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Global Arts Networking Organization Big Vision Empty Wallet Announces Screenwriting Competition Judged by Top Film & Literary Leaders

NEW YORK, NEW YORK, August 11, 2010 –

Big Vision Empty Wallet

(BVEW), the networking organization dedicated to bringing both emerging and established artists together from all over the world to help them create art with no rules or limitations, announces today its prestigious 2011 Screenwriting Competition. Judges include New York Times Bestselling author Luanne Rice (The Silver Boat, Summer’s Child, Sandcastles), screenwriter and director J.C. Chandor (Margin Call, 2011 Sundance Film Festival Official Selection starring Academy Award winners Kevin Spacey and Jeremy Irons), and Emmy, Peabody and Academy Award-winning filmmaker and director/writer Robert Levi (Billy Strayhorn: Lush Life).

BVEW’s Screenplay Competition is now accepting submissions through October 15. Whether a new story or a new take on an old classic, BVEW is looking for original, creative and compelling feature-length screenplays so it may introduce emerging screenwriters to top agents and BVEW’s large audience. The finalists, chosen by BVEW staff, will be announced on November 1, and the winners as selected by the judging panel will be announced on November 15.

To submit, the screenwriter must be a member of Big Vision Empty Wallet. There is no additional submission fee. Submissions are open online at:…

The Grand Prize Winner receives:

* A private reading in either New York City or Los Angeles (winner’s choice) for invited industry guests and friends.
* Meetings with top agents and production companies, including:

o Carrie Alexander of Paradigm

o Jody Hotchkiss, owner of Hotchkiss and Associates, Inc., which has represented the distinguished screenwriters of such films as Secretariat, American Gangster, Live Free or Die Hard and The Kite Runner

o Two other prizes to be announced and consideration by other companies in our large database.

* A press blast in industry publications and an announcement on BVEW.

2nd and 3rd Place Winners receive:

* Meetings with top agents and production companies (see above).
* A press blast in industry publications and an announcement on BVEW.

Dani Faith Leonard and Alex Cirillo, founders and creative directors of Big Vision Empty Wallet, are excited to receive submissions from all over the world. “I am so excited to offer this unique opportunity for writers. If your screenplay is great, it shouldn’t be collecting dust on your coffee table,” said Leonard.

Cirillo chimed in saying, “I’m thrilled to have such talented and successful judges for this competition. Having these three brilliant writers read your script is a prize in itself!”

In addition to announcing its upcoming Screenwriting Competition, BVEW is proud to announce the launch of its re-designed website with expanded member benefits. BVEW membership is open to arts professionals in all disciplines from film to theatre to visual arts to multimedia to music and more. Whether up-and-coming or a seasoned pro, BVEW offers resources that every artist can benefit from and tools to further the collaborative process. Annual membership for artists is only $50, and $95 for artist collectives and bands. Members can create a profile where they can share their work, take advantage of exclusive member deals and discounts, use BVEW’s extensive resource guide including over 125 production forms, NY and LA vendor directories, as well as listings of film commissions and unions, and keep up to date with festival and grant deadlines. Members can also browse through jobs available and projects currently casting on BVEW’s projects board, and post opportunities on the jobs board and in the BVEW member bulletin. Members attend free BVEW events, which range from intimate film screenings to interdisciplinary celebrations of the arts and showcase members’ work. BVEW artists also gain free online entry to all of BVEW’s online competitions. Additionally, BVEW features free articles and reviews that profile events, companies and artists, along with film and theatre reviews written by people who actually work in the industry.

Upcoming events and competitions include the Be You Artists Series in the Fall, of which BVEW is a sponsor and coordinator of the film program. Also coming this fall will be BVEW’s National Film Competition, sponsored by Canon. The much sought-after prize valued at over $50,000 will be unlimited free Canon cameras and lenses for 30 days, as well as other prizes and resources that will help the winner create his or her film on a limited budget. Judges confirmed so far for the National Film Competition include Russell Carpenter (cinematographer, Titantic), Alex Buono (cinematographer, Saturday Night Live) and Rik Cordero (independent music video and commercial director).

In May 2010, actress Dani Faith Leonard and filmmaker Alex Cirillo teamed up to create BVEW, a one-stop destination with a fresh and unique perspective about the independent film and arts community in New York City. BVEW became a conduit of information, news, entertainment and resources to aid and support filmmakers and artists in the midst of the current economic climate and ever-changing media landscape. BVEW has since then evolved into a global arts networking organization with members, events and competitions in New York, Los Angeles and Washington DC, and soon to be in Chicago, Boston, Toronto, London and Madrid.

Alex Cirillo is a filmmaker born and raised in New York. In May 2010, she and Dani Faith Leonard launched Big Vision Empty Wallet after having produced film screenings and competitions through their sister company, Industry Power Play. Cirillo is also a Producer at Washington Square Films where she works on feature films, documentaries and commercials, and specializes in TV & New Media development. Last summer she worked on Margin Call, a feature film starring Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Irons and Stanley Tucci, which premiered at Sundance 2011, and Francine, an independent experimental drama starring Melissa Leo slated for release in 2012. Cirillo also serves as Grant Manager for Emmy-winning Director Robert Levi’s and Bowery Arts & Science’s National Endowment for the Humanities Grant for a documentary about a legendary jazz musician. Additionally, Cirillo is the chairwoman of the yet-to-be-named sub-committee of New York Women in Film & Television’s Special Events Committee. This summer she will also have the honor of serving as a judge for the Boston Comedy Festival’s New York Showcase. She is currently in pre-production on a documentary about children in inner city Baltimore and is looking forward to continuing to support independent artists through Big Vision Empty Wallet’s growth.

Dani Faith Leonard is a writer and actress based in New York City. She has acted in independent films and theatre in the US and overseas. She is a founding member of Broads & Wenches – the sexy girl group of NYC sketch comedy – and can be seen writing and performing with the sketch comedy troupe Really Sketchy. In June 2008, she founded Preen Productions under which she and business partner Alex Cirillo ran Industry Power Play, a series of monthly film screenings and events for the independent film and performing arts community of NYC. In May 2010, they launched, a networking organization dedicated to bringing artists together from all over the world. She currently has two films in pre-production and is looking forward to what this exciting year will hold personally, and for Big Vision Empty Wallet.

For more information and to become a member of Big Vision Empty Wallet, visit