What is a Drama Proposal?

A drama proposal is a fundamental piece of writing that presents solid goals, objectives, and plans of students in a drama club at school or a director, producer, screenwriter, or  TV and drama production team with the purpose of providing unique and enthralling full-length or mid-length drama series, short drama specials, TV shows,  short films, theatre plays, web series, and many more for the public. It is very important for aspiring and professional drama producers to submit this document to various broadcasting corporations and digital video-streaming companies to earn approval and support of the production and completion of their dramas.

Based on the data from Nielsen’s Streaming Meter, a subset of over 1,100 streaming capable homes from the National TV panel, as of Q2 2020, streaming comprised one-fourth of all television minutes viewed, with Netflix being the largest contributor to streaming share at 34%, followed by YouTube at 20%. This means streaming services for TV and drama shows are increasing and continuing to grow and evolve as time passes by.  Thus, if you are currently working on a drama project with the aim of expanding its viewers to many countries through various platforms, the first thing you need to accomplish is preparing an effective drama proposal for your drama project.

Different Types of Drama Proposals

Being the artist in the process of TV and drama production,  the director is expected to be the driving force of new projects and to hold a vision of what is to be produced. On the other hand the screenwriter is regarded as more of a craftsperson, someone who assists the director in turning his or her vision come alive. However, what kind of drama proposals do you need to construct? Below are different types of drama proposals that you may think carefully:

1. Action Drama Proposal

With multiple dynamic fight scenes, extensive chase and running scenes, and heart-pounding stunts,  an action drama portrays the main character or a group of leading characters as incredible heroes who appear to be quick-witted in solving the main issue. If your drama project contains the majority of these elements, then we recommend that you write an action drama proposal. Developing an effective proposal for an action drama is a beneficial way to get your drama project approved by a broadcasting or online streaming company

2. Drama Thriller Proposal

Eric R. Williams, a screenwriter and scholar, said: “Even the typical good guys in other genres (the police, detectives, and guards) can’t be trusted in a thriller. Granted, there are “good guys” in a thriller, but the audience and hero never really know who they are until the end. Thrillers explore the ideas of Hope and Fear, constantly tearing the hero (and more importantly: the audience) between these two extremes.” In this type of drama proposal, the story is typically about the protagonist being involved in an event where he or she needs to save the lives of innocent victims, and solve mysterious cases. A drama thriller can make the audience feel hopeful that the lead character will become successful in defeating the antagonist yet they may also feel anxious and fearful that the main character will fail as well. So, create a thought-provoking proposal for your drama thriller project. 

3. Life Drama Proposal

If you want to depict mundane experiences or meaningful events in a person’s life with the goal of highlighting their significance, you need to construct a life drama proposal.  There are many noteworthy slice-of-life dramas out there. For instance, My Mister is an award-winning South Korean TV drama series that portrays the lives of three individuals who carry their own struggles as they help each other to cope with their loneliness. While another South Korean drama entitled Because This Is My First Life is a thoughtfully-written rom-com story with some touches of quirkiness and freshness plus the addition of multiple references coming from poems, movies, and books that revolves on how the three couples overcome failures, and difficulties in life. 

4. Science Fiction Drama Proposal

Star Trek, Life on Mars, The Flash, The 100, Black Mirror, and Circle are several examples of science fiction of sci-fi dramas that depict fictional scientific situations such as alien worlds, extrasensory perceptions, extraterrestrial lifeforms, time travel, etc. If you want to produce a drama that has futuristic content, preparing a sophisticated proposal for a science fiction will help in enticing the interest of the audience in watching your science fiction drama.

Benefits of a Drama Proposal

To accommodate a more on-demand and possibly more international audience through new modes of partnerships, production models, and storytelling techniques, digital or online streaming immensely affects TV and drama production worldwide.  That’s why creating an effective proposal for a drama project is a beneficial tool in order to attract prospective business partners, investors, and other broadcasting companies to get your work done and gain much needed exposure from the public. Below are some of the benefits of using a compelling drama proposal:

1. Comparison of Quality Content 

When you construct a proposal for your drama project, you let integral decision makers such as several broadcasting stations and digital streaming companies make better comparisons of qualities, prices, and anticipated results of the drama project. It helps them to scrutinize specific components of the drama that can influence the overall quality of the project itself. By making use of this accurate data, it will help them in formulating more informed and objective decisions when it comes to promoting, and distributing TV drama shows in their broadcasting stations or online streaming websites.

