‘1917’ Filmmakers Launching Contest to Find the Next Roger Deakins

     November 8, 2019


With the release of Sam Mendes’ World War I thriller 1917 set for Christmas day, NBCUniversal and Ideas United are partnering to produce a video submission contest aimed at burgeoning filmmakers. The challenge is this: submit a two-minute video filmed in a single continuous shot with the urgent delivery of a message as the theme.

Why these specifics? Well, if you haven’t heard, the entire film is made to look like a single continuous shot—all 110 minutes of it (not including credits). The genius behind the feat was DP Roger Deakins, whose work includes some of the most beautifully shot films ever made—The Shawshank Redemption, Fargo, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, Blade Runner 2049. The list goes on and on. And this one might be his crowning achievement.


Image via Universal Pictures

Now here’s a chance for an up-and-comer to prove he/she is the next great filmmaking talent in a world brimming with more than it’s ever had. The call for submissions will last until December 2, 2019. Contestants can upload their two-minute videos to Instagram, Facebook or YouTube using the hashtag, “#1917oneshotchallenge.” The public link can then be uploaded to 1917oneshotchallenge.com. You must be 18 or older and a U.S. resident to be considered. Ideas United, who will manage the open call through its Campus Movie Fest participants and its global network of filmmakers, producers, and writers, will narrow down all submissions to the finalists. The 1917 filmmakers will choose the sole winner, who will be flown (with a guest) to Los Angeles to attend the premiere of the movie on December 18.

Co-founder and CEO of Ideas United, David Roemer, said this of the contest:

“Ideas United has the unique opportunity to tap into a global network of talented filmmakers and creative thinkers. By partnering with Universal Pictures, we are able to challenge the next generation of creators with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that will help them showcase their talents and give them a chance to meet some of the filmmakers and cast of 1917.”

Mendes’ film stars George MacKay (Captain Fantastic), Dean-Charles Chapman (Game of Thrones), Benedict Cumberbatch (Doctor Strange), Andrew Scott (Steel Country), Colin Firth (The King’s Speech), and Mark Strong (Kingsman: The Secret Service).

Here’s a plot summary of the movie:

At the height of the First World War, two young British soldiers, Schofield (Captain Fantastic’s George MacKay) and Blake (Game of Thrones’ Dean-Charles Chapman) are given a seemingly impossible mission. In a race against time, they must cross enemy territory and deliver a message that will stop a deadly attack on hundreds of soldiers—Blake’s own brother among them.

For more information and official rules on the contest, visit 1917oneshotchallenge.com.

Latest News