In this issue:
Message from Rick Bernstein, new Harvardwood Director
- ARTS FIRST film & video submissions due April 1
- Talent Agent Training Program (UTA) - CA/NY/TN
- Exclusive Q&A With Winnie M Li AB’00 (Writer, novelist, activist)
- Industry Successes
- Suggested Reading
- New Members' Welcome
- Alumni Profile: Donna Brown Guillaume AB '73 (Producer, journalist)
CALENDAR & NOTES
- Become a Harvardwood member as we further engage in socially active programming, discourse, and action to help change the entertainment industry
- Want to submit your success(es) to Harvardwood HIGHLIGHTS? Do so by posting here!
Message from Harvardwood
Dear Harvardwood Community,
As some of you know, we’ve had some big changes happening with Harvardwood’s team.
First, after three wonderful years of service, Andrea Schmitt has left to take a new full-time position at the Jewish World Watch. Her last day was earlier in March, although she has promised to stop by for holiday parties and special events.
Second, Justin White is transitioning into a new role with Harvardwood focusing on Harvardwood’s career opportunities listings, sponsorship and development.
Third, I'm very excited to introduce myself as Harvardwood’s new Director. I come to Harvardwood from Impro Theatre, where I've been working as their Managing Director since 2013. For more than 15 years, my work in non-profit theatre has encompassed all aspects of arts management including marketing, fundraising and administration at many arts organizations throughout L.A. Prior to theatre, I worked for about 10 years in film and television, interning at a handful of places like Miramax and NBC, which led to staff positions at The Tonight Show and managing the office of film producer Lawrence Gordon at Universal Studios. I'm not a Harvard grad -- I actually graduated from Stanford -- but I'm hoping that people won't hold that against me.
My email is [email protected] I'm continuing to shadow Justin, who's been a terrific source of information, as I work to become more familiar with the intricacies of Harvardwood so I can better serve the entire community.
I'm glad to be here and excited to work with you!
Please consider donating to Harvardwood. Thank you very much!
As always, we want to hear from you - if you have an event or programming idea you'd like implemented, please tell us about it here. If you have an announcement about your work or that of others, please detail it here (members) and it will appear in our Weekly, and/or next HIGHLIGHTS issue.
ARTS FIRST Film & Video Submissions Due April 1
Calling all filmmakers and digital multimedia artists! The ARTS FIRST Festival is offering a new opportunity to showcase your work during Harvard’s annual celebration of creativity. Submit original short films, music videos, digital multimedia works or performance videos to be showcased live on campus and online during the ARTS FIRST Festival, April 28-May 1. All works must be original and created recently. Videos should be between 2 and 7 minutes in length. Preferred video file format: .mov (we will also accept .mp4 files if it’s not possible to provide a .mov file). Submission deadline: April 1, 2022.
Talent Agent Training Program (UTA) - CA/NY/TN
Job Description: Trainees begin coursework through the UTA University, the in-house education program that all Trainees have the opportunity to attend before advancing. These curated classes will equip colleagues with the necessary skills needed to thrive in an agency and build a foundation that can lead to a successful career in the business. Then based on business needs and a Trainee’s career interests, participants will apply to work for Agents and Executives of all levels, across all departments, with the goal to obtain an apprentice style learning opportunity, as an Assistant. It’s preferred that Agent Training Program applicants have a four-year degree from an accredited college or University or relevant entry level qualifications to be considered. UTA hires qualified applicants for its Agent Training Program on an ongoing basis, based on business needs. The Agent Training Program is full-time with benefits, offering opportunities at our Los Angeles, New York City and Nashville locations.
Exclusive Q&A With Winnie M Li AB’00 (Writer, novelist, activist)
Winnie M Li AB’00 is an author and activist based in London. Last year, her second novel, Complicit, sold in a hotly-contested five-way auction to Simon & Schuster in a major two-book deal — and it will be out on August 19, following its UK publication in June. Inspired partly by the #MeToo movement and partly by her time working in the film industry, Complicit follows on from the success of Winnie’s award-winning debut novel Dark Chapter (which was a fictional re-telling of her own real-life stranger rape). In this interview, Winnie discusses her two novels, her activism, and her career as a creative. (You can pre-order Complicit here.
Q. A lot has happened since your first novel, Dark Chapter, was released. Can you share a little bit about the impact the book has made?
