Act One 2014 Graduating Class: Through the Summer, Into the Family

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2014 marked the graduation of the 15th Act One summer program class of producers and writers. A diverse group spent the summer bonding, learning and being challenged to populate Hollywood with people that honor the craft, work to have a strong community and maintain a life of deep Christian ethics.

2014 marked the graduation of the 15th Act One summer program class of producers and writers. A diverse group spent the summer bonding, learning and being challenged to populate Hollywood with people that honor the craft, work to have a strong community and maintain a life of deep Christian ethics.

From June through August, twenty students passed through the summer writing program. Taken online or in person in Hollywood, the ten week course focusing on craft, the business of writing, and faith. Led by Dr. Thom Parham, Susan Issacs, Leo Partible and Jonathan Vermeer, the students learned about structure, plot, characters, conflict, dialogue and so much more. One graduate, Nantale C., had this to say about the program: “Act One wove all three key areas together [craft, business, and faith] in a way that I wish had been done for me in school.”

In addition to classes, mentors played a big role in shaping the summer experience. Nantale C. remarked, “[My mentor] was great. Very easy to talk to, smart and experienced. He was respectful of everyone's varying skill levels and gave helpful suggestions. I did not feel nervous to ask him questions.”

Ten students attended the summer’s producing program. Classes covered development, optioning material, writing coverage, budgets, and contracts. Students applied this knowledge in industry internships. “The program was excellent with strong presenters…For me, the best sessions combined lecture, videos, other visuals, discussion/interaction. The field trips were awesome. Activities like [visiting the] Getty and seeing Blended [the feature film] together and then hearing from the writer, were very helpful and fun,” notes Paul N., a producing graduate.

The producing program was overseen by an amazingly diverse group of producers and executives: Lara Sumera, Christina Lee Storm, Chuck Slocum, and Justin Bell. These talented, and experienced professionals made sure to combine craft, business, and faith into the lessons, the homework, and the outings. “All three of these areas take a great deal of time and effort to develop. Takes years to master them. Act One was a great step in the right direction for me. I want more,” states a 2014 producing graduate.

Tying it all together was Lara Sumera. As the VP of Programming, Lara coordinated the classes, speakers, students, and all the events. With an amazing team of volunteers, she seamlessly pulled off ten weeks of classes, ensuring that the 30 plus students were in the right place at the right time with the resources they needed.

A dynamic organization, Act One has hundreds of its alumni working as producers, writers, agents, lawyers, and more. They are in the process of populating Hollywood with Christ-loving men and women, bent on being the light of Jesus Christ inside Hollywood’s studio lots, film sets, and offices.

Act One is building a faith-powered community in Hollywood, advancing that community professionally, and going Global. Our vision is to see cinema, television, and digital media produced that respects and serves the global audience, combining mastery of craft with depth and substance. We encourage our Alumni, Faculty, and Community to deeply love and honor God with a servant heart for those they work alongside in the industry. Our Alumni are prepared for careers marked by integrity and excellence in writers’ rooms, on sets, in studio and network offices. In service of this vision, Act One offers a variety of educational programs including a Writing for Film & Television Program endorsed by industry insiders specifically for its Alumni and globally. The last part of the previous sentence doesn’t make sense to me.

For more information, please visit http://www.actoneprogram.com or email Act One at information(at)actoneprogram(dot)com.

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Chris Dalton
Act One Program
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