Jurors & Judges
Fiction Podcast Script Judges
Austin Film Festival, (AFF) is pleased to announce a distinguished panel of judges for its inaugural Fiction Podcast Script Competition:
- Jeffrey Cranor, the co-author of the novels Welcome to Night Vale and It Devours! He is also the co-creator of the podcasts Welcome to Night Vale and Within the Wires.
- Zack Akers and Skip Bronkie graduated from Tisch School of the Arts with a degree in Film & Television. In Summer 2015, they co-founded Two-Up and released Limetown, which has received over 8 million listens and was an iTunes Best of 2015.
- Kathy Merritt is VP of Content Strategies and Development for Public Radio International, where she oversees podcasting, special projects, and distributed radio programs. An award-winning producer, she develops new talent and production partners and most recently launched Playdate with Sarah Jones.
- Ann Heppermann is the founder of The Sarah Awards, celebrating and rewarding radio drama for the 21st century, and hosts its fiction podcast Serendipity. She teaches audio fiction at Sarah Lawrence College in its writing program and is also a producer with Pineapple Street Media.
We’re proud to begin sharing our list of exciting jurors! Submit to the competition and have your films viewed by industry insiders. This year we have judges from Showtime, ICM Partners, Gravitas Ventures, POV, Gunpowder &Sky and many others.
Juror Spotlights – Narrative Feature
Dan Guando is the President of Production at Bloom Media. Dan previously worked at The Weinstein Company for twelve years, most recently serving as US Head of Acquisitions, Production, and Development. During his time at TWC, Dan oversaw the acquisition and release of dozens of films, including The Imitation Game, The Artist, Fruitvale Station, Philomena, The Grandmaster, Snowpiercer, Blue Valentine, Begin Again, Sing Street, and The Founder.
Cullen Conly is an agent at ICM Partners in the Motion Picture Literary department, based in New York. His clients include Sarah-Violet Bliss & Charles Rogers, Charlie McDowell, Sian Heder, Patrick Brice, the Zellner Brothers, Ben Dickinson, Andrew Ahn and Zachary Heinzerling, among others. Prior to joining ICM, Conly was the Manager of the Feature Film Program of the Sundance Institute, where he worked in the Screenwriter and Director Labs. Among the filmmakers he helped nurture there are Beasts Of The Southern Wild‘s Lucy Alibar and Benh Zeitlin, Fruitvale‘s Ryan Coogler, Ain’t Them Bodies Saints’ David Lowery, Martha Marcy May Marlene‘s Sean Durkin, Compliance‘s Craig Zobel and Nobody Walks‘ Lena Dunham and Ry Russo-Young. Before Sundance, Conly worked in development and production at Paramount Vantage and began his film career in the mailroom at the William Morris Agency.
Juror Spotlight – Narrative Short
Justin Lader – After receiving a film degree from the University of Central Florida, Justin went on to attend the American Film Institute (AFI) where he received his Masters in Screenwriting. While at AFI, Justin met Charlie McDowell who was enrolled in the directing program. Their partnership culminated with the film “The One I Love”, which starred Mark Duplass and Elisabeth Moss. The film premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, where it was purchased by The Weinstein Company for distribution. For his efforts, Justin was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for Best First Screenplay. Netflix recently released Justin and Charlies’s feature film The Discovery , starring Jason Segel, Rooney Mara, Jesse Plemmons, Riley Keough, and Robert Redford.
Stay tuned for more 2017 Film Juror announcements!
2017 Screenplay & Teleplay Judges
Stay tuned for more 2017 Screenplay Competition Judges!
Enderby Entertainment Award
Co-founded by Rick Dugdale and Daniel Petrie, Jr. (Beverly Hills Cop, The Big Easy), the production company acquired the 2008 AFF Finalist script Stranded (now titled Dawn Patrol). The film stars Scott Eastwood and Rita Wilson and was directed by Petrie. AFF proudly presented the world premiere of Dawn Patrol at the 2014 Festival. The Enderby Entertainment Award category is open to feature scripts in all genres with an original concept and distinctive voice that can be independently produced under $10 million.
Digital Series Judges
Stay tuned for 2017 Digital Series Judges!
Stay tuned for 2017 Playwriting Competition Judges!
Stay tuned for 2017 Podcast Judges!