A. It's funny, because I often don't have that moment where I sit back and look at everything, because you’re always just trying to move on to the next project or keep working until you get the next book written. For me personally, I've wanted to be a writer my entire life from the age of six. So being able to finally get that first novel out there, and have it reach that many people was amazing. It takes a lot of work to write a novel - not just the process of writing it but also querying and trying to acquire an agent and a publisher. And maybe, for me, it took something which was that personal, that deeply rooted in my own experience, which also tied to my own activism and my own beliefs, to fire me up and get me through that whole process.
I wrote Dark Chapter, unwittingly, as a suspense novel. I suppose I used suspense and crime fiction as a template to capture that experience moving back and forth between the victim and the perpetrator’s perspective. It was published as crime fiction and nominated for the Edgar Award. Eventually, it was translated into ten languages and right now I’m adapting it into a screenplay.
The whole project was even more emotionally loaded for me because my own personal experience was at stake, on top of the usual anxiety any writer has about getting a publishing deal. I obviously wrote the book to address the issue of sexual violence, which I feel like has often been misunderstood, or misrepresented. What probably means the most to me is I've had other survivors share with me they felt I was capturing elements of their own experience, too. Hopefully, somebody who hasn’t been through that experience can kind of vicariously understand the impact that trauma has on the victim’s life, through reading the book.
Q. Has your reaction to survivor stories changed as you get further away from the incident?
A. Certainly, and a lot of it's about the professionalization of working around this issue. In the beginning I was quite open with my friends about what happened. But the first time I spoke with journalists about my experience, I was incredibly nervous. Now I’m quite used to speaking to the media and I give public talks. So that kind of emotional power and anxiety and trauma about sharing your issue publicly is no longer there for me. Every time I hear another woman or man share their story, it’s incredibly powerful. I recognize that it took something for that person to share it. Every once in a while, I will hear a story that just knocks me sideways. It can get quite heavy and at the end of the day, I'm not actually a trained counselor. I think many other survivors who are activists also find they get a whole lot of disclosures and stories coming to them, and it can get emotionally exhausting. And yet at the same time, that is why we're telling our stories to begin with: to have that kind of open dialogue.
Q. Your new book, Complicit, touches on the #MeToo movement’s impact on the entertainment industry. What made you want to explore that for your second novel?
A. Initially I was reluctant. Dark Chapter came out in 2017 and then the Weinstein allegations happened that October. My hardcover had just come out in the U.S. and I was in the thick of promoting it, when all this stuff about Weinstein started happening. Every time there was a new allegation in the Hollywood Reporter, I would be clicking on the headline. There was a buzz in the air, it sounds horrible, but there was so much stuff happening, and so many headlines coming one after another.
Around that time, I met up with my then literary agents, who told me a lot of editors were asking about my next book. I had an idea for a historical novel I wanted to work on. They said ‘well you know, historical is good, but at this point you're quite well known for writing about contemporary feminist issues, would you be interested in writing about what’s happening in the moment, since you're quite well placed as a survivor and also as somebody who's worked in film?‘ And my reaction at first was “Oh, man, I don't know.” But finally, I said yes, but I can only do this if I can think of a way to structure the book that is interesting for me, where it's not just about sexual violence, but also about the broader film industry and the broader power structures that govern our workplaces.
There’s #MeToo in the story, but it’s mainly about a young woman who wants to make it in the film industry. She doesn't want to appear on screen, she wants to work behind the scenes. I felt you don't often see that in fictional narratives about the business. It starts with her being contacted by the New York Times to ask her some questions about her former boss, a famous male producer who she worked for 10 years earlier. This causes her to reflect on what happened 10 years ago, and how she got started in film. I wanted to explore that a bit, but also write it by creating suspense in terms of a larger news story that is also breaking in the present day.
I wasn't really intending to write a crime novel again, only to use suspense to draw the story out, but now I find that the book is being marketed as crime fiction. I never actually saw myself as writing in that genre. But now both of my books have been published like that. It’s fine, it's a huge genre. It's a lucrative one. But it also was something I never really expected.
Q. Since the beginning of the movement, so many high-profile individuals throughout the entertainment and media industries have been affected by these stories, in many cases losing their jobs. What will it take to finally eliminate these types of power dynamics from the workplace?