2. Clear Perception

The primary goals, purpose, production processes, forecasted outcomes, and synopsis of a drama show are written in a drama proposal. All of these essential aspects are necessary so that both sides can come to a decision of an agreement regarding what the drama project will present. It affirms to the prospective business partner, investor, or management that the TV drama director or producer has a clear perception concerning the scope of the TV drama project. Thus, it can facilitate amicable agreement to one another because of the confidence and honesty between the producer, media production group, and broadcasting company or digital streaming business firm involved in the project.

3. Emphasize Credibility 

A drama proposal also plays a significant role in emphasizing credibility. It must convey to the prospective business media partner, or investor that the TV drama director or producer is responsible and expert in completing the entire drama project and achieving expectations. So, consider that you specify potential risks or issues in the drama proposal and how you and your TV and drama production team will come out on top despite the challenges and stumbling blocks during the production of the drama. 

4. Unveil the Planning Stages for the Drama 

Writing a project proposal for your TV drama show appears to be advantageous in terms of unveiling the planning stages for the drama production. Explain that you have a systematic plan in order to fully execute the entire drama. If you obtain an approval from your prospective business media partners or investors, this proposal will be utilized in managing the production timelines, budget, and resource scheduling  of the TV drama project for the contract agreement.

Basic Components of a Drama Proposal 

In this section, you will learn how to craft a well-written TV drama proposal so that you are able to seize the opportunity of getting the interest of the readers of your proposal like your potential business media partners, investors, funders, and many others. However, a proposal has different components. Include the following elements for you to create an exceptional document:

Cover Letter: One of the basic components of a drama proposal is the cover letter. It contains essential information about your profession and experience in TV and drama production, as well as the main idea, purpose, and primary objectives of the drama project. Drama Synopsis: Write the introduction or synopsis of your drama project. It is the most crucial component of your proposal. It gives the reader an impression on how appealing the drama project is and portrays the determination of the drama producer. You must strategically place the enticing elements of your drama in this proposal so that the readers will be able to remember the essence of your work. Marketing Plan: Specify your target audience and why many people will be satisfied with the drama show. Include some details on how the drama show will be advertised, promoted and distributed to obtain more viewers. Resume: List down your experience, educational background, and awards you have received in the entertainment and drama industry. Also, add the resumes of the staff members of the drama production team such as the director, casting director, production designer, location manager, set designer, researcher, screenwriter, story editor, audio director, cinematographer, stage manager, gaffer, technical director, composer, sound editor, and many others on your your document. Financial Budget: Indicate the estimated financial budget for the entire production of the drama project. Write down the expenses of the creative and technological elements of the drama production such as drama script, cinematography, set design, props design, lighting design, costume design, professional fees of the staff members, actor salaries and many others. Visual Sketches and Storyboard: Include some visual sketches or construct a mood board of the set design, costume design, and style for the drama project. Also, you may attach some other illustrations or a well-detailed storyboard that will clearly explain the story that you want to convey and to easily plan your shot list for the drama project.

How to Write a Drama Proposal 

Writing and production of television and drama series is regarded as a highly complicated and collaborative endeavour. To achieve a successful TV drama series like Stranger Things, The Umbrella Academy, Lupin, The Crown, and many others,  In this matter, we suggest that you follow the simple steps below while freely using one of our drama proposal templates in this article:

Step 1: Write a Cover Letter

First, have some sufficient time to write a simple and compelling cover letter. Tell your potential business partner or investor about your professional experience in TV and drama production and interpret the main idea or subject of your drama proposal. Indicate your definite goals and objectives for your TV drama project. Explain why your TV drama project is substantial and valuable, as well as the reason why you have what it takes to direct, produce, or design a particular drama show.  Also, inform them on the specific season you would like to air the TV drama project. 

