WIF | Black List Writing Labs


Applications to the 2019 Black List and Women In Film Writers Programs have closed. Thanks to all who applied!


This year, we’re thrilled to announce that The Black List and Women In Film will invite six promising non-professional screenwriters who identify as women to participate in a one-year residency, kicking off with a weekend intensive in the Los Angeles area the weekend of July 19, 2019. Over the kickoff weekend, writers involved in the Lab will workshop one feature screenplay through one-on-one sessions with screenwriting mentors and in peer workshops. Throughout the following 12 months, writers will be supported through arranged meetings with representation, production companies, and fellow writers to elevate their projects and career trajectories. Writers will also be invited to exclusive Black List and Women In Film events through the end of June 2020.


The Black List and Women In Film will invite six to eight promising non-professional television writers who identify as women to the Lab. The Lab will run twice weekly for four weeks beginning on Tuesday, October 1, 2019 and will consist of script development, peer workshopping sessions and Master Classes with established writers and industry executives. Lab participants will have their final pilots read by agencies and networks. Past advisors and Master Class teachers include Cindy Chupack (“Divorce”), Monica Beletsky (“Parenthood”), Carly Wray (“Westworld”), Gloria Calderón Kellett (“One Day at a Time”), Glen Mazzara (“The Dark Tower”), and many others.

The Women In Film x Black List writing programs kicked off the 2019 feature residency with a three-day intensive in a Los Angeles home sponsored by Airbnb. The program provides mentorship and career opportunities to six rising women screenwriters over the course of a year. The kickoff weekend included mentors and advisors such as: Haifaa al-Mansour (WADJDA, ReFrame Rise Fellow), Jessica Bendinger (BRING IT ON), Andrea Berloff (THE KITCHEN), Aline Brosh McKenna (“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”), Scott Myers (Go Into the Story, the official blog of The Black List), Liz Hannah (LONG SHOT), Kirsten “Kiwi” Smith (LEGALLY BLONDE). The Residency is supported by Airbnb and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.

Participants of the 2019 Black List | Women In Film
Feature Residency:

Sylvia Batey Alcalá

SICK – When a violent contagion begins to spread, a director and actor take solace in their production of OTHELLO and fall deeply in love, even as the outbreak threatens to destroy what they’ve created.

Sylvia Batey Alcalá is an award-winning writer-director-actor-hyphen enthusiast, whose most recent film, THE SPECTACULAR SUMMER OF WEREDOG AND AMY, took home the Hollyshorts Audience Award. She has worked as a Writers’ Assistant on The CW’s “Legacies,” and lives in Eagle Rock with her husband and two dogs, Tesla and Indiana Bones.

Devi Gowni

THE LIMPING LADY – The true story of Virginia Hall, the legendary female spy from World War II, and her escape across the Alps with a wooden leg, several injured POWs in tow, and the Nazi army closing in behind them.

Devi Gowni is a writer, director, and political organizer who has worked with organizations such as March and Rally LA and Human Rights Watch to craft and execute campaigns centering around advocacy. Having worked at the intersection of storytelling and activism for most of her adult life, her aim is to tell powerful, inclusive, and commercial stories with lasting human impact.

Alyssa Lerner

JESSE IS A FRIEND – Jesse, a 17-year-old Filipina and awkward tomboy, is in deep unrequited love with her best friend, Roxanne. After Roxanne shows interest in a new girl, Jesse will have to move their semi-romantic friendship to the next level before Roxanne moves on without her.

Alyssa Lerner is a queer, Asian-American writer and director heralding from Poway, CA. Since receiving her M.F.A. in Writing for Film and TV from the University of Southern California, her work has garnered a number of accolades, including the Best TV Pilot screenplay award at the L.A. Comedy Fest, finalist placement at the NBCUniversal Short Film Fest, winner of the Inside Out Film Festival Pitch Competition, and the audience award for Best Short at the Frameline43 International Film Festival with her directorial debut BUBBLE.

Anya Meksin

TAMINEX – When a deadly pandemic plunges the city into an anti-immigrant panic, a young Iranian woman must go outside official channels and venture into the underbelly of a corrupt society to procure the only drug that can save her boyfriend’s life and her own—Taminex.

Anya Meksin is an award-winning writer-director whose work has been supported by Film Independent, IFP, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Open Society Institute, SFFILM, ScreenCraft, NYTVF, the Big Vision Creators Program, the Museum of the Moving Image, and the National Academy of Sciences. Born in Russia, Meksin immigrated to the U.S. as an asylum-seeking refugee before receiving a B.A. from Yale University and an M.F.A. from Columbia University, where she also taught non-fiction filmmaking.

Erin Rodman

MADAME – Based on the true life story of the legendary Madame Claude (Fernande Grudet), from her childhood in Nazi-occupied France to the origins of her brothel and its mid-century heyday. Serving illustrious clients such as Marlon Brando, Gianni Agnelli, and the Shah of Iran, in Paris and L.A., Madame Claude managed to elude authorities until third-generation police detective Martine Monteil, eager to boost her career, decides to take her down.

Erin Rodman spent many years rolling calls, making lists on buck slips, and reading on the weekends as a development assistant at DreamWorks and 20th Century Fox, and writing coverage as a story analyst at Parkes MacDonald, Netflix, and Paramount. She currently has a feature and two series in development at Stampede Ventures, co-wrote two episodes of the upcoming Miso Film/Viaplay series “Seizure,” and is a 2019 WritersForWriters Female Screenwriting Fellowship winner. Erin has an M.F.A. in screenwriting from Loyola Marymount University and a Master’s Degree in film and television theory from the University of Glasgow in Scotland.

Bo Shim

TAKE CARE – Struggling to follow up her debut bestseller, a Korean-American novelist reluctantly returns home to care for her cancer-stricken brother. As she gets entangled in the chaos of the family she left behind, they all confront the ugly truth that facing mortality doesn’t necessarily bring out the best in people.

A graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, Bo Shim is a Korean-American writer based in Los Angeles. She has received the Alfred P. Sloan Writing Grant and the Writers Guild Initiative’s Michael Collyer Memorial Fellowship in Screenwriting, and most recently participated in the inaugural Women In Film Production Program.

Participants of the 2018 Black List | Women In Film
Episodic Lab for Women Writers: