Issue 133 | February 2016

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In This Issue:

  • Director's Notes
  • Message from Allison

NEWS

  • Featured Member Posting: Assistant/P.A. to Executive Producers (Tolerable Entertainment) - LA
  • Recruit Harvard students to intern at your arts, media, or entertainment company in Summer 2016
  • Help us recognize Harvard-affiliated OSCARS nominees & watch the Academy Awards with Harvardwood - Feb. 28
  • Interview top industry execs & creatives: Become a HIGHLIGHTS alum profile writer
  • Audition to join the Harvardwood Talent Group
  • Harvardwood 101: The 2016 Recap

FEATURES

  • Announcing the winners of the Harvardwood Writers Competition
  • Where Are They Now? Series Q&A with Emmylou Diaz A.R.T. '07 (Writer, Jane the Virgin)
  • Industry Successes
  • New Members' Welcome
  • Alumni Profile: Jack Riccobono '03 (Writer & Director, The Seventh Fire)

CALENDAR & NOTES

  • Calendar
  • NEW: Harvardwood as your non-commercial film project's fiscal sponsor

2016_101_group2.JPGDirector's Notes

Kudos to Program Directors Amit Samuel and Ansley Rubinstein for organizing another amazing Harvardwood 101 program for two dozen Harvard College students last month! Thanks to their hard work, this year's 101ers were able to visit talent agencies and management companies, attend speaker panels with industry VIPs, get exclusive set tours, and learn a LOT about what it means to work in entertainment.

If you're feeling the winter doldrums and can't wait for spring, never fear—Harvardwood will heat up your calendar this month! In Cambridge, we're hosting a FREE advance screening of COOPER BARRETT'S GUIDE TO SURVIVING LIFE followed by a Q&A with the show's star, Jack Cutmore-Scott AB '10; in New York, we're heading to the Metropolitan Museum of Art for a unique guided tour, Shady Ladies of the Met; and last but not least, LA actors should jump at the chance for this one-of-a-kind Harvardwood Masterclass: Acting with Andy Cadiff!  

— Dona

Message from Allison

2016 is getting off to a fantastic start—we've got a lot to celebrate this month! First off, congratulations to this year's Harvardwood Writers Competition winners: Meredith Bagby (Feature), Todd Bartels (TV), and Alex Lee (Short)!

Next up, new programs! Based on our Fall 2015 member survey, we're proud to announce some new initiatives, including monthly masterclasses, actor-focused events (hint hint, check out our Acting Masterclass with Andy Cadiff this month), and a program for Harvardwood producers. Make sure you're a dues-current Harvardwood member to be eligible for these programs.

Lastly, it's time to start sending us your internship opportunities again! If your company would like to recruit Harvard students for an arts, media, or entertainment internship this summer, send us the internship details by March 15th, and we'll include it for free in the 2016 Harvardwood Summer Internship Program.

Looking forward to seeing you at a upcoming event soon!

— Allison

Featured Member Posting: Assistant/P.A. to Executive Producers (Tolerable Entertainment) - LA

Tolerable Entertainment was founded by three writers at The Simpsons to produce original digital animated content. We're looking for an assistant for approximately eight months of full-time work, and possibly beyond. We have several projects underway and need a person at this position to help with script formatting, note taking, social media, organizing and scheduling meetings and conference calls, very occasional errand runs, and more. Ideally you have experience with Final Draft, great computer and social media skills, and are extremely organized. Salary is $750/week.

APPLY HERE

Recruit Harvard students to intern at your arts, media, or entertainment company in Summer 2016

Harvardwood is pleased to announce the 2016 Harvardwood Summer Internship Program (HSIP), and is now seeking internship opportunities worldwide! HSIP provides a list of internship opportunities in the arts, media and entertainment to Harvard undergraduates and also coordinates career-related events over the summer for program participants in LA, NYC and other cities.

If your company is interested in listing an internship FOR FREE via HSIP, please fill out our brief participant form by Tuesday, March 15th. While your company can list your internship at any time, we recommend submitting by Sunday, March 15th in order to be included in the first round of HSIP offerings and reach the largest number of potential candidates.

SUBMIT INTERNSHIP

oscars.jpgHelp us recognize Harvard-affiliated OSCARS nominees & watch the Academy Awards with Harvardwood - Feb. 28

With the 88th annual ACADEMY AWARDS coming up on February 28th, we want to make sure that Harvardwood recognizes all Harvard-affiliated nominees! If you or someone you know from the Harvard community is up for an Oscar this year, please let us know by sending a quick email to [email protected] Thank you, and congratulations to all of the well-deserved nominees!

And join Harvardwood in Los Angeles for an Oscars watch party at Bugatta! This is a FREE event, but please register so we know how many folks to expect.

