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Mayor Join WGAE To Increase Diversity NYC’s TV Writers’ Rooms

Lee Daniels (Empire).

In an attempt to improve diversity in the rather homogeneous world of TV writing, the City of New York is combining with the Writers Guild of America, East, which has had great success of late organizing editorial workers at digital news operations. They’ll offer a six-month fellowship to provide opportunities for wannabes from varied backgrounds to work in New York, which was home to 52 scripted TV series last year.

 

Beau Willimon (House of Cards).

Beau Willimon (House of Cards).

The union says the “Made In NY Writing Room” will accept up to 12 applicants, either individuals or writing teams, to take part in the program. They’ll get a stipend, participation in various professional development program and be twinned with what’s known as a “showrunner” based on their career interests “and produce a table read of their script by union actors.” (Writers Guild of America)

Julie Klausner (Difficult People).

Julie Klausner (Difficult People).

Participants in the program will be assigned to a dedicated mentor, who is an established New York City-based showrunner. Confirmed mentors include Sarah Treem (The Affair),

Sarah Treem (The Affair).

Sarah Treem (The Affair).

Lee Daniels (Empire), Beau Willimon (House of Cards), Julie Klausner (Difficult People), Julie Martin (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit), Brian Koppelman (Billions), David Levien (Billions) and Richard LaGravenese (The Divide). This mentorship will provide an unprecedented opportunity for writers to learn what it takes to succeed in the industry here in New York City, and to receive feedback on their works in progress. Participants will also receive additional professional development opportunities and industry feedback, with the goal of developing an original drama or comedy pilot ready for production at the end of the fellowship period.

The submission period for applications opened on September 15, 2016 and close at 11:59 p.m. ET on October 20, 2016.  No more than 500 applications will be reviewed for the fellowship, and the submission period will close at either the 500-application capacity or at the submission deadline, whichever occurs first.

The 6-month fellowship is expected to begin in June 2017 and continue through December 2017. Final dates will be dependent on various factors including mentor schedules.

For more information on the Made in NY Writers Room, including program and eligibility guidelines, please visit: https://www.wgaeast.org/writersroom

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