A. In the ideal world, equal distribution of wealth across gender. As an artist I don't want to say it comes down to money. But if you look at the film industry, it's about money! Complicit explores that. I remember what it was like to be a producer thinking ‘Oh, I just need to find another half a million to make this film happen’ and where is that money coming from? Men are traditionally the ones who make the decisions - the ultimate casting decisions, who decides to greenlight projects, and they are the ones who have the money to begin with to be able to finance projects. That creates a whole power structure in terms of what projects are allowed to happen and who could be leading those projects. As you go further and further up the corporate ladder, you still get more men in power positions. I wanted to explore different hidden ways in which opportunities are given to men that aren't given to women.
Q. Do you feel that America and Britain have addressed this issue differently?
A. In the UK, you don't have the studio system here in the same way as in America, and you don't have as much money in the British system. In the UK, people in the arts tend to already have family money and can afford to go into the arts, because the arts don't pay very well at all. That was one reason why I found it so hard to even get a job in the first place in the UK, because it was generally comprised of people whose families or friends were already in the industry. It’s very hard to get your foot in the door - even harder than in the U.S. because there's just less money and available jobs. Consequently, after #MeToo, you didn't have that same kind of house cleaning, because it wasn't occurring in bigger, more structured companies that had policies put in place about these issues.
One of the reasons I wrote Complicit was I remember speaking to somebody who said ‘I don't understand with regards to Weinstein, why wouldn't these women just go to HR?’ I think most people don’t understand the fly-by-night nature of things in this business and how resources can be so completely stretched that nobody has time to deal with an HR issue, or it’s just you and your boss and one other person in the company. Weinstein was ultimately convicted because the state of New York charged him. I don't think there's been any similar action toward an accused figure in the UK. The whole conversation about sexual assault is much more hidden than it is in the U.S.
Q. How did the Clear Lines Festival come about?
A. I started writing Dark Chapter in 2013. I’d worked for a film production company for six years prior to my rape in 2008, but afterwards, I went through this whole period of not being able to find work again. I couldn't get another job in the film industry. I started to become more of an activist around the issue, mainly just starting by writing. I wrote a short play about being a rape victim and trying to reintegrate yourself into society. It played at a small theatre fringe festival in London. That's when I started to realize that there was quite good theater work being done around this issue, mainly written by survivors. I thought somebody could put together an arts festival that created a platform for all this art to be seen. I wanted to create a space that brought together people who care about the issue, people who had personal experiences but wanted to engage with art that addressed it from a lived experience perspective, and from a creative perspective. It’s ultimately about creating a community, through the arts, to have more open conversations about these experiences.
If I wasn't trying to have a writing career, I could do more with Clear Lines. I had to reflect on what my priorities are. At the end of the day, I'm a creative. I want to be writing. If I could find other people that want to work with me on continuing to run it, that would be great.
You could spend your entire life being an activist around this issue because there's so many different aspects of it. For me, the activism I do is the writing work. I'd be happy if Complicit helps lend itself to people reevaluating the way companies are structured and what practices are in place for safeguarding young people starting out, both in the entertainment industry and outside. It’s very easy for people to say Miramax during Weinstein’s reign was an outlier. Yet every industry is structured around differences in power in some ways. That’s the conversation that needs to occur.
Q. What advice would you give to Harvard students looking to become novelists?
A. When I was at Harvard, I loved writing, but I got it into my head that being a writer is not a lucrative job, which is true. I mean, there are ways to make it lucrative. I think I'm finally at the point where I feel like I am earning a decent salary as a writer. But for many years, I wasn't. So you have to love the art itself. The act of writing needs to be a positive and beneficial experience for all those years that you're not actually earning anything decent. If you love what you're doing, that is 100 times better than doing a soulless job that you hate. That’s something that we all face in our modern 21st century lives. It takes a fair amount of perseverance in some ways. It’s about being a good writer, but any writer can always be improving. So even though I’ve written two novels, there’s still always ways to improve my writing. I always want to get engaged in forms of storytelling that will improve my craft as a writer.
