7:00 p.m. Tuesday, June 11, 2019
James Bridges Theater, Melnitz Hall
UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television
PGA/UCLA VISION AWARD HONOREE
LYNETTE HOWELL TAYLOR
Academy Award-nominated producer Lynette Howell Taylor is the founder of 51 Entertainment, a platform, agnostic filmmaker-driven production company.
Taylor produced Bradley Cooper’s directorial debut, the critically acclaimed A Star Is Born, which was nominated for eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture. She is in post-production on writer-director Tara Miele’s Wander Darkly, starring Sienna Miller and Diego Luna, and is an executive producer on Derek Cianfrance’s HBO limited series I Know This Much Is True, based on Wally Lamb’s best-selling novel and starring Mark Ruffalo. She is also developing Apple’s untitled, straight-to-series project based on Amaryrillis Fox’s upcoming memoir, Life Undercover: Coming of Age in the CIA, starring and executive produced by Academy Award-winner Brie Larson. Megan Martin is adapting. For Netflix, Taylor is producing Lady Business, alongside Larson, who will also star, after optioning the original article with Endeavor Content.
Taylor produced writer-director Matt Ross’ Captain Fantastic, starring Academy Award-nominee Viggo Mortensen. The film won multiple awards around the world including the directing prize at the Cannes Film Festival’s Un Certain Regard. She previously produced Matt Ross’ 28 Hotel Rooms, which premiered at Sundance and was released theatrically in 2012.
Taylor produced Larson’s directorial debut, Unicorn Store, which premiered on Netflix in April 2019. Taylor also produced director Gavin O’Connor’s Warner Bros. film The Accountant, starring Ben Affleck and J.K. Simmons. Other credits include Tim Burton’s award-winning Big Eyes; Ryan Fleck’s Oscar-nominated Half Nelson; Derek Cianfrance’s The Place Beyond the Pines and the Oscar-nominated Blue Valentine; Alex of Venice; Terri; On the Ice; Stephanie Daley; Kristy; The Passage; Phoebe in Wonderland; The Greatest; An Invisible Sign; Shark Night 3D; Levitated Mass; The Space Between; and multiple episodes of the award-winning ESPN docuseries 30 for 30.
Producers Marketplace Judges
SVP, Drama Development
Twentieth Century Fox
Chloe Dan is the Senior Vice President of Drama Development at Twentieth Century Fox.
Dan first joined the 20thCentury Fox Television team as Vice President, Drama Development, in 2014. As VP, Dan oversaw the development of Matt Nix and Bryan Singer’s Marvel drama The Gifted, Amy Holden Jones and Antoine Fuqua’s medical drama The Resident, Seth Macfarlane’s sci-fi drama The Orville and This Is Us.
Before Fox, Dan served as the VP of Production at DreamWorks Studios where she worked on films including The Delivery Man, Dinner for Schmucks, I Love You Man and The Lovely Bones.
Dan graduated from Emory University with a degree in psychology.
Three finalists will present their thesis projects to the audience and a panel of industry professionals at the Producers Marketplace. Both the panel and the audience will vote on the favorite.
Hometown: Woodbury, New Jersey
Bio: Bobbie Lucas received her undergraduate BA from Vassar College in 2015, where she double majored in Film and Economics. While attending UCLA, Bobbie has worked in Development at Bruna Papandrea’s Made Up Stories, Blumhouse Television, and Jim Whitaker’s Whitaker Entertainment, and has worked as a freelance development consultant for Catherine Hardwicke. Prior to UCLA, Bobbie worked in Theatrical Distribution at Lionsgate Entertainment. She has also interned for Color Force, Lisa Kudrow’s production company Is Or Isn’t Entertainment, and Warner Bros. International Television Development. Bobbie hopes to produce female-driven content that advocates for the increased visibility of women, both in front of and behind the camera.
Thesis: MISS 37.Hour-long serialized period drama. When a team of ragtag female bootleggers recruits a hapless young socialite into their operation, they must learn to work together in order to outmaneuver mobsters, a corrupt police force, and the fanatical local Women’s Temperance League.