Interview top industry execs & creatives: Become a HIGHLIGHTS alum profile writer

Harvardwood seeks writers to handle monthly profile pieces on Harvard alumni in the entertainment industry.

Responsibilities include researching, interviewing the subject(s) via telephone or in person, and writing a 800-1200 word profile piece. Writers should be familiar with both the Harvard community and the entertainment industry, and may suggest profile subjects of interest. Some reporting and/or interview skills are required, as well as poise and a discreet manner. 

This is a great opportunity for someone trying to build their portfolio of clips and/or are interested in the entertainment industry. Profile writers receive three (3) free months of Full Membership to Harvardwood, with a maximum of one (1) full free year per calendar year. Writers can work from any city, and both current students as well as alumni are welcome.

If interested, please first review a few sample profiles to get a feel for how they are written.

Then email [email protected] with the subject line HIGHLIGHTS WRITER. Please write a brief cover letter explaining your interest and any relevant writing or interviewing experience in the body of the email. An attached writing sample (preferably under 1000 words) is preferred although not required.

Audition to join the Harvardwood Talent Group

Harvardwood Talent Group (HTG*) is a program that provides professional resources, information, and opportunities for Harvard actors. In addition, HTG submits Harvardwood actors for feature films, TV, and Theater. The goal is to help participating actors establish a strong work history and eventually secure talent agency representation.

To be considered for HTG, please email [email protected] Actors must audition to join HTG, and audition times/materials will be sent out next week.

[PLEASE NOTE: Only Full Members of Harvardwood will be considered for participation.]

*Currently, HTG is only available to Los Angeles-based actors.

Harvardwood 101: The 2016 Recap

2016_101_group1.JPGEvery January, Harvardwood brings two dozen current undergraduates to Los Angeles to learn about working in entertainment via a week-long, jam-packed bootcamp + the option of short-term J-termships at entertainment companies.

We're grateful for all of the Harvard alums and friends who participated in Harvardwood 101, including:   

Patric Verrone & Maiya Verrone Williams, Liz Femi, Mark Horowitz, Steve HarperMark Gill, Beth Bruckner, Eli Shibley, JR Smith, Ben Scott, Taylor Randall, Bob Bookman, Martin Spencer, Adam Kanter, Anne Sawyier, Adam Shulman, Kerry Kohansky-Roberts, Heather NunnFranklin Leonard, Couper Samuelson, Christine Otal-Crow, Peter Dodd, Michael Conway, Larry Wasserman, Matt GrimmSeth Brodie, Lyndsay Harding, Andrew Calof, Neil Jacobson, Erin Cooney, Ryan Roy, Sebastian Begg, Nick Grof, Karen Abrams, Doug MacLaren, Jonathan Perlman, Brian Li, Bryan DipersteinWarren Hsu Leonard, Nelson Greaves, Sam Chalsen, Emmylou DiazRuben Garcia, Laura Lewis, Jamil Shamasdin, and Andy Cadiff.

Check out these testimonials from participating students below...

"Harvardwood 101 provided a condensed but far-reaching sampling of the entertainment industry's different players, processes, and paths. I received advice I didn't know I needed."
     - Jenny M. Ng AB '16

"I definitely gained an perspective of how the entertainment industry functions and what's more, I left the program knowing what career I want to pursue and what initial steps I can take to get there."
     - Tola Omilana AB '16

"Harvardwood 101 is an excellent introduction to the entertainment industry. As a hard science concentrator, I had no experience whatsoever in entertainment. All I knew was that I loved TV and film, and I had a hobby for writing. If you want to figure out whether or not you want a career in the entertainment industry or if you want to make contacts to get your foot in the door or to learn how to enter the industry, this is the career exploration trip for you! Fun, fulfilling, and in L.A., it's the Holy Grail of winter break opportunities!"
     - Jason Gomez AB '16

"Harvardwood101 was the best thing I did my senior year and I only wish i had done it earlier."
     - Dylan MacAurele AB '16

Read more testimonials from our 2016 Harvardwood 101ers!

Announcing the winners of the Harvardwood Writers Competition

After working through over 100 scripts and multiple judging rounds, we're excited to announce the winners of the 2015 Harvardwood Writers Competition! Congratulations to all FINALISTS as well — choosing among the best scripts was difficult in every category. Once again, the quality of your writing speaks for itself. Also, a huge thank you to everybody who helped out as judges in the 2015 HWC. We’re grateful that you lent us your time and expertise.

