Online PitchFest XXII: The Big Dogs Part III

Pitchfest Schedule

27 SEP

Gabriel Chu - Creative Executive, Vertigo Entertainment

27 SEP

WME

27 SEP

Chika Chukudebelu - Manager of Original Programming, BET

27 SEP

Jared Iacino - SVP, Head of Films an Television Production, Panay Films

27 SEP

Dixie Copeland - Development Assistant, ABC

27 SEP

Nathan Samdahl - Creative Executive, Parmount

28 SEP

Brad Kessell - Production Executive, Gold Circle Films

28 SEP

Jesse Kahn - Junior Executive, Cinetic Media

28 SEP

Sarah Fiori - Assistant to Executive, Participant Media

Online PitchFest XXII: The Big Dogs Part III

Entry Fee (Skype or Written): $45 per session

Online PitchFest XXII: The Big Dogs Part III Our goal is to open doors to the biggest and hardest-to-get-to companies in the industry. Some companies are harder than others...and we always want to connect you with those companies! These companies have immaculate rosters, prestige, years of experience and admirable reputations. We know how hard you work on your scripts so it's only fair that we work just as hard to help get them in the right hands. 

For our next Online PitchFest XXII, and in conjunction with our three year anniversary, we have decided to bring The Big Dogs back! By popular demand, we are thrilled to bring you our third installment of The Big Dogs! On tap we have WME, Participant Media, BET, ABC, Vertigo, Paramount, Gold Circle, Odd Lot, Virgin Produced, Mosaic and Cinetic Media! These companies have brought you films like THE DEPARTED, HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON, MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING, BOYHOOD, PRECIOUS, DRIVE and LIMITLESS.  We have also brought you two major representation firms and two TV networks.

Cool, huh?

These are the best of the best so please be polished and prepared. We love being able to connect you into the heart of Hollywood and it's your success stories that keep us going every day. Please be sure to check out some of our recent successes from our online pitch fests below, and in our success stories section. Also, read what our executives and writers are saying about these groundbreaking Stage 32 Happy Writer Online Pitchfests here!

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Company Executives

Gabriel Chu

Gabriel Chu - Creative Executive, Vertigo Entertainment

Gabriel Chu is the creative executive of Vertigo Entertainment and has been with the company for just over a year. Vertigo is a very active production company with credits including The Departed, How to Train Your Dragon, The Strangers, Oldboy, The Roomate, Abduction, Quarantine and The Grudge.They currently have over 40 projects in various stages of development and production including Poltergeist, Run All Night w/ Liam Neeson, The Double Hour w/ Michelle Williams and Death Note directed by Gus Van Sant. In just 10 years Vertigo has produced almost 30 films.

WME

WME - WME

WME is known as the world's largest diversified talent agency with offices in Beverly Hills, New York City, London, Miami and Nashville.

Chika Chukudebelu

Chika Chukudebelu - Manager of Original Programming, BET

Chika Chukudebelu works in Original Programming at BET Networks. Since joining the company in 2009, she has been a part of the team that has brought scripted programming to the network. Her projects include The Game, which in January of 2011 debuted as the #1 ad-supported scripted sitcom premiere in cable television history, and the upcoming series, Second Generation Wayans.

Prior to BET, Chukudebelu worked as a Creative Executive at Starbucks Entertainment. There she helped oversee the company’s film and publishing efforts. Projects here include the film, The Kite Runner, and the memoir A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah. She started her entertainment career in New York at New Line Cinema working in business development on projects like Lord of the Rings Trilog, Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle and Blade. Afterward, she spent time at Killer Films on projects like Infamous and Showtime’s This American Life. She recently produced the new Issa Rae Productions web project, The Michelle Obama Diaries. In 2007 she independently produced the short film, Apartment A, and is currently producing the new web series, M.A.S.H., based on the childhood prediction game, to be released next month.

Chukudebelu is a graduate of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and was Co-President of the Junior Hollywood Radio & Television Society (JHRTS) from 2011 to 2012. She resides in Los Angeles.

Jared Iacino

Jared Iacino - SVP, Head of Films an Television Production, Panay Films

Jared Iacino is the Head of Films and Television Production at Panay Films. Jared has been involved with the development and production of projects including HIT & RUN starring Kristen Bell, Dax Shepard and Bradley Cooper, HOT TUB TIME MACHINE 2 starring Craig Robinson, Rob Corddry and Adam Scott, and the family adventure film EARTH TO ECHO, MASTERMINDS starring Zach Galifianakis, Kristen Wig and Owen Wilson, and the recent CHIPS starring Michael Peña and Dax Shepard. Panay has produced WEDDING CRASHERS starring Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson, VAN WILDER starring Ryan Reynolds, and SERENDIPITY starring John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale.

