Past Events

Sep 2016

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Writers on Writing with Terence Winter

   Date: Sep 27, 2016

From his groundbreaking work on HBO as the creator of BOARDWALK EMPIRE and executive producer of THE SOPRANOS to his turns as screenwriter of films such as THE WOLF OF WALL STREET and 50 Cent biopic GET RICH OR DIE TRYIN’, Terence Winter is a writer and producer known for masterfully crafting stories centered around the world of criminals and cons. It’s quite the fascinating trajectory from his early work writing for 90s shows such as THE COSBY MYSTERIES, XENA: WARRIOR PRINCESS and SISTER, SISTER.

On this special evening, Winter takes us through his evolution as a TV writer, shares his process for shaping complex characters, and his approach to building the worlds surrounding his shows.

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The Raconteur: Writing Prose and Television with Jonathan Ames

   Date: Sep 20, 2016

As the creator and showrunner of the Starz Original Series BLUNT TALK (which premieres its second season on October 2) as well as the much-missed HBO series BORED TO DEATH, Jonathan Ames is known for his whimsical style of maneuvering flawed yet empathetic characters through their substance-filled misadventures and idiosyncratic lives. Ames is also known for cribbing elements of his real life adventures into both his television and literary work, which includes three novels (one of which was adapted into the film THE EXTRA MAN), the autobiographical graphic novel THE ALCOHOLIC, numerous collections of essays and memoirs, and monologues he’s staged himself or at The Moth.

On this special night, Ames shares his approach and process to writing his varied projects, how they inform one another, and how he developed his self-referential style.

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Sublime Primetime 2016

   Date: Sep 15, 2016

Every year we team up with the Writers Guild of America, West and Variety to gather this year’s nominated writers for a lively conversation on the season’s most talked-about episodes.

Panelists:

SCOTT ALEXANDER & LARRY KARASZEWSKI
The People v. O.J. Simpson

JOEL FIELDS & JOE WEISBERG
The Americans

ALEX GREGORY & PETER HUYCK
Veep

MARTI NOXON & SARAH G. SHAPIRO
UnREAL

CAROLYN OMINE
The Simpsons

ALEX RUBENS
Key & Peele

Moderator: BOB ODENKIRK, Better Call Saul

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Character Sketch: Uncovering Spies and Secret Agents with William Blake Herron

   Date: Sep 6, 2016

From James Bond and Jason Bourne to Sydney Bristow and Carrie Mathison, film and TV’s fascination with the covert lives of spies and secret agents has produced memorable characters and endlessly entertaining franchises.

On this evening, writer William Blake Herron (AGENT X, THE BOURNE IDENTITY) shares his unique insight (he studied Russian in college and is an avid martial artist) and process for writing characters embroiled in the world of espionage. Along with a look into how to shape characters within the genre, he’ll also give us the scoop on his experiences with studio assignments and lessons learned as a first-time showrunner.

Co-hosted by NYU Tisch in LA.

Aug 2016

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From Views to VR: Careers in Digital Storytelling

   Date: Aug 16, 2016

This panel addresses the various paths to a career in storytelling within the digital space. From writing webisodes to VR simulations, our panelists share their experiences creating content for new and emerging mediums and what lessons they’ve learned in often unchartered territory.

Moderator:

Richie Solomon – video games BINGO Blitz, Zynga Elite Slots, Scratchers Casino, and The Godfather: Gangland.

Panelists:

Dean Orion – Executive Creative Director at Spaces Inc., a virtual and mixed reality company that conceives, designs and builds fully dimensional VR and MxR experiences. Formally a creative producer at Walt Disney Imagineering.

John Zuur Platten – Creative director at Niantic Labs, developer of Ingress and Pokémon GO, and a creative consultant on a reboot of his Fear Effect property. Written and designed over 60 projects for every major publisher and studio, including: Ghostbusters, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay.

