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WGF In the News

May 15, 2017 

June 2017

Ramadan in Hollywood: Industry Muslims Hold Interfaith Outreach Events – Hollywood Reporter

May 2017

Ted Danson Almost Spoiled ‘The Good Place’ Twist Because He Couldn’t Stop Telling All His Friends – Indiewire

Hooray for Hollywood’s hand-me-downs: LAUSD taps industry resources – KPCC

March 2017

Aaron Sorkin Gets an Education on Hollywood’s Diversity Issue at WGFestival – Variety

‘Guardians of the Galaxy’: James Gunn “Had a Lot More Freedom” in ‘Vol. 2’ – Variety

February 2017

Writers Guild Award-Nominated Screenwriters Discuss Their ‘Worst Notes Ever’ – Variety 

January 2017

Coffee, Tea and a Script: 18 LA Hot Spots for Hollywood Writers – Hollywood Reporter

December 2016

9 Things We Learned from the Insecure Writing Staff Panel at the Writers Guild Foundation – Decider

October 2016

Oprah Winfrey & Ava DuVernay: A TV Dream Team Talks ‘Queen Sugar’ – Variety 

Carlton Cuse: How Staying Zen Makes Him One of TV’s Most Prolific Showrunners – Indiewire 

8 Places to Write in LA (That Aren’t Coffee Shops) – LA Weekly

‘Wonder Buffalo’ Filmmakers Receive ETC@USC Innovation Technology Award – Variety

September 2016

Emmy Nominated Writers Talk Actors, Research & Changing Story Arcs at Sublime Primetime 2016 – Variety

Terence Winter to Write HBO’s Griselda Blanco Movie Starring Jennifer Lopez – Deadline

June 2016

In the Writers Room: Outlander Writers Talk Sex Scenes and Bringing the Books to Screen – Paste magazine

May 2016

‘Better Call Saul’ Vs. ‘Breaking Bad: The Shows Writers Reveal How Each Series Stands Alone – Bustle.com

How Kim from ‘Better Call Saul’ Became One of TV’s Most Feminist Characters – Bustle.com

20 of Our Favorite Events in Los Angeles This Week – LAist

The Best Place in the World for Screenwriters to Write – Screencraft Blog

The Writer’s Guild and Aspiring Veteran Writers – Military.com

April 2016

Arrow EPs Open Up About Flashback Woes, Why Season 5 Should Be Better – TVLine

Even ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’ Writer Lawrence Kasdan Thinks TV is the Future of Quality Storytelling – IndieWire

March 2016

‘Veterans Writing Project’ Seeking Active Military and Veteran Voices – Observer

Active military and vets who want to write for TV and film, this program is for you – Examiner.com

 

WGF Honors Writing and Service at 2017 Veterans Writing Project

May 3, 2017 

Los Angeles, CA – The Writers Guild Foundation (WGF) kicked off the 2017 session of the Veterans Writing Project with a weekend retreat on April 29 and 30 at the New York Film Academy campus in Burbank, CA.  

Now in its seventh year, the yearlong Veterans Writing Project pairs military veterans who are interested in writing for film and TV with mentors who are members of the Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW). The 2017 session welcomed the program’s largest class yet with 80 veterans and 27 mentors, including seasoned film and TV writers and producers Peter Casey (Frasier), David Isaacs (Frasier), Ken Levine (M*A*S*H*), Ashley Edward Miller (X-Men: First Class), Saul Turteltaub (Sanford and Son), Kira Snyder (The Handmaid’s Tale), Steve Lightfoot (The Punisher series), and Marc Klein (Serendipity). The weekend retreat consisted of workshops on developing story, structure, and characters, and culminated with a presentation on the elements of screenwriting from noted film writer Billy Ray (Captain Phillips, The Hunger Games).

This year, the retreat, which was sponsored by Final Draft, was held at the New York Film Academy for the first time.

“Our Veterans Writing Project has opened doors for men and women who have bravely served our country to break into the entertainment industry,” said WGF Executive Director Katie Buckland. “We are thankful to our generous hosts and sponsors, the New York Film Academy and Final Draft, for their support as we continue to train more vets who aspire to share their stories with the world.”

“There’s nobody more creative than veterans,” said Colonel Jack Jacobs, Chair of NYFA’s Veterans Advancement Program. “They bring life experience and creativity to a profession that requires both of those attributes. The partnership between the New York Film Academy and Writers Guild Foundation symbolizes both institutions’ dedication to those who have served our country faithfully.”

Following the weekend retreat, the Veterans Writing Project continues with workshops throughout the year focusing on the craft and business of writing for the screen. For more information on the program, visit wgfoundation.org.  

 

About the Writers Guild Foundation:

The Writers Guild Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that is dedicated to preserving and promoting the history and craft of writing for the screen. Along with operating the Shavelson-Webb Library and Archives, the Foundation hosts events featuring notable TV and film writers and runs programs connecting writers with underserved communities, from military veterans to youth.

About the New York Film Academy:

New York Film Academy (NYFA) teaches students the art of filmmaking and related visual and performing arts through blending traditional school instruction with practical, hands-on experience.  NYFA is the largest independent international film and acting school in the world.  Since 1992, NYFA has been offering innovative curricula taught by award-winning instructors using industry standard equipment.

More than 1,250 veteran students have attended NYFA, and the School has Veterans Support staff at all three US campuses: New York City, Los Angeles, and South Beach (Miami). www.nyfa.edu

 

WGFestival 2017 Gathers Top Film and TV Writers for Weekend Conference

March 1, 2017 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 1, 2017

LOS ANGELES – The Writers Guild Foundation, in partnership with Academy Education and Nicholl Fellowships Programs, presents WGFestival 2017, a weekend conference on Saturday, March 25, and Sunday, March 26, at the Academy’s Pickford Center for Motion Picture Study in Hollywood. Specifically focused on the craft and business of writing for the screen, the conference consists of headline panels, interactive workshops, special screenings and a pitch competition.

