Alumni Events & Announcements

MARCH 14 | AFI WRITERS' ROOM READY RECEPTION
You are invited to join us in celebration of the four AFI Class of 2015 Screenwriters chosen for Writers' Room Ready, a new program that pairs select writers from the year's graduating Screenwriting class with accomplished AFI alumni mentors working in the industry. The AFI Class of 2015 recipients and their mentors are: Brennan Peters and Raelle Tucker (AFI DWW, Class of 2003), Tegan Shohet and Mikkel Bondesen (AFI Class of 1998), Andy Siara and Alex Herschlag (AFI TVW, Class of 1989), and Christina Strain and Norberto Barba (AFI Class of 1990).

Date: Monday, March 14, 2016
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Location: Louis B. Mayer Library at the American Film Institute
2021 North Western Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90027
RSVP HERE

MARCH 15 | AFI CONSERVATORY THESIS SHOWCASE
You are invited to the AFI Conservatory Thesis Showcase, where we will present a compilation reel of all thesis films by the Class of 2015 along with screenings of three jury-selected films. A reception with the entire class of thesis filmmakers will follow immediately after.

Date: Tuesday, March 15, 2016
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Location: Directors Guild of America
7920 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90046
RSVP HERE

APRIL 12 | AFI CONSERVATORY DIRECTING WORKSHOP FOR WOMEN SHOWCASE
Save the date for the AFI Conservatory Directing Workshop for Women Showcase, where we will present 10 films by the directors who recently completed the 2015 program: Amy Barrett, Christine Boylan, Dime Davis, Claire Fowler, Mia Lidofsky, Erica Liu, Bella Monticelli, Rebecca Mura, Philiane Phang and Chelsea Woods. A reception with the filmmakers will follow.

Date: Tuesday, April 12, 2016
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Location: Directors Guild of America
7920 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90046

JUNE 9 | 44TH AFI LIFE ACHIEVEMENT AWARD: A TRIBUTE TO JOHN WILLIAMS
The arts and entertainment community will come together to honor the recipient of the 44th AFI Life Achievement Award, John Williams, with a Gala tribute on Thursday, June 9, 2016.

Alumni will be invited to purchase exclusive seats to this memorable event. Alumni-only tickets include mezzanine two seating with a private alumni reception, tribute show and keepsake tribute book. Look for details in your inbox next month.

JUNE 15 | AFI CONSERVATORY COMMENCEMENT
AFI will celebrate the Class of 2016 and confer honorary degrees on distinguished members of the film community at AFI Conservatory commencement. The ceremony will take place Wednesday, June 15, 2016. A limited number of seats will be made available to alumni. Details to follow.


ALUMNI NEWS & UPDATES

Ernie Altbacker (AFI Class of 1992) released his sci-fi novella “Handy Andy Saves the World,” which follows his six-book “Shark Wars” series for middle graders, on February 9. Altbacker is also currently story-editing, with Jim Krieg (AFI Class of 1992) as the producer, LAS LEYENDAS, an animated show due on Netflix in early 2017. Altbacker is also writing for Lego and Warner Bros. Animation.



Neema Barnette (AFI DWW, Class of 1982) has joined OWN's new original drama series QUEEN SUGAR, from Ava DuVernay and Warner Horizon Television, as a director and producer. Barnette is also a member of AFI’s Directing faculty.



Producer Diane Becker's (AFI Class of 2006) HOMEGROWN: THE COUNTER-TERROR DILEMMA premiered on HBO on February 8.



Tessa Blake (AFI DWW, Class of 2014) directed an episode of NCIS: NEW ORLEANS, which aired on February 23. Blake is also currently the interim manager of the Directing Workshop for Women program.



Leah Cameron (AFI Class of 2011) has joined the writing team on THE CORONER, a one-hour drama currently in development for CTV/Bravo in Canada. Created by Morwyn Brebner (ROOKIE BLUE, SAVING HOPE), the drama is adapted from the British book series by M.R. Hall. Back Alley Productions (BOMB GIRLS) is producing. In addition, Cameron recently wrote, story-edited and associate-produced season two of WHERE COOL CAME FROM, a pop culture documentary web series.



20th Century Fox Television has picked up the pilot for 24: LEGACY, a new installment of the groundbreaking and Emmy® Award-winning drama franchise 24. Manny Coto (AFI Class of 1984) is the pilot's executive producer and writer.



Hanelle Culpepper (AFI DWW, Class of 2002) directed an episode of The CW’s THE FLASH, which aired on February 23.



The indie feature film ABOUT SCOUT opens on Friday, March 11 in Los Angeles, New York, Toronto and on iTunes. Nicolas Emiliani (AFI Class of 2007), Dwjuan F. Fox (AFI Class of 2007) and Beverley Gordon (AFI Class of 2004) are producers, Megan Hutchison (AFI Class of 2005) is the production designer, Hyein Ki (AFI Class of 2011) is the art director, Christopher Eckerdt (AFI Class of 2010) is the assistant art director, and Kimby Caplan (AFI Class of 2007) is the second unit cinematographer.



