Veteran casting agent Dori Zuckerman has spent her career working with A-list talent. She has cast over 100 TV series and feature films and has worked with Academy Award and Emmy-winning talent including George Clooney, Sarah Jessica Parker, Bill Paxton, and Rashida Jones, among many others. Dori is known for her ability to spot up-and-coming talent including casting Halle Berry in her first professional role. She is a member of the Casting Society of America and has twice received their award for excellence in casting. Full Bio »
Do you have a project that needs a top-tier piece of talent attached to get the proper attention of buyers and financiers?
Actors bring your characters and story to life, but before your film is ever seen on screen, signing the right top talent can bring financing and get your project sold. So how do you as a writer, producer or filmmaker approach A-list talent to be a part of your film?
In this exclusive Stage 32 webinar, top casting director Dori Zuckerman, who has worked with director Garry Marshall and talent including George Clooney, Elijah Wood, Halle Berry, Sarah Jessica Parker, and more, will give you an insider’s view on the types of projects that attract top talent, as well as strategies to position your project, break through the gatekeepers and actually sign top talent to get your project made.
You'll leave this webinar with essential information and important tools to approach difference-making talent for your own projects that can help propel your work and career.
Dori has cast over 100 TV series and feature films.
Dori is a member of the Casting Society of America and has twice been the recipient of their award for excellence in casting.
The First Steps
How to Attract Talent
Q&A with Dori
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This Webinar Has a 100% Satisfaction Rate Aren’t you tired of querying and pitching agents and managers only to be dismissed or ignored? The truth is that reps find writers through referrals, which is annoying for those who don’t have the connections yet. But there’s a better way. You can be your own rep, keep the 10% commission for yourself, and get yourself and your work noticed on your own. In this Stage 32 exclusive on-demand webinar, professional screenwriter Brooks Elms will show you how to get yourself and your work noticed without a rep and how use your passion to become an unstoppable sales force on your own. Brooks is an accomplished screenwriter, who’s penned over 35 scripts, selling several of them, writing a dozen movies on assignment and whose projects have screened all around the world. Brooks most recently sold a script with Brad Peyton (SAN ANDREAS) attached to executive produce. Brooks brings his vast experience to show you how to up your outreach game, use your social media for success, build sustainable relationships, keep smiling and selling in the face of adversity, and so much more. Brooks believes that the best way to sell your work is to sell yourself, making the process less about “sales” and more about embracing your strengths and communicating them in the best way possible to the industry. This is a next-level, world-class relationship-building webinar and that shares a fun way to launch your career in your own unique style. Praise For Brooks' Stage 32 Webinar"I learned so much and feel more confident than ever that I can get my work seen the right people. Thank you, Brooks!" - Jeanine R.
Walking onto a film set for the first time can be intimidating and overwhelming. Wires, lights, cameras. People everywhere. Places you should be. Places you shouldn’t. Times you need to be quiet, times you need to speak up. The film set is a place where everyone needs to know what they’re doing and where they’re going, and it’s a place where everyone will expect the same of you. Yet if you’ve never worked on a set like this before, that can be a tall order. Whether you’re a PA on your first film, the director helming the production yourself, or anything in between, having a firm understanding of the expected etiquette on set—or “setiquette”—is crucial and lends itself to how much trust others will put on you. A film set might look like chaos from the outside, but it is often just the opposite—a well-oiled machine where everyone has a role and everyone knows where they should be and what they should be doing. If you are unsure of your own role on set, you can very well stick out like a sore thumb and contribute to slowdowns and frustrations. On the other hand, if you are confident, competent, and helpful on set, people will notice, which will lead to new opportunities and a team who will want to work with you time and time again. This is why it’s so important to walk onto your first set with a good idea of how everything works. Jonathan Kesselman is an award-winning writer and director who has worked on projects for companies like Fox, Paramount, Nickelodeon, Disney, Sony, Blue Sky Animation, MTV, Comedy Central studios, Funny or Die, WWE, Nintendo, and many more. His first feature film THE HEBREW HAMMER, starring Adam Goldberg, Judy Greer and Andy Dick, premiered at Sundance Film Festival before getting picked up by Comedy Central. THE HEBREW HAMMER has since become a holiday cult classic, voted among the top holiday movies by the New York Times, Vanity Fair, Boston Globe and Time