Writing Program

  • Q If I don't work or live in the United States, am I eligible to apply to the Writing Program?

    A Yes. However, due to the nature of the Program, we are unable to sponsor individuals for United States work visas to participate in the Program. To be eligible, an applicant must possess and present evidence of identity and United States employment eligibility (valid for the duration of the Program) as required by the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, as amended.

  • Q If I work for Walt Disney Television or any subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company, am I eligible to apply?

    A Yes. The Writing Program is open to employees of The Walt Disney Company and its subsidiaries.

  • Q Do you have to be a member of the Writers Guild of America (WGA)?

    A No.

  • Q How old do you have to be to apply?

    A You must be at least twenty-one (21) to apply to the Program.

  • Q Is there an application fee?

    A No.

  • Q Do you need to have professional writing or production experience to apply?

    A You do not need to have professional writing or production experience. However, past participants who entered the Program with television production experience (e.g., writers’ assistant or script coordinator) have found that knowledge helpful.

  • Q Do I need to include a subject line and/or message with my submission email?

    A Yes. The subject line should read: [Year] Disney ABC Writing Program Application – [First, Last Name].

  • Q What file format should I use for my documents?

    A Submit all documents individually in a Portable Document Format (PDF).

  • Q Must I submit a resume even if I have not worked as a professional writer?

    A Yes. All applicants must submit a chronological employment resume. Only list jobs or positions where compensation was received with the exception of entertainment industry internships and full-time volunteer work at non-profits. Positions must have been held within the past fifteen (15) years and may include entertainment and non-entertainment positions (two (2) pages or less). Applications that do not include a resume will be disqualified.

  • Q Must I include a letter of recommendation with my application?

    A Letters of recommendation from entertainment industry professionals who have read the applicant’s material and can comment on the applicant’s ability are strongly encouraged, but not mandatory.

    This would include network, studio and production company executives, writer/producers, episodic and feature directors, and educators (e.g., professors or writing instructors) who have entertainment industry experience and/or produced credits. Letters from representatives (e.g., agents, managers or attorneys) will not be accepted. Letters must be on letterhead and dated in the current calendar year. It is recommended that those signing recommendation letters include either a title or a brief introduction indicating who they are. A maximum of two (2) letters of recommendation may accompany each submission. Any letters of recommendation sent separately from the applicant’s submission will not be counted towards the application and will be discarded. To include a signed hardcopy letter, scan and attach letter as a PDF document to your email submission.

  • Q If I want to include a letter of recommendation, who should I list for the salutation?

    A Letters of recommendation may be addressed to “Disney-ABC Writing Program.”

  • Q Do writing teams turn in two letters of recommendation total or can each partner submit two letters each?

    A Writing teams should submit no more than two (2) letters of recommendation total from entertainment industry professionals who can attest to the writing of the team and not as individual writers.

  • Q Do both members of a writing team need to file individual applications?

    A Yes. Each partner must complete a separate application and release form (i.e., items #3 and #4 in the Requirements section) and submit one application email package that includes both applications, release forms, one copy of the writing team’s original pilot script and spec script, and all other required items set forth in the Requirements section.

  • Q Can an individual applicant submit material that was written with a partner?

    A No. Individual applicants must be the sole writer of submitted material.

  • Q What if I send you my application and I realize that I have left out one or more of the required elements?

    A Unfortunately, your application cannot be updated once it is received. All elements must be submitted together. If you have left out a required element, you may re-submit a full and complete application via email by the submission deadline. Subject line should read: RESUBMISSION – [Year] Disney ABC Writing Program Application – [First, Last Name].

  • Q Does my application need to be received by the deadline date?

    A Your application must be received no later than 11:59 p.m. PST of the deadline date. Applications received prior to the application start date or later than the application deadline date will be disqualified.

  • Q Can I hand deliver or mail my application and materials?

    A No.

  • Q What would be appropriate writing samples?