Step 2: Figure Out the Target Audience

One of the integral factors that you need to consider in creating an effective drama proposal is to figure out the target audience of your drama project. Carefully discuss this matter with your drama department or your production team about their personal ideas, comments, and recommendations for the drama project.  Research about the necessities and preferences of the target audience and consider the things they prefer to watch in a particular drama show. By doing this, you are able to bring about some better suggestions or introduce some fresh concepts to your team. Then, describe how the drama project would win over the hearts of the audience.

Step 3: Include a Brief Synopsis of the Drama

Anthony Burgess said: “I chart a little first-list of names, rough synopsis of chapters, and so on. But one daren’t overplan; so many things are generated by the sheer act of writing.”  Your proposal should include an uncomplicated yet intriguing brief synopsis of your drama project.Thus, describe your ingenious ideas, and the comprehensive design of the TV drama project. When writing this portion, you must genuinely consider your readers. Then, add some dependable information as well. 

Step 4: Provide the Financial Budget and Production Timeline

Create an estimate of the financial budget of the TV drama that you need so that you can get under way of the TV drama production. Indicate a run-down of the technological expenses, drama production pieces, and other components involved in the drama project. Then, provide crucial information of the estimated production timeline of your TV drama project. Present the specific dates by which each stage of the drama project  will come to an end. 

Step 5: Outline the Notable Roles and Responsibilities

Prepare a simple and structured personal resume and background of individual key members in your drama production team  such as the TV drama producer, director, screenwriter, production manager, script editor, cinematographer, sound recordist, production designer, art director, and many others to outline the notable roles and responsibilities in your drama production team. Include some resumes of your drama cast and other remaining drama staff as well such as the TV drama production managers, musical director, costume director, set designer, lighting director, sound designer, prop designer, etc. 

Step 6: Attached Some Visual Designs and Completed Script

The last part in your drama proposal is to prepare some visual representations such as production design, set design, costume designs, character styling,  and many more. Then, include the superstar of your proposal which is the completed script for the drama project.


What are the important components of the drama proposal?

A drama proposal should provide a simple statement about the drama show’s introduction. Then, include some information of the TV and drama production team while describing the roles and responsibilities of the corresponding team members. Explain the scope of the drama production.  After that, you can incorporate more details to further elucidate the content and nature of the TV drama project. 

What are the significant roles in TV and drama production?

The significant roles in TV and drama production are directors, chief executive, assistant directors, producers, writers, actors, marketing manager, development manager, finance and administration staff, cameraman, audio director, videographer, set designer, costume designer, stylist, make-up artist, and other backstage staff and technical personnel.

What is the difference between a proposal and treatment?

A proposal is a comprehensive description of all the primary aspects of a particular project. While a treatment is a brief narrative written in short story format with non-technical terms and phrases.

What is the meaning of one act play?

Like the name it implies, a one-act play is a type of play in drama production that presents only a single act. Usually, plays have many acts. But this type of play focuses on one story and the conflict must be comprehensible to the viewers. Also, it has one main character along with 2-7 supporting characters. One act play typically lasts around 30 minutes.

What are the elements of drama?

The elements of drama are plot, character roles, relationships, setting, conflict, dialogue, theme, focus, contrast, rhythm, movement, language and texts, stage directions, space and time, mood and atmosphere, audience, and dramatic tension.

In accordance with a Nielsen data analysis, the media consumption of many consumers who stay indoors all the time rises nearly 60% and even more in many cases, especially during these difficult times of COVID-19 pandemic. Along with the constant surge of TV and drama shows specifically in a variety of online streaming websites like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, YouTube, Viu, iQiyi, and many others, there are a wide array of opportunities for you and your TV drama production team to exhibit your creativity and motivate the viewers. Being an aspiring successful drama producer or director, you need to work hard in creating mesmerizing and delightful drama shows. Furthermore, you must be able to create a compelling and systematized drama proposal. You can get a free drama proposal template today to start off in fulfilling your goals in TV and drama production.