Magazine. His next film JIMMY VESTVOOD: AMERIKAN HERO, starring Maz Jobrani, won both the Comedy Vanguard and Audience Award at the Austin Film Festival before being released on Showtime and Netflix. Jonathan also wrote and directed second Unit for Oscar-winning director Ang Lee on the film BILLY LYNN'S LONG HALFTIME WALK. He recently co-created the short form comedy series GANDER, streaming exclusively on Tubi. Through his long and varied history in film and television, Jonathan is no stranger to film sets and how to best work within them. Jonathan will break down how a professional film or television set works and everything you should know before stepping on set for the very first time. He will give a snapshot of how a film set generally looks and run before going through all of the different departments on set and their relationship to the director. Jonathan will spend time delving into the role of the assistant director, the beating heart of the set and will then explain what a day on set generally looks like, including a schedule breakdown and how the workflow normally looks. Next he will go through the importance of blocking rehearsals, the art of slating, and how to read a call sheet and shooting schedule. Jonathan will teach you how to find success on your first set, including how to hold yourself so you’re called back again. He will also go over how to find success as a director, how to delegate, motivate, and empower, in addition to staying on schedule. Jonathan will then show you five common mistakes to avoid making on set. Finally he will give you tips on how to break in and get experience on set, including where to find opportunities and what roles you should be looking for. Praise for Jonathan's Stage 32 Webinar: "I enjoyed the thoroughness and detailed explanation, have no complains or negative comments, it was fantastic!" -Arlen G. "It was so broad, yet very detailed - perfect for a newbie like myself" -Kiri M. "Great information for me. Helps me to understand "Setiqutte" as I work towards getting my first TV show into the hands of a production company." -Gregory M.
Learn directly from Nikki Hevesy and Anne Marie Gillen, Producers with over 20 years of experience each in developing and financing media projects. Nikki is a director, producer and media strategist with an expertise in integrating faith-based content into mainstream media, and Anne Marie is an expert on film finance, having successfully raised over $100M for projects worldwide. With the recent successes of films like Heaven Is For Real, Son Of God, God Is Not Dead, and all of the faith oriented films coming down the pike like Mark Burnett’s Ben Hur, Mary Mother Of Christ and The Shack, Faith and Family based projects have grown from a niche market to a box office phenomenon.TV has also jumped on the bandwagon with the recent Red Tent, Preachers of LA and Mark Burnett’s The Bible and A.D. However, alongside these successes are huge controversies in the faith community, such as those surrounding Paramount's Noah and Ridley Scott’s Exodus. Faith and Family based material is like a soufflé – if you get even the smallest ingredient wrong, the entire soufflé collapses. In this Stage 32 Next Level Webinar, hosts Nikki Hevesy and Anne Marie Gillen will walk you through the development and financing phases of creating a successful faith and/or family based project. Drawing from their 20 years of experience, Nikki and Anne Marie will teach you how faith and family based projects get funded and who the financiers, studios and distributors are that specialize in this genre so you know who to target. They will also teach you how to easily find and reach your desired audience and what type of marketing is successful for this genre. Whether you’re a producer, filmmaker or writer, knowing what goes into a faith and family project in the development stage, team building stage and financing and distribution stage is key to your project’s success in the marketplace! PRAISE FOR ANNE AND NIKKI'S TEACHINGS: “Amazing! …I’ve taken many webinars on the subject, but none really compares to this. …I have the right tools to move forward into producing my project. Thank you so much!” – Diane M.“Invaluable... packed with information … The explosion that's happening with these types of films is just the tip of the iceberg... this workshop was one of the smartest things I've ever done!“ – Suzanne L.“Unparalleled insights, information, and resources … a comprehensive program to jump start your project.” – Denene C.“Although I have extensive experience as a Line Producer on studio films, Anne Marie Gillen gave me the map of how to successfully negotiate the strange land of independent film production. She showed me which doors to knock on and how to get them to open. In three months, I went from being a clueless indie neophyte to negotiating with foreign sales agents bolstered by the confidence that comes with knowledge.” - Robert B.“Your insight cleared up my eyesight... What a great seminar! The information you provide on the business principles and practices of the entertainment industry is an invaluable tool for producers.” – Karen B.
Art/Work Entertainment Manager, Spencer Robinson joins our panel as we listen and read your pitches live to help educate the Writers' Room screenwriters on what is and isn't working in their pitch.
