Issue 2 | March 2005

  • Message from Membership Director
  • Message from the President – “Mia’s Monthly Message”
  • HSIP:  Harvardwood Summer Internship Program
  • Member Profile of Caroline Libresco HDS ’91
  • Industry Successes…
  • So You Got The Job, Hey…
  • And the Award Goes to….
  • Members in the News…
  • Personal Highlights…
  • Harvard in Hollywood Thank Yous

A Message from the Membership Director 

Hello everyone!!  We hope you enjoy the second edition of Harvardwood Highlights.  It’s so exciting to read about all the success everyone has had over the last month.  Please continue to share, and I want to thank everyone who submitted information this month.  Enjoy the beginnings of spring.  Cheers, Kibi

Mia’s Monthly Message…. 

Hello, Harvardwood!  It’s been a busy March with activities from coast to coast.  We’re very pleased by the success of our first-ever “Harvard in Hollywood” event, which we cosponsored with the HAA, HBS Association of Southern California, and Harvard-Radcliffe Club of SC.  The event, held in LA on March 12, drew well over 500 alums and guests who heard 20 distinguished alums speak on various topics pertaining to the entertainment industry.  Many thanks to our cosponsors, speakers, attendees, and in-kind donors for their contributions to this unprecedented event (see below for full thank-you list)…In New York, we organized a fun-filled group outing to the Def Poetry Jam (with complimentary admission, thanks to NYC Events Director Sherrese Clarke!)…In Cambridge, we conducted an on-campus information session for students about the Harvardwood Summer Internship Program, cosponsored by OCS and the OFA.  Look for more great happenings in the next two months, including the launch of our new website and our brand-new Harvardwood Writers’ Program!

-Mia  

HSIP:  Harvardwood Summer Internship Program

The third annual Harvardwood Summer Internship Program (HSIP) is quickly approaching.  This program, cosponsored by Harvard’s OFA and OCS, provides summer internship opportunities in the arts and entertainment to current Harvard students and recent grads (in some cases).  Harvardwood also coordinates special events, speakers, and screenings over the summer for participating students and companies in New York and Los Angeles.

HSIP COMPANIES:  We are still accepting requests for interns from entertainment, arts and media companies (or productions) who would be willing to host one or more Harvard students as summer intern(s).  Most of our participating companies are in Los Angeles and New York, but we are open to opportunities in other locations as well.  To submit a request for interns, please email us at [email protected], and we will contact you with further information on the program and the matching process.

HSIP APPLICANTS:  If you are interested in applying to HSIP internships, please email us at [email protected] with “HSIP" in the subject line.  Include your name and class year.

Member Profile: CAROLINE LIBRESCO HDS ‘91

The state of old age is generally regarded as one of dementia, inactivity and incontinence.  And for the most part, people turn away from stories chronicling senescence.  In our society, growing old is certainly equated with an acquisition of knowledge and experience, but the state of actually ‘being old’ tends to be perceived as neither pleasant nor familiar.  This is where the makers of Sunset Story vehemently differ.  In a recent conversation, Caroline Libresco (one of the producers and a Harvard grad) stated that as a filmmaker she was drawn into the story of this elderly pair, their transformation, and their exemplary evolution.

There is a universal value to the film, in that we will all hopefully grow old – but how one does is really a matter of choice. The film implies that the stagnation associated with old age should not be inevitable.  In our conversation, I asked Caroline if her religious education (MA in history of religion from the Divinity School) somehow influenced her decision to join the project.  To me, the question made perfect sense—religion and geriatrics are completely congruent topics, in that religion deals with a post-death existence, while geriatrics focus on a pre-death existence.  Not so.  Caroline instead surprisingly responded by suggesting that Sunset Story is a reflection of the present, of intimate and common relationships, of an “engagement of life.”   The story was less about death and more about living.   To her, the point of the movie is not only to showcase a unique and memorable pair, but for the viewer to recognize the familiarity of this camaraderie.

Particularly striking to Caroline was the relationship she personally developed with the protagonists, becoming good friends as she would have with any of her contemporaries. Caroline noted that she generally gravitates towards passion projects – the making of Sunset Story took over 6 years, and she joined the crew a year into the piece.  Sunset Story has been incredibly well received throughout its exposure.  It will be air on PBS across the country, March 22 (except for in Los Angeles, where it will air April 3rd).  The film can also be seen at San Francisco's Balboa Theatre from March 19-20th.   The film won the Audience Award at the Los Angeles Film Festival and was a Special Jury Prize Winner at both the Tribeca and Miami International Film Festivals.  Please visit www.sunsetstory.com for more information.

--Reported by Dominique Kalil, ‘00

INDUSTRY SUCCESSES….

THE JACKET, written by Massy Tadjedin ’99, is currently playing in theaters around the country.  THE JACKET stars Adrien Brody and Keira Knightley and premiered at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival.

Producer Yule Caise '86-'87, is proud to announce the completion of the independent feature film TWEEK CITY.  The film chronicles a week in the life of a crystal meth addict as he struggles with his racial and sexual identity.  The film was shot on location in San Francisco and Los

Angeles and mixed at George Lucas' Skywalker Sound in Marin County.  Please visit his website at www.tweekcity.com for more info and updates.

