On March 12, PaFIA hosted an immensely informative and insightful event for local screenwriters, where they could learn the secrets of breaking into the industry. Jamal Hill, Jennifer McDevitt and Joe Gangemi, three successful and established local screenwriters, described in detail the process, craft and nature of the field.
Joe Gangemi is the screenwriter of the movies WIND CHILL, starring Emily Blunt, STONEHEARST ASYLUM, starring Michael Caine, Kate Beckinsale and Ben Kingsley, BLACKWAY, starring Anthony Hopkins, and RED OAKS, starring Paul Reiser, Jennifer Gray and Richard Kind. Jamal Hill started out in the industry by working on such films as I AM LEGEND, HANCOCK and IRON MAN, which later lead him on to directing Lady Gaga’s THE FAME. He also directed STREETS starring hip hop star Meek Mill and landed a deal with Queen Latifah’s Flavor Unit Entertainment to direct a slate of films, including BROTHERLY LOVE. Jennifer Yee McDevitt has films in development at 20th Century Fox. She worked at Warner Bros Studios, spent two seasons with NFL Films and directed 10 MOUNTAINS 10 YEARS narrated by Anne Hathaway with music by Bruce Springsteen. She is represented by CAA and Rise Management.
David Raynor, member of Producer’s Guild of America and one of PaFIA’s board members, moderated the event, asking the panelists the most burning questions of the local screenwriters’ community. Aspiring writers were moved and inspired by the panelists’ stories and words of guidance. The speakers did not speak about an overnight success, but rather gave realistic advice on the right steps to make, books to read and ways to promote yourself in order to become a full-time screenwriter.
PaFIA is truly grateful to Greater Philadelphia Film Office for help with event promotion; to Sofitel Philadelphia for hosting this event and providing a wonderful wine and food set up; and to the amazing sponsors: Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Tague Lumber, Colomy Paint & Decorating, Herc Rentals and Staybridge Suites Wilmington-Brandywine Valley. Also, a special shout out to Chris Kellett and Sync Speed for the awesome audio set up and a big welcome to our ten new and two renewing members!