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Screenwriters Roundtable: Craft to Career

Screenwriters Roundtable: Craft to Career Friday, May 8th 11AM PDT Slamdance alumni Todd Berger (It’s a Disaster) and Sarah Sherman (Thunderbolt in Mine Eye), and screenwriter Leah Rachel (Netflix’s Chambers) joined moderator Phil Galasso, host of Final Draft’s Write On podcast for a webinar on screenwriting. The writers will share their insights into honing your craft, shaping your career, as well as tips for staying focused while self-isolating. If you missed the live event, you can still watch the video above! Todd Berger Todd Berger is a filmmaker hailing from New Orleans, Louisiana who has been making movies since age 11 (Dick Tracy vs. Dr. Bubbles.)  In addition to scripts in development at Dreamworks Animation, Millennium Films, and Netflix, he’s also written and directed several shorts and independent feature films including It’s A Disaster, The Scenesters, and Cover Versions. His first novel Showdown City was recently published by Diversion Books.  He also spent several years as a feature film programmer for the Slamdance Film Festival.  He prefers waffles over pancakes.       Leah Rachel Leah Rachel is a writer/director born and raised in Akron, Ohio.  While she was working as a pizza waitress to make ends meet, Leah sold her first script to HBO with Mark Wahlberg and Steve Levinson producing. She hasn’t looked...

The 2019 Award-winning Screenwriters

  Grand Prize & 1st Place Feature The Fall by Michael Lipoma & Tamra Teig East Berlin 1989 - A single mother is forced to become a spy to save her son when he’s framed for murder, and her act of revenge, woven into historic events, leads to the fall of the Berlin Wall. "Our producing partner's uncle was accused of being a KGB agent, and died under suspicious circumstances when he tried to extricate himself to protect his family. We used that as the inspiration and chose another time in history that was filled with espionage--the Cold War world behind the Berlin Wall. As we researched the idea of a mother who's forced to become a spy to save her son, we discovered the real cause of the fall of the Berlin Wall--a communication error. We wove real stories of East Berliners' struggles to free themselves from their oppressive regime into historic events and imagined how these events could have unfolded, through the eyes of single mother trying to keep her children safe behind the Iron Curtain."...

Gina Prince-Bythewood & Tina Mabry on Mentorship

How to Turn Your Idol into Your Mentor into Your Collaborator Gina Prince-Bythewood (“Love and Basketball”, “Shots Fired”) and Tina Mabry (“Mississippi Damned”, “Queen Sugar”) are unstoppable forces on the rise — writing, producing, and directing for TV and film while mentoring the next generation of filmmaking talent. Gina premiered an early short film at Slamdance in 1998 (“Bowl of Pork”, starring Dave Chappell) before her breakout first feature “Love and Basketball”. The film that redefined sports films and broke new ground on how women and people of color are depicted onscreen inspired Tina Mabry to abandon her LSATs and apply for film school. Tina’s 2009 debut feature “Mississippi Damned” (starring Tessa Thompson with cinematography by Oscar nominee Bradford Young) won Gina’s admiration and respect and the two filmmakers have since become mentor/mentee, friends, colleagues, and are now collaborating on an upcoming film. Both Slamdance alums, they came to our offices to discuss their experiences navigating the industry with all its highs and lows, and offered some valuable wisdom for fellow filmmakers. Listen to their conversation in it’s entirety or read some highlights below. “I mean, making a good movie is hard. Getting a movie made is a miracle.” Tina on meeting Gina after watching “Love and Basketball” and stalking her for years: Tina: The first time we...

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