These productions have given Panay Films the opportunity to work with other major companies including:

  • Paramount
  • Warner Bros.
  • Relativity Media
  • Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM)
  • Open Road Films

Prior to his time at Panay Films, Jared worked in development and production at Walt Disney Studios, Red Wagon Entertainment, Storyline Entertainment and Fox Studios - affording him the opportunity to work on a diverse slate of award-winning and critically-acclaimed Film and Television projects including: THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA, JUNO, HAIRSPRAY, THE BUCKET LIST, A RAISIN IN THE SUN, THE PROPOSAL, and THE MUPPETS.

A Seattle native, Jared has a BFA from Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Media Arts.

Jared Specializes in Comedy, Rom-com, Family Comedy, Thriller, and Sci-fi Features and TV.

 

company credits include:

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Dixie Copeland

Dixie Copeland - Development Assistant, ABC

Dickie Copeland is currently a development assistant in the Drama Development department at Disney-ABC, specializing in Mini Series development. Previously she worked in talent management at Avalon, the management and production company behind such shows as Workaholics and Last Week Tonight With John Oliver. She received her masters in Communications from Cal State Fullerton and graduated with a double major in Theater and Communications from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. An active member of the Upright Citizens Brigade theater in Los Angeles for the last five years, she has extensive experience in both comedy and drama.

Nathan Samdahl

Nathan Samdahl - Creative Executive, Parmount

Nathan was recently promoted to creative executive at Paramount Studios. Before working at Paramount Studios, he worked in development at Paramount Insurge which was Paramount's indie division specializing in projects under $5M, Nathan worked at agency powerhouse APA in the lit department. He originally worked for agents Debbie Deuble, Sheryl Peterson and Sarah Amico before being promoted to features coordinator. Before APA he read and developed scripts at Sidney Kimmel Entertainment (MONEYBALL, THE PLACE BEYOND THE PINES) and New Regency Productions (MR AND MRS SMITH).

Brad Kessell

Brad Kessell - Production Executive, Gold Circle Films

 Brad Kessell has been a producer, executive, and occasionally a writer for Gold Circle Entertainment for the past 11 years. While at Gold Circle, Brad has developed and supervised scores of movies and projects with a wide spectrum of talented writers, directors, producers and actors, from pitch to screenplay to casting, production and post-production. Gold Circle has produced films like:

  • My Big Fat Greek Wedding
  • the Pitch Perfect franchise
  • Life As We Know It 
  • The Haunting in Connecticut 
  • The Wedding Date
  • Because I Said So

Prior to Gold Circle, Brad was a Vice President at Paramount Pictures for 12 years, where he ran the Story Department and worked on many iconic movies during the period. Prior to that, he ran the production company headed by Sherry Lansing and Stanley Jaffe, and worked on such titles as Fatal Attraction, The Accused, School Ties, Indecent Proposal and The First Wives Club. He began his tenure in the industry as a story analyst. Brad grew up in Orange County, California, graduated from UCLA, and currently lives in La Canada with his family.

Movies Gold Circle Films has produced:

Tips on pitching to Brad:

  • Jump into the story. Cut to the chase.
  • Highlight what makes your story cinematic. What are the big set pieces?
  • Make sure the tone is clear. If it's a thriller, for example, the pitch needs to showcase a few of the most thrilling moments.
  • Keep your verbal pitch under 6 minutes and your written pitches under 2 pages.
  • Give away the ending.

 

Jesse Kahn

Jesse Kahn - Junior Executive, Cinetic Media

Jesse Kahn is a junior executive at Cinetic Media. Cinetic has over 200 credits to their name including Boyhood, My Old Lady, Fading Gigolo, The Bling Ring, Before Midnight, Bernie, The Romantics, Precious and Napoleon Dynamite. Cinetic Media was founded in 2001 and the firm specializes in film finance, sales, distribution, talent management, and corporate consulting, occupying a unique position in the film industry as representatives of marquee talent at the intersection of financing and distribution. A native New Yorker, Jesse graduated with a BA in Economics, and Film from Connecticut College.

Sarah Fiori

Sarah Fiori - Assistant to Executive, Participant Media

Sarah has been the assistant to Evan Shapiro, President of Pivot (Participant Media’s new TV Network) since the beginning of the 2014. Before Participant, she was the assistant to TV literary and packaging agent Nancy Etz at CAA for a 16 months. Participant Media's film credits include BEGIN AGAIN, SNITCH, LINCOLN, THE CRAZIES and THE COVE. In their burgeoning TV department credits include IT COULD BE WORSE and the upcoming series WELCOME TO FAIRFAX.  Sarah grew up in Baltimore, MD and graduated from Wellesley College in 2011 where she majored in both Art History and Cinema & Media Studies. 
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