One of the weakest elements in screenwriting is story momentum. Without story momentum, pacing drags, plots lose focus, second acts die, and story climaxes are – anticlimactic. Achieving story momentum is not addressed often enough in screenwriting classes. Nor is the direct correlation between dramatic tension and the cause and effect elements needed to link scenes and scene sequences. This relationship is the cornerstone of achieving dramatic tension and mastering story momentum. In this Stage 32 Next Level Webinar, Max Adams, a 20-year working screenwriter and acclaimed author who has worked with Columbia Pictures, Touchstone Pictures, Universal Pictures, Walt Disney Studios, and Tri-Star Pictures, will explain why linear plotting fails and will give you practical tools and techniques you can immediately apply to you writing. You will leave this webinar knowing how to fix story holes, correct pacing, create driving story engines and achieve rising story momentum to maintain a feature film script straight through to a riveting story climax! PRAISE FOR MAX'S TEACHINGS: “I’ve taken all of Max’s classes and quite simply, her focused methods and attention to detail blow every other screenwriting class out of the water.” ~ Jules Howe, Best Comedy Screenplay, Austin Film Festival “If you want someone to challenge you to dive deep and pull the BEST out of yourself, Max is that whip-smart coach, teacher, and mentor.” ~ Ana Maria Montoya, Winner Sundance Latino Screenwriting Project “Max Adams is one of the most knowledgeable and talented people in screenwriting that I know, all writers need to hear what Max Adams has to say.” ~ Kerry Valderrama, Winner, Best Director, Independent Television & Film Festival “Max Adams is the kind of smart, engaging teacher that made me want to be a better writer — and she helped me do it.” ~ Alvaro Rodriguez, writer - Machete, From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series
The LGBTQ+ market is expanding and it's high time fresh voices are heard. The popularity of recent titles like Netflix’s THE BOYS IN THE BAND, Hulu’s LOVE, VICTOR, and FX’s POSE point to the truth that stories and perspectives from the LGBTQ+ community are finally welcomed and in demand. This in turn is encouraging more buyers to gravitate towards content from queer voices and with queer themes. It’s been a long time coming, and now that we’re here, it’s important to take a look at what exactly is selling and what makes LGBTQ+ content authentic, responsible, and popular. As more voices and stories from the LGBTQ+ community are coming forward, audiences are clearly becoming more open and interested in exploring these themes and characters, but they’re also more discerning about the authenticity and respect queer characters are given. The romantic lead’s sassy and platonic gay best friend doesn’t fly the way it might have in the ‘90s. So what do authentic queer characters actually look like today? How can you avoid clichés and stereotypes and instead craft something complex and responsible? Whether you are queer, straight, or anything else, how can you positively contribute to the LGBTQ+ film and TV market? Devon Byers is a manager, producer, and co-founder of First Friday Entertainment, the industry's top literary management and production company dedicated to finding unique voices focused on diversity and inclusion. His clients are currently working with companies like Issa Rae’s ColorCreative and Shonda Rhimes’ Shondaland, and are staffed on shows such as CBS’s GOD FRIENDED ME and CW’s KATY KEENE. Devon has based his career on championing diverse voices and bringing forward inclusive stories, and he’s bringing his perspective to the Stage 32 community. Devon will lay out what the LGBTQ+ film and TV market looks like today and how best to create your own stories and characters with these themes. He will begin by exploring what LGBTQ+ stories have been done and what you can do to make your own story unique. He’ll then delve into writing LGBTQ+ characters, including how to write them authentically and avoid clichés. He’ll outline the common traps LGBTQ+ characters often fall into and show you how to make sure your unique voice is evident in the writing. He’ll talk about themes that should be explored in this market as well as themes to avoid. Devon will also talk about if it’s okay to rewrite your straight characters for the LGBTQ+ market and whether there are any topics considered too insensitive or taboo. He’ll also discuss whether the market accepts straight people telling LGBTQ+ stories. He will then walk you through what platforms and formats are looking for this material and the most popular genres that are selling. Finally, Devon will dive into specific examples of successful LGBTQ+ projects in film, TV, podcasts and web series, and what makes them stand out. It’s an exciting time as Hollywood continues to become more diverse and inclusive. Let Devon give you the tools and confidence to responsibly contribute to this trend and even elevate it further.