MACRO, Warner Bros., The Black List Team Up for Screenwriting Incubator

Charles D. King, Niija Kuykendall and Franklin Leonard
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Charles D. King, Niija Kuykendall and Franklin Leonard

One writer of color will receive $10,000 to develop their film pitch to present to a Warner Bros. executive.

Three major Hollywood companies are coming together to help one screenwriter of color move a step closer to realizing their dreams.

The MACRO x The Black List Feature Screenwriter Incubator launches today to give writers of color a chance to get in front of real industry gatekeepers. Applicants can use the Black List website to opt-in their feature scripts for consideration until Aug. 1. Semifinalists will pitch their stories to MACRO and the Black List, who will select one writer this fall to receive $10,000 to develop their pitch further. The pitch will ultimately be presented to a Warner Bros. executive and, if sold, will net the writer a two-step WGA minimum deal.

"I truly respect and admire [MACRO founder] Charles King and [Black List founder] Franklin Leonard and the work they do," Warner Bros. Pictures executive vp film production Niija Kuykendall said in a statement. "I'm excited to partner with MACRO and the Black List to give fresh and talented voices the opportunity to tell their stories at Warner Bros."

General use of the Black List platform costs $30 monthly for each hosted script on the platform, but for the incubator, MACRO will provide one month of hosting and one free evaluation (a $75 value) for 500 writers who apply for a fee waiver on the media company's website by April 19. "Providing access and opportunity for new voices is part of the foundation on which I launched MACRO," King said in a statement. "I'm thrilled to be able to do that with Franklin Leonard and the Black List again and our new partners, Niija Kuykendall and Warner Bros., to open doors for more undiscovered and incredibly talented storytellers."

MACRO and The Black List previously partnered in 2018 for the MACRO Episodic Lab Powered by The Black List, which paired winning TV writers Sahar Jahani and K.C. Scott with Eva Longoria and Lena Waithe, respectively, to develop $30,000 pilot presentations. MACRO has a first-look feature deal with Warner Bros. Pictures; they most recently came together for Judas and the Black Messiah, which received six Oscar nominations, including a best picture nod for King.

"Charles King and I have long been two Georgia kids on a similar mission in Hollywood, and it's a real joy to join our two companies with Warner Bros. — and Niija Kuykendall, specifically — in this specific endeavor," Leonard said in a statement. "We're incredibly excited about the many writers we'll discover through the process, and the movie we'll get to develop with one of them."