Saturday, October 13, 2012

Autumn is Here in HOLLY WEIRD !!!





Los Angeles has been a whirlwind for me. 


The Cosby Program has been an awesome crash course in the professional Television and Film  industry. More than that it has helped me get a somewhat stable footing in Hollywood. 

A few weeks ago, the Cosby Program held it's "commencement," ceremony, celebrating almost 20 years of success as a champion of diversity.  More on that here.  

The last eight months have been a writer's retreat for me, and I got a lot done: 


  • Lead TV Writing Sample (NBC’s Community) placed in top ten percent at Austin Film Festival
  • Two rounds of interviews for a Writers Intern post on a  real network TV show (but no cigar)
  • Original Webseries (She’s Out Of Order) post-production is underway (Fall 2012 premiere)
  • Core rewrites on my Music-dramadey theater piece:  Bring the Beat Back
  • Short Play – Falling Out – remounted by Christopher Burris in Brooklyn for a two-weekend run (I wasn’t even there)
  • New Writing Samples in development:  original TV pilot, Happy Endings sample episode, new full-length theater drama, and more!!
  •  Growing Los Angeles “Industry” network, including folks from Futurama, BET, CBS, just to name a few.

Too many good things have already happened. Can't stop now!!! 


My Cosby cohort - the 2012 class - has more exciting things planned, and I can't wait to share them, as well as a few more updates from Under the Spell Productions and my growing network of peers!



Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Derek in Los Angeles for the Cosby Program!

Over the holiday break I was offered a fellowship with the Guy Hanks and Marvin Miller Screenwriting Program. Administered at the University of Southern California, the program is essentially a 16-week writers boot-camp for TV and Film writing.

Bill and Camille Cosby founded the program back in 1993, and it was created out of Bill Cosby’s desire to support more socially-conscious, ethically responsible black writers in TV and Film. Around town the program is called “The Cosby Program.”

I accepted the fellowship, and I essentially had to implement a frantic relocation from Harlem to Los Angeles over the month of January, balancing my day-job at the Apollo and January 2012 Fire This Time Festival in the process.

Anyway, we are about 45 days into the program and I LOVE it! I am in the television track (comedy), developing my writing portfolio for professional commercial TV writing gigs.

I making the most of my time in Los Angeles, and doing my very best to take full advantage of this amazing opportunity.

More Soon!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Full of IT: What does Diversity mean to you?

Full of IT: What does Diversity mean to you?: Contributed by Guest Blogger of the Week, Derek Lee McPhatter . Indie Theater is, in my opinion, the artsy, gutsy creative, risk-taking ...