Amy Kaufman at The Wrap has a piece up raising a lot of questions about Fade In's promise of cash and an intro to Hollywood for the winners of a reader screenwriting contest.
In the summer of 2007, Patrice Williams said she received a call from Audrey Kelly, the publisher and editor-in-chief of Fade In Magazine.
Williams had won first place in the magazine's screenwriting competition, in the "Thriller" category, she was told. She would be receiving $750, script coverage by a WGA-affiliated writer, a subscription to Fade In and a Waterman pen.
And most important, Williams said she was promised her screenplay would be introduced and promoted to producers and agents and her win would be announced in an ad in Variety or the Hollywood Reporter.
But six months passed, and Williams had yet to receive her cash prize or see an ad in the trades. So she got in touch with Kelly.
"I contacted Audrey and said, 'It would be really nice if you were able to send out the award money as promised,'" Williams recalled. "She took that as an attack, that I was demanding the money, writing, 'You'll get it when all of the other winners get it.'"
In July 2008, a full year after the original call, Williams got tired of waiting. She took Kelly to small claims court. They settled in November 2008, but while Williams finally got her money, she still hasn't seen the promised ad.
Screenwriters Eric Roth, James Gray and Scott Rosenberg are listed on the Fade In advisory board and in the house ad for the contest, but tell The Wrap they do nothing for the magazine or the contest. Some screenwriters, by the way, did tell The Wrap of positive experiences with the contest. In the comments, though, the critics of Kelly and Fade In have come out.