Disney Channel has selected five new participants for the second go-round of its Storytellers program, designed to develop the next generation of series creators and writers of programming for kids, tweens and families.
Chosen out of hundreds of applicants are Rachel McNevin, Farhan Arshad, Han-Yee Ling, Hunter Cope and Adam Aseraf. The program, which spans a 20-week period, presents the writers with the opportunity to be mentored by Disney Channel programming and development executives and producers. Emmy-nominated Marc Warren, writer and producer of Disney Channel hit series Even Stevens, That’s So Raven and Cory in the House, returns to supervise the program. Each participant or writing team develops one live action script for pilot consideration, with mentoring from concept ideation and writing to network pitching and pilot production.
The program’s inaugural group of writers included Kyle Stegina and Josh Lehrman, who during their Storytellers’ tenure, created Disney Channel’s new series Bizaardvark. The duo will serve as co-executive producers on the series, which will make its debut later this year.
“We are thrilled to once again have assembled such a talented group of writers. Storytellers has proven it is a noteworthy writing program, providing real opportunity for up-and-coming writers to share their creative visions,” said Adam Bonnett, Executive Vice President, Original Programming, Disney Channels Worldwide.
Here are this year’s writers:
Rachel McNevin, a UC Berkeley graduate with an MFA from the USC School of Cinematic Arts, who while at USC was awarded the Jack Oakie Scholarship for Excellence in comedy writing. Additionally, she was a writer on Disney Channel’s “Austin & Ally.”
Farhan Arshad, a Northwestern University graduate with an MFA in screenwriting, who was script coordinator on ABC’S “Dr. Ken” and writer’s assistant on CBS’ “The McCarthys.”
Han-Yee Ling, a UCLA graduate with a degree in screenwriting, who won first place in the 59th Annual Samuel Goldwyn Writing Awards for Excellence in Dramatic Writing for her feature family drama, “Spaghetti Bridges.” Her pilots “The Smart Ones” and “Noodles” were highlighted at the 2014 and 2015 UCLA Screenwriters Showcases. Additionally, she was a writer on Disney Channel’s new animated TV series, “Tangled.”
Hunter Cope and Adam Aseraf, Los Angeles natives, who were writers on Nickelodeon’s Emmy-nominated show “Sanjay and Craig.”