Headline panels include conversations with Academy Award®-winning screenwriter and renowned playwright Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network, The Newsroom, The West Wing); writer/director James Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2); an advanced pilot screening of new STARZ series American Gods followed by a Q&A with writers and showrunners Bryan Fuller (Hannibal TV series) and Michael Green (Logan) and star Ian McShane (Deadwood); a special screening of new FOX series Shots Fired followed by a Q&A with writers and co-creators Gina Prince-Bythewood (Love & Basketball) and Reggie Rock Bythewood (Notorious) and the show’s writers room; and a panel on balancing creative passions and business with Academy Award®-winning screenwriter Mark Boal (The Hurt Locker) and more.  

Classroom-size workshops provide hands-on opportunities for writers to learn and hone their skills in pitching ideas, developing characters, adaptations, and more from industry insiders such as writer/executive producer Simon Kinberg (X-Men series), producer Aditya Sood (Deadpool, The Martian), writer/executive producer Derek Haas (Chicago franchise), screenwriter Craig Mazin (Identity Thief), screenwriter Robin Swicord (Memoirs of a Geisha), writer/executive producer Adele Lim (Lethal Weapon TV series), screenwriter Meg LeFauve (Inside Out), writer/producer Laurence Andries (Being Mary Jane), writer/executive producer Pam Veasey (CSI: Cyber), screenwriter Robin Schiff (Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion), screenwriter Ben Ripley (Source Code), screenwriters Destin Daniel Cretton (The Glass Castle) and Andrew Lanham (The Glass Castle), and more.

WGFestival attendees will also be eligible to enter a live pitch competition judged by Matt Dy from the Austin Film Festival, WME Story Editor Christopher Lockhart, and writer/producer Edward Ricourt (Marvel’s Jessica Jones, Now You See Me).

“WGFestival is our premiere event of the year,” said Writers Guild Foundation Executive Director Katie Buckland. “It not only celebrates great film and TV writing, it gives emerging talents an opportunity to learn the craft directly from the best in the industry.”  

“When I became an Academy Governor, I found myself surrounded by Academy members and Governors who share my interest in creating a more inclusive industry,” said screenwriter Robin Swicord, a member of the AMPAS Board of Governors who will lead a WGFestival workshop on adaptations. “It seemed ideal for us to join forces with the Writers Guild Foundation to give emerging writers of every point of view a chance to strengthen their craft, and also make professional contacts. I’m hoping it’s the start of a great collaboration that will eventually infuse our entertainment industry with valuable new voices.”

Sponsors for WGFestival 2017 include Final Draft, STARZ, ScreenCraft, and the WGAW Registry. View the WGFestival list of panelists and schedule at http://www.wgfoundation.org.

For media inquiries about WGFestival 2017, please contact Enid Portuguez at the Writers Guild Foundation at: 323-782-4694 or eportuguez@wgfoundation.org.

The Writers Guild Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that is dedicated to preserving and promoting the history and craft of writing for the screen. Along with operating the Shavelson-Webb Library and Archives, the Foundation hosts events featuring notable TV and film writers and runs programs connecting writers with underserved communities, from military veterans to youth. For more information, visit wgfoundation.org.  

The Academy’s Department of Educational Initiatives is responsible for developing programs and workshops for educators and students. Since its inception in 2012, the department has created a middle school mentoring program called Spark @ The Academy, a yearly professional development program for teachers, the Careers in Film Summit, and a robust tours and visiting artists program. It also has expanded the Academy’s long-running high school media literacy program to include middle school students.  In addition, the department collaborates on various community outreach programs with organizations such as WriteGirl, Film Independent’s Project Involve, Inner-City Filmmakers, the Latino Film Institute Youth Cinema Project, as well as The Film Foundation, the Writers Guild Foundation and the Austin Film Festival.

The Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting is an international screenwriting competition established to identify and encourage talented new screenwriters. For more information on Academy programs, visit http://www.oscars.org/.

Top Writers and Industry Insiders Highlight The Business and Craft of Screenwriting at WGFestival 2016

March 8, 2016 

MEDIA ADVISORY

March 8, 2016

 

WHAT: The Writers Guild Foundation, in partnership with the Academy Education and Nicholl Fellowships Programs, presents WGFestival 2016, two all-day events at the Writers Guild Theater in Beverly Hills. On Saturday, March 19, a series of panels featuring writers, producers and executives from film and TV address the business behind a career in screenwriting. March 19 also features a pitch clinic and competition, where ten aspiring writers get the opportunity to pitch their ideas live for judges Matt Dy (Austin Film Festival), Franklin Leonard (The Black List), and Christopher Lockhart (WME).

On Saturday, April 16, panels featuring today’s most influential film and TV writers discuss the craft of screenwriting and writing their shows. Along with Star Wars scribe Lawrence Kasdan, we’ll welcome the showrunners from the DC Universe shows under the Greg Berlanti Productions banner, and the creators, executive producers and writers rooms of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and Marvel’s Jessica Jones.