Hometown: Mexico City
Bio: Hector started his career as a Theater Producer back in Mexico City. He produced sketch comedy shows before eventually transitioning into bigger projects, including an adaptation of Avenue Q: The Musical. At the height of his theater career, he began working at the Make-A-Wish foundation. While there, he helmed the first ever Wish Day and helped build the creative team from the ground up. It was at the foundation where he fell in love with kids content and became interested in fantastical stories. He witnessed firsthand how stories helped children and their families heal, become inspired, and regain a sense of wonder. He wants to create stories that stir imagination and wanderlust and help inspire. While at UCLA, Hector interned at Hivemind and Amazon Studios. Hector currently works in development at Imagine Kids & Family.
Thesis: The Imagineers. 3D Animated Feature. A 12-year-old girl struggles to understand who she is, and where she belongs in the new chapter of her life, when she suddenly falls trapped inside a magician’s hat, where she explores the magic world that lives within.
Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta
Bio: A Canadian transplant in LA, Mackenzie received her Honours BA in Political Science and Sexual Diversity from the University of Toronto in 2015. She spent the next two years in Toronto, working at various tech startups. At the same time, she wrote, produced, and acted in short-form comedy content for YouTube as an agency-represented actor. In her first year at UCLA, Mackenzie produced four films, includingawebpilot she also wrote and starred in called CASANOVA and the short film, Soft & Pink, a proof of concept for a feature that came to be Mackenzie’s thesis project. She interned at Bona Fide Productions. Mackenziehas a passion for diversity and representation in film and TV, with a particular love for dark comedy and anything female-driven. She plans on opening her own production company one day and plans to keep writing, directing, producing, and acting after graduating.
Thesis: Soft & Pink. Feature. Darkly comic, stylized drama. After striking gold with her self-penned single “Soft & Pink,” androgynous 1950s teen idol Queenie Carr discovers the record company’s plan to steal her songbook and knock her out of the spotlight. Queenie and her chaperone-turned-secret-lover Veronica Albini work together to take down her manipulative and abusive talent manager to secure Queenie’s stardom – by whatever means necessary.
Producers Program Class of 2019
Hometown: London, United Kingdom
Bio: George graduated from the University of Edinburgh with an MA Hons in History before going on to earn the Graduate Diploma in Law from BPP University London. He interned at 42 Management & Production and worked at Independent Talent, which sparked his career in film. During his time at UCLA, Berman interned at Temple Hill, Fox Searchlight & Amazon Studios. He produced two short films for MFA directing candidate Katie Lemon: ‘Gail’, and ‘Sparklers’. He also produced, wrote, and starred in a digital series teaser titled ‘Yes, I’m From London’ which provided incontrovertible evidence that he should remain firmly behind the camera, as opposed to in front, for the rest of his career in entertainment. Upon graduation, he plans to pursue a career in film development at a specialty studio or independent production company.
Thesis: PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (Feature Comedy)— A contemporary romantic comedy set in the heart of London. The story centers on two politicians from opposing parties who fall in love and begin a secret relationship. However, when the Prime Minister calls an election and they are cruelly pitted against each other in the same district, they must decide whether to revert to their negative, stereotypical presumptions about each other, or whether their love and connection supersedes their political enmity and can endure and thrive in spite of their opposing affiliations.
Hometown: London, United Kingdom
Bio: After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts with Honours from Edinburgh Napier University in Photography and Film, Hannah worked for eight years in the London advertising industry as a commercial line producer, primarily focused on print advertising as well as television commercial production. She made the transition from advertising to the entertainment industry in 2017. Her interests lie in scripted drama production. While at UCLA, she has interned at Paramount Television in the production department, where she gained experience in physical production working on shows such as The Haunting of Hill House and Jack Ryan. Having always had a penchant for the dark and sinister, she is interested in horror, supernatural and period pieces.
TRAPPER (One-Hour Drama) — At the turn of the 18th century a trapper kidnaps the wife of the local magistrate. The hunt to find her through the Maryland wilderness uncovers a tale of revenge, a transatlantic child slavery ring, and the possibility that the devil is real and living amongst them.
