Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith have donated $30,000 to NYU’s undergraduate film program.
The money comes from the actors’ family foundation and will be used to support female filmmakers, as well as students’ television projects.
“Will and Jada Smith have a strong desire and commitment to the education of tomorrow’s storytellers, and we’re thrilled that they have decided to support some of out standout students and programs,” said Joe Pichirallo, chair of Tisch’s undergraduate film and TV department.
The grant will finance two student-created pilots developed through Tisch’s television production class, which instructs students about the intricacies of cooking up original pilots. Two of the shows they create will be selected to receive grants of $10,000.
The remaining funds were donated to the student-run Fusion Film Festival, supporting up to five female filmmakers whose work has been submitted to the festival. Awards of $2,000 will go to Fusion Festival winners.
The recipients are:
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1) Alik Barsoumian, Graduate Feature Screenplay – “Antouni” (Homeless)
2) Madelyn Miller, Undergraduate Half Hour Pilot – “Right Wing Woman”
3) Jennifer Rudin, Graduate Half Hour Pilot – “Starring Chloe Fisher”
4) Jennifer Helen Coates, Undergraduate Hour Pilot – “Wasteland”
5) Suzanne Egan, Undergraduate Feature Screenplay – “The Firebird”