WHO: Confirmed panelists include: Lawrence Kasdan (Star Wars: The Force Awakens), Greg Berlanti (Arrow, The Flash, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Mysteries of Laura, Supergirl), Ali Adler (Supergirl) John August (Big Fish), Rachel Bloom and Aline Brosh McKenna (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend), Kay Cannon (Pitch Perfect), Susannah Grant (Erin Brockovitch), Marc Guggenheim (Arrow, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow), Aaron & Todd Helbing (The Flash), Phil Klemmer (Legends of Tomorrow), Larry Karasczewski (American Crime Story), Andrew Kreisberg (Arrow, The Flash, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Supergirl), Craig Mazin (The Huntsman: Winter’s War), Wendy Mericle (Arrow), Roberto Orci (Transformers), Melissa Rosenberg (Jessica Jones), and more to be announced.

Full program for March 19: https://www.wgfoundation.org/screenwriting-events/wgfestival-2016-business/

Full program for April 16: https://www.wgfoundation.org/screenwriting-events/wgfestival-2016-craft/

 

WHEN: SATURDAY, MARCH 19, 2016

Doors open at 9am

Event starts at 10am to 6pm

SATURDAY, APRIL 16, 2016

Doors open at 9am

Event starts at 10am to 6pm

WHERE: Writers Guild Theatre

135 S. Doheny Dr.

Beverly Hills, CA 90211

 

CONTACT: For media coverage and inquiries, please contact Enid Portuguez at (323) 782-4694 or eportuguez@wga.org.

 

Writers Guild Foundation Hosts “Scribble to Screen” Panels at Atlanta TV Festival

January 25, 2016 

Panels take the audience inside the writers rooms of Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, Family Guy and Futurama

Los Angeles, CA – The Writers Guild Foundation (WGF) is thrilled to host its “Scribble to Screen” panels at the Atlanta TV Festival from February 4 to 7, 2016.

WGF welcomes a fantastic group of writers and producers from four of the most popular and beloved series on TV: ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal, FOX’s Family Guy, and Futurama.

On Thursday, February 4 at SCADshow main stage, Futurama co-creator David X. Cohen, and writers/producers Eric Horsted, Ken Keeler and Patric Verrone guide the audience through the process of writing the smart, satirical series for its seven seasons.

On Saturday, February 7 at SCADshow Stage 2, Family Guy executive producer and showrunner Steve Callaghan and writers/producers Dominic Bianchi, Travis Bowe, Aaron Lee, Chris Sheridan, and Danny Smith give the audience a glimpse inside the writer’s room of the long-running series. Attendees will also be treated to an episode of Family Guy that will screen before the panel.

Also on Saturday, February 7 at SCAD Atlanta, writers/producers Zoanne Clack and Stacy McKee from Grey’s Anatomy and Zahir McGhee and Mark Wilding from Scandal take the stage to share the secrets behind the stories that keep audiences tuned to TGIT.

About the Writers Guild Foundation:

The Writers Guild Foundation is a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote and preserve the craft, history, and voices of screen storytelling. Along with operating the Shavelson-Webb Library and Archives in Los Angeles, WGF also prides itself in hosting monthly events featuring the most talked-about writers in film and TV as well as connecting professional screenwriters with the writing community through volunteer opportunities. For more info, visit wgfoundation.org.

 

For press inquiries, please contact:

Enid Portuguez, Director of Communications

Writers Guild Foundation. eportuguez@wga.org; 323-782-4694

Writers Guild Foundation Hosts “Scribble to Screen” Panels and Exhibit at Savannah Film Festival

October 12, 2015 

Panelists include BOB’S BURGERS writers Holly Schlesinger and Nora Smith and PAN writer Jason Fuchs

Los Angeles, CA – The Writers Guild Foundation (WGF) is thrilled to host its “Scribble to Screen” panels and exhibit series at the Savannah Film Festival from October 24 to 26, 2015.

Three fantastic writers will grace the stage of the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) Museum of Art Theater on Sunday, October 25. At 11am, Jason Fuchs, screenwriter of PAN, takes the audience through his journey to retell the beloved tale of Peter Pan. At 2pm, Holly Schlesinger and Nora Smith of BOB’S BURGERS give a special sneak peek into two upcoming episodes from this season of the popular FOX series. Expect behind-the-scenes looks at their early drafts, notes, animated clips, and process to get from scribble to screen.

Along with the panels, WGF’s Library and Archives also hit the road to Savannah with an Exhibit at the Lucas Theatre from Saturday, October 24 to Monday, October 26.

On display at the Exhibit:

  • Development materials from Disney’s BEAUTY AND THE BEAST from the personal collection of writer Linda Woolverton.
  • Production design legend William Cameron Menzies’ 1933 illustrated screenplay of ALICE IN WONDERLAND.
  • The only extant written draft of Lawrence Kasdan’s THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK.
  • Bound TV, video game and film scripts, including films starring Savannah such as MIDNIGHT IN THE GARDEN OF GOOD AND EVIL and FORREST GUMP.
  • Our iPads loaded with scripts from TV hits like MAD MEN, THE WALKING DEAD and GAME OF THRONES.
  • All the notes and materials showcased at the PAN and BOB’s BURGERS panels.

About the Writers Guild Foundation:

The Writers Guild Foundation is a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote and preserve the craft, history, and voices of screen storytelling. Along with operating the Shavelson-Webb Library and Archives in Los Angeles, WGF also prides itself in hosting monthly events featuring the most talked-about writers in film and TV as well as connecting professional screenwriters with the writing community through volunteer opportunities. For more info, visit wgfoundation.org.

For press inquiries, please contact:

Enid Portuguez, Director of Communications

Writers Guild Foundation. eportuguez@wga.org; 323-782-4694

Writers Guild Foundation Executive Director Appointed to California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls

October 5, 2015 

Governor Jerry Brown appoints Katie Buckland as one of seven Public Members of the Commission

Los Angeles, CA – The Writers Guild Foundation (WGF) is proud to announce the appointment of its Executive Director Katie Buckland to the California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls, a non-partisan state agency that works to promote equality and justice for women and girls.

