Meryl Streep Funds A New Lab For Women Screenwriters Over 40
Hollywood is a cesspool of occasionally brilliant ideas drowning amongst a slew of action movies, remakes and animated films about inanimate objects. Anyone with a copy of Final Draft Pro and a dream in their heart can pound out a script and send it off, but it takes actual talent, connections and nerve to get it in front of the right people at the right time.
Diversity at the top of the Hollywood food chain is woefully sparse. According to a recent study conducted by UCLA’s Ralph J. Bunche Center for African-American Studies, the majority of studio heads, executives and senior management in both television and film is overwhelmingly white and male. This comes as no real surprise, given the quality and tenor of films coming out of the Hollywood machine. Thank the goddess for Meryl Strep. It was announced Sunday night at the Tribeca Film Festival that she would be generously funding a screenwriting intensive for women over 40, Variety reports.
Called the Writers Lab, the screenplay development program aims to increase opportunities for female screenwriters over the age of 40. This year the initiative will accept submissions May 1-June 1, with eight winning scribes named Aug. 1.
Among the mentors to participate in the Lab’s inaugural year are writer-director Gina Prince-Bythewood (“Beyond the Lights”), producer Caroline Kaplan (“Boyhood”), and writers Kirsten Smith (“Legally Blonde”) and Jessica Bendinger (“Bring It On”).
If you’re a female screenwriter over the age of 40, do yourself a favor and sign the hell up here.