Even more importantly, make sure that the thing that you’re writing about, especially if it’s a novel, is something that completely fires you up. Because it’s a long, hard road, writing a novel, and then also finding the book deal and promoting it. Your subject needs to be something that you’re definitely passionate about. Because if you’re not passionate about it, you’re going to get bored, and you’re probably going to hate the project. Several years of your life are going to be devoted to this project. So it’s about finding your passion, both in the craft of writing, but then also in the subject matter. Finally, it’s also just being persistent, because most novelists I know have written a novel that never got published. Most people have their first novel sitting in a drawer somewhere. I know exactly where mine is! I never want it to see the light of day, because it’s kind of embarrassing. But I did take elements of it and applied them to Complicit. Nothing’s completely lost in that first go, it’s about constantly learning, enjoying the craft, and remembering how important it is to still enjoy the craft. But most importantly, finding something you're passionate about.
Photo credit of Winnie M Li: Grace Gelder.
Paramount+ is rounding out its cast for the upcoming Grease prequel series Rise of the Pink Ladies, adding Charlotte Kavanagh, Josette Halpert, Nicholas McDonough, Maximo Weber Salas and Alexis Sides. Marty Bowen (AB '91) is an EP for the series! (Deadline)
The trailer for WeCrashed — the limited series on WeWork from AppleTV+ — is out! Marshall Lewy (AB '99) serves as an executive producer for Wondery! (IndieWire)
Courtney B. Vance (AB ‘82), Salli Richardson-Whitfield, Pearlena Igbokwe and Debra Martin Chase (JD '81) discuss the state of the industry for Black creators. (Variety)
The CW is developing another Arrowverse show in its thriving list of DC Comics adaptation series, and the series is called Justice U. The two writers already working on the project are Michael Narducci (AB '97) and Zoanne Clack! (Pop Culture)
Best-selling author Ben Mezrich (AB '91) goes behind the scenes of his new book, The Midnight Ride! (Boston Globe)
Universal has set April 14, 2023, for the release of Renfield, its monster movie starring Nicolas Cage, Nicholas Hoult and Awkwafina. Renfield is produced by Skybound Entertainment partners Robert Kirkman and David Alpert (AB '00)! (Deadline)
CBS is developing a new law enforcement procedural called Five Point, and it will be the first show in the genre to focus on the U.S. Marshal's Office. The series will be co-written by Craig Turk (AB '93)! (Pop Culture)
David Eilenberg (AB '97) joins Roku as Head of Originals! (Deadline)
Composer Nicholas Britell (AB '03), the Emmy winner who earned his third Oscar nomination for Don't Look Up, takes Vanity Fair through his most acclaimed film work! (VanityFair)
Physician-writers point to the power of storytelling — check out the Harvard Gazette's profile on Neal Bear (EDM '79, AM '82, MD '95)! (Harvard Gazette)
Meet the Stars of Peacock's Pitch Perfect Series! Megan Amram (AB '10) is acting as showrunner, writer and executive producer! (E News)
Sarah Manguso (AB '97) joins Maris Kreizman to discuss her debut novel Very Cold People — out now from Graywolf! (LitHub)
Apple TV+’s inspiring series Dear returns on March 4 for its second season, and here's a sneak peak at Sandra Oh's episode! The unscripted series comes from Emmy and Peabody Award-winner R.J. Cutler (AB '83)! (TV Insider)
Harvard senior Julia Riew (AB ‘22)'s Disney-inspired Korean musical is a hit online! (Boston.com)
The former Comedy Central series South Side was renewed for a third season! The show was created by Diallo Riddle ('97), Bashir Salahuddin (AB '98), and Sultan Salahuddin. (Pop Culture)
NBC News now launches in the U.K. on Sky and Virgin Media! See what NBC News president Noah Oppenheim (AB '00) had to say. (Variety)
NPR's Michel Martin (AB '80) speaks with Lucie Arnaz, daughter of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz about the new documentary Lucy and Desi. (NPR)
Prime Video has released a teaser trailer for Outer Range, its twisty Western thriller starring Oscar nominee Josh Brolin! Executive producers for Plan B Entertainment are Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner (AB '98), and Brad Pitt. (Deadline)
Ward Horton joins CW's Tom Swift! The series is co-created by Harvard College alum Melinda Hsu Taylor (AB '92), Noga Landau and Cameron Johnson. (ANI)
Brian Cox, Edie Falco, Lisa Kudrow and Dean Norris (AB '85), who have appeared on some of the most acclaimed shows in television this century, have been cast in The Parenting, an ensemble poltergeist comedy from New Line and HBO Max. (Hollywood Reporter)
New Yorker cartoonist David Sipress (GSA ‘70) has a new memoir out called What’s So Funny? (NYT)
AWA Studios announced today its latest sci-fi anthology series, NewThink by The New York Times #1 international best-selling and award-winning writer, Gregg Hurwitz (AB '95). (Bleeding Cool)
Veep character Jonah Ryan cheers the Senate voting to end Daylight Savings in a letter to his fellow Americans that was shared by Veep boss David Mandel (AB '92)! (Hollywood Reporter)
JJ Abrams’ Bad Robot is putting together a limited-series package based on the Stephen King bestselling novel Billy Summers. Ed Zwick (AB '74) & Marshall Herskovitz will adapt with Zwick directing what will likely be 6-10 episodes! (Deadline)
Harvard alum Jesse Leon (MPP '01)'s memoir, I'm Not Broken will be released on August 23rd 2022 by Vintage, now available for pre-order! (Penguin)
Mira Nair (AB ‘79) donates her professional archive to Radcliffe’s Schlesinger Library. (Harvard Gazette)
Gerry Bryant (AB ‘76)’s upcoming album The Composers will feature works from Black classical composers overlooked throughout history, such as Florence Price.