Anne Toole – Anne is a writer for TV, games, web series, VR, comics, and short fiction. Credits include THE WITCHER and THE LIZZIE BENNET DIARIES, a web series that won an Emmy.

Evette Vargas – Award-winning writer, director, multiplatform & Virtual Reality creator. Work includes series for MTV, Bravo, DirectTV; branded entertainment for FAST & FURIOUS, LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy and Madonna. Wrote and directed her digital series DARK PROPHET.

Micah Wright – Wrote, storyboarded, directed, and composed songs for shows like The Angry Beavers, Hey Arnold!, and Constant Payne. Written and designed on over 50 video games including hit games in the Transformers, Ratchet & Clank, Destroy All Humans, and wrote the zombies mode for Call of Duty: Black Ops II. Hired in 2014 by Samsung to help guide the creation of the Virtual Reality experience TheBluVR.

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Making the Cut: How to Navigate the Screenplay Contest Circuit

   Date: Aug 9, 2016

Our panelists will share their experiences inside various contest and fellowship application processes, how to navigate through the gauntlet of steps, and how you can use networking opportunities at events (such as San Diego Comic-Con and this one) to get yourself and your work noticed throughout the process.

Panelists:

Brian Anthony – THE NIGHT SHIFT, ARMY WIVES, completed the 2012 NBC Writers On The Verge Program
Brandon Easton – MARVEL’S AGENT CARTER, 2014 nominee for an Eisner Comic Industry Award, completed the 2015 Disney-ABC Writing Program
Greta Heinemann – NCIS NEW ORLEANS, completed CBS Writers Mentoring Program, Humanitas New Voices Initiative
Andrew Lanham – THE GLASS CASTLE, 2010 Nicholl Fellowship winner, Winner of Drama and Latitude awards at Austin Film Festival
Shireen Razack – SHADOWHUNTERS, completed CBS Writers Mentoring Program
Michael Werwie – 2012 Nicholl Fellowship winner

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Women Who Run the Room: A Conversation with Showrunners

   Date: Aug 6, 2016

On this special Saturday event, a panel of female showrunners discuss their experiences of running a room and the impact of increasing female voices in television.

Panelists:

Alexa Junge – GRACE AND FRANKIE, UNITED STATES OF TARA, FRIENDS
Laurie McCarthy – REIGN, GHOST WHISPERER
Lizzy Weiss – SWITCHED AT BIRTH, UNDRESSED

Check back for more panelist announcements.

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Writers on Writing with Steven Knight

   Date: Aug 2, 2016

Screenwriter and director Steven Knight’s fascinating and highly enviable career spans genres and mediums. On the big screen, he’s penned the thrillers DIRTY PRETTY THINGS (which earned him an Academy Award nomination), and EASTERN PROMISES; dramas such as LOCKE (which he also directed) and PAWN SACRIFICE, and the upcoming THE GIRL IN THE SPIDER’S WEB and ALLIED.

On the small screen, he’s the creator and showrunner of PEAKY BLINDERS and the upcoming BBC series TABOO starring Tom Hardy. Plus, Knight has also published novels, written plays and even co-created the game show WHO WANTS TO BE A MILLIONAIRE?

Jul 2016

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In Conversation with Phyllis Nagy

   Date: Jul 26, 2016

In this special event in our IN CONVERSATION WITH series, Phyllis shares her experiences adapting novels for the screen (CAROL was adapted from a Patricia Highsmith novel) and for the stage (Phyllis wrote plays based on novels by Highsmith, Anton Chekhov and Nathaniel Hawthorne). She’ll also talk about the transition from writing for the stage to screen as well as how one medium can inform the other.

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Escape from Development Hell: How to Get a Movie Made

   Date: Jul 18, 2016

For every Hollywood success story, there are 100 tales of trudging unsuccessfully through the trenches. Lessons are learned, contacts are made, and every so often, a deal is struck. Our panelists will share how you can maximize your opportunities and emerge from the trenches to get your film produced.

