Executive Panels from the Stage 32 + Hollyshorts Film Conference Now Live!

Posted by Amanda Toney

Over the past few years, we here at Stage 32 have been thrilled to be recognized throughout the industry as the leaders in online film craft and business education. This past spring, we joined forces with Cannes to help provide education throughout the festival. November will be our 3rd straight year as the official education partner of AFM. And last month, we joined forces with one of the most prestigious, and one of the few Oscar qualifying short film festivals in the land, Hollyshorts, as not only their educational partner, but to run the Stage 32 / Hollyshorts Film Conference.

Over 1000 people attended the week long event which featured over 15 panels and workshops taught by nearly 50 of the top minds and talents working in the industry today. Managers and agents from Zero Gravity, Art/Work, Kaplan Strahler, executives from Warner Bros., Legendary Entertainment, Sony, festival executives from Sundance and Tribeca, and talent from such shows as American Horror Story, Narcos, Vida, Game of Thrones were just some of the voices the attendees got to hear from and spend time with.

In addition to the panels, we also premiered our 3rd Annual Short Film Program at Hollyshorts. Our winner came in all the way from Hungary to take part in the festivities. And now all our winners' films are Oscar qualified!

We wanted to share some of the week's events with you, the Stage 32 community. We were able to record some of the panels and now have them posted on the Stage 32 YouTube page. Just a heads up that the audio isn't the greatest, but nonetheless, you'll be able to gain much knowledge, insight and actionable information. And remember, if you haven't subscribed to the Stage 32 YouTube page, be sure to do so! We're always posting new content for you to enjoy.

Here are some of the featured panels / panelists!

Women in Entertainment

  • Sheila Walcott Production Executive (Creative) from Warner Bros.

  • Julianna Politsky, Production Finance Coordinator Legendary Pictures

  • Carmen Cabana – Director of Photography of NARCOS and VIDA

  • Lauren Fash (director)

  • Amanda Toney, Stage 32

Writing & Directing a Short as Proof of Concept

  • Rachel Goldberg (Director, American Horror Story)

  • Elyes Gabel (Filmmaker, Actor; Game of Thrones, World War Z, Interstellar, Scorpion)

  • James Kicklighter (Director)

How to Stand Out to a Manager or Agent

  • Allen Roughton, Stage 32

  • Spencer Robinson, Talent & Literary Manager, Art/Work Entertainment

  • Katt Riley, Literary Agent, Kaplan Stahler

  • Richard Botto, Founder & CEO, Stage 32; repped screenwriter

Working in the US - An Immigration Guide (coming soon)


  • Zoe Kevork, Entertainment Attorney

How to Network & Make Connections to Managers, Producers, Agents & Executives to Help Move The Needle In Your Career

  • Amanda Toney, Stage 32

  • Nick Terry, Talent & Literary Manager, Zero Gravity

  • Richard Botto, Founder & CEO, Stage 32

Easterseals Southern California Presents: Disability is the “D” in Diversity (coming soon)

  • Tim Gray- Senior Vice President & Awards Editor, Variety

  • Nic Novicki- Founder and Director, Easterseals Disability Film Challenge

  • Pam Dixon- Casting Director (Green Lantern, City Slickers, Mask of Zorro)

  • Karim Ahmad- Director, Inclusion & Outreach, Sundance Institute

  • Hasan Foster- Senior Manager, Inclusion and Discourse, FiLM iNDEPENDENT’s LA Film Festival

  • Kaitlyn Yang- Founder, Alpha Studios

  • Nancy Weintraub - Chief Development Officer of Easterseals Southern California

Distribution - How to Get Your Short Film Seen

  • Richard Botto, Founder & CEO, Stage 32

  • Zahida Kazar (Director of Opeartiona, Gravitas Ventures)

  • Alexia Melocchi (Little Studio Films)

  • Ka Wai Ho (Sony Crackle)

Horrific Beginnings: Launching a Career Through Horror

  • Writer/Director Nicholas Tana and Producer Denise Acosta, HELL'S KITTY
  • Courtney Gains (CHILDREN OF THE CORN)


  • Dale Midkiff (Pet Sematary)

  • Channel Ryan (CIRCUS OF THE DEAD)


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