The 17-member commission consists of seven Public Members who are appointed by the Governor of California and confirmed by the state Senate. Other Public Members of the Commission include actress Geena Davis, who serves as Chair, Army Major Ofelia Alvarez-Willis, and Discovery Cube-LA Executive Director Kafi Blumenfield.

Buckland brings to the Commission a wealth of experience in women’s and children’s rights, government, politics and law. Prior to joining WGF in 2013, she headed the California Women’s Law Center, which addressed issues such as domestic violence, reproductive rights and Title IX discrimination. She’s held several positions at the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office, where she spearheaded the Neighborhood Prosecutor Program, and the Democratic National Committee. Buckland earned her Juris Doctor from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.

“The Commission’s goals and mission to promote and educate the public on important issues affecting women and girls, from economic equity to access to health care and protection from violence, are intrinsically aligned with my own core values,” says Buckland. “I am honored to accept this appointment, and I look forward to exploring how media, film and television can play a role in addressing the issues impacting women and girls today.”

 

About the Writers Guild Foundation:

The Writers Guild Foundation is a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote and preserve the craft, history, and voices of screen storytelling. Along with operating the Shavelson-Webb Library and Archives, WGF also prides itself in connecting professional screenwriters with the writing community through volunteer opportunities.

 

 

For press inquiries, please contact:

Enid Portuguez, Director of Communications

Writers Guild Foundation. eportuguez@wga.org; 323-782-4694

Writers Guild Foundation Adds Second Track to Veterans Writing Project

August 20, 2015 

Los Angeles, CA – The Writers Guild Foundation (WGF) is thrilled to announce it has received a grant from the Annenberg Foundation to fund a second track of its Veterans Writing Project program starting this fall.

Now in its fifth year, the Veterans Writing Project has served approximately 300 military veterans, some of whom have traveled from outside the Los Angeles area to participate. The program pairs veterans who have a penchant for wordsmithing with a collection of Writers Guild of America, West members, who serve as mentors during an intensive weeklong retreat and a series of regular workshops throughout the year. In that time, vets receive the screenwriting training and meet the contacts needed to enter the entertainment workforce.

“Our Veterans Writing Project has opened doors for men and women who have bravely served our country to break into the industry,” said WGF Executive Director Katie Buckland. “We are thankful to the Annenberg Foundation for the opportunity to continue training more vets who aspire to share their stories with the world.”

Applications for the second track of the Veterans Writing Project are now open to individuals with military veteran status and are accessible via the Writers Guild Foundation website. The deadline to submit applications is Friday, September 11 at 5pm PST.

About the Writers Guild Foundation:

The Writers Guild Foundation is a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote and preserve the craft, history, and voices of screen storytelling. Along with operating the Shavelson-Webb Library and Archives, WGF also prides itself in connecting professional screenwriters with the writing community through volunteer opportunities.

For press inquiries, please contact:
Enid Portuguez
Director of Communications
Writers Guild Foundation
eportuguez@wga.org; 323-782-4694

WGF Veterans Reception To Be Hosted By Writers, Directors of ZERO DARK THIRTY, HOUSE M.D., MAD MEN, More

November 4, 2014 

LOS ANGELES, NOV. 4 – A wide variety of film and television creators including Kathryn Bigelow, Mark Boal, Matthew Weiner and David Shore will host a reception to celebrate the Writers Guild Foundation’s Veterans Writing Project, the only program that pairs military veterans with industry writers who serve as creative and professional mentors.

The event marks the fifth year of the program, which is designed to increase the participation of veterans in the entertainment industry and add more veteran voices to our mass culture. It’ll be attended by a variety of mentors, former participants in the program, WGF staff and board, donors, and other luminaries.

Since 2005, the Writers Guild Foundation has run the Veterans Writing Project, wherein working film and television writers offer guidance to veterans wishing to learn more about the entertainment industry, or simply improve their writing skills. Past mentors have included FRASIER co-creator Peter Casey, WICKED writer Winnie Holzman, RENO 911! co-creator Robert Ben Garant, BOB’S BURGERS writers Lizzie Molyneux and Wendy Molyneux, and former WALKING DEAD showrunner Glen Mazzara.

The program has turned out hundreds of satisfied veterans, all of whom have improved their writing skills considerably – but several vets have left the program to join the writing staffs of shows like ARMY WIVES, RIZZOLI & ISLES and the upcoming CONSTANTINE and SECRETS AND LIES. Other vets have premiered films at film festivals and produced ongoing web series.

“There’s a profound need for more veteran voices in today’s media landscape,” said WGF Executive Director Katie Buckland. “These writers have uniquely important stories to tell, and we value the opportunity to give them the chance to develop those stories.”

WHAT. A reception to celebrate the Veterans Writing Workshop.
WHEN. Tuesday, November 11, 2014, 7pm to 8:30pm.
WHERE. Writers Guild Foundation Library, 7000 W. 3rd Street, Los Angeles 90048
WHO. Host Committee includes Kathryn Bigelow, Mark Boal, Allan Burns, David Shore, Matthew Weiner and more
CONTACT. Kevin Ott, Director of Communications, 323.782.4694

WGF Library Receives Major BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER Script Donation

October 28, 2014 

LOS ANGELES, OCT. 28 – Former BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER writer Jane Espenson has donated copies of every teleplay she wrote in her five seasons on the show’s writing staff, along with a hefty selection of scripts from before her tenure, to the Writers Guild Foundation library.