Jun 2016

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Breaking In at Any Age

   Date: Jun 28, 2016

We’re thrilled to host a panel, in partnership with the Academy Education and Nicholl Fellowship Programs, on how to break into the industry as a writer at any age.

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Writers on Writing with Marvel's Jessica Jones

   Date: Jun 21, 2016

At this special event, three writers and producers from MARVEL’S JESSICA JONES–Hilly Hicks, Jamie King, and Edward Ricourt –join us to talk more about the intricacies of building Jessica’s world and their own paths to building a career as a writer.

Doors open at 7pm. Event starts at 7:30pm.

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Master Class with Mike O'Malley

   Date: Jun 14, 2016

If Mike O’Malley looks familiar, it’s probably because he’s tugged at your heartstrings as Burt Hummel on GLEE or made you laugh as Jimmy Hughes in the CBS comedy YES, DEAR. He’s also guest starred on shows such as PARENTHOOD, MY NAME IS EARL, PARKS AND RECREATION and on films such as DEEP IMPACT, 28 DAYS and LEATHERHEADS.

Along with his list of acting credits, O’Malley is also the creator and showrunner of the Starz Original Series SURVIVOR’S REMORSE, a comedy about the lives of a pro-basketball player and his family after they move to Atlanta. He was also a writer and producer on the Showtime series SHAMELESS.

In this Master Class, O’Malley shares his process and experiences creating and running his show as well as how acting has informed his writing.

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Inside the Writers Room with OUTLANDER

   Date: Jun 7, 2016

The hit Starz original series, adapted and developed by Ronald D. Moore from the novels by Diana Gabaldon, has captured a rabid following with its strong, sensual characters, lush storytelling, and its dimensional look at relationship and power dynamics. On this special evening, we’re thrilled to welcome Moore, who also developed the beloved series BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, and the OUTLANDER writers room to share the process behind crafting the show’s emotional journeys as well as its swashbuckling story lines.

May 2016

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Special Screening and Panel with PREACHER

   Date: May 31, 2016

On this special evening, we are screening the premiere episode of PREACHER which will be followed by a panel that will discuss how to adapt comic books, writing the anti-hero, and what’s in store for the first season. The panel will feature executive producer Sam Catlin and the show’s writers and producers.

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Inside the Writers Room with BETTER CALL SAUL

   Date: May 26, 2016

What else can you expect from creators Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould? On this special Inside the Writers Room event, Gould, along with members of the writers room, take us through the process of crafting BETTER CALL SAUL and creating new arcs that inform the larger world of BREAKING BAD as well as their own journey from various writers rooms, including the BREAKING BAD writers room, to the BETTER CALL SAUL writers room.

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Between the Chapters: Writing and Acting with JANE THE VIRGIN

   Date: May 25, 2016

At this special event, JANE THE VIRGIN creator and showrunner Jennie Snyder Urman shares insight into the process of designing that ride for the past two seasons. She’ll be joined by members of her incredible cast, who’ll give the actor’s perspective on bringing the characters and dialogue to life.

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Master Class with Courtney A. Kemp

   Date: May 17, 2016

After an exceptional career as a writer and producer on THE GOOD WIFE, ELI STONE, JUSTICE and THE BERNIE MAC SHOW, Courtney A. Kemp made her spectacular debut as a creator and showrunner with the Starz Original Series POWER. The hit show, which is the most highly watched original series for the cable network, follows the complex double life led by James “Ghost” St. Patrick (played by Omari Hardwick) amid the gritty and glamorous streets of New York City.

With POWER’s third season premiering this summer, Kemp talks to us about the journey and process behind creating and running her TV show as well as the lessons learned as she approaches the show’s upcoming season. Kemp will also shed light on transitioning from writing half hour to writing hour.

