Press

JILL SOLOWAY TO KEYNOTE
AFI CONSERVATORY DIRECTING WORKSHOP FOR WOMEN
SHOWCASE ON MAY 14

Soloway Joins Gina Prince-Bythewood and Daisy von Scherler Mayer as
Newly Named Artists-In-Residence For DWW Class Of 2015

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – APRIL 16, 2015, LOS ANGELES, CA – The American Film Institute (AFI) will host its annual AFI Conservatory Directing Workshop for Women (DWW) showcase on Thursday, May 14, 2015 at 7:30 p.m. at the Directors Guild of America (DGA) in Los Angeles. The event provides an opportunity for the 2014 program's participants to present their completed work to an invitation-only audience of agency and studio representatives, as well as working artists from throughout the creative community. As the evening's guest of honor, director/writer/producer Jill Soloway (TRANSPARENT) will deliver a keynote address prior to the screening. Soloway will serve as Artist-in-Residence for the incoming 2015 participants, along with Gina Prince-Bythewood (BEYOND THE LIGHTS) and Daisy von Scherler Mayer (ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK).

The nine presenting directors are Pippa Bianco, Tessa Blake, Roja Gashtili, Devon Kirkpatrick, Alexis O. Korycinski, Jean Lee, Kantu Lentz, Julia Lerman and Thoranna Sigurdardottir. Two DWW shorts will be featured at the Cannes Film Festival 2015: Pippa Bianco's SHARE as a Cinéfondation selection and Tessa Blake's ELECTION NIGHT in the Emerging Filmmaker Showcase at the American Pavilion. The class of 2014's films have already begun to premiere at festivals around the world such as AFI FEST presented by Audi, South By Southwest and the Tribeca Film Festival. Bios for 2014 participants can be found here.

The May 14 showcase will also welcome DWW's 2015 episodic participants Amy Barrett, Christine Boylan, Dime Davis and Mia Lidofsky, as well as short film participants Claire Fowler, Erica Liu, Bella Monticelli-McTiernan, Rebecca Murga, Philiane Phang and Chelsea Woods. Bios are available here.

Recent notable success includes alumna Lesli Linka Glatter winning a DGA Award this year for her work directing HOMELAND and Sarah Gertrude Shapiro turning her award-winning DWW short SEQUIN RAZE into a new series with Lifetime entitled UNREAL, premiering June 1 on the network. SEQUIN RAZE is available for rental or purchase on the newly launched AFI Conservatory Online Theater here.

Founded in 1974, the AFI Conservatory Directing Workshop for Women is a hands-on training program committed to increasing the number of women working professionally in screen directing. The innovative and tuition-free workshop is open to women with three years or more of professional experience in the arts, providing them an immersive opportunity to learn by doing – with each participant required to complete a short film or series by the end of the program. Since DWW's inception, it has trained more than 275 women in screen directing – with Maya Angelou, Anne Bancroft, Neema Barnette, Tricia Brock, Ellen Burstyn, Rebecca Cammisa, Dyan Cannon, Hanelle Culpepper, Jan Eliasberg, Naomi Foner, Jennifer Getzinger, Lyn Goldfarb, Randa Haines, Victoria Hochberg, Marianne Jean-Baptiste, Lesli Linka Glatter, Lynne Littman, Matia Karrell, Nancy Malone, Becky Smith, Cicely Tyson and Joanne Woodward included among its distinguished alumnae.

The AFI Conservatory Directing Workshop for Women receives generous support from The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, The Adrienne Shelly Foundation, Jean Picker Firstenberg, Indiegogo, Nancy Malone, the Nancy Malone Endowment provided by the Bob & Dolores Hope Charitable Foundation, NBCUniversal, the Will & Jada Smith Family Foundation, Roz Wyman, and many other individuals committed to providing opportunities for women in the media arts.

For more on the AFI Conservatory Directing Workshop for Women, please visit: AFI.com/DWW.

About the American Film Institute
AFI is America's promise to preserve the heritage of the motion picture, to honor the artists and their work and to educate the next generation of storytellers. AFI programs include the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and the AFI Archive, which preserve film heritage for future generations; the AFI Life Achievement Award, the highest honor for a career in film; AFI AWARDS, honoring the most outstanding motion pictures and television programs of the year; AFI's 100 Years…100 Movies television events and movie reference lists, which have introduced and reintroduced classic American movies to millions of film lovers; year-round and special event exhibition through AFI FEST presented by Audi, AFI DOCS and the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center; and educating the next generation of storytellers at the world-renowned AFI Conservatory. For more information about AFI, visit AFI.com or connect with AFI at twitter.com/AmericanFilm, facebook.com/AmericanFilmInstitute and youtube.com/AFI.