The Directors Guild of America (DGA) has selected the participants for a TV directing mentorship initative, SHOOTonline reports. The program will see “early-career directors (Protégés)” partner with “veteran TV directors (Mentors) who will serve as their professional guides to the working world of episodic television throughout the 2017–18 season.” On the protégé side of things, the DGA has achieved gender parity and then some. Eleven of the 20 slots went to women, amounting to 55 percent of the participants.
Among the female protégés are Lena Khan, who directed the upcoming immigration film “The Tiger Hunter,” Valerie Heather Weiss, the filmmaker behind the feminist coming-of-age tale “The Archer,” and Ramaa D. Mosley, director of the 2012 comedy “The Brass Teapot.”
Although the number of female protégés is impressive, the mentor side is a little disappointing: women represent only 30 percent of the program’s mentors. Jamie Babbit, director of the cult classic “But I’m a Cheerleader” and many TV shows (“Girls,” “Looking,” “Married”) is a mentor, as are frequent “Homeland” helmer Lesli Linka Glatter, and Roxann Dawson, whose most recent credits include episodes of “The Americans” and “Good Girls Revolt.”
Mentors and protégés will be “matched based on their work experience, interpersonal chemistry, and mutual craft interests to ensure a fulfilling experience,” the source writes. The program will feature one-on-one coaching, seminars, and group activities.
The DGA’s TV director mentorship program is a part of the Guild’s Director Development Initiative, which kicked off in early 2016. A push for increased inclusivity and diversity amongst directors, the Initiative “includes a speaker series, craft and career workshops, practical labs, and networking events for members seeking to advance their television directing careers.”
“With television directing jobs on the rise and more industry employers heeding the call for director diversity — our members have told us that they are seeking career development resources to help set them up for success,” DGA president and mentor Paris Barclay explained. “And the DGA has the best resources in the world — a deep well of talent made up of seasoned TV directors who are dedicated and eager to give back to their Guild and share their years of expert experience with the next generation.”
All of the female 2017 TV director program’s protégés and mentors are listed below.
The 2017 Protégé participants are:
Heather CappielloDaniella EismanLiz R. HinleinA. Laura JamesLena KhanPaige Morrow KimballJessica LowreyKimberly Anne McCulloughRamaa D. MosleyValerie Heather WeissAprill Lynn Winney
The 2017 Mentor participants are:
Jamie Merrill BabbitRoxann DawsonLesli Linka GlatterGail MancusoTawnia McKiernanBethany Rooney
DGA Announces Participants of New TV Director Mentorship Program was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.