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Entertainment Law for Creatives

   Date: May 10, 2016

As creatives, navigating the business side of the entertainment industry can be daunting, which is why brushing up on Entertainment Law 101 is always a great idea. On this evening, attorney Luke Lieberman will give a survey of intellectual property, personal/publicity rights, and relevant contract law–consider it an overview for writers, directors, actors, and producers on the how to protect their work, avoid common pitfalls in the industry and manage their representatives.

With experience as both a creator and a lawyer, Luke provides a unique perspective on the industry, providing invaluable information for established and up and coming filmmakers alike.

Apr 2016

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WGFestival 2016: THE CRAFT

   Date: Apr 16, 2016

On Saturday April 16th, we’ll gather for an all-day event at the Writers Guild Theater in Beverly Hills.

WGFestival: THE CRAFT will have panels on the changing landscape of distribution, new media, and crafting the script of today and tomorrow. Today even more opportunities abound across many different platforms. Creators, showrunners, and Executives will open the magic box and discuss all the possibilities.

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WGFestival 2016: ALL ACCESS

   Date: Apr 16, 2016

The Writers Guild Foundation in Partnership with the Academy Education and Nicholl Fellowships Programs presents WGFestival 2016!

Have you been to our craft day symposiums? Like any Hollywood sequel, they just keep getting bigger and faster and furious-er.

On Saturday, March 19 and Saturday, April 16, we’ll gather the industry’s best and brightest writers, producers, executives and insiders for two all-day events at the Writers Guild Theater in Beverly Hills.

And for the first time with the ALL ACCESS PASS, we will pass your first 10 pages of your screenplay or television script on to some people we know – click the link to find out how.

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Write-a-Thon 3

   Date: Apr 9, 2016

It’s our third Write-A-Thon of the year! Like any third installment in a series, you can expect all the familiar favorites (the pizza, the snacks, the raffle prizes) plus some new faces.

At our last Write-A-Thon, we had the pleasure of welcoming Heather Washington from the Universal Pictures Emerging Writers Fellowship. This time, we’re excited to have Eva Gross, the Final Draft Big Break Contest Director, who’ll share some insight and answer all your questions about entering the contest.

And of course, we’ll have our incredible Library staff on hand, plus our catalog of scripts, to help you polish that draft or finish that final scene.

Space is limited, so reserve your spot ASAP!

Our Write-A-Thons are brought to you by our wonderful sponsors:

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WritersStore

Mar 2016

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The World Builder: Frank Spotnitz on Creating Complex TV Series

   Date: Mar 24, 2016

In this special event, Frank Spotnitz shares his experiences writing across genres and platforms as well as delving into the intricate process of world-building.

Spotnitz is no stranger to building and exploring new and old worlds. He wrote, executive produced and developed Amazon’s most viewed series, THE MAN IN THE HIGH CASTLE, about what would have happened if the Allied Powers lost World War II and the U.S. along with much of the world is controlled by Imperial Japan and Nazi German. Spotnitz then takes us back to the Italian Renaissance with MEDICI: MASTERS OF FLORENCE, an upcoming eight-part drama series starring Richard Madden and Dustin Hoffman that chronicles the rise of the Medici family.

He’ll be interviewed by friend of the Foundation, Neil Landau, who has interviewed Spotnitz for his brand new book, TV Outside the Box: Trailblazing in the Digital Television Revolution, which will be available to purchase at the event.

PLUS we’ll also have an EXCLUSIVE Green Room Experience beginning at 6:30pm, where you can meet and hang out with Frank before the event. You will also get a reserved front row seat at the event. These tickets are limited.

Doors open at 7pm. Event starts at 7:30pm.

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WGFestival 2016: THE BUSINESS

   Date: Mar 19, 2016

On Saturday March 19th, we’ll gather for an all-day event at the Writers Guild Theater in Beverly Hills.

WGFestival: THE BUSINESS will be focused on your career in the screenwriting trade. Panelists will help you fashion your concept into something they want to read, help you turn that script into a film, and guide you through what it takes to sustain yourself in the film business.