"Hollywood film producer on teaming up with ex-SAS members and war reporters to escape from Kyiv" by
producer and screenwriter Mark O’Keefe (AB '93) who fled the war in Ukraine in early March. Mark co-wrote the movies Bruce Almighty and Click and worked on TV shows such as David Letterman.
New Members' Welcome
Harvardwood warmly welcomes all members who joined the organization last month:
- Jared James Grogan, Div., LA
- Kalia Firester, College, BOS/Campus
- Joe Kerwin, College, BOS/Campus
- Faith Mcclure, Div., BOS/Campus
- Francesca Barr, College, BOS/Campus
- Kelsey Chen, College, BOS/Campus
- Ria Modak, College, BOS/Campus
- Max Shakespeare, College, BOS/Campus
- Abbeny Solis, College, BOS/Campus
- Skylar-Bree Takyi, College, BOS/Campus
- Michael Osei, College, BOS/Campus
- Joy Zhang, Div., LA
- Mayi Hughes, College, BOS/Campus
- Mawi Asgedom, College, CHI
- Tracey Robertson Carter, Div., BOS/Campus
- Scott Mead, College, London, UK
- Will Powers, College, BOS/Campus
- Trey Layton, College, BOS/Campus
- Babi O., College, NY
- Donna Bachler, Ext., Other U.S.
- Alexandre Drago, GSE, Toronto
- Elsa Ames, FOH, LA
- Lauren Lorentz, ART, LA
- Yael Schick, GSE, NY
- Laurence Ciembroniewicz, HMS, BOS/Campus
- Colter Bayard, Ext., LA
- Michele-Marie Gallant, GSAS, LA
- Jonathan Handel, College, LA
- Eileen Tucci, College, BOS/Campus
- Annie Ablon, Div., Campus
- Samantha Shelton, College, LA
- O. Phillips, Ext., Other U.S.
- Maureen Clare, College, BOS/Campus
- Anupama Mehta, Ext., BOS/Campus
- Hegine Nazarian, FOH, LA
- Nicholas Hutchison, College, NY
- Alexander Kim, College, NY
- Taylor Peterman, College, BOS/Campus
*FOH = Friend of Harvardwood
Alumni Profile: Donna Brown Guillaume AB ’73 (producer, journalist)
by Dayna Wilkinson
Donna Brown Guillaume was brought up all over the world. “My dad was in the Air Force so we moved a lot.” After a five-year stint in Minnesota, the family relocated to Brooklyn, New York. “It was my last two years of high school, a very tough time to transfer schools. Going from a school with eighty-eight kids in my grade to one with five thousand kids in grades 9-12—that was some serious culture shock.”
Soon after, a critical chapter in Donna Brown Guillaume’s life and in the life of the nation began. “The assassinations of Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy, anti-War protests, the DNC convention beatings, anti-apartheid demonstrations--I can’t overstate how important the year 1968 was,” she recalls.
“During my junior year, I went to a college recruiting fair in Manhattan. All the Harvard-Radcliffe recruiters were Black students just a couple of years older than I. A Radcliffe student from the class of 1971 told me about all the exciting things they were doing. She was so cool and made such an impression that I decided ‘I want to go where she goes.’ I loved the idea of connecting with a community that looked like me. I started college in 1969 when Black Studies departments were being formed and consciousness-raising was happening on campuses across the country.