Each winner will receive a one-on-one mentorship, as well as a cash prize. This year's mentors are:

  • Samuel Baum -  Creator & Executive Producer, Lie to Me (Fox); Writer, upcoming HBO film The Wizard of Lies
  • Adam Fratto - Executive Vice President, Pukeko Pictures / Weta Workshop
  • Couper Samuelson - President of Features for Blumhouse
  • Nell Scovell - Co-Executive Producer, The Muppets; Creator, Sabrina, The Teenage Witch

Without further ado, please join us in congratulating:

FEATURE SCREENPLAY

Winner: Meredith Bagby - Rain to Make a River (Drama)
     A woman, whose husband has dementia, pretends to be his mistress in order to solve her mysterious death.

Runner-Up: Dustin Stevens - Be My Eyes (Drama)
     Two unlikely companions, one seeking a second chance and one their last chance, depart on a journey together that will define them both for the rest of their days.

TELEVISION PILOT

Winner & Most Staffable List TV Writer: Todd Bartels - Heat (One-Hour Drama)
     In the explosive restaurant scene of early 90s New York, at the dawn of the celebrity chef craze, a revolutionary but reckless young chef packs up his knives from the top place in town and attempts to open a restaurant of his own, fueled by a dash of Nirvana, a heaping portion of sex, and a side of coke snorted out of dried penne.

Runner-Up: Alison McKenzie* - Serum (One-Hour Drama)
     Richard Vine is a top FBI agent until a car wreck leaves him brain damaged. Now, his father’s pharmaceutical company has developed a serum that temporarily returns his previous high intelligence, so he can try to unravel the criminal conspiracy he was investigating at the time of the accident.

SHORT

Winner: Alex Lee* - Twin Study (Adaptation)
     As identical twin sisters with remarkably divergent lives attend a series of scientific studies, eerie contradictions in their mannerisms reveal a disturbing truth that would destroy their personal and professional lives if it ever came to light.

*Eligible for diversity consideration

In recent years, participants in the Harvardwood Writers Program and Competition have seen unprecedented success with pilot sales to ABC, the CW, Showtime, Sony, Spike, Syfy, and TV Land, in addition to blind script deals at ABC and Warner Bros. Harvardwood writers have been staffed on Agent Carter (ABC), American Dad (Fox), Community (NBC), Covert Affairs (USA), Family Guy (FOX), The Flash (CW), The Good Wife (CBS), Gotham (Fox), How to Get Away with Murder (ABC), Jane the Virgin (CW), Justified (FX), The Newsroom (HBO), Perception (TNT), Sleepy Hollow (Fox), State of Affairs (NBC), and The Tomorrow People (CW). Among our feature film writers, successes include the theatrical releases of Jamesy Boy and Unfriended, as well as OddLot Entertainment’s optioning ofSeptillion to One; previous HWC feature category winner Capture is in post production with Circle of Confusion producing. Participants have also secured representation at Apostle, Benderspink, Brant Rose Agency, CAA, Circle of Confusion, Echo Lake, Gersh, ICM, Management 360, Original Artists, WME, and others.

Where Are They Now? Series Q&A with Emmylou Diaz A.R.T. '07 (Writer, Jane the Virgin)

In the #HWire blog's "Where Are They Now?" series, we check in with Harvardwood program alums—e.g., from Harvardwood 101, the Writers Program, past Writers Competition winners—to find out what they've been up to and to showcase their accomplishments since participating with Harvardwood!

diaz.jpgAn alum of the Harvardwood Writers Program and past winner of the annual Harvardwood Most Staffable TV Writers list, Emmylou Diaz A.R.T. '07 is currently a writer on The CW's hit show, Jane the Virgin. The show's S2 mid-season premiere aired just last week on January 25th—an episode penned by Emmy! Watch Jane the Virgin on Mondays at 9/8c on The CW.

Q. What made you decide to pursue a career in TV writing?

A. ​In many ways, ending up in TV was a happy accident. I never formally studied screenwriting and didn’t set out to do this at all. In fact, I didn’t know that TV writing was a job you could have. I grew up in the theatre as an actress, and that was what I was most focused on as a kid. I was always doing some kind of show, whether it was a school play, or a community musical, or a one-woman extravaganza in the family room downstairs. (There were a lot of those.) I attended Williams College as an undergrad where I was an English and a Theatre double major. Then I studied acting in New York after graduation and finally ended up at Harvard, at the A.R.T. Institute. My time in Cambridge was inspirational, but after I got my MFA and moved to LA, I was really discouraged at the lack of opportunities for an actress like me, a classically trained performer of color. I also HATED auditioning.Jane-the-Virgin-Season-2.jpg

So I started writing, mainly as a creative outlet as I tried to figure my life out post-graduate school. But as soon as I started writing, things started to fall into place. I quickly found I loved writing every bit as much as I loved acting, more even, and through doing the Harvardwood Writers Program (HWP), I learned my work actually showed some promise. After HWP, things moved really quickly for me. I was named to the Most Staffable List, then was selected for the NHMC diversity program (sponsored by ABC and NBC), and then I landed my first TV job, as assistant to a showrunner who was producing a comedy pilot at the time. That job led to a writers assistant gig, which in turn led to staffing on a show. It certainly wasn’t what I had envisioned when I moved to LA years ago, but looking back it all kind of makes sense. I come from the theatre world, which is really all about the ensemble, the company. I grew up with a “let’s-make-a-show-together” mentality, spending hours on end in a rehearsal room with people who end up becoming a kind of second family. That’s exactly what you’re doing on the staff of a TV show!

