2011-12 Scriptwriter Contest with John Wells

NEW YORK — The ever-fascinating, endlessly changing American family has been the source of some of the best TV storytelling ever. Now the same group that helped bring Gilmore Girls,Everybody Hates Chris and Friday Night Lights to television is looking for the next great family script.

The Association of National Advertisers’ Alliance for Family Entertainment, which has helped find, support and bring to air 20 hit TV shows and awarded more than 50 scholarships to young screenwriters at leading universities across the country, is looking for the freshest take on what’s real—and really funny—about the modern family in the first annual Search for America’s Newest Comedy Writer.

It’s a coast-to-coast contest in which new writers submit their original, half-hour comedy format script for a chance to win $5,000. But there’s mentoring as well as money at stake. The winner will also receive creative guidance and direct input from acclaimed producer/director/writer John Wells, executive producer of the television series ER, Third Watch, The West Wing, Shameless and Southland.

“Marketers of family brands are often stymied in finding shows to support that offer smart, sophisticated takes on family life that everybody can watch and enjoy,” says Bob Liodice, president and CEO of the ANA. “So our determination to find and help fund the production of promising family scripts and encourage emerging young talent to write stories about modern family life is good for business.”

“We’re really proud of our track record in discovering and supporting good family storytelling,” adds Michael Palmer, ANA executive vice president, AFE member relations. “But the American family never stops changing and so we never stop looking for the next great story and the next great storyteller. The Search for America’s Newest Comedy Writer will help us do just that.”

Search for America’s Newest Comedy Writer script submissions begin October 5 and continue until October 28. Judging will take place October 28 to November 11, and a winner will be announced on or aboutNovember 28. For official rules and more information, visit

About the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) and the ANA Alliance for Family Entertainment

Founded in 1910, the ANA (Association of National Advertisers) leads the marketing community by providing its members with insights, collaboration, and advocacy. ANA’s membership includes 400 companies with 10,000 brands that collectively spend over $250 billion in marketing communications and advertising. The ANA strives to communicate marketing best practices, lead industry initiatives, influence industry practices, manage industry affairs, and advance, promote, and protect all advertisers and marketers.

The Alliance for Family Entertainment is a group of nearly 40 national advertisers, supported by the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), representing approximately 30% of all U.S. television advertising dollars. Its mission is to find, nurture, develop and support high quality content the entire family can enjoy on multiple distribution platforms.

Since its inception (as the Family Friendly Programming Forum) more than a decade ago, the group has played a role in bringing 20 family primetime programs to air, including Friday Night Lights, Chuck, Everybody Hates Chris, 8 Simple Rules and Gilmore Girls.

Patty Kerr
For ANA Alliance for Family Entertainment
(310) 344-4487

SOURCE Alliance for Family Entertainment