“At Harvard, Black students had really fought for an Afro-American Studies department. Harvard had pushed back, saying ‘why can’t you have a couple of classes here and a couple of classes there from existing departments?’ The students’ response was ‘you can have a department of Sanskrit but you can’t have a department of Afro-American Studies?’ The class ahead of me was the first year you could have Afro-American Studies as a major. I knew that any liberal arts degree would train me to be a critical thinker; my decision to major in Afro-American Studies was a political one.
“While on campus from 1969-1973, I marched and picketed. I was in the African dance troupe and in AFRO, the Black student group--we had a high level of anti-apartheid consciousness. I was also a cheerleader for the basketball team: ten of us created an all-Black squad that wasn’t Harvard-sanctioned so we made our own uniforms. I also taught at a preschool in Roxbury.
“My college years were transformational. I had a slammin’ group of classmates, many of whom became influential in their spheres. At our 40th reunion we formed ClassActHR73.org, (Achieving Change Together), an initiative of Harvard-Radcliffe Class of ’73 alumni who aim to help solve local, national, and international problems by creating and supporting positive change. We’re still activists who want to make a difference.”
Donna moved to Los Angeles in 1977 and worked on a community newspaper supported by an anti-poverty program. When its grant ran out, she went to work at the local Channel 2 newsroom and then at CBS’ network news bureau. “Working at CBS network news was heady stuff to me. I could be sitting in the newsroom and Mike Wallace or Ed Bradley (from 60 Minutes) would walk in. Our bureau covered Alaska, Hawaii and all the Western states. I was young and single so I didn’t mind working on the weekends, and sometimes I filled in as weekend assignment editor. I’d send out correspondents from L.A. to cover breaking news anywhere in the region. I also started writing and producing Newsbreak, a one-minute news broadcast that CBS aired before the start of the 9:00 pm show.”
After about a year, Donna returned to the local CBS station as an associate producer on the magazine show Two on the Town.
“A lot of the stories were entertainment-based, and many involved travel. I went to Zimbabwe, Mexico, and in Tahiti spent a day with Marlon Brando. It was an incredible job. I interviewed Aretha Franklin, Quincy Jones, Henry Mancini and a lot of other artists.
“Sometimes I could pitch stories with more of an edge. I pitched a story about the KKK in Southern California, and had a close phone relationship with a KKK grand dragon—of course, he didn’t know I was Black. When it came time for the on-camera interview, a white colleague went instead--like in the movie Black KKKlansman.
“I also did a half-hour, Emmy-nominated documentary on Martin Luther King; the host was Robert Guillaume, the man who was to become my husband. Robert opened other doors that I wanted to walk through.
“I’ve been in production since I joined CBS, so I understand production and I understand storytelling. Storytelling fuels me whether it’s in news, documentaries or entertainment.”
In terms of her overall work, Guillaume says she’s probably most proud of Happily Ever: Fairy Tales for Every Child. “Meryl Marshall and I pitched and sold it to HBO then oversaw it throughout as the executive producers.
“Most fairy tales we know are from the European children’s storytelling canon but the themes are transferrable and universal. We adapted the tales then cast them to give them cultural diversity so all children can relate to them. For example, Rosie Perez was Robinita Hood.
“It was great working with wonderful talent like Rosie, Danny Glover, Denzel Washington, Whoopi Goldberg, Alfre Woodard, Blair Underwood, Jimmy Smits, B.D. Wong, Buffy St. Marie and so many more. We went on the air in 1995 and those thirty-nine animated episodes are still running on HBO.”
Currently, Guillaume is a consulting producer on Eureka!, a musical animated series coming to Disney Junior in June 2022. Ruth Righi (Disney Channel's Sydney to the Max) has the lead role of a talented young inventor living in a fantastical prehistoric world; the voice cast also includes Renée Elise Goldsberry (Hamilton) and Lil Rel Howery (Get Out) as Eureka’s parents and Javier Muñoz (another Hamilton alum), as her teacher.
“Part of my job is to go through scripts and flag anything that strikes me as culturally inaccurate,” Guillaume says. For a show about a girl who helps others learn to see the world from different perspectives, that seems just what’s needed.
