To All Writers, Mentors, Filmmakers, and Friends

A couple of months ago, the CineStory Foundation became aware that there’s a film festival in Arizona calling itself the CineStory International Film Festival.

Let us be clear: we have NO AFFILIATION with this other organization.

Since this is their first year in operation and we've been active for over 20 years, we consulted with a trademark attorney who informed us that they are in violation of common-law trademark.

So last week, we sent them a cease-and-desist letter to notify them of their violation stating that they need to change their name. But when FedEx attempted to deliver their letter, FedEx said they couldn't because their address (which is on their website) does not have a floor nor a suite number. On top of that, the address was for a hospital.

Now, there are some real questions surrounding their validity as even being a legitimate film festival. So if you have any friends or colleagues currently submitting films to festivals, please caution them about submitting to this group.

Also, we want to stop this group from negatively affecting us in any way, because we have worked extremely hard so when people hear the name CineStory, they think about screenwriting, the retreats, mentorship, and community. 

In the end, we all know there’s the only one true CineStory and need to make sure everyone else does, too.

Your Friends at the CineStory Foundation

2016 FEATURE QUARTERFINALISTS ANNOUNCED!

Congratulations to the writers who have advanced to the Quarterfinalist round. All these writers are still in the running to earn an invitation to our Feature Retreat and year-long Fellowship.

To all the writers who submitted, it was an extremely competitive year, so if you didn't advance, don't get discouraged… KEEP WRITING! 

 

Meet our 2016 TV/Digital Category Winners!

JARED RONIN - SPEC DRAMA: BETTER CALL SAUL "DOMINGO"

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Jared Ronin began writing scripts after reading A Streetcar Named Desire at his Tennessee high school. His work drew him to New York where he graduated with a BFA in Dramatic Writing from Purchase College in 2009. After writing commercials for various companies around the country, television production brought Jared to Los Angeles where he currently pens one-hour dramas.

ARUN NARAYANAN - ORIGINAL COMEDY: ADVENTURES OF ASH & OWEN

Arun Narayanan is a writer and filmmaker based in Los Angeles. His half-hour pilot script THE ADVENTURES OF ASH AND OWEN, which was named the winner in the Original Comedy category of CineStory’s 2016 TV/Digital competition, was also a finalist (top 10) in both the Final Draft Big Break Contest and the Page International Screenwriting Awards in 2015. In the same year, Arun’s first feature-length screenplay SOME KIND OF MIRACLE was selected by the Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) for their Emerging Storytellers program. He is currently writing a feature film made-for-television for Larry Levinson Productions.

When he’s not writing, Arun works freelance as a video editor and as a Content Tagger for The Walt Disney Company. He directed the short films CELLULOID DREAMS, which aired on PBS’s Shorts Showcase in 2013, and FALSE WITNESS, which will air on ShortsHD in 2016. Most recently, he produced the South Africa-set feature-length documentary TAKING STOCK, which will have its festival premiere this summer.

Arun received an MFA in Film & TV Production from the USC School of Cinematic Arts in 2014.

DANIEL FOX - ORIGINAL DRAMA: ARKHAM P.D.

Daniel Fox went from high school to the Vancouver Film School just months after Kevin Smith bailed from the very same establishment, making Daniel one of the few people in the world who has seen Mr. Smith’s student documentary. Daniel is pretty sure that means that he is super interesting and that you should get to know him.

Vancouver was in one of its busy seasons with multiple television shows being filmed there. Being a big fan of this brand new science fiction show called “The X-Files” Daniel was of course just about the only person in his class who didn’t stumble across one of their shoots. He did however manage to get kicked in the shin by Fox Mulder’s little sister… so there’s that.

Upon graduation Daniel crewed various shorts, music videos, television shows, and films in Vancouver and Toronto. He has held every position from Craft Service to Location Manager and back again. However somewhere in this time he realized that carrying C-stands was not scratching the creative itch, and he finally turned to what he thinks he should have been doing all along – writing.

Since then Daniel has had a feature film script place as a Top Ten Runner-Up at Scriptapalooza, in the top 10% at Nicholl’s, and nab him a spot at Cinestory’s features retreat. He has also written a number of books over the years, one of which ranked as number one in Amazon. For about three days. In Germany. In a sub-sub-sub category. Still, he was pretty excited to see his name above such luminaries as Stephen Fry and George R.R. Martin.

