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Warner Bros. to Address Diversity Issue With Directors Workshop

Warner Bros. is continuing its efforts to tackle Hollywood’s diversity problem by launching an emerging film directors workshop, a talent incubator designed to give access and voice to new and underrepresented talent.

The studio will begin accepting applications next month and hopes to have the workshop up and running by the end of the third quarter.

The emerging film directors workshop will provide aspiring helmers from underrepresented communities with the opportunity to showcase their work to the film world after an intensive nine-month fellowship at Warner Bros. Participants will be partnered with a Warner Bros. executive mentor as they work through the entire film production process, from pitch to final cut to premiere. The inaugural class will have five filmmakers.

“Our emerging film directors workshop continues Warner Bros.’ commitment to being the industry’s most talent-focused studio,” said Greg Silverman, Warner Bros.’ president of creative development and worldwide production. “There are so many bright, creative individuals at the threshold, who just need access to bring their vision and voice to a bigger audience. By providing that access, as well as a professional network and funding for a short film, Warner Bros. will play a small part in developing the next generation of great storytellers, whether they work in film or television, at our studio or elsewhere.”

Silverman came up with the plan and spearheaded the program, which has been in development for about two years.

Designed to re-create the features production process on a micro level, the workshop will have participants pitch, write or work with a screenwriter, and develop a script for a short film that’s three to 10 minutes long and budgeted at $100,000. Once they have a final screenplay, filmmakers will work with physical production to prep, create a budget, cast, shoot on the lot and edit with a full post-production process. Warner Bros. will cover all production costs and salary for filmmakers for the duration of the workshop.

The workshop will culminate in a film festival showcasing the directors’ work that will be held for agents, managers, producers and film executives from across the industry. More information on the program and the application process can be found here.

Warner Bros. also sponsors the Warner Bros. television workshop, which features both a writers and directors workshop.

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