Dayna Wilkinson is a proud New Yorker currently living, working and writing in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.
Harvardwood Presents: A Conversation with Film/TV Composer Roger Neill AM '90, PhD '94 [click here] (April 7, 6pm PT)
Roger Neill is a film and television composer, best known for his scores for the films “20th Century Women,” “Don’t Think Twice,” “Beginners,” and his work on television series such as Amazon’s “Mozart in the Jungle,” CBS’s “Mom” and the long-running Fox animated series “King of the Hill.” Neill, who holds a PhD from Harvard in music, has a vast award-winning music catalog, including the scores to more than twenty feature films, hundreds of television episodes, video games, commercials, and an opera.
The Harvard Club of Southern California and Harvardwood Present: How to Be Perfect Author Michael Schur ’97 Talks with Eric Kaplan ’88 [click here] (April 19, 7pm PT)
Please join us for what promises to be the funniest philosophical discourse since Plato and Socrates matched wits at open mic night at The Parthenon as TV showrunner Michael Schur AB '97 discusses his new book with fellow writer-producer Eric Kaplan AB '88.
Michael Schur concentrated in philosophy at Harvard, graduating in the Class of 1997. He is an Emmy and Peabody Award-winning television writer/producer who created The Good Place and co-created Parks and Recreation, Brooklyn 99, and Rutherford Falls. His other writing credits include Saturday Night Live, The Office, Black Mirror, Master of None, The Comeback, and Hacks.
Eric Kaplan graduated from Harvard in the Class of 1988. He has an M.A. in philosophy from Columbia University and a PhD. from U.C. Berkeley where he wrote his dissertation on "Kierkegaard and the Funny". He is an Emmy-winning television writer whose credits include The Late Show With David Letterman, Futurama, The Flight of the Conchords, The Big Bang Theory, and Young Sheldon. He is the author of Does Santa Exist?: A Philosophical Investigation and his stories have appeared in The New York Times.
The European Cultural Center Academy of Venice, in cooperation with Harvardwood, welcomes former Harvard Artist-In-Residence and Artist faculty, Romolo Del Deo ‘82 [click here] (April 22, 7:30am PT)
As part the opening ceremonies for Venice Art Biennial 22, Romolo Del Deo will speak in a live zoomcast from the Palazzo Michiel in Venice, Italy, on "Long Art: Creating The Tree of Life Which is Ours" on April 22, 2022.
Romolo will discuss the development of, "The Tree of Life Which Is Ours," which was inspired partly by climate science and partly by myth. This artwork was created for the Marinressa Gardens of Venice, and presents the artist’s approach to a sustainable artpractice for the 21st century, which he refers to as Long Art, a platform for environmental and sociocultural activism. This approach repurposes artisanal methodsfrom antiquity which require the investment of an artist’s time, utilizing natural materials,as an alternative to the industrialized mass produced processes and products that are driving global warming.
Romolo Del Deo’s work has been described as "Reinvigorating ancient techniques, exploring ideas that speak to us from a place that feels familiar and yet also distant and elevated in times past" (Mignon Nixon - Courtauld Institute of Art - London).
Harvardwood Presents: Refining Your Writing Sample with Joey Siara EDM '14 [click here] (April 26, 6pm PT)
Join Harvardwood for a conversation with Joey Siara EDM '14 about breaking into the business with a great writing sample!
Joey Siara is a New York based screenwriter. He spent his twenties performing in a noisy indie-rock band and has seen nearly every state in the country through the cracked window of a Ford Econoline. His music has been featured in several episodes of television – from SONS OF ANARCHY to PARENTHOOD to GOSSIP GIRL. Post-band, he received a Master’s from Harvard, an MFA from UCLA, and worked on shows for CNN, PBS, and DISCOVERY before focusing on scripted work. In the last few years, he's been staffed on EMERGENCE for ABC, wrote a comedy feature for Limelight Pictures, and published a short-story -- The Last of the Goggled Barskys for Slate. He is currently developing a new sci-fi comedy series with his brother Andy (screenwriter of PALM SPRINGS) and Drew Goddard (THE MARTIAN) for Hulu. And at this moment, he is staffed on THE RESORT, produced by Sam Esmail (MR. ROBOT) for Peacock. When not writing, you can probably find him teaching at UCLA, playing guitar with his band NEAR BEER, or searching for the best bagel in New York.
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