In total, Espenson gave the library – which collects scripts from television, film, video games and web series, and is the only library focused entirely on writing for the screen – twenty scripts credited to her name, and additional scripts for the entire first and second seasons of the show, totaling 54 scripts.

Espenson, who has also written for BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, FIREFLY, ONCE UPON A TIME and several other popular television shows, is well known in the screenwriting community for her blog, janeespenson.com, where she dispenses advice on the art and business of writing for television.

She was on the BUFFY writing staff beginning with the third season, and staying on until its seventh and final season. Her episodes include “Conversations With Dead People,” a fan favorite co-written with fellow BUFFY writers; “Earshot,” an episode featuring a gun-wielding high school student which was pre-empted due to the Columbine High School massacre one week before it was supposed to air; and “Superstar,” a universe-shifting episode for which the show’s producers changed the opening credits.

Espenson began her career as part of the ABC writing fellowship, designed to increase the presence of women and minorities in television writing. She is known for her ability to weave humor into otherwise dramatic and thrilling narratives.

“Buffy is a pillar of the 90s cultural canon that led to the modern Golden Age in television,” said WGF Library & Archive Director Joanne Lammers. “She was the first teenage girl to star in her own action-adventure series, and over seven seasons, the show broke new ground in representations of gender, sexuality, and the social structure of high school. These new scripts represent substantial progress in our mission to secure the vital materials that comprise modern American screen culture.”

Espenson’s episodes can be viewed in the WGF library on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 11am to 6pm, and on Thursdays from 11am to 8pm.

 

 

WGF To Sneak Preview Upcoming BOB’S BURGERS Episode At AFF

October 23, 2014 

LOS ANGELES, OCT. 22 – As part of its “Scribble to Screen” program at the Austin Film Festival this weekend, the Writers Guild Foundation will preview “Dawn of the Peck,” the upcoming Thanksgiving episode of the fifth season of BOB’S BURGERS, several weeks before the episode of the Fox animated series airs on television.

The episode’s writers, Lizzie Molyneux and Wendy Molyneux, join the Foundation to discuss the creation of the episode, modeled after horror and action films of 1970s through the 1990s. In addition to early script outlines, table-read drafts and lists of potential jokes, they and the WGF will screen early animation tests of the episode, as well as a nearly-final version of its first act.

The “Scribble to Screen” series spotlights the writing process that brings movies and television shows to the screen, aided by the materials generated during that process – such as early drafts, outlines, handwritten notes, character sketches and studio memos.

This is the WGF’s second year bringing the series to the Austin Film Festival.

“Writing for an animated series is a different animal,” said Katie Buckland, Executive Director of the WGF. “Our task is to preserve and explore every aspect of the craft of writing for the screen, and this interview and display will provide both fans and emerging writers alike with a window into the process.”

The interview will take place at 12:30pm in the Citadel Room of the Driskill Hotel at the Austin Film Festival. Click here for more details.

WGF To Display Exclusive Preproduction Materials From MAD MEN, GREY’S ANATOMY, THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK At AFF “Scribble To Screen” Exhibit

 

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 23 – The Writers Guild Foundation will display a series of early drafts, handwritten notes, pitch outlines and other preproduction materials at its “Scribble To Screen” event October 25 at the Austin Film Festival, including never-before-seen items from MAD MEN and exclusive materials from THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK and GREY’S ANATOMY.

The event spotlights items in the WGF’s library and archive, the only such collections that focus solely on film and television writing.

Items in the exhibit will include:

  • The only extant copy of Lawrence Kasdan’s handwritten first draft of THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, complete with margin notes such as “figure out a speech pattern for Yoda;”
  • Early drafts from the sixth season finale of MAD MEN, complete with handwritten notes;
  • Shonda Rhimes’ original pitch for GREY’S ANATOMY, originally titled UNDER THE KNIFE;
  • Show bibles from classics like THE GOLDEN GIRLS and various STAR TREK series;
  • Story conference notes from groundbreaking ALL IN THE FAMILY episodes;
  • A selection of original BREAKING BAD scripts, donated by Vince Gilligan;
  • Behind-the-Scenes drafts and production materials from HOUSE M.D. and CASTLE;
  • Billy Wilder’s own copy of DOUBLE INDEMNITY, donated by his estate;
  • Scripts from modern and classic films and television shows like THE MINDY PROJECT, ALIEN, NETWORK and BROOKLYN NINE-NINE.

Next door to the exhibit, the Foundation will offer an all-day series of interviews with a variety of film and television writers, including MY SO-CALLED LIFE creator Winnie Holzman, GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY writer Nicole Perlman and BOB’S BURGERS writers Lizzie and Wendy Molyneux. In addition, former MAD MEN and BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER writer Marti Noxon will discuss her upcoming Gillian Flynn adaptation, and BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, ALICE IN WONDERLAND and MALEFICENT writer Linda Woolverton will chart the progression of Disney heroines, using her own scripts as benchmarks. Click here to learn more about the schedule.

“These items, and the writers who created them, are a keystone of the culture that surrounds us,” said WGF Executive Director Katie Buckland. “Our job is to preserve artifacts like these, and an important part of preservation is making them available for as many people as possible to read and experience. We’re proud to be working with the Austin Film Festival to bring our collection before a new audience.”

Writers of GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, BOB’S BURGERS To Show Writing, Development Process at WGF “Scribble To Screen” Event at AFF

October 22, 2014 

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 22 – The Writers Guild Foundation will showcase the writers of a variety of movies and television shows, including MY SO-CALLED LIFE, GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, BOB’S BURGERS and MALEFICENT, at their “Scribble To Screen” event on October 25 at the Austin Film Festival. The writers will bring the early drafts and handwritten notes they generated during the writing process, and discuss these items on stage in a series of interviews.

