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Top Hollywood Studios Partner with Fresh Films in Support of Broadening Pipeline to Reach More BIPOC Young Creatives

for Above and Below the Line Opportunities

LOS ANGELES, CA, UNITED STATES, July 22, 2022 / -- Fresh Films, a non-profit production company that creates Emmy-nominated films, TV shows, and documentaries while training youth in all aspects of the entertainment industry, announced today new industry partnerships with Sony, United Talent Agency (UTA), Lifetime, Roku, AMC Theatres, the Food Network, Imagine Entertainment, and Paramount to broaden equal access to job skills and opportunities for diverse young people of color that live outside the Hollywood geographical area.

“We’re excited to partner with Fresh Films as Paramount furthers our commitment to providing opportunities for entry, mentorship, and career growth in media and entertainment to our industry’s next generation of BIPOC creators,” said Crystal Barnes, SVP of Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental, Social and Governance at Paramount. “In keeping with Paramount’s global Content for Change initiative—which seeks to transform the industry through our content, creative supply chain, and culture—Fresh Films is helping to spark a new wave of inclusive storytelling that is as diverse and representative as the world around us.”

“Diverse and inclusive storytelling is a key pillar of AMC’s programming strategy. As such, we believe strongly in supporting Fresh Films’ initiatives, which engage and educate BIPOC students, who traditionally have had less access to skill building, mentoring and job opportunities in entertainment. We look forward to offering the results of their work to our guests on screens in the future,” stated Nikkole Denson-Randolph, SVP Content Strategy & Inclusive Programming at AMC Theatres.

“For years, Fresh Films has been at the epicenter building skills and access for diverse young people to enter the film and TV industry. Through the support of our partners we’re now reaching more youth in more locations than ever before with access to speakers, mentors, internships and jobs,” said Kelli Feigley, Founder and Managing Director, Fresh Films. “With four year-round programs in LA in non-Hollywood areas like Downey, Monterey Park, and San Pedro and 21 more locations across the country in cities like Atlanta, Boston, Pittsburgh, Knoxville, and Davenport, Iowa, diverse students outside the typical Hollywood circles are getting their chance to break in and transform their lives and the industry.”

“Our partnership with Fresh Films allows us to not only build a base of diverse talent, but also develop stories with new and fresh perspectives for film and television,” said Stephanie Sperber, President of Imagine Kids+Family, Imagine Entertainment.

Allyson Chung, TV Lit agent with UTA stated, "As a first generation, Caribbean-American agent, it can be tough to find your professional mirrors. UTA’s Project Mentor partnership with Fresh Films gave me the opportunity to share my unique journey into this industry and hopefully, help inspire this group of incredible, diverse filmmakers to see themselves more fully in this business."

Now, California high school youth, in addition to students from other states, are able to build their credentials and IMDB resume with hands-on experience working on the set of the Emmy-nominated PBS television show Detectives Club. They will be rotating through all on-set positions under the guidance of film professionals as they film a segment of the TV episode.

“It’s amazing to see teens holding the boom, working the camera, to get that experience alongside professionals, you can’t pay for that,” said Rainn Wilson, actor, who starred in The Stream, a Fresh Films production.

“I worked on a variety of projects with Fresh Films in my teens, and the real world experience was invaluable,” said Ramy Youssef, Golden Globe winner, writer/creator, and Fresh Films Alum 2009-2011. “I remember having great cameras, great crews…and amazing craft service. It set the standard.”

“Fresh Films continues to be an amazing resource for filmmaking opportunities,” said Glynnis Leach, a 2018 Fresh Films alum who was selected to be an apprentice at Lifetime this summer. “I loved working with this company in 2018 on Reese Witherspoon’s Filmmaker Lab project and that experience has led me into getting the apprenticeship with Lifetime on this one-of-a-kind opportunity. This program for other students like me to be involved in learning every aspect of the filmmaking process will result in the future of a more well-rounded and talented generation of filmmakers.”

“We know that our expanded learning programs are critical while students are still in high school, so they can have equal access to college and career opportunities,” said Kelli Feigley. “Our program focuses on high school because research shows us that young people of color and young women receive limited support about their capacity and eligibility to work in media (in tech or creative roles) so they need equal access to build exposure, skills, and confidence before they ‘self-select’ out of opportunities.”

Educators, media, and industry professionals looking to learn more about Fresh Films and see the teen program in action are welcome to attend the filming days.

On-set Filming Details:
Date: Wednesday, June 27th
Time: 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Where: Boys and Girls Club of San Pedro, 1200 S. Cabrillo Ave., San Pedro, CA 90731
What: High school student filmmakers will be filming the third segment of the show where local children from Boys & Girls Club of San Pedro complete a science experiment related to the episode.

Date: Thursday, June 28th
Time: 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Where: Gauldin Elementary School (part of Downey USD), 9724 Spry Street, Downey, CA 90242
What: High school student filmmakers will be filming the fourth segment of the show where local children from Gauldin Elementary complete a science experiment related to the episode.

Ivette Garcia, a high school student from Los Angeles, who will be an intern on the set of Detectives Club, said, “Fresh Films has taught me more about the industry and I have made so many memories with my fellow filmmakers! I really appreciate the program!”

About Fresh Films:
Fresh Films engages over 300 diverse youth annually across 24 locations in Atlanta, Chicago, Boston, Detroit, Phoenix, Seattle, Minneapolis, Knoxville, Pittsburgh, and Rock Island. Fresh Films creates Emmy-nominated films, TV shows and documentaries while training youth in all aspects of the entertainment industry.

Danielle Scott
Fresh Films
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