Hometown: Johannesburg, South Africa
Bio: Graduated with a Bachelor of Business Science at the University of Cape Town with an honors in Finance and Accounting. An avid surfer with a penchant for eastern esoteric mysticism, Ryan is the Telluride Film Festival FilmLab Fellow. Before UCLA, he started his career in entertainment by structuring deficit financing against South Africa’s production incentive. After graduation, he hopes to move into a career in development with a focus on narratives that pervade deep questions and explore social issues. Ryan recently completed his first feature documentary, The Second Wave, which explores how the 2017 Total solar eclipse gathering in rural Oregon united elders from over 22 indigenous tribes from across the country to share in a collective prayer for the future
Thesis: HIGH PRIEST(One-Hour Drama) — Psychology professor Timothy Leary abandons Harvard to helm the psychedelic revolution, galvanizing the multiple social upheavals of the 1960s to become who Richard Nixon would call, “The Most Dangerous Man in America.” Currently in development at Anonymous Content.
Hometown: St. Louis, Missouri by way of upstate New York
Bio: Greg Gullberg plans to be a television development executive, championing elite & edgy single-cam comedy series for a cable network or streaming platform. His comedic sensibility is dark and quirky. During film school, Gullberg has interned at five major Hollywood companies, including Paramount and Sony Pictures. Before coming to Hollywood, Gullberg was a TV newscaster.
Thesis: BAD FRIENDS (Half-Hour Comedy)“Exposing corruption, if they can make rent.” A team of four millennials who work together on the investigative unit of a struggling TV News station will blow the lid off of the biggest stories in San Francisco, but only if they don’t drive each other crazy first.
Hometown: Port Townsend, WA
Bio: Nickolas graduated from Georgetown University in 2011, majoring in Linguistics, with an intent to pursue a career in entertainment law. However, after working in law firms in both Seattle and New York, Nickolas realized that life in the legal field was, to put it bluntly, miserable. This led him to pivot his focus to his one true passion – film. Since arriving at UCLA, Nickolas has interned at a number of companies, including Legendary Entertainment and Warner Bros., where he has been able to further his love for all things blockbuster. He has also produced two short films with an ongoing collaborator in the UCLA Directing program. Nickolas hopes to one day create the type of films that inspired him as a young boy, when the likes of Jurassic Parkand Star Warsshowed him the new and imaginative worlds that cinema was capable of creating.
Thesis: DEAD MEN’S SWITCH (Feature Drama) — Set against the backdrop of a WWII-ravaged Europe, the film follows a disillusioned group of US soldiers who are tasked with transporting a train filled with Hungarian refugees and stolen Jewish treasure to a safe haven on the opposite side of Austria. After building a fragile alliance with a Hungarian government official and a female Jewish stowaway, the group must fight off a number of enemies, including renegade SS officers and Hungarian guns-for-hire, as the train speeds towards its final destination.
Hometown: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Bio: Mo Hussain is a Malaysian citizen, but was raised in the United Kingdom. He received his B.A. in Film Production from Emerson College. During his time at UCLA, Mo has interned for a diverse range of companies, such as Lionsgate Entertainment, Aviron Pictures, and Gunpowder & Sky. Upon graduation, he intends to continue his producing career focusing on the distribution and exhibition side of entertainment.
Thesis: HANDS DOWN (Feature Drama) — Escaping her abusive home when she discovers she is pregnant, Montana teenager Danny finds work and refuge on a cattle ranch. But when her past comes looking for her, Danny is forced to choose between running from her abusers or staying and fighting for her newfound peace.
Hometown: Kashmir, India
Bio: Shazia Khan is an award-winning multi-hyphenate filmmaker from Kashmir, the war-torn crown of India. She is internationally recognized for her decade-long excellence in the field of documentary film making in India. In addition to directing and producing, she comes with the history of having aced the roles of cinematographer and writer, as well. She is most interested in producing content on transnational subjects for established studios and OTT streaming services. However, her long-term goal is to expand the production house she owns in India, to transcend borders and to collaborate on humanistic creative projects in Hollywood that harmonizes and bridges ideas from the east and west.
Thesis: GOA FILES (One-Hour Drama) — American detective Jamal and Indian police cop Kabir, peel the layers of the mysterious murder of 21yr old American backpacker Sara in Goa, exposing the deep criminal underbelly of this Indian beach paradise while living their own colorful and complicated lives here.
