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Justine Wentzell is the former lead of the acquisitions and co-productions team at MarVista (A Deadly Adoption, Bitch, Most Likely to Die) Amanda Toney is the Managing Director of Stage 32, the world’s largest platform for connecting and educating film creatives and is also a working actor, producer and screenwriter. Full Bio »
Justine Wentzell, former lead of MarVista's Acquisitions & Co-Productions team, will discuss the current feature market, including alternative avenues like TV movies, plus a live Q&A!
Stage 32's Amanda Toney leads a 1 hour conversation with Justine Wentzell, former lead of MarVista's Acquisitions & Co-Productions team, discussing writing voice, cultural representation in writing, the new TV movie landscape, and much more before taking live questions from the Writers' Room members.
The Executive Hour
Devon got his start as a Development Exec at Ideate Entertainment before launching the management company, First Friday Entertainment, last year with Krista Sipp. We discuss what makes a writer stand out to reps, trends in film and TV, writer voice and standing out, & more, plus a live Q&A!
This week, Jason speaks with producer Natalie Qasabian, who has forged a successful career producing independent films which have had tremendous commercial success! Natalie began her career producing three films for the indie film duo the Duplass Brothers, including Duck Butter directed by Miguel Arteta, Natalie went on to produce All About Nina starring Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Common. Later, Natalie produced Searching, a thriller starring John Cho and Debra Messing which was acquired by Sony at Sundance in 2018 and went on to gross $75M at the box office! Currently she's producing Run, starring Sarah Paulson for Lionsgate as well as the sequel to Searching for Sony. Natalie talks about starting her career as a Line Producer and Production Manager, and how that allowed her to make independent films for a modest budget. Natalie shares her insights on the effectiveness of proof of concept videos, how first-time filmmakers can attract financing, and the inside story of how she sold Searching to Sony at Sundance!
We're back in the Writers' Room for the Executive Hour Webcast with Netflix Script Analyst Michael Schulman! Michael Schulman is a Feature Story Analyst for Netflix as part of its Independent Original Film Division, and his job revolves around evaluating feature screenplay submissions and deciding which ones to pass up to the executives to consider. Prior to his role at Netflix, Michael spent nearly a decade in the story department at CAA where he found projects for CAA clients. Over his storied career, Michael also served as an agent at ICM’s Motion Picture Literary Department and held numerous studio creative executive positions at Orion, TriStar, and Disney where he worked to develop film and television projects with some of the top talent in the industry. Michael is very familiar with what it takes for a script to find its way to decisionmakers since this has been a key feature of his job for over a decade. This was a great conversation with Michael!
This week Jason welcomes screenwriter Tripper Clancy, who wrote the summer's smash comedy hit, Stuber for 20th Century Fox! Tripper went on to write comedies and dramas of all shapes and sizes for Columbia Pictures, 20th Century Fox, Amazon, Netflix, MGM, Fox Animation, Paramount Animation, and Hasbro. He recently adapted the New York Times’ bestselling novel, The Art of Fielding, and writes on Season One of "I Am Not OK With This", a half-hour show for Netflix and is currently developing a series with Quibi. During the webcast, Tripper talks about finding an agent, selling and developing Stuber, being in the writers' room of a Netflix series, and the best advice he ever received!
In the final Executive Hour of 2020, the Writers' Room members welcome Emmy-nominated and Peabody Award-winning writer Vijal Patel who has written for comedy series including ABC’s BLACK-ISH, THE MIDDLE, and currently is the Co-EP on SCHOOLED with Tim Meadows. He also writes and develops feature film projects for DreamWorks and has a development deal with Sony Pictures Television. Vijal has built his career on writing comedy and using it to explore race, family, religion, politics, and class struggle. During this webcast, we discuss how Vijal entered the industry without going to film school, how he landed his first agent and manager, his thoughts on writing compelling dialogue, characters, and comedy, along with a lot more! It is one of the best Executive Hours of 2020!
This week we welcome playwright and TV writer who is the author of over forty plays! His television credits include Executive Story Editor on Season 2 of the Starz drama "MAGIC CITY", and serving as Executive Story Editor on two seasons of the HBO television show "HUNG". He wrote and directed the film EXILES IN New York, which played at the A.F.I Film Festival, South by South West, The Santa Barbara Film Festival and The Latin American International Film Festival in Havana, Cuba. He has also has sold his original television projects to Starz, Amazon and AMC, among others. During this incredible Executive Hour, Eduardo talks about working with Oscar-winner Al Pacino on the film SCARFACE in his early 20's, how to write compelling characters for stage and screen, what it is like being in a writers room for HBO, and offers a exercise in breaking character and story that brought one of our members to tears!