12:00pm PT by Bryn Elise Sandberg
Fox Writers Lab Names Fellow
Fox Inclusive has named a fellow out of its Fox Writers Lab.
Writer Keely MacDonald has been selected from the sixth annual group of finalists and has received a script development deal with Fox Broadcasting Company. Launched in 2011, Fox Writers Lab (formerly known as the Fox Writers Intensive) is an initiative designed to nurture writers who have diverse voices, backgrounds and life experiences in an effort to create a strong pipeline of talent for potential staffing on Fox television shows and films.
During this year's program, the writers developed and wrote an original comedy or drama pilot script under the guidance of producer Sheila Hanahan-Taylor of Practical Pictures and Kelly Kulchak, head of current programming at Dreamworks Animation. The writing culminated in a "Pitchfest" in which writers pitched their original ideas to network and studio executives. They also participated in guest speaker sessions with Fox studio and network development executives Glen Mazzara (The Walking Dead), Imagine Television executive and producer Francie Calfo (Empire), Joe Henderson and Ildy Modrovich (Lucifer), and alumni from the program.
Born and raised in North Carolina, MacDonald graduated from Duke University in 2012. In 2013, when Fox's Sleepy Hollow began production on its first season, filming on location in North Carolina, MacDonald landed a job on the series as a research intern. She then worked her way up the ladder and wrote the season four episode, "Insatiable."
In addition to MacDonald, participants in the lab included Arielle Diaz, Brad Marques, Elizabeth Oyebode, Erick Castrillon and Esteban Arango, Jennifer Graham Imada, Lauren Tyler, Mellori Velasquez, Nicky Young, Pilar Valdes, Tania Lotia and Yasemin Yilmaz. They each are being promoted throughout the Fox creative community and submitted for potential staffing on current and future Fox entertainment productions. This year's 12 writers were selected from a pool of nominations submitted by showrunners, talent representation and arts organizations across the country, including the National Association of Latino Independent Producers and the National Hispanic Media Coalition.
"Fox is deeply committed to supporting the most talented emerging creatives working today," said MyKhanh Shelton, senior vp of Fox Inclusion. "Diversity is key to our success, and this year's pool reflects the core belief that the future success of Fox lies with nurturing these unique voices."
"Fox Writers Lab has become an increasingly crucial component of our staffing process," said Terence Carter, executive vp of drama programming, development and event series at Fox. "There are so many talented writers, with so many different points of view. Those diverse viewpoints help make our programming smarter, stronger and, ultimately, more reflective of FOX's viewership."