andaz hotel

  • NYFA Screenwriting Graduates Celebrate With an Industry Pitch Fest


    Graduating New York Film Academy MFA and BFA screenwriting students recently attended their culminating Industry Pitch Fest Event, held at the penthouse ballroom of the Andaz Hotel on Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood, surrounded by astounding views of Los Angeles.

    The catered event provided mingling and networking opportunities for the students, executives, and faculty alike. It was a capstone evening celebrated the New York Film Academy’s graduating screenwriting students, offering them an outlet to jumpstart their careers by pitching their film and TV thesis projects to entertainment industry professionals.

    These writing students spent their final semester in their Business of Screenwriting classes working with instructors Adam Finer, Doc Pedrolie, and David O’Leary, in conjunction with Faculty Chair Nunzio DeFilippis and other members of the Screenwriting Department, preparing and fine-tuning their pitches.

    The students’ hard work and dedication shined as they pitched their thesis projects, which they had developed for nearly a year. Students left with new contacts, excitement about the scripts they’d worked so hard to create, and a sense of what it’s like to meet with industry professionals.

    Considered by the school as the graduating students’ first night as professional screenwriters, the evening showed that this group of talented and creative students’ hard work has paid off, as they pitched agents, managers, studios, and digital, TV and film production company execs in a relaxed, round-table environment.

    Organized and hosted by Adam Finer, the event featured representatives from Hollywood companies, including Blumhouse, ICM, Left Field Pictures, Madhouse Entertainment, Manifest Talent, Quadrant Pictures, Skydance, Studio71, This is Just a Test Productions, and Weed Road Pictures.

    NYFA wishes to thank all of its participants, particularly our industry guests, without whom this evening could not have been possible. Also, we’d like to extend a big congratulations to all of our MFA and BFA graduates!


    September 15, 2017 • Academic Programs, Community Highlights, Screenwriting • Views: 2220

  • NYFA LA Holds Annual Producing Pitch Fest at Andaz Hotel


    On Wednesday, May 17 graduating Producing students gathered in the grand Panorama Ballroom at the Andaz Hotel on the Sunset Strip in Hollywood for the New York Film Academy’s annual Pitch Fest. Veterans of the Hollywood film industry spread across the hall to hear what could be their next project. The extravagant evening was organized by Rich Thorne, Producing Department Faculty Chair and Heather Ritcheson, Producing Coordinator.


    Each student was allowed three minutes to present their films to each professional volunteer. They could pitch one project with a teaser presentation or pitch two projects. Afterward, students had twenty minutes with their professional advisor for critique, advice, marketing advice, and possible partnership. Volunteers were asked to hold nothing back from the students. Only honest opinions and expertise were acceptable.

    At the end of the night, there was serious interest in three projects from visiting producers. “For those who didn’t get interested in their projects they got the benefit of real-world advice and a lot of them said the difference between pitch fest with the faculty two semesters ago and this one with the professionals was immeasurable,” Richeson said.

    producing pitch fest

    When asked her thoughts on the evening, Volunteer April Wright, Programmer for Sundance and AFI Fest, Foundation Manager at Women in Film said, “I was impressed with the professionalism of the students and the caliber of their ideas.”

    Marlon Schulman, Founder, and CEO of Horror Equity Fund, Producer and Attorney felt similar stating, “Thanks for the terrific education and prep the graduates clearly had experienced. It allowed us to hear pitches that were interesting, well-prepared and yet open to suggestion, perspective, and possible improvement. Great!”

    producing class

    The New York Film Academy would like to thank Michael Barlow, Kimberley Browning, Brian Herskowitz, John Morrissey, Diana Romero, Arnold Rudnick, Marlon Schulman, Rich Thorne, Russ Ward, and April Wright. We’d also like to congradulate all of our graduating producers including Amari Agee, Batool Hassan Alarfah, Mujahed Aljumaiaah, Larissa da Rosa Beck, Xiangrong Du, Thomas Freeman, Yizhen Hou, Ah Reum Jung, Jianhyue Lin, Junhao Ma, Zoe Pelloux, Nikita Sapronov, Yoselin Pamela Solorzano, Huidi Sun, Zhikun Yu, Jihan Zhang, Ziyi Zhao.


    May 31, 2017 • Community Highlights, Producing, Student & Alumni Spotlights • Views: 3306

  • Advanced Producers Pitch Fest at Andaz Hotel


    pitch fest

    The New York Film Academy’s MFA in Producing Program kicked off 2016 with the Advanced Producers Pitch Fest on Thursday, January 20 at the Andaz Hotel in West Hollywood. Annually since 2008, MFA Producers gather to pitch their slate of projects to industry guests from a variety of entertainment companies. NYFA welcomed 20 plus guests, who enjoyed an evening of pitching and viewing film teasers and television series sizzle reels from 25 plus graduating MFA in Producing students. Executives and representatives from NBCUniversal, Mar Vista Entertainment, Lifeboat Productions and Hanai Studios Los Angeles participated, along with award-winning producers, screenwriters and talent representatives.

    nyfa pitching

    Industry guests included: Michael Barlow (film and television producer and screenwriter and former executive at Paramount Classics and Orion Pictures); Blaine Chiappetta and Marguerite Henry (Mar Vista Entertainment); producers Lucas Jarach and Nicolas Veinberg (Defiant Pictures); Nicole Rivera and Angela Waldrop-Gilbert (NBCUniversal); Alex Shekarchian (talent manager and entertainment attorney); Connor Robinson (Head of Producing, Lifeboat Productions); Kelly Zhang (Hainai Studio, Los Angeles); Nanobah Becker (award-winning producer and filmmaker; David Rosenberg (Daytime Emmy-nominated screenwriter); Joe Sabatino (co-executive producer of television series ‘Necessary Roughness’ and screenwriter;) Tova Laiter (film producer and former studio executive, Warner Bros., Imagine Entertainment, Cinergi Pictures); Beverley Gordon and Sean Kohnen (film producers); Doug Cooney (screenwriter for Paramount Pictures and Sony Animation); Paige Morrow Kimball (producer and filmmaker for film and television via her Makazan Films shingle); and Henry Priest (film and television producer and Director, Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles.)

    Many thanks to our industry guests, and congratulations to our MFA in Producing students for a successful evening of pitching!

  • The Power of Pitchfest


    Pitchfest are events at New York Film Academy are held shortly after graduation for MFA and AFA students in Screenwriting and Producing. A culmination of their studies, graduates pitch their thesis projects, usually a TV pilot or feature screenplay, to television and film professionals. It’s a great opportunity for students to start developing relationships in the industry. About 15 producing students held their event on campus in March, pitching their projects to industry professionals including guests from HBO and Network Television, and even George Gallo, writer of Midnight RunBad Boys, and The Whole Ten Yards. Twelve screenwriting students held their event at West Hollywood’s luxurious Andaz Hotel. By the end of the evening, each student had pitched to about 20 companies.

    Since the event, a number of students from both departments have gotten interest from companies. Congratulations to our recent Screenwriting and Producing graduates!

    NYFA PitchFest


    April 5, 2012 • Acting, Producing, Screenwriting • Views: 4903