The Sony Pictures Animation x The Black List Writers Program will select one writer to work in-house at the studio for a six-month period, with that creative being responsible for crafting dialogue for custom animation pieces, diving into scripts on the development slate, pitching their own ideas, and more. They will receive $50,000 for their services, which will be covered under the jurisdiction of the Sony Pictures Animation I.A.T.S.E. Agreement.
Only individual writers interested in developing their skill set in the world of animation, who represent the global, diverse audience the studio seeks to entertain, will be eligible for the program. Scripts submitted can come from any genre, and take the form of a feature film, play or musical, though pilot scripts won’t be accepted. They do not necessarily need to be animated, and will serve as samples. Submitting writers must be able to commit to the full-time, six-month program, which will take place this year from fall through winter.
Submissions are now open via blcklst.com and will close on July 8. Selected shortlist writers will be notified of their placement and receive next steps this summer.
“We are thrilled to announce this exciting new program in partnership with The Black List, which will provide new writing talent the opportunity to gain first-hand experience in the animation industry while bringing their own unique and personal perspective to Sony Pictures Animation,” said Kristine Belson, who serves as President of Features and Series at the studio.
“It’s no secret that “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse: is one of my favorite films of the last decade. Partnering with Sony Pictures Animation to identify a writer who will work in-house with them is both an honor and a joy,” added The Black List’s founder and CEO, Franklin Leonard. “I look forward to being able to watch the extraordinary animated content this soon-to-be-named writer will contribute to.”
Sony Pictures Animation’s latest releases include the Oscar-nominated Netflix pic The Mitchells vs. The Machines; the musical adventure Vivo, featuring original songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda; and Hotel Transylvania: Transformania, the fourth installment in the beloved monster movie franchise. The division has also been behind hit film series such as Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, which received the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature in 2019. Up next for Sony Pictures Animation is the highly-anticipated sequel, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse (Part One), set for theatrical release in October 2022.
Sony Pictures Animation, which was founded in 2002, is a division of the Sony Pictures Motion Pictures Group for Sony Pictures Entertainment, a subsidiary of the Tokyo-based Sony Group Corporation.
The Black List, an annual survey of Hollywood executives’ favorite unproduced screenplays, was founded in 2005. Since then, at least 440 Black List scripts have been produced, grossing over $30 billion in box office worldwide. Black List movies have won 54 Academy Awards from 267 nominations, including four of the last 12 Best Picture Oscars and 11 of the last 28 Best Screenplay Oscars.
In October of 2012, the Black List launched an online community where screenwriters make their work available to readers, buyers and employers. Since its inception, it has hosted nearly 80,000 screenplays and teleplays and provided more than 130,000 script evaluations. As a direct result of introductions made on the Black List, dozens of writers have found representation at major talent agencies and management companies, as well as sold or optioned their screenplays. Several films have been produced from scripts showcased on the website including the Golden Globe-nominated Nightingale, starring David Oyelowo.
The Black List currently hosts over 5,000 scripts by approximately 3,700 writer members, which are available for download by industry professionals ranging from agency assistants, to studio and network presidents, to A-list actors and directors.
The Black List’s first feature production, Come As You Are, debuted to critical acclaim at SXSW in 2019. Its second feature, Breaking News in Yuba County, directed by Oscar nominee director Tate Taylor and starring Allison Janney, Mila Kunis, Regina Hall, Awkwafina, Wanda Sykes and Juliette Lewis, was released by MGM Studios in February of last year.
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