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Just For Laughs and New York TV Fest Launch Sitcom Pitch Contest

Eric Leibowitz/FX

The Montreal fest will see five stand-up comedy finalists compete to showcase the next "Seinfeld" or "Louie" at the New York Television Festival in October 2012.

TORONTO – The New York Television Festival is extending its search for the next Seinfeld, Ellen or Louie hit sitcom to Montreal’s Just For Laughs comedy festival.

The U.S. and Canadian festivals have partnered on a new pitch contest for international comedy performers at the upcoming Just For Laughs comedy conference in July.

The winner from five finalists in Montreal will showcase their sitcom concept, ideally based on a stand-up comedy character or sketch, at the New York TV festival in late October 2012.

NYTVF founder Terence Gray said tapping into Just for Laughs’ ability to spot emerging comedic talent will help provide his festival with new voices and TV development opportunities for his own industry attendees.

A screening committee of Just for Laughs and NYTVF execs will narrow a pool of global applicants down to five finalists to pitch their sitcom concepts to a jury of comedy experts at the Just for Laughs Comedy Conference in Montreal from July 26 to 28, 2012.