Q. As a Harvardwood Writers Program alum and a past Most Staffable TV Writer, did you find it useful to leverage the Harvardwood network, personally or professionally?

A. ​So much about this business is about the relationships you cultivate. When I moved to LA I knew nobody in the business. Harvardwood was a real game-changer for me. Since I never studied screenwriting and didn’t know anything about the industry, I had so much to learn. I didn’t know what a spec was, believe it or not. I didn’t know what a meeting was or how to take one. The first meetings I took in town were as a result of the Most Staffable List. And it was in my Harvardwood group and at the panels that I really got a feel for the industry. I still stay in touch with members of my HWP cohort, many of us are now working writers and we make a point of celebrating each other’s successes and looking out for each other. For me, Harvardwood really provided that human element of personal connection that’s so important for launching and sustaining a career in this town.

Q. You are also an alum of the NHMC TV Writers Program. What do you consider to be the greatest benefits (and drawbacks, if any) of these types of diversity programs?

A. ​Applying to the various diversity programs is something I recommend to all writers starting out, regardless of your background or experience. These programs are fiercely competitive, but if nothing else, it provides a deadline, and by the end of the process you have a new piece of writing to show for it. For those lucky enough to participate in the programs, it’s really about using that as a launching pad to get to the next level, and that’s something you have to do for yourself. No one program is going to do that for you. The diversity programs are just one way into the business, certainly not the only way. The perception of the “diversity hire” on staff can be problematic at times. It’s an imperfect system. But I believe anything that helps a writer break in is a good thing. But again, no one program is the golden ticket. And neither is getting repped or staffed for that matter. The onus is really on us to continue writing regardless, to continue building relationships and putting ourselves out there to get to the next level.

READ THE COMPLETE Q&A WITH EMMYLOU DIAZ

Industry Successes

Zak Tanjeloff AB '08 is pleased to announce the acquisition of THE BIRTH OF A NATION for a record-shattering $17.5 million at the Sundance Film Festival. Tanjeloff served as a co-producer on the film. His production company, which he co-founded with director/actor Nate Parker, Tiny Giant Productions, also produced and financed. Tanjeloff was an intern through the Harvardwood Internship Program in the summer of 2007.

Mandel Ilagan’s (AB '99) latest project with Nickelodeon, PARADISE RUN, premieres February 1st at 7pm. This exciting daily reality competition series features three teams of kids racing across the grounds of an exotic Hawaiian resort, competing against each other in a series of heart-pounding challenges. Episodes air weeknights throughout the month. Mandel oversaw the development and production of the show in his role as Nickelodeon’s unscripted programming exec.

Joanne Groshardt has published a new Kindle novel, Holly Blossums. It’s a bargain at only $.99, and half of all profits buy new shoes from Target at 75% off for Dallas school kids. If you buy and like the book, Joanne appreciate it if you left a positive comment and tell your friends!yu_MasterofNone.jpg

Congratulations to Alan Yang '02, Co-Creator and Executive Producer of MASTER OF NONE, which won the 2016 Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Comedy Series! 

New Members' Welcome

Harvardwood warmly welcomes all members who joined the organization over the past month, including:

  • Katrina Adell, NY, FOH
  • Saad Amer, Boston/On-Campus, College
  • Paula Bonnell, Boston/On-Campus, HLS
  • Henry Brooks, LA, College
  • Jessica Brownell, LA, FOH
  • Anthony Cahillane, Boston/On-Campus, E.X.T.
  • Patrick Cheung, LA, FOH
  • Christina Collette, NY, FOH
  • Enrico D'Angelo, LA, HBS
  • Mark David, NY, College
  • David Dorfman, LA, HLS
  • Rachel Douglas, LA, College
  • Caitlin Graham, Boston/On-Campus, Staff
  • Jia Min Nancy Hou, NY, GSD
  • Joseph Hurd, Boston/On-Campus, HMS
  • Annette Kazmerski, LA, College
  • Marikit Lawson, NY, E.X.T.
  • James Levins, Boston/On-Campus, FOH
  • KhoonMin Lim, NY, HBS
  • Moira McCavana, Boston/On-Campus, College
  • Benjamin Newmark, NY, College
  • Kate Nihill, Boston/On-Campus, HBS
  • Tommy O'Regan, Boston/On-Campus, College
  • Philip A Olapade, Boston/On-Campus, College
  • Lance Oppenheim, LA, College
  • Atesa Pacelli, NY, HBS
  • David Palmer, SF/Bay Area, College
  • Alison Reed, NY, College
  • Meredith Slifkin, Boston/On-Campus, College
  • Brooke Tjarks, Boston/On-Campus, E.X.T.
  • Sindhu Vegesena, Boston/On-Campus, College
  • Heather White, NY, College