DANIEL MENDOZA - DIGITAL SERIES: NUESTRA VOICE

Danny Mendoza is a Cuban-American storyteller from Miami, Florida. He is trained as an actor, writer, director, and producer - and he works in those capacities in film, television, digital media, commercials, and theatre. He is based out of Miami and New York.

Danny Mendoza is a Cuban-American storyteller from Miami, Florida. He is trained as an actor, writer, director, and producer - and he works in those capacities in film, television, digital media, commercials, and theatre. He is based out of Miami and New York.

And the TV/Digital Fellowship Winner is...

From a talented field of writers, we're proud to announce L.M. Harter as the 1st ever CineStory TV Fellow!

L.M. grew up in an old coal miner's house and was first runner up Little Miss Parade of the Hills Pageant (to this day she still believes the other girl cheated.) She took her driver's exam with a drunk instructor who kept passing out, no windshield wipers in the rain, a driver's door that wouldn't open, and to top it all off: a pregnant cat hyperventilating while pacing around the pedals. Between the Mennonites who lived next door and painted sewage pipes as playground equipment she had a very traditional childhood.

She eventually collected impractical degrees in Communications from Ohio University and a Screenwriting MFA from the University of Texas resulting in prettily framed papers that her office wall quite appreciates. She started her own production company, making a few shorts that have screened globally (but does it count if the festival misspells the name of your short?)  Her scripts have done well at Slamdance, the Austin Film Festival, Zoetrope, Table Read My Screenplay and Screencraft’s Screenwriters’ Residency. 

Lover of TV, gin, sleep and occasional recreational activities like binge watching depressing documentaries on Netflix. She is beyond excited and flattered to be Cinestory’s 2016 TV/Digital Fellow.

CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR FINALISTS!

Congratulations to the following Writers in becoming a Finalist for the CineStory TV/Digital Retreat & Fellowship! We will be announcing the Fellowship Winner and Category Winners in mid-March. Each of these writers has earned an invitation to attend the TV/Digital Retreat that will be held in Idyllwild, CA from April 22nd to April 26th.

2nd ANNUAL PAULIST PRODUCTIONS SCHOLARSHIP!

We are proud to announce that the 2nd Annual Paulist Productions Scholarship!

Paulist Productions, a company dedicated to developing stories at the intersection of faith and culture, will give a needs-based scholarship to one of our very talented semi-finalists to attend the Feature Retreat held from October 15th to October 18th in Idyllwild, CA.

To be in the running for this scholarship, you must submit your script before April 5th, 2016 through the CineStory website here. By entering, you will automatically be considered for the scholarship.

*Please note that the writer named as the CineStory Fellowship Winner is not eligible for the Paulist Productions Scholarship.
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About Paulist Productions: 

Paulist Productions was founded over 50 years ago to provide thought-provoking entertainment that explores the human condition, and has produced award-winning documentaries, feature films, television, and TV movies addressing pressing social issues and important moral questions.  Paulist has created programming for Paramount, Warner Brothers, CBS, ABC, A&E, the History Channel, Hallmark Hall of Fame and UPtv, collaborating with industry greats such as Martin Sheen, William Shatner and Tom Fontana.  In a time of rapid change and declining options for family viewing, Paulist is dedicated to developing positive programming with meaningful content.  For updates, please visit our page on Facebook.

CineStory Alum Selected for Prestigious Writing Program!

Huge congratulations to CineStory 2012 alum Christina Walker for being named one of the eight scribes for the 2016 Disney-ABC Writing Program.

The primary goal for the Program Writers is to staff on a DATG series as a staff writer during the one-year program; however, staffing is not guaranteed. The program also provides access to executives, producers and literary representatives through various meetings and events designed to facilitate relationships that can prove invaluable in developing a television writing career. For at least the first month the Program Writers participate in a curriculum designed to better prepare them for staffing consideration.

In the past, the program has launched the careers of writers, like Maria Jacquemetton (Mad Men), Jane Espenson (Once Upon A Time), Saladin K. Patterson (Psych), Bryan Oh (Chicago Fire), George Mastras (Breaking Bad), and Veena Sud (The Killing).

If you want to know more about the program, go here