Each writer will take part in 75-minute interview, with audience Q&A, aided visually by the materials generated during their writing process, which will be projected on a screen on stage. For instance:

  • GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY writer Nicole Perlman will discuss pages and panels from the original Marvel comic that inspired her, as well as side-by-side comparisons of her draft and writer/director James Gunn’s final shooting draft;
  • MY SO-CALLED LIFE writer Winnie Holzman will discuss the original outline, as well as story and character notes, for her series, originally titled SOMEONE LIKE ME;
  • Disney writer Linda Woolverton will track the social progress of Disney heroines across BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, ALICE IN WONDERLAND and MALEFICENT, three films she wrote;
  • Marti Noxon will show note and pitch materials for an in-development adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s ;
  • BOB’S BURGERS writers Lizzie and Wendy Molyneux will show script outlines as well as early animation tests for an episode they penned.

The WGF’s mission is to preserve and promote the craft and history of film and television writing; “Scribble To Screen,” in its second year at the Austin Film Festival, aims to serve that mission by spotlighting the many steps in the process of writing for the screen, including outlining, drafting and incorporating studio notes.

“The Austin Film Fest is known as the ‘writer’s festival’ – and as such, these writers will be able to provide an extraordinarily valuable peek into the professional process,” said Writers Guild Foundation Executive Director Katie Buckland. “We’re proud to give aspiring writers the opportunity to see that these writers face similar challenges and hew to similar workflows as they do.”

Here’s the full schedule of the day’s interviews:

9:00am: Winnie Holzman
10:45am: Marti Noxon
12:30pm: Lizzie Molyneux and Wendy Molyneux
2:45pm: Nicole Perlman
4:30pm: Linda Woolverton
6:00pm: Reception, hosted by Matthew Weiner

Click here for more information.

WGF To Display Original Billy Wilder DOUBLE INDEMNITY Manuscript Outside LA For First Time Ever

October 21, 2014 

LOS ANGELES, OCT. 21 – The Writers Guild Foundation will bring Billy Wilder’s own copy of DOUBLE INDEMNITY, the script he co-wrote with Raymond Chandler, to its “Scribble To Screen” event at the Austin Film Festival Saturday, Oct. 25. It will be the first time the manuscript leaves the organization’s Los Angeles library.

Wilder’s widow, Audrey Wilder, donated the script to the Foundation as part of her late husband’s entire personal script collection in 2002. The collection includes Wilder’s well-known classics like SOME LIKE IT HOT and THE APARTMENT as well as earlier works like NINOTCHKA.

Charged with preserving and promoting the craft of film television, videogame and new media writing, the Writers Guild Foundation operates the only library in the world dedicated solely to collecting film scripts and teleplays, both classic and modern. They also maintain an archive of screenwriting for the Writers Guild of America. Most recently, the Foundation digitized Wilder’s entire collection, preserving the scripts for perusal on tablet computers to minimize wear and tear on the originals.

The DOUBLE INDEMNITY manuscript will be included in the “Scribble to Screen” exhibit on Saturday, October 25 at the Austin Film Festival. The exhibit – which includes a series of interviews with current film and television writers – is a broad selection of items from the WGF’s library and archive, including early drafts and handwritten notes from shows like MAD MEN and GREY’S ANATOMY; Lawrence Kasdan’s handwritten first draft of THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, story conference notes from ALL IN THE FAMILY; and more.

“We feel privileged to have Billy Wilder’s own desk collection on our shelves, but more importantly, we take our stewardship of it very seriously,” said WGF Executive Director Katie Buckland. “Part of that stewardship means granting access to writers, scholars and film enthusiasts outside of Los Angeles, and we’re happy to be working together with the Austin Film Festival to make that happen.”

MAD MEN Creator Matthew Weiner To Host WGF’s “Scribble To Screen” Reception at AFF

October 20, 2014 

LOS ANGELES, OCT. 20 – MAD MEN creator and former SOPRANOS writer Matthew Weiner will host the closing reception of the Writers Guild Foundation’s “Scribble to Screen” event this Saturday, October 25, at the Austin Film Festival.

Weiner, a member of the Foundation’s board of directors, is also the recipient of this year’s  Outstanding Television Writer award at AFF. The Writers Guild Foundation is tasked with promoting and preserving the craft of writing for the screen, and as such operates the world’s only library devoted entirely to film and television writing, and maintains the archive of the Writers Guild of America.

The “Scribble To Screen” series is an all-day event centered in the Driskill Hotel, the heart of the festival that many call the “writers’ festival.” It highlights the process by which an idea or adaptation reaches the final script stage – a process that’s longer and more complex than many media consumers expect. The event will feature an all-day series of interviews with writers, complemented by screen projections of the materials they generated during their writing processes. The event also features an extensive exhibit of materials from the Foundation’s library and archive.

This year’s interviewees include Winnie Holzman (creator, MY SO-CALLED LIFE); Marti Noxon (writer, BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER, MAD MEN); Lizzie Molyneux and Wendy Molyneux (writers, BOB’S BURGERS); Nicole Perlman (writer, GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY); and Linda Woolverton (writer, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, MALEFICENT). Click here to learn more about the schedule.

For his part, Weiner loaned the Foundation the complete set of drafts and notes from “In Care Of,” the sixth season finale of MAD MEN. That collection includes an outline, a concept draft, a preproduction draft and a production draft. The preproduction and production drafts include handwritten notes, offering more insight into the writing process.