FOH = Friend of Harvardwood

Alumni Profile: Jack Riccobono '03 (Writer & Director, The Seventh Fire

by Sara Lynn Wright

Riccobono.jpg

Filmmaker Jack Riccobono’s first piece of advice to anyone who wants to make independent film is to find collaborators you can trust. His longstanding industry relationships, many of which go back more than thirteen years to his time at Harvard, show he’s followed his own advice.

THE SEVENTH FIRE, a feature documentary he directed/shot/produced that is slated for a May 2016 theatrical release, follows Native American gang members embroiled in the drug trade on the White Earth Indian Reservation in Minnesota. While this nuanced portrait of a rarely seen part of America feels very far from the hallowed halls of the Ivy League, the film’s list of credits has Harvard all over it.

At the top of that list are executive producers and Harvard alums Terrence Malick AB ‘65 and Natalie Portman AB ‘03. The composer of the film, Nicholas Britell AB ’03, who also recently composed THE BIG SHORT, has been collaborating with Jack since their junior year at Harvard. Two of the three editors, Michael J. Palmer AB ‘03 and Adelaide Papazoglou AB ‘02, were also college classmates, as was co-cinematographer and producer Shane Slattery-Quintanilla AB ‘03.  

Over the course of three years, Jack and his team chronicled the intersecting journeys of two men on the White Earth Indian Reservation: Rob Brown, a charismatic Native gang leader, and Kevin Fineday, Rob’s seventeen-year-old protégé, who finds himself facing a pivotal choice.  

7thfire1.jpgThe film had its World Premiere on February 7, 2015 at the Berlin International Film Festival and has been on the festival circuit ever since, most recently in competition at the 2016 Palm Springs International Film Festival. It will show this month at the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival in Missoula, Montana, with additional engagements added regularly on the film’s website. (For screening info, visit this page.) The Hollywood Reporter hailed THE SEVENTH FIRE as a “fascinating and important documentary,” and The Film Stage described it as “spare-but-effective filmmaking and brave.”  

“The question I get asked most is, 'How on earth did you find your way to this subject?'” Jack told Harvardwood. Which leads to his second piece of advice, “Embrace the unexpected as part of the creative journey.” And in fact the journey of THE SEVENTH FIRE and his inclination toward the unexpected can be traced back to just after he graduated from Harvard, when Jack was awarded the prestigious Gardner Fellowship to pursue film projects while living in Sarajevo for a year. He also had the chance to participate in Berlinale Talents - a mentoring program for young filmmakers at the Berlin International Film Festival. As part of the program, he was asked what he loves about filmmaking and wrote in 2004: “Film keeps me looking beyond what’s familiar.”

Over his career, he has shot a music video on the streets of Moscow, a narrative short in a Liberian refugee camp, and a commercial in the tea fields of southern China. “Each project is a leap into the unknown, even if you’re shooting in your own backyard, and part of that uncertainty is what can allow something really special to happen.” 

Jack’s narrative short KILLER, which was shot entirely on location in New York City, where Jack grew up, and was based on an unusual rite of passage from his teenage years. “We mixed professional and nonprofessional actors, and used a vérité doc-style of shooting to try to create a really authentic atmosphere,” Jack explains.  The film premiered at the Museum of Modern Art in 2009 at the New Directors New Films series.  

His path to making THE SEVENTH FIRE truly began in 2006, when he was invited to make a five-minute documentary short for the Slow Food Organization, which seeks to protect biodiversity and indigenous food cultures around the world. Jack began researching Slow Food communities in the U.S. and was immediately drawn to the story behind wild rice, which plays a central role in the oral history of the Ojibwe tribe in Minnesota.

The_Seventh_Fire_Still2.jpg“Wild rice is a part of the Seven Fires Prophecy that brought the Ojibwe from the Northeast to the upper Midwest. Before the coming of white settlers, the Prophecy told them to journey west and look for the place where food grows on the water or they would be wiped out as a people. So in this food was the story of their history, their survival, and their contemporary struggle to protect wild rice from genetic modification.” Jack set out to tell that story in his 2007 short documentary THE SACRED FOOD, which premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival and went on to screen at more than 25 festivals around the world.

