2018 Universal Writers Program Participants Announced

TVWriter™ Press Service Thanks the Universal Writers Program, Deadline.Com, MovieBytes & all the Usual Showbiz Sources

HOT OFF THE PRESSES…if there still were real printing presses:

The Universal Writers Program, a one-year program giving selected writers the opportunity to develop feature film scripts while working with executives and producers at Unversal and its Focus Features subsidiary, has announced the following participants:

Evan Dodson
A Baltimore native and graduating senior of USC’s John Wells Writing for Screen and Television program, who is the youngest writer ever to be featured on The Black List.

Nancy Duff
A Universal Pictures employee from the Visual Effects department, the Atlanta native was recently awarded the top prize in the Napa Valley Film Festival, where she participated in a weeklong Artist in Residency Program.

Anil Foreman
A long-time Atlanta resident, who began writing comedy screenplays in her spare time while practicing health care and administrative law. Prior to being accepted into the Program, she was an attorney for the Georgia Department of Community Health.

Omid Ghaffarian
A graduate of the MFA program at UCLA, the New York native most recently served as a production assistant on Hollywood Babble On featuring Kevin Smith.

Joelle Luman
With a degree in Broadcast Journalism from USC, the San Francisco native recently worked as an unscripted producer for television shows such as Top Chef and Big Brother.

Kimberly Walker
Previously a beauty editor for BET.com and contributing beauty expert for Ebony.com, the Michigan native recently wrote the film Comeback Dad, which was picked up by UPtv and later purchased by Netflix.

Here’s what Universal Talent Development has to say about the Writers Program:

The Universal Writers Program identifies experienced and up-and-coming screenwriters with unique points of view that build upon the Studio’s commitment to telling stories and creating films that reflect the vast diversity of our audiences. The Program inclusively develops storytellers with the intent to incorporate multicultural and global perspectives in screenwriting. The only feature film program sanctioned by the Writers Guild of America West (WGAW), the Program seeks writers who tonally match the Universal Pictures and Focus Features slates.

The primary goal for the one-year paid program is for writers to create material for development consideration; however, concept development is not guaranteed. From pitch to final draft, writers will be afforded creative guidance from executives, producers and designated creative consultants.  In addition to penning two (2) feature-length scripts, writers will participate in a curriculum designed to strengthen their creative approach, personal presentation skills and overall knowledge of the Studio production process from pitch to premiere. The Program also provides access to agents, managers and various industry professionals through meetings and/or events designed to facilitate relationships that can prove invaluable in developing a screenwriting career.

Writers selected to participate in the Program are hired under a writing service agreement requiring a full-time commitment of a minimum of 40 hours per week.  Additionally, should a writer’s material be identified as potential development content, UFEG has the option to extend the writer’s contract for a term of up to one additional year.

In other words, don’t let anybody kid you. The run-up to this was as much a contest as any writing contest can be, and these “participants” are winners in every way. TVWriter™ congratulates you all!