of the Applicant.  However, the Applicant agrees that details about their project and their name and address may be held by the NZ Writers Guild to assist with tracking for future workshops.
  5. The Applicant understands that this is a blind submission process and has not included their name on any page of the script.
  6. The New Zealand Writers Guild is not responsible for the loss of submissions.  Applicants must retain a copy of their submission.
  7. Non-payment of application fee invalidates the entry.
  8. All decisions concerning applications and assessments of project submissions are at the absolute discretion of the NZ Writers Guild. No further correspondence will be entered into with Applicants.
  9. All Applicants must be New Zealand citizens or permanent residents.
  10. Assessors and staff of the NZWG are not eligible to enter this competition.

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