Fast-forward to August 2010 when Jack’s producing partner read an article about how criminal gang culture is migrating from inner cities and prisons out to remote Native American reservations across the county. Jack decided to return to the White Earth Indian Reservation and see if this phenomenon was affecting the same community where he filmed THE SACRED FOOD three years earlier. He visited a tribal college class and one of the students in the class that day was Rob Brown, who would become the main subject of THE SEVENTH FIRE.   

“From our very first meeting, I was blown away by Rob’s dynamism and presence,” Jack says. A self-taught writer and poet, Rob’s charisma was undeniable. “He had the unique ability to reflect on his situation - going through the foster care system, juvenile detention, and a decade in and out of prison - while still being trapped in the gang life.”  Jack asked Rob if he would be the subject of a documentary and allow him to return with a film crew. “Thankfully, Rob was ready to share his story and decided to trust me with it; so he said yes,” Jack explains. “We did fourteen shoots over the next two and a half years. The production was really challenging because these guys had burner phones and were engaged in criminal activity.” About a year into filming, Rob was sent back to prison for three years. “This could have been the end.”

But Jack and his crew felt this development was a crucial part of Rob’s life story and wanted to do whatever was necessary to gain access and keep filming. “We spent a year developing a relationship with the Minnesota Department of Corrections and became the first independent film crew allowed to shoot inside their prisons. We were fortunate to do three shoots with Rob while he was in lockup; Rob kept a journal and wrote some amazing poems, one of which we feature in the film. So you are able to get a glimpse of what his life is like on the inside.”

The film had early support from Sundial Pictures (JIRO DREAMS OF SUSHI, PARIAH), their first partner on the project, and from Chris Eyre (SMOKE SIGNALS), who is “the most accomplished Native filmmaker out there.” About halfway through production, Jack showed a cut to Natalie Portman, who had been his classmate at Harvard. “Like a lot of Americans, she didn’t know a lot about contemporary life on Indian reservations. She saw the potential to raise awareness and was drawn in by the unique approach we had to try to make it cinematic.”

Portman’s involvement led to Malick’s. “Natalie had collaborated with Mr. Malick on two films and knew he was very passionate about Native American issues. She thought he might respond to the filmmaking style. I was really interested in trying to bring a narrative film approach to a documentary. I didn’t want it to be talking heads but rather character-driven and immersive. Once we showed him the full rough cut, he agreed to come on as an executive producer. We were also lucky to meet him in person when the film premiered in Berlin.” (Mr. Malick does not do any press, public interviews or appearances.)

“It’s such an important and overlooked story,” Jack says. “I feel fortunate that I had the opportunity to meet Rob and to collaborate with so many great people while making this film.”

Today, Jack’s body of work spans narrative films, commercials, music videos, and art installations in addition to documentaries.  Jack is currently producing another documentary that shoots in Israel and the West Bank in March. He is also developing a narrative feature script and a scripted series. A video art piece he directed, commissioned by the neoluxury fashion house FEIT, with music also composed by Nicholas Britell, will premiere at the New Museum in New York on February 3 during Men’s Fashion Week.

Look for THE SEVENTH FIRE, distributed by Film Movement (run by Michael Rosenberg AB ‘85), in theatres May 2016.

Sara Lynne Wright writes, acts and produces in Los Angeles and Seattle.

Calendar

FEATURED EVENT | FREE advance screening of COOPER BARRETT’S GUIDE TO SURVIVING LIFE + Q&A with Jack Cutmore-Scott AB '10 & Main Cast - Tuesday, Feb. 2nd

CooperStreetGroup3sm.jpgWouldn’t it be great to have a friend who has made all the mistakes in life there are to make, and then tells you exactly where he went wrong, so you don't have to? COOPER BARRETT’S GUIDE TO SURVIVING LIFE is a new action comedy that explores what we all go through on our way to figuring out what life is all about.

Harvardwood invites you to a FREE advance screening of two new episodes of COOPER BARRETT’S GUIDE TO SURVIVING LIFE on Tuesday, February 2 at 7pm at the Brattle Theatre. Immediately following, join us for a special Q&A with the show's star,
Jack Cutmore-Scott AB '10, plus main cast members Meaghan Rath (Kelly Bishop), James Earl (Barry Sandel), and Charlie Saxton (Neal Fissley)!

Seating begins at 6:00pm and is not guaranteed. Seating is first-come, first-served. This screening may be overbooked. Theater is not responsible for overbooking. This screening will be monitored for unauthorized recording.