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Write-A-Thon 2

   Date: Mar 5, 2016

This event is sold out and the wait list is full.

Our first Write-A-Thon of the year was a sold-out hit, so we’re naturally following it up with a sequel (Sorry, Ice Cube and Kevin Hart aren’t starring in this one).

We will, however, have some cool things to add, such as special guest, Heather Morris Washington, Program Manager of the Universal Pictures Emerging Writers Fellowship, who will give info and answer questions about the fellowship’s fourth year.

As always, there will be pizza, soda, snacks, raffle prizes, our fabulous Library staff, and most importantly, uninterrupted writing time for you to finish that script.

Feb 2016

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MASTER CLASS WITH EVAN DAUGHERTY

   Date: Feb 23, 2016

Evan Daugherty, screenwriter of SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN, DIVERGENT, KILLING SEASON, TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES, and the upcoming 2017 reboot of TOMB RAIDER, shares his journey from NYU film student and living in his parent’s basement to moving to LA and becoming the writer of big-budget, high-profile movies. Trust us, he will inspire you!

In this Master Class, he’ll also give insight into his process for adapting classic stories for a modern audience and what it’s like to take on the screenplay of a famous film franchise.

Writer Meg LeFauve is photographed on October 2, 2015 at Pixar Animation Studios in Emeryville, Calif. (Photo by Deborah Coleman / Pixar)

WRITERS ON WRITING WITH MEG LEFAUVE

   Date: Feb 18, 2016

On this special night, Meg LeFauve (INSIDE OUT, THE GOOD DINOSAUR) shares her process to bringing characters to life, her experiences writing animated features, and her approach to writing live action features like the upcoming CAPTAIN MARVEL.

PLUS we’ll also have an EXCLUSIVE Green Room Experience beginning at 6:30pm, where you can meet and hang out with Meg before the event. You will also get a reserved front row seat at the event. These tickets are limited.

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BEYOND WORDS 2016

   Date: Feb 4, 2016

Award season is coming…

Each year at BEYOND WORDS, we partner with the Writers Guild of America, West to assemble a panel filled with award-nominated screenwriters who chat about their lives in the trade and their nominated work.

This event is presented by the Writers Guild of America, West, Variety, and the Writers Guild Foundation.

Jan 2016

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LIFE OF CRIME 2: WRITING THE SERIAL DRAMA

   Date: Jan 26, 2016

We have just added Chris Brancato and Diane Frolov & Andrew Schneider to the panel!

Chris was an Executive Producer on the Golden Globe nominated NARCOS. He has written for HANNIBAL, LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT, and LAW & ORDER: CRIMINAL INTENT. Diane & Andrew have written for CHICAGO MED, BOSCH, BOARDWALK EMPIRE, and THE SOPRANOS.

If you made it to last year’s sold out Life of Crime event, then you learned the secrets to writing a great procedural. This time around, we are opening the suitcase and giving out ALL THE SECRETS to writing serial crime dramas.

Join Laurence Andries (THE PACIFIC, SIX FEET UNDER) as he chats with a “Murderer’s Row” of crime drama writers and creators about writing serial dramas, serials vs. procedurals, and a whole lot more!

Laurence will be joined by Shawn Ryan (THE SHIELD, TERRIERS) and more. Keep checking back for additional panelists.

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New Years' Resolution Write-A-Thon

   Date: Jan 16, 2016

It’s a new year! That means new resolutions to start (or finish) that feature/pilot/spec/novel/short story. Plus, those Sundance Episodic Story Lab and Nickelodeon Writing Program deadlines are right around the corner!

Let us help you kick start those resolutions with our first Write-A-Thon of the year on Saturday, January 16!

We’ll have pizza, soda, and our awesome Library staff on hand, not to mention some cool prizes to raffle off.

Space is limited, so get your tickets early!