Weiner will host the closing reception of the event from 6pm to 7pm. The reception will be hosted by The Naked Grape.

“Matthew isn’t just a great writer and contributor of some of the most conscious and compelling drama on television,” said Katie Buckland, the WGF’s Executive Director. “He’s a stalwart member of our board of directors – and as such, he’s dedicated to helping us tell the world about the vital role of writers in entertainment production. Having him join us at Scribble To Screen is an honor.”

WGF Appoints New Library & Archive Director, Archivist

September 11, 2014 

The Writers Guild Foundation has appointed Joanne Lammers the Managing Director of its unique library and archive, and Hilary Swett as its new Archivist. Together, the two will continue expanding the Foundation’s extensive collection of screenplays, teleplays and related historical artifacts.

Lammers and Swett combine continuing library science training with practical entertainment production experience. Both arrive at their new positions from within the Writers Guild Foundation; previously, Lammers was Director of the Archive and Swett was the Foundation’s Rosenthal Fellow (an archival position).

In her new role, Lammers is charged with directing the Foundation’s library and archive, whose collections number over 30,000 items, ranging from current film and television scripts to early drafts, studio notes and other production memoranda from culturally significant titles like THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, THE SOPRANOS and GREY’S ANATOMY. The archive also preserves the labor history of the Writers Guild of America from 1920 to the present. As archivist, Swett will process those early Guild records, production documents  and writers’ papers, and assist researchers.

Lammers has delivered presentations on preservation and outreach at the Library of Congress and other archival institutions. She also serves on the board of the Los Angeles Preservation Network, and has been a judge in the Samuel Goldwyn Writing Awards since 1996. Prior to her library work, she spent 17 years as a script consultant at several production companies, including Castle Rock and Morgan Creek; she also managed the script library for A&M Films, a division of A&M records. She holds a BS in Critical Studies is from the University of Texas, Austin and an MLIS from San Jose State University.

Swett’s career began in talent representation, at The Alpern Group and McKeon-Myones Management. She moved on to library science after discovering a passion for research and information management. She processed materials and helped design workflows at a variety of archives, including NBCUniversal and Mount St. Mary’s College, and archived the personal papers of aeronautical engineer and inventor Paul MacCready. Her BA from Loyola Marymount University is in film production; her MLIS is from San Jose State University.

“Joanne and Hilary are a perfect team, with skill sets that almost seem designed just for us,” said WGF Executive Director Katie Buckland. “With the two of them working alongside our seasoned staff, the library and archive are sure to thrive.”

“The library and archive are the centerpiece of the Foundation, and they are in very good hands,” added Robert Nelson Jacobs, president of the WGF’s board of directors. “Joanne and Hilary are uniquely qualified to ensure not only that daily operations run smoothly, but also that we continue to grow and reach new users in the years to come.”

Writers Guild Foundation elects 2014-15 directors, appoints Oscar-nominated writer Robert Nelson Jacobs president

July 29, 2014 

LOS ANGELES, JULY 28 – Robert Nelson Jacobs, the Academy Award-nominated writer of CHOCOLAT, has been elected the new president of the Writers Guild Foundation’s Board of Directors. The board also elected three of its 22 incumbents to its executive committee, and added nine new directors to its ranks.

Jacobs, whose CHOCOLAT script was nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay in 2000, is currently adapting the memoir HOW STARBUCKS SAVED MY LIFE for The Weinstein Company, among other projects. He has served on the Writers Guild Foundation board for seven years.

In addition to Jacobs as President, the Board also elected Georgia Jeffries its Vice President; Ligiah Villalobos its Secretary; and Elias Davis its Treasurer.

The Board also elected nine new directors with a broad range of professional backgrounds.

The new directors include:

  • Laurence Andries, writer and producer known for ALIAS, SIX FEET UNDER and SUPERNATURAL;
  • Alfredo Barrios, writer and producer known for BURN NOTICE, JUSTICE and LAW & ORDER;
  • Louis Black, co-founder of the South By Southwest festival of film, music and interactive media and co-founder and editor of the Austin Chronicle;
  • Neil Druckmann, writer and video game designer known for THE LAST OF US;
  • Terri Edda Miller, writer and co-creator of CASTLE;
  • Minyon Moore, political strategist and public affairs consultant, founder of the public affairs and advertising firm The Dewey Square Group;
  • Veena Sud, television writer and developer of THE KILLING;
  • Pam Veasey, writer and producer known for IN LIVING COLOR and CSI: NY;
  • Sally Wilcox, agent in the Motion Picture Literary Department at Creative Artists Agency.

They join the following incumbent board members Neal Baer, Craig Bankey, Barbara Benedek, Allan Burns, Elias Davis, Seth Freeman, Lowell Ganz, Charlie Hauck, Georgia Jeffries, Bill Lawrence, Peter Lefcourt, Andrew Marlowe, Jan Oxenberg, Shonda Rhimes, David Shore, Holly Goldberg Sloan, Ligiah Villalobos, Matthew Weiner, Alan Wertheimer, Larry Wilmore and John Sacret Young.

Jacobs praised the new members, and the new executive committee, as indicators of a bright future.

“As the craft of writing for the screen changes with shifting audiences and developing technology, it’s vital that our board keep pace,” he said. “This board appreciates the value of promoting and preserving that craft, and has the collective wisdom and experiences to help the Foundation maintain its vision moving foward.”

WGF Executive Director Katie Buckland agreed, citing the value of a strong board.

“I’m looking forward to working with these new directors – in fact, I’m thrilled,” she said. “The Foundation’s mission of promoting and preserving the craft of film and television writing is in good hands. Under the guidance of this fantastic array of brilliant, creative professionals, we’re sure to thrive.”