Los Angeles

C.L.A. invites Harvardwood to The Art of Storytelling for Mediators and Lawyers - Wednesday, Feb. 10th

CLA.jpgStorytelling—what it is, why it matters, how to do it—is not a metaphor for legal advocacy. It is legal advocacy itself, and it is not limited to jury trials or court appearances: It relates to every aspect of a lawyer’s work. The practice of law is the business of persuasion, and storytelling is the most effective means of persuading. But just recognizing the centrality of storytelling to the legal profession is not enough. Lawyers should also study the basic structure and elements that apply to stories, how they work and why, as well as the principles that have guided great storytellers for thousands of years. This presentation shows how to convey legal information in a cogent, persuasive way to the client who needs the help, to opposing counsel, and to the decision-maker who has the final say.

Harvardwood Heads To... The Ivy Plus Society's Affair of the Heart - Thursday, Feb. 11th

Have an affair with LA's finest and brightest at 41 Ocean Club, an intimate environment with "an ambience that is elegant but relaxed" (L.A. Biz). This luxurious club is known for their delicious cocktails, posh decor, and stunning crowd. Ditch the blind dates and secret admirers and put on your finest cocktail attire to mix and mingle with LA's hottest singles. Who knows... maybe Cupid's arrow will strike you! Help us spread the love! TIPS will be donating a portion of all proceeds to The Children's Heart Fund at Mount Sinai Health System.

C.L.A. invites Harvardwood to Drone Use for Filmmaking - Wednesday, Feb. 17th

Drones have revolutionized television and film production almost overnight by placing a very powerful tool into the hands of filmmakers. From the major motion picture studios to independent artists, this fun and informative Q&A session with an industry-recognized attorney will leave you equipped with a solid understanding of the rules and regulations governing commercial drone operations for film and television.

Harvardwood Masterclass: Acting with Andy Cadiff (HOT IN CLEVELAND, SPIN CITY, YOUNG & HUNGRY) - Thursday, Feb. 18th

cadiff.jpgThe next Harvardwood Masterclass is an actors' workshop with Director-Producer-Actor Andy Cadiff AB '77 (HOME IMPROVEMENT, SPIN CITY, HOT IN CLEVELAND, YOUNG & HUNGRY)!

Participating actors will most likely be paired with a scene partner, depending on the number of interested participants, and asked to prepare in advance a brief comedy piece/scene from a sit-com, comedy movie, or play to workshop with Andy Cadiff. The participation fee for this masterclass if $20/actor.

Andy Cadiff AB '77 has directed over 500 episodes of television. He served as Director and Executive Producer of Home Improvement, which won the People's Choice Award for ‘Favorite Comedy’ four times, and Spin City. He recently concluded as director of two long running TV Land shows: The Exes and the award winning hit comedy, Hot In Cleveland.

His other television credits include but are not limited to: Empty Nest, Nurses, My Two Dads, Quantum Leap, The War At Home, The George Lopez Show, Rules Of Engagement,The King Of Queens, Hermans's Head, The Hughleys, According To Jim, and My Wife & Kids.

Andy’s title as Director has not been solely on TV series, but also on several films and TV movies. He directed the feature film version of the television classic Leave It To Beaver, Chasing Liberty starring Mandy Moore and Jeremy Piven, and the British Film A Bunch Of Amateurs, which was selected for the 2008 Royal Film Performance in London.

Andy is a graduate of Harvard University and is a native of Newton, Massachusetts. Currently, he is the Director and Executive Producer of Young & Hungry for Freeform.

Harvardwood Co-Sponsors: The Changing Landscape of the Entertainment Industry - Wednesday, Feb. 24th

Join the Harvard Law Alumni Association of Los Angeles for a special night to discuss the changing landscape of the entertainment industry. Panelists will talk about how the legal aspects of the entertainment industry have responded to the digital wave in the past years.

Panelists will include:

  • Chris Handman, Yale Law School | General Counsel of Snapchat
  • Kurt Hugo Schneider, Yale College | Musician on Youtube with 6 million followers
  • Eric Galen, JD | Law & Business Development for Influencers, Brands & Tech Companies, Development of Jack & Jack (Vine celebrities)
  • Jonathan Handel, JD, Harvard College, HLS | The Hollywood Reporter journalist and entertainment lawyer
  • Andrew Graham, | Talent Manager at Big Frame and Co-Founder of Heard Well

Harvardwood Heads To... The Ivy Plus Society's February Retreat - Wednesday, Feb. 24th

This February, The Ivy Plus Society is gathering at the most stunning networking retreat in Los Angeles. Join us at the luxurious Viceroy Santa Monica and get your mingle on with LA's finest and brightest alumni and professionals. This decorated nightlife venue has been named the Los Angeles Time's "best kept secret in Santa Monica," Food & Wine's "Best Hotel Restaurants," and a "Haute Restaurant" by Haute Living.

C.L.A. invites Harvardwood to Relax with Tax for Artists & the Self-Employed - Saturday, Feb. 27th

Don't miss this annual seminar on the essentials of income tax for individual artists and artist groups of all disciplines, and the self-employed. Learn how you can efficiently track income and expenses throughout the year and correctly file your taxes. Topics will include record keeping, form 1040, Schedule C, the self-employment schedule, deductions, hobby losses, home offices, and more.