Brad Falchuk (AFI Class of 1994) has closed a three-year overall deal with 20th Century Fox Television. Under the deal, Falchuk will continue his duties on three series for the studio: Fox's SCREAM QUEENS, recently renewed for a second season, on which Falchuk serves as showrunner; as well as FX's AMERICAN HORROR STORY, recently renewed for a sixth season; and breakout spinoff AMERICAN CRIME STORY, which Falchuk executive-produces. Additionally under the pact, Falchuk will develop new network and cable projects for the studio.



Scott Frank (AFI Class of 1984) is reuniting with Steven Soderbergh for the Netflix limited series GODLESS. Soderbergh will serve as an executive producer, while Frank will pen, direct and executive produce the project along with Casey Silver.



Three DWW alumnae were selected for Film Independent's Directing Lab: Roja Gashtili (AFI DWW, Class of 2010), Maggie Kiley (AFI DWW, Class of 2009) and Julia Lerman (AFI DWW, Class of 2010).



Jennifer Getzinger (AFI DWW, Class of 2005) is set to direct NBCUniversal TV's legal drama pilot MIRANDA'S RIGHTS. Getzinger is the only woman hired to direct a broadcast drama pilot this season.



Rachel Goldberg's (AFI DWW, Class of 2010) screenplay “Welcome to Camelot” won the Donna Lisa Rothstein Best Screenplay award at the Garden State Film Festival. In addition, Goldberg's short film MUTED won a Casting Society of America Artios Award.



Magnolia Pictures has acquired U.S. rights to Ira Sachs' LITTLE MEN, which stars Greg Kinnear. The film had its world premiere at Sundance and its international premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival. Affonso Gonçalves (AFI Class of 1993) is the film's editor.



The new series JUSTICE LEAGUE ACTION has been picked up by Warner Bros. Animation for Cartoon Network. James Krieg (AFI Class of 1992) is the series' producer.



Endemol Shine Studios and Assembly Entertainment have picked up the series I'M DYING UP HERE, a one-hour dark comedy set among the famous Hollywood comedy clubs of the 1970s, for Showtime. Jonathan Levine (AFI Class of 2004) is the director.



Daniel Radcliffe is set to star in Greg McLean's upcoming JUNGLE, a thriller based on Yossi Ghinsberg's account of spending three weeks lost and trying to survive in the Amazon. Dana Lustig (AFI Class of 1988) is the film's producer.



Melina Matsoukas (AFI Class of 2005) directed Beyoncé's “Formation” music video. Matsoukas has directed eight Beyoncé videos since 2007. She won a Grammy® for Rihanna's “We Found Love” video, and also directed Solange's “Losing You” and “I Decided,” Ciara's “Work (feat. Missy Elliot)” and Jay Z's “Run.” Matsoukas will make her TV directing debut with Issa Rae's upcoming HBO comedy series INSECURE.



Universal has picked up U.K. and Australian rights to ID2: SHADWELL ARMY, the sequel to 1995 soccer hooliganism cult movie I.D. by Philip Davis. Joel Novoa (AFI Class of 2012) is the film's director, Petr Cikhart (AFI Class of 2012) is the cinematographer and Martin Kobylarz (AFI Class of 2012) is the gaffer.



William “Bert” Pigg's (AFI Class of 2008) screenplay “The Assassin's Shadow” took the Silver Prize in the Historical/Biographical category at the Beverly Hills Screenplay Contest.



Wally Pfister (AFI Class of 1988) is directing Netflix’s new series FLAKED, starring Will Arnett and premiering on March 11.



Dawn Prestwich (AFI Class of 1985) and Nicole Yorkin (AFI Class of 1985) are executive producers and writers of Amazon's new series Z: THE BEGINNING OF EVERYTHING, starring Christina Ricci.



The Caucus for Producers, Writers & Directors, in association with Emerson College, hosted a panel discussion on virtual reality on February 24. Karina Pyudik (AFI Class of 2001) produced the event.



Logan Sandler (AFI Class of 2014) has signed with Joanne Roberts Wiles at ICM. Wiles also reps Duke Johnson (AFI Class of 2006) and Charlie McDowell (AFI Class of 2006).



Christina Strain (AFI Class of 2015) has joined Syfy’s THE MAGICIANS as a staff writer.



IN MEMORIAM

Linda Sena (AFI Class of 2001)
Linda Sena passed away on February 27, 2016, surrounded by family and friends after a battle with ovarian cancer. Linda was a highly creative, fiercely independent and kind person. Her whole life she loved to draw and was never without her sketchbook. She worked as both an art director and production designer who put all of herself into the films she worked on. Most recently she production designed films including ALEX OF VENICE, THE SPECTACULAR NOW, NOBODY WALKS, SMASHED and the short, WHAT DO WE HAVE IN OUR POCKETS?. She will be remembered and missed by all who knew her.