The Good Theater’s production of Jule Selbo’s BOXES offers a taut psychological study of manipulation and longing, misconceptions about self and love, all carefully crafted into a thriller with rapid twists and turns that compels the audience’s attention for its brisk ninety-minutes. The boxes of the title are literal props used in a clinical psychological research study, but they are really metaphors for the constraints that shape our views of selfhood and for the inscrutable containers of dark secrets.
The importance of having material on the internet that helps tell people what you do and how well you do it came to my attention again last month.
I received an email invitation to moderate a panel at the Downtown LA Film Festival (DTLA) (https://www.dtlaff.com/) on the subject of “Implicit Bias” and how screenwriters can keep their scripts clear of their own and society’s implicit bias. Happily, I was able to invite one of our favorite Stephens mentors – Maria Escobeda – to be a panelist so we gave them a double-dose of Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting magic.
On Oct. 20, 2019, 4 pm, Reel Sisters and Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting hosted the closing night film Skin produced by Beverly Naya and directed by Daniel Etim Effiong. A documentary set in Lagos, Nollywood actress Beverly defines Black beauty and explores the practice of skin bleaching in African culture. Emmy-nominated, award-winning writer Dawn Comer Jefferson moderated the discussion with acclaimed culture, fashion and beauty journalists Channing Hargrove, J’na Jefferson and Monroe Steele.
T.J. Brady graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1996, and went on to serve as an Armor Officer at Fort Carson, Colorado in the roles of Platoon Leader, Battalion S-1, Company XO, and several staff positions, achieving the rank of Captain. In early 2001, T.J. left the military to pursue his writing dreams and moved to New York City, where he worked a corporate sales job by day, and took writing courses by night.
After building up a portfolio, T.J. moved to Los Angeles in 2004 and worked as a sales rep for a lighting company until 2008, when he was hired to write on staff for the Fox TV series, Lie to Me, where he wrote for two seasons. After Lie to Me, he went on to write for the Lifetime series, Army Wives, for three seasons. He currently works as a Writer/Producer for The 100, a Warner Bros., sci-fi drama that will premiere March 19th, at 9pm on The CW.
DuVernay is a writer, producer, director and distributor of independent film.
Winner of the Emmy, BAFTA and Peabody Awards, Academy award nominee Ava DuVernay is a writer, director, producer and film distributor. Her directorial work includes the historical drama SELMA, the criminal justice documentary 13TH and Disney’s A WRINKLE IN TIME, which made her the highest grossing black woman director in American box office history. Based on the infamous case of The Central Park Five, her next project is entitled WHEN THEY SEE US and will be released worldwide on Netflix in May 2019. Currently, she is overseeing production on her critically-acclaimed TV series QUEEN SUGAR, her new CBS limited series THE RED LINE and her upcoming OWN series CHERISH THE DAY. Winner of the 2012 Sundance Film Festival’s Best Director Prize for her micro-budget film MIDDLE OF NOWHERE, DuVernay amplifies the work of people of color and women of all kinds through her non-profit film collective ARRAY, named one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies. DuVernay sits on the advisory board of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, and chairs the Prada Diversity Council. She is based in Los Angeles, California.
Maria Escobedo is a film and television writer with credits including Grey’s Anatomy, Hulu’s East Los High and the indie film Rum and Coke, which she wrote and directed. She’s developed movies and pilots for Lifetime, Disney Channel, and Nickelodeon. She also has written for animated kids’ TV, including Dora the Explorer, Go Diego Go, Elena of Avalor, Special Agent Oso and Nina’s World, which earned her a Humanitas Award nomination. Escobedo is currently writing for Amazon’s If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, Netflix’s What-To-Doodles and Nickelodeon’s Santiago of the Seas. She also has developed original pilots for Amazon Kids. Escobedo served as chair of the Latino Writers Committee at the Writers Guild of America West for five years, and teaches writing at University of Southern California and California State University, Los Angeles.