Alumni Events & Announcements



The Alumni Script Reading Series gives AFI alumni the opportunity to submit a screenplay to be read with professional actors and receive constructive feedback from others in the artistic community. Please join us for the next selection of the series:

Written by Sylvia Sether (AFI Directing Workshop for Women, Class of 2009)

A troubled young woman returns to Norway to say goodbye to her dying father, and in the process, finds deliverance through love and letting go.

Date: Wednesday, February 4, 2015
Time: 7:00-10:00 p.m.
Location: Ahmanson Room, Louis B. Mayer Library | AFI Campus
RSVP: Click here

Sylvia's love of music and photography led her to directing and editing music videos, which gave her the opportunity to explore different visual techniques. Ultimately, this helped her develop a distinct narrative style and visual aesthetic, which has become an obvious through-line in her work today.

In 2009, Sylvia was one of eight women to be selected for the American Film Institute's Directing Workshop For Women. Her latest short film KING OF NORWAY (KON) premiered at Palm Springs ShortFest in June 2013 and took home the award for "Best Narrative Short Film" at Napa Valley Film Festival.

KON went on to have a successful festival run, and KON's DP, VanNessa Manlunas, was one of eight honored by the International Cinematographers Guild with an Emerging Cinematography Award for her work on the film. KON is a proof of concept for her feature script NORWAY.

Recently, Sylvia was one of four fellows selected for the 2014 Sony Television Diverse Directors Program. She is currently producing a documentary called WE GOTTA GET OUT OF HERE about five youth struggling to thrive within the imploding California Foster Care system.


Levi Bailey's (AFI Class of 2010) original one-hour drama pilot INCORRUPTIBLE made the 2015 Staffing Survey. The Staffing Survey is a collection of the best staffing samples as voted on by coordinators and assistants working at the various networks, studios, and PODS during staffing season.

The 38th Asian American International Film Festival recognized Oscar®-nominated and triple Sundance award-winning filmmaker, Arthur Dong (AFI Class of 1984), to the New York stage in a tribute. Dong is celebrated for his prowess in utilizing the art of film as a means to investigate social issues and examine undisclosed parts of Asian American and LGBT history and identity.

Creator/executive producer/writer Sam Esmail's (AFI Class of 2004) show, MR. ROBOT, has been renewed for a second season by USA Network. Sam has inked an overall deal with Universal Cable Prods.

Roja Gashtili (AFI DWW, Class of 2014) and Julia Lerman's (AFI DWW, Class of 2014) RITA MAHTOUBIAN IS NOT A TERRORIST and Philiane Phang's (AFI DWW, Class of 2015) THE SPACE BETWEEN were selected for the Sundance Institute's Creative Film Producing Lab.

Guy Godfree (AFI Class of 2011) was accepted to the Canadian Society of Cinematographers.

THE LAST SURVIVORS will be available on DVD and Blu-ray beginning August 4. The film won the Special Jury Prize at the 2014 Las Vegas International Film Festival. Tom Hammock (AFI Class of 2004) is the director/writer, Jacob Forman (AFI Class of 2004) is the writer/producer, Seth Caplan (AFI Class of 2005) is a producer, Seamus Tierney (AFI Class of 2004) is the cinematographer, Sarah Broshar (AFI Class of 2005) is the editor, Megan Hutchison (AFI Class of 2005) is the art director, Russell Bell (AFI Class of 2009) is the gaffer, Howard E. Smith (AFI Class of 1970) is the editorial consultant and Xue Yin (AFI Class of 2012) is the assistant editor.

Kevin Lacy (AFI Class of 2013), Vanara Taing (AFI Class of 2012) and Arun Vir (AFI DWW, Class of 1997) are quarterfinalists for the 2015 Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting.

Howard Libov (AFI Class of 1987), professor of film at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Madison, NJ, was the guest speaker of a special film-lecture titled "Unlikely Heroes in Film" as part of the West Caldwell Public Library's Ninth Annual Adult Summer Reading Club.

Melina Matsoukas (AFI Class of 2005) will helm the pilot for Issa Rae's HBO project, INSECURE, making her TV directing debut.

Sharone Meir (AFI Class of 1993) and Rachel Morrison (AFI Class of 2006) were invited to be members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Producer Stratton Leopold (MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE III) has hired award-winning director/writer/producer Dax Phelan (AFI Class of 2000) to pen an adaptation of Neil White's memoir, "In the Sanctuary of Outcasts."

Sathya Prabhas Pinisetty (AFI Class of 2009) was interviewed by The New Indian Express on his filmmaking journey beginning at AFI.

Karen Pyudik (AFI Class of 2001) was elected president of the Caucus Foundation Alumni Network.

Dave Rosenbaum (AFI Class of 2000) is the senior production executive for Universal Studio's MINIONS. He also serves as head of story for MINIONS and has a voice role opposite Sandra Bullock.

Kristina Schulte-Eversum (AFI Class of 2009) launched Dreamcatcher Designs, a design consultation and distribution business.

Lifetime has renewed the scripted drama series UNREAL, created by Sarah Gertrude Shapiro (AFI DWW, Class of 2012), for a second season, ordering 10 more episodes for next year. It is the first scripted series fully produced and distributed by A+E Studios. Shapiro is also the show's executive producer.

Jude Weng (AFI DWW, Class of 1998) was selected as one of eight fellows for the inaugural HBOAccess Writing Fellowship.