Congratulations! Your student film/independent film/spec screenplay won a ton of awards. That’s awesome -- it means you’ve got some raw talent, and on nights when you’re in the office til way past your dinner (or bed) time, you’ll need to remember that there’s a reason you’re in this industry. But that’s pretty much all it should mean as you make your foray into Hollywood.
Listing too many accolades, especially if they aren’t from the top contests or first place wins, makes you seem like an amateur who doesn’t know what counts in this business. Plus, if you’re applying for an assistant job, the last thing your future boss wants to see is a list of “why I’m the best filmmaker in the world.” Does that boss think she’ll get a good assistant who takes his job seriously, or an assistant who can’t wait to “be discovered” -- or worse, already thinks he has been? Don't let awards pull the focus from the skills that show you can do the job.
Look, if you were nominated for a Student Academy Award, go ahead and list it. But if you placed as a quarterfinalist in Scriptapalooza, leave it off.
-- Angela Silak & Cindy Kaplan