WGF to Host Symposium on the Changing Art of TV Writing

July 9, 2014 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 9, 2014
Contact: Kevin Ott, Director of Communications – 323.782.4694

The Writers Guild Foundation will host a day-long symposium on the changing art of television writing. The event, THE SERIES OF TUBES: SERIAL STORYTELLING IN AN EXPANDING WORLD, continues the yearly tradition of the WGF’s all-day summer writing symposia, and this year will focus on writing for the varying media and outlets on which serialized stories are increasingly appearing.

Guests will talk about writing for cable, networks, and the internet, both web series and for new outlets like Netflix and Hulu. The panel will be composed of successful television writers and creators, as well as agents and producers, including Veena Sud (THE KILLING), David Shore (HOUSE), Jay Kogen (THE SIMPSONS), Dan O’Shannon (MODERN FAMILY), Jeffrey Glaser (VP, current programming, Fox Television), and more.

Other panelists include Cody Heller and Brett Konner, seasoned television writers whose new show DEADBEAT is exclusively on Hulu, Jane Espenson and Brad Bell, creators of the hit web series HUSBANDS,  and Dan Harmon, whose hit show COMMUNITY will soon make its move from television to the internet, as it was recently picked up for its sixth season on Yahoo.

“Outlets for writers and producers have vastly increased in form and in volume as technology has advanced,” said WGF Executive Director Katie Buckland. “This weekend, we’ll explore those new avenues to creative success, and give emerging writers a more complete view of the landscape before them.”

Click here for more information on the event, including a complete list of panelists.

The event will take place Saturday, July 12, at the Writers Guild Theater at 135 S. Doheny Drive in Beverly Hills.

Writers Guild Foundation Joins Forces With California Preservation Orgs To Archive Hollywood History

July 1, 2014 

LOS ANGELES, JULY 24 — The Writers Guild Foundation, in conjunction with the California Preservation Program’s CALIFORNIA LIGHT AND SOUND preservation effort, has released rare recordings of the writers of COOL HAND LUKE and television’s M*A*S*H onto the Internet Archive, granting access to scholars and fans worldwide for the first time.

Also released were audio interviews with Phillip Dunne, a leading organizer of what would become the Writers Guild of America, and Jean Rouverol, a writer whose career was nearly ruined by the Hollywood Blacklist.

Prior to their inclusion on the Internet Archive – itself a nonprofit organization intended to create an “internet library” – the interviews were stored on audiocassettes, an archivally unstable medium. Access to the cassettes was limited as well.

“The single audiocassette was the master and the access copy,” said Writers Guild Foundation Archivist Joanne Lammers, “meaning every time it was played, we ran the risk of losing it forever. Now, thanks to the California Preservation Program and the Internet Archive, those interviews are not only preserved on another medium, they’re made available to anyone with an internet connection. It’s tremendously satisfying.”

CPP, which covered the costs of the transfer from audiocassette to digital file, works to digitize and increase access to audiovisual artifacts that relate to the state’s heritage as part of its California Audiovisual Preservation Project. Lammers asked that the interviews be included because of their important connection to California history and culture.

“Gelbart was the creator and producer of M*A*S*H, which in addition to being excellent television, was filmed largely in Malibu Creek State Park, and is still a destination for hikers and television history buffs. Likewise, COOL HAND LUKE was shot mostly on a Stockton set, and its writer, Frank Pierson, was president of both the Writers Guild of America and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences – both organizations integral to the economic history and development of southern California.”

Dunne was a co-founder of the Screen Writers Guild, which would develop into the WGA. He also co- founded the Committee For The First Amendment, which fought the House Un-American Activities Committee and the Hollywood Blacklist. Rouverol and her family self-exiled to Mexico, fearing prison sentences as a result of HUAC and the Blacklist.

The WGF will continue to work with CPP in the months to come to make more such interviews available. Currently, the files can be accessed at archive.org/details/writersguildfoundation.

WRITERS GUILD FOUNDATION, AUSTIN FILM FEST TO JOIN FORCES FOR HISTORIC WEEKEND SYMPOSIUM

March 27, 2014 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 27,2014
Contact: Kevin Ott, Director of Communications – 323.782.4694

The Writers Guild Foundation, the charitable writers’ outreach organization associated with the Writers Guild of America-West, is combining its efforts with the Austin Film Festival to host a day-long symposium on the state of the feature film industry and current script sales.

Featuring a broad variety of screenwriters, producers and prestigious contest directors, the event will feature four separate panels – two organized by the WGF, and two organized by AFF. The WGF panels will focus largely on style and craft, and the AFF panels will be more marketplace-oriented, but topics will be somewhat fluid throughout the day’s discussions.

Click here for a complete list of the day’s panels.

Though a co-produced day-long event is a first for the two organizations, they have worked together in the past, when the WGF brought its SCRIBBLE TO SCREEN interview series to the Austin Film Festival in 2013. The series featured film and TV writers David Shore, Jenji Kohan, Ashley Edward Miller, Robin Swicord and Andrew Marlowe & Terri Edda Miller discussing the process of going from story notes to a completed final draft. SCRIBBLE TO SCREEN was coupled with an extensive exhibit of the WGF’s archive, which includes early production materials from those writers’ projects.

“It’s more than just an honor to work with the Austin Film Festival,” said Katie Buckland, Executive Director of the Writers Guild Foundation. “Two powerful voices advocating the value of great screenwriting are joining forces to offer emerging writers a picture of the current landscape. Our friendship is a friendship with benefits – and in this case, the benefits are being reaped by the community of emerging writers in Los Angeles.”