    A Submissions to the Writing Program must include TWO writing samples: 1) an original pilot script that captures your unique tone, style and point of view, and 2) a spec script for a broadcast, cable, or streaming series (e.g., Netflix, Amazon, Hulu) airing during the current television season. We advise you to select a series that is well-established and at least in its second season. The timeline for your spec must reflect the series’ current timeline. This second sample should demonstrate your ability to adapt to an existing format while at the same time infusing your unique point of view and sensibility. Both samples MUST be live-action content. We do not accept animation samples.

  • Q Does my spec script have to be based on a Disney│ABC Television series?

    A No. However, we suggest you select a series that tonally reflects the type of programming broadcast on Disney│ABC.

  • QCan I submit a spec on a recently canceled series?

    A Yes, as long as the recently canceled series aired during the current television season.

  • Q Can I submit a feature or play as an original pilot script?

    A No.

  • Q Can I submit more than one spec script?

    A No.

  • Q Can I submit more than one original pilot script?

    A No.

  • Q Can I submit a comedy spec and an original drama pilot or vice-versa?

    A No. If you are a comedy writer, you need to submit a comedy spec and an original comedy pilot. If you are a drama writer, you need to submit a drama spec and an original drama pilot.

  • Q Can I submit a script that I previously provided to the Program?

    A Yes, but submitting new material will better reflect a writer’s progress.

  • Q Do I have to submit a release form for my original pilot script and spec script?

    A Yes, one Program Release Form covers both the original pilot script (Exhibit A) and the spec script (Exhibit B). The release form is attached to the application and is accessible during the submission period.

  • Q Does the release form have to be hand signed?

    A Yes. Type entries directly into all required fields, print document, sign on the signature line, scan the document, attach as a PDF and title filename as follows: [First, Last Name]_2018_DisneyABC_ReleaseForm.

  • Q Do my writing samples have to be in any particular format?

    A Yes. Scripts must be presented in the standard, industry-accepted format for the type of script being submitted. Formatting guidelines can be found in various publications.

  • Q What would be the appropriate page-length for my spec and original scripts?

    A Script formats vary by series. We encourage you to research the proper format for your submission.

  • Q Can Walt Disney Television provide me with sample scripts to review?

    A No. For legal reasons, we are unable to accommodate this request.

  • Q Who owns the rights to the materials that I submit with my application for the Writing Program and/or materials that I previously created?

    A You will retain ownership of material. However, if you are selected as a participant, any material written by you prior to the term of the Writing Program and currently controlled and/or owned by you must be disclosed in writing. ABC Studios shall have an “Exclusive First Look” for such material, whereby, ABC Studios shall have the exclusive option to purchase such material from you in accordance with the policies and terms outlined in the Writing Program Contract.

  • Q Who will review my submission?

    A Professional readers, WDT executives and producers from series airing on ABC, Freeform and Disney Channel.

  • Q Will I be able to receive feedback on my submission?

    A No. Due to the high volume of submissions, we are unable to provide feedback.

  • Q When will I be informed of my application status with the Writing Program?

    A Due to the volume of the applications, those not accepted will not be notified. Please check our Facebook page for announcements regarding individuals accepted to the Writing Program.

  • Q Will my submission be returned?

    A No, submissions will not be returned.

  • Q If I’m selected as a finalist to participate in the in-person interviews and/or selected for the Writing Program and do not live in Los Angeles, will Disney│ABC pay for my travel and accommodation expenses?

    A No.

  • Q Must I reside in Los Angeles to participate in the Writing Program?

    A Yes.

  • Q Is there an East Coast version of this program?

    A No.

  • Q When does the Writing Program begin?

    A Writers typically begin the Program in February; however, the schedule is subject to change.

  • Q Is the Writing Program full-time employment?

    A Yes. Writers become employees of Walt Disney Television and will be paid a non-negotiable weekly salary of $961.54 ($50,000.00 annualized) plus any applicable benefits for which they are eligible in accordance with the then-current Company benefits plans. If a writing team is accepted to the Program, each partner will be paid the aforementioned weekly salary plus any applicable benefits. You may not hold other employment or be enrolled in school during the Program period.

  • Q If selected for the Writing Program, will I be guaranteed a job as a staff writer?

    A No.

  • Q How many writers are selected each year?

    A The number of writers selected for the Writing Program varies.