Harvardwood Co-Hosts the 88th Academy Awards Watch Party - Sunday, Feb. 28th

Swing by Bugatta on Sunday, February 28th to watch the awards show and mix/mingle with fellow Harvardwood members, as well as our alumni friends from Northwestern, Dartmouth, New York University, and Columbia. FREE TO ATTEND. Cash bar. Friends welcome.

New York

Harvardwood Heads To... MAN. V. MACHINE: A Film Installation - Thursday, Feb. 4th

Attend this special event featuring the release of the film installation MAN VS MACHINE commissioned by neoluxury brand FEIT.

MAN VS MACHINE - FEIT’s first ever film commission - contrasts the iconic mass production imagery of the 1982 cult classic movie Koyaanisqatsi: Life Out of Balance with the unique artistry that defines FEIT’s commitment to handmade. “We wanted to create the arc of a battle between these two modes of creation, so that you feel the tension between the rote repetition of the industrial process versus the skill, beauty, and attention to detail in FEIT’s handcrafted approach,” says director Jack Riccobono AB '03.

Harvardwood Heads To... Gary Negbaur plays Jazz and Blues every Thursday at Lily's Bar - Thursday, Feb. 4th

Pianist/singer/songwriter Gary Negbaur '89 will be performing on Thursdays in midtown Manhattan. Swing on by for jazz, blues and what have you. EVERY THURSDAY, 5:30pm - 8:30pm. Free.

Harvardwood Is Invited to Steinway Pianist Jiaxin Tian at Carnegie Hall - Wednesday, Feb. 10th

In honor of the upcoming Chinese New Year, world-renowned pianist and Steinway Artist Jiaxin Tian will share the stage with legendary conductor Gregory Singer and his orchestra, the Manhattan Symphonie, for a Chinese New Year Spectacular concert at Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium Perelman Stage! Former mayor David Dinkins will narrate Aaron Copland's Portrait of Lincoln.

Harvardwood members receive a 15% discount off tickets with code: HRW23372.

Additional information and ticket purchase link here.Shady_Salome.jpg

Harvardwood Presents: Shady Ladies of the Met - Sunday, Feb. 21st

Courtesans, royal mistresses, scandalous women of every sort—the Metropolitan Museum is crammed with them, from the ancient Greeks to Sargent's Madame X and beyond. These sexy—and often intelligent, educated, wealthy, even powerful—women were key members of their political and cultural elites, fascinating patrons and artists alike, from Praxiteles to Titian to Manet. But who were they? What were their stories?

To find out, join us as the witty, erudite, and entertaining Andrew Lear guides us through the lives and loves that lie behind the paintings. The Met will never seem quite the same again.

LIMITED TO JUST 18 PEOPLE. Advance registration is REQUIRED—no tickets will be sold at the door!

Boston

Harvardwood Heads To... Paula Bonnell Reads Her Poems - Friday, Feb. 12th

Paula Bonnell, a native of western Pennsylvania, studied literature in Minnesota, New York, and Texas. She moved to Boston, earned a J.D., practiced law, and began publishing poems. Her collections are Before the Alphabet, a story of kindergarten in free verse, Message, including the “Eurydice” sequence, and Airs & Voices, winner of the John Ciardi Prize. In the PEN Syndicated Fiction Project, newspapers in Chapel Hill and Kansas City published her fiction. Bonnell is a PEN New England Discovery writer. Last April, she attended the two most interesting poetry events she found in Poets & Writers’ local listings, one being a Chapter and Verse reading.

More information and event details here: http://www.jamaicapondpoets.com/page6.php. Includes map and info on free parking.

SF/Bay Area

C.L.A. invites Harvardwood to International IP Protection for Your Art and Technology - Wednesday, Feb. 24th

This workshop provides an overview of international intellectual property (IP) law. You will learn how to protect your art and technology internationally. Topic covered include:

        • the basics of patent and copyright law
        • differences between design patents and utility patents; and
        • international IP systems such the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

boardbanner.jpgWe will also discuss Apple v. Samsung as a case study to highlight the economic ramifications of international IP protection.

NEW: Harvardwood as your non-commercial film project's fiscal sponsor

If you're a filmmaker with a non-commercial project and seeking funding from an organization that requires you to be a tax-exempt NPO, Harvardwood can serve as your NPO fiscal sponsor! By acting as your fiscal sponsor, Harvardwood helps make your project eligible for funding from many foundations, corporations, government agencies, and even individuals (because 501(c)(3) status makes their contributions tax-deductible). This option is only available to dues-paying members—find out how to apply for fiscal sponsorship.


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