This year marks Ecuador's first entry into the competition. Scripts were sent in from all 50 states as well as: Argentina, Australia, Austria, the Bahamas, Bangladesh, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cameroon, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, India, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, the Philippines, Portugal, Romania, the Russian Federation, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Taiwan, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Venezuela and Vietnam.
According to the Academy, all scripts are read at least once in the competition, with about half getting a second read and one-sixth a third. About five percent of entries advance to the competition quarterfinals, about two percent advance to the semifinals and about ten reach the finals. Film industry professionals who are not members of the Academy judge the first and quarterfinal rounds; a mix of Academy members judge the semifinal round. The Nicholl Committee makes the call on the finalist scripts. All entrants get notification of their status by e-mail no later than August 1 of each year, including quarterfinalists; fellowship recipients are announced in October. Here's more on who qualifies for the fellowships and the program's history.
[Pictured: 2010 winners, courtesy of the Academy]