Two minorities, one woman and three writers age 60 and older are this year’s honorees for the WGA West’s Feature Writer Access Project, the guild’s screenwriting program for women, minority, disabled, older and LGBTQ+ writers.
Now in its sixth year, the program seeks to identify outstanding historically underrepresented writers and make their scripts available to entertainment industry decision-makers — including producers, studio executives, agents and managers — to help raise their profiles and generate potential employment opportunities.
This year’s honorees and their screenplays are:
Tara Atashgah – Under the Olive Tree
Bob Bridges – Khuska the Humble
Willie J. Hagan – The Furies
Joanna Philbin – Go Your Own Way
Peter Silverman – Herta Mansbacher
Garret Williams – Lost Dog
As part of the program, the guild hosts a series of workshops covering industry topics such as how to pitch themselves and an evening with screenwriter Michael Golamco (Please Stand By), as well as meet-and-greet mixers with development executives, agents and managers.
“The meet-and-greet session puts them in front of those that can hire them, an opportunity some might not have otherwise, especially if not currently represented,” said Tery Lopez, the guild’s director of inclusion and equity.
The program received 162 script submissions from guild members this year, including 34 minority writers, 38 women writers, six writers with disabilities, 67 writers 60 and older, and 17 LGBTQ+ writers.