Theodore Kim’s '85 company CHROMINANCE recently signed a contract with MTV to re-master an entire television series in hi-definition.  This is the first time MTV has done a complete series in high definition, and Theodore’s project will be one of Paramount studio's first Hi-Def DVD releases.  The project will involve using one of CHROMINANCE’S proprietary digital servers, which operates at much faster speeds and at lower cost then using traditional post technologies.  Theodore writes: “Considering that next year (2006) is mandated by the FCC for the switchover to digital television, the content providers who are members of Harvardwood may be interested in re-mastering their content to take advantage of the much higher quality available.”   He is also interested in learning new ways of marketing these services and welcomes advice/assistance/proposals/partners from fellow Harvardwood members.  Please contact Theodore at (323) 225-4029 or [email protected]

Bill Oakley ’88 and Josh Weinstein’s untitled comedy pilot was recently greenlit by Fox.  “Saturday Night Live” creator Lorne Michaels is also executive producing the sitcom, which is set at a police precinct in Times Square.

Chris Terrio's '97 feature film directing debut premiered at Sundance in January 2005.  The film is called HEIGHTS and stars Glenn Close, James Marsden, Elizabeth Banks, and Jesse Bradford.

Alum feature film RED DOORS will be premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival in April 2005 as part of the NY, NY competition.  RED DOORS was written and directed by Georgia Lee ’98 and produced by Blanc de Chine Entertainment (Georgia, Jane Chen ’96 and Mia Riverton ’99).  For more information, please visit: www.reddoorsthemovie.com.  Blanc de Chine is currently developing Georgia’s follow-up feature, FORBIDDEN CITY, which has been selected for the 2005 Tribeca All-Access program.

Look for Karen Gordon in a hilarious national "Angel Soft" spot during the season finale of "Desperate Housewives," Sunday, May 22, on NBC (look for the HUGE bleach moustache and the lovely uni-brow), directed by Tom Schiller of SNL fame...if you miss the show, catch the spot on the internet at www.AngelSoft.com for the next YEAR (also, I'm currently filming the independent feature, "Perceptions," with Jason Ritter, details to follow)!

Anthony Cistaro, ART '97 guest-starred on the March 2nd episode of ALIAS, where he played "Guinot," a French arms dealer (performance was subtitled in English).

SO YOU GOT THE JOB, HEY….

Terence Carter ’01 was recently named Director of Comedy Development at NBC.  Terence writes: “After several years producing in the feature film world, I am extremely excited to make the transition to television.  NBC is making some dramatic changes to the ways in which their structure defines their content and I am thrilled to be a part of that endeavor.”  You can read more about his new job in a March 13, 2005 Variety article called “Pilot’s New Course”.

AND THE AWARD GOES TO…

Tim Curley's HLS ’02 feature screenplay, Stagolee, won the Josephine award for best screenplay on Feb 25 at the Indie Producer gala at the Writers' Guild in Beverly Hills.  Tim writes: “It was an exciting night during which Indie Producer honored up-and-coming writers, directors and the ever-so-cool Andy Garcia for his continuing contribution to film.”  In March, Stagolee competes for the top prize as a top ten finalist at the Cinequest festival in San Jose where Sir Ben Kingsley will be the guest honoree. Please visit www.indieproducer.net www.cinequest.org  or contact Tim directly at [email protected] for more information.  He currently seeks representation.    

MEMBERS IN THE NEWS…

SUNSET STORY, a documentary feature produced by Caroline Libresco HDS ‘91, was warmly reviewed in the New York Times Feb 25, 2005 in an article titled: High-Spirited Old Leftists Who Refuse to Go Gently.  The feature was the Audience Award Winner at the Los Angeles Film Festival and the Special Jury Prize Winner at the Tribeca and Miami International Film Festivals.  It is currently playing in select cities across the country.  For more details please visit www.sunsetstory.com

PERSONAL HIGHLIGHTS…

Rob Rader ‘89 married Melissa Price on Nov. 14, 2004 in Kauai.  Rob was also recently elected to the Board of Trustees for Santa Monica College.

HARVARD IN HOLLYWOOD THANK YOUS

COSPONSORS

  • Harvard Alumni Association (Charlie Cardillo, Sue Peterson, Molly Constable, Rachel Lamson)
  • HBS Association of Southern California (Alexis Kuta, Shari Gibbons)
  • Harvard-Radcliffe Club of Southern California (Cynthia Torres, Susan Reardon)

ALUM SPEAKERS

  • Lorenzo di Bonaventura
  • Andy Borowitz
  • Amy Brenneman
  • Rob Cohen
  • Susanne Daniels
  • Lucy Fisher
  • Lisa Henson
  • Alan Horn
  • Martin Kaplan
  • Robert Kraft
  • Michael Lynton
  • Chris Moore
  • Jonathan Mostow
  • Glenn Padnick
  • Nell Scovell
  • Jeff Sagansky
  • Elisabeth Shue
  • Jack Valenti
  • Ken Williams
  • Strauss Zelnick
  • Ed Zwick

CONTRIBUTORS

  • Mary Burton Flowers (Mary Burton) – (310) 451-2684
  • Valerie Confections (Stan Weightman) – www.valerieconfections.com
  • Paramount Pictures (Libby Shani)
  • Outrageous Fortune Cookies (Zoe Argento) – www.outrageousfortunecookies.com
  • Sara Melson Yoga – [email protected]
  • Harvard Krokodiloes (Mark Lee) – www.kroks.com
  • BEST Promotions (Paul Suchecki) – (818) 788-1178
  • Girls & Sports Comics (Andy Feinstein) – www.girlsandsports.com
  • Stayclip (Josh Gutstein) – www.stayclip.com
  • Cara Jones – www.carajones.com
  • Ethan Gold – www.ethangold.com
  • Baratunde Thurston – www.baratunde.com
  • THE DEAD ZONE (Adam Fratto)
  • SOAPnet (Gene Pao)
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