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Go behind the scenes to learn from Sundance Advisors in our Conversations from the Labs series. This collection of videos will deepen your understanding of all the creative disciplines that are supported through our Labs including Feature Film Directing and Writing, TV Writing, Emerging Media, Documentary, Producing, Film Music, and Theater.

In this video, seven screenwriters share their approach to taking the next step after they've finished the first draft of their work. Join Howard Rodman, Walter Mosley, Doug Wright, Erin Cressida Wilson, Naomi Foner, Susannah Grant and John Gatins as they discuss their rewriting process. You'll learn how they manage next steps, what they look for, questions they ask themselves and tips for keeping motivated. The advice and insight shared will serve writers at all stages of their creative journey.

Other conversations in the series include those with editor Dylan Tichenor, actor/director Ed Harris, writer/director Karyn Kusama, writer/director/producer Kasi Lemmons, cinematographer Stephen Goldblatt, and others.

Screenwriter
Naomi Foner has spent her career as a screenwriter exploring the exquisite complications of family. She was nominated for an Academy Award and received the PEN West and Golden Globe Awards for her original screenplay RUNNING ON EMPTY, starring River Phoenix and directed by Sidney Lumet. Agricultural Fair. more...
Walter Mosley is one of the most versatile and admired writers in America today. He is the author of close to 60 critically-acclaimed books, including the just-released John Woman, Down the River Unto the Sea, and the bestselling mystery series featuring Easy Rawlins. Mosley's books have been adapted for film and television with new projects in development. His work has been translated into 25 languages and includes literary fiction, science fiction, political monographs, and a young adult novel. His short fiction has been widely published, and his nonfiction has appeared in the New York Times Magazine and The Nation, among other publications. In 2013, he was inducted into the New York State Writers Hall of Fame, and he is the winner of numerous awards, including an 0. Henry Award, the Mystery Writers of America's Grand Master Award, a Grammy, and PEN America's Lifetime Achievement Award. He lives in New York City, but he is back in LA again this year working in the writer's room for John Singleton's FX series, Snowfall. more...
Erin Cressida Wilson won the Independent Spirit Award for her first film, SECRETARY. Other films include THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN, CHLOE, MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN and FUR: AN IMAGINARY PORTRAIT OF DIANE ARBUS. She is currently writing the live action musical, SNOW WHITE, with Pasek & Paul for Marc Platt Productions at Disney. more...
Susannah Grant is an Academy Award-nominated writer, producer, and director whose resume includes film, television and streaming platforms. In features, Grant is perhaps best known for writing the screenplay for ERIN BROCKOVICH, which earned her an Academy Award nomination, a BAFTA nomination and a WGA nomination. Additional feature credits include screenplays for THE SOLOIST, IN HER SHOES, 28 DAYS, EVER AFTER, POCAHONTAS, CHARLOTTE'S WEB and THE 5TH WAVE. Additionally in 2007, Grant wrote and directed CATCH AND RELEASE. more...
John Gatins graduated from Vassar College and drove to Los Angeles to become a movie star. In six years he had tended bar, parked cars, been a nanny, and watered Brad Pitt's plants. Gatins also starred in the movies WITCHBOARD II and LEPRECHAUN Ill. At age 26, Gatins returned to Vassar to participate in the New York Stage and Film Summer Theater Festival. Afterward, he wrote a one-act play that eventually became his debut screenplay, SMELLS LIKE TEEN SUICIDE. After Disney bought the script, MTV and Paramount approached him to rewrite VARSITY BLUES. Other screenplay credits include SUMMER CATCH, HARDBALL, and COACH CARTER. more...
Screenwriter / Novelist / Educator
Howard A. Rodman is a screenwriter, novelist, and educator. His feature adaptation of the book SAVAGE GRACE for Killer Films and director Tom Kalin, starring Julianne Moore and Eddie Redmayne as mother and son, premiered at the Cannes Film Festival and was nominated for a Spirit Award for Best Screenplay. His other films include AUGUST, starring Josh Hartnett, Naomie Harris, Rip Torn, and David Bowie, and Joe Gould's SECRET, which opened the 2000 Sundance Festival. Rodman is past president of the Writers Guild of America West; professor and former chair of the writing division of the USC Cinema School; and a member of the National Film Preservation Board. Rodman's television credits include several episodes of the Showtime anthologies FALLEN ANGELS and THE HUNGER for directors Tony Scott, Steven Soderbergh, and Tom Cruise. Rodman has also written for Errol Morris, Clive Barker, David Lynch, Chantal Akerman, Maurice Sendak, and John McTiernan. In October 2013, Rodman was named a Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the government of France. He's in the FinalDraft Screenwriters Hall of Fame alongside Guillermo del Toro, Quentin Tarrantino, Callie Khouri, Nancy Meyers, Aaron Sorkin, Robert Towne. Among his current projects are an adaptation for Amazon of the Jean-Patrick Manchette thriller 3 TO KILL with producer Chris McQuarrie; a sprawling, lavish 19th-century anti-colonial adventure novel, THE GREAT EASTERN, published in June 2019 by Melville House, and an adaptation of said novel for UK's Great Point Media. Earlier this year Rodman was on the writing staff of THE IDOL, premiering on HBO on Sunday nights in November, created by Sam Levinson (EUPHORIA) and The Weeknd. more...

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