Hometown: Oakland, California
Bio: Jordan graduated from Princeton University with a B.A. in English and emphasis on creative writing. She played on the Varsity Golf Team and was named captain her senior year. For her undergrad thesis, Jordan wrote the feature screenplay version of her current thesis at UCLA. Jordan has interned at Plan B Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company, STARZ, XYZ Films, Odenkirk Provissiero, Imperative Entertainment, and Muse Entertainment. Jordan has worked as a production assistant for The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallonand the Sundance NEXT Audience Award winner, First Girl I Loved. Jordan loves creating rich, immersive settings with relatable characters, allowing the audience to connect with familiar perspectives types in unfamiliar worlds. Jordan hopes to develop series that span the drama and sci-fi genres
Thesis: DIGNITY(One-Hour Drama) — When the head geneticist of an all-female society becomes pregnant with a male baby, the existing order is thrown into question as she and the president must fight to protect the baby and the future of mankind.
Hometown: Orange County, California
Bio: Sherial McKinney is an American producer hailing from Orange County, California. She has most recently produced the queer love story Frog Catcher. In addition to this, Sherial co-created the webseries, Almost 30, alongside the award-winning director, Matthew Cherry. Most recently, Sherial has interned at A&E networks in its international department and is currently interning for Will Packer Productions. Although Sherial has worked on a wide range of projects, she is most passionate about creating film and television projects that reflect social unity, diversity, and the resiliency of the human spirit. Following graduation, Sherial will continue work on her thesis project.
Thesis: POWERHOUSE (One-Hour Drama) — A hot-shot talent agent leaves the most powerful agency in the world to build his own, but finds that becoming Hollywood’s most powerful man also makes him the most hated.
Hometown: St. Petersburg, Russia
Bio: Sasha Shulman (Abdrekhimova) hails from St. Petersburg, Russia. She received her BA/MA degree in sociology/social work from St. Petersburg State University. A former screenwriter-turned-producer, she has a strong background in entertainment. She has several years of experience as a freelance writer on police procedurals and serialized shows for major Russian TV channels. Prior to entering the film industry, she worked in concert and event promotion and at an advertising agency as a project manager. In 2015, Sasha moved to Hollywood to segue into producing. During her time at UCLA, she has produced four short films, including a mockumentary web series pilot she also wrote, and a UCLA director’s thesis project shot in Anchorage, Alaska. While attending UCLA, she has interned at MGM Studios, XYZ Films, Steve Zaillian’s Film Rites, and Brian Oliver’s New Republic Pictures.
Sasha hopes to produce globally appealing premium cable TV dramas and specialty titles. She has a passion for subversive, character-driven stories for adult audiences. Her inherent appreciation for the global marketplace and international experience in creative development allow her to bring an original and authentic perspective to Hollywood.
Thesis: BROTHERS (One-Hour Drama) — In this modern retelling of the classic Russian novel set in present-day Los Angeles, three brothers, Russian immigrants, must confront the dark secrets of the family’s violent past that rise to the surface when their estranged oligarch Russian oligarch father crash-lands into their lives.
Hometown: Orlando, FL
Bio: Shelby Silverman received her bachelor’s degree in Theatre and Entertainment Media Studies from the University of Georgia. An only child from the strange city of Orlando, Shelby has always been drawn to specialty film and the impact certain films can have. Her passion was influenced by movies such as Beetlejuiceand The Birdcage. Films like these steered her career towards interning at Fox Searchlight and Focus Features. She has also interned at Creative Artists Agency, Conanand Fox Broadcasting Company and was a honor board member for the Peabody Awards while attending UGA. After graduating from UCLA, her goal is to work in the specialty film space, supporting female filmmakers and finding new voices to create films that matter.
Thesis: THE DRIVE THERE (Feature Dramedy) — After graduating college in New York City, a disillusioned and directionless young man defies his parent’s expectations and convinces his dream girl, a married artist, to embark on a road trip in pursuit of finding themselves.
Hometown: Memphis, Tennessee
Bio: As a writer and producer, Asia is particularly inspired by womanhood, sisterhood, and multigenerational families of women. Her passion is creating stories about powerful women who save the world. From a working class single mom fighting for the betterment of herself and children, a high powered professional like Olivia Pope, women of the Black Panther party, and midwives who use their supernatural power to seek vigilante justice in their early 1900’s rural town – Asia believes there is superhero in all these women. She is dedicated to shepherding these stories to both the big and small screens across genres.
Thesis: KING ZORA (One-Hour Series) — It follows the adventures of our galaxy’s flyest girl as she jetsets from her home on the moon to the vexed planet of Earth where she wields her superpower over light and darkness to defeat monstrous creatures – all while proving to her new friends they actually have superpowers too.