It’s not their job until they make it theirs.
This is the amazingly innovative spirit behind the production of Lionsgate Inclusion Alliance program, by a group of physical and post- Initiated by the producers. The PIC includes a growing number of tangible action plans to broaden and diversify the industry pipeline of entry-level and seasoned talent from historically excluded backgrounds and geographies outside of Hollywood.
“Our starting point was how to change the visibility of everyone on set first, starting with our productions,” Jamie Clevenger, vice president of physical production at Film Group, told The Hollywood Reporter . “We wanted to develop a career with the PA starting at the grassroots level, but also wanted to get new names and faces in front of the team members at department head level, so we tried to tackle this from the top and bottom at the same time. This also evolved into continuing late Processing.”
Unlike many other studio diversity programs, PIC is not associated with workshops and masterclasses. It trains participants and provides industry connections to Lionsgate films by directly hiring them and paying them like other cast members. “That was my first real film job, and I threw myself into it from zero to . The whole situation taught me everything I know today. Valet . She earned her master’s degree from the New York Film Academy four years ago, but says a simulated experience in an academic setting can’t compare to real work experience in an actual studio production.
“If you work hard, people will notice you and they will remember you,” says Vacca, who has since been in the Paramount Plus film Secret Headquarters made as Marvel’s upcoming Blade and Echo, all of which All based on positive word-of-mouth and a series of relationships that began with Lionsgate’s first big break. “If I hadn’t had that opportunity, I probably wouldn’t have gotten the film work I’ve done [since], or I’d have spent more long time. This is a fact. The doors this project opened for me are countless. ”
PIC works by proactively sourcing and interviewing candidates who have not yet been placed on the preferred staff list by partnering with local arts organizations. Hired people stay in touch and act as a resource during and after their jobs.
“We actually do bi-weekly check-ins to make sure everything is running smoothly because being a PA can be exhausting at times,” says Jesse Hart , as a graduate of the Vancouver Film School, he has worked as an exterior PA for Hollywood projects filmed in the city, such as Supergirl, who are on PIC for Lionsgate coming soon Before the PA of Summer Comedy Joy Ride “My first experience as a PA was that I was thrown at the end of the cornfield all day Watch generators. It feels really different. Someone was watching and making sure I had a good experience.
This connection continued long after the original production ended. Emailing questions to my LG PIC people, who are still out there for me,” said Samm Brown, Alabama, who also serves as Lionsgate comedy About My Father‘s Assistant Producer and Accounting Clerk, out next month.
Currently, the PIC includes the following areas of focus:
Production Assistant : For shoots outside traditional film centers, PIC identifies local candidates and aims to hire two to five per production from systematically excluded backgrounds PA.
Department Leader : PIC adopts the technique introduced intentionally and actively arranges the development and production of Lionsgate Supervisors meet department head candidates they don’t know and can then refer them to filmmakers who are actively working on Lionsgate projects. “We meet people, and we say, ‘Okay, we can put them on our slate ? ’ and then do some matchmaking and see if we can get them to meet with those filmmakers and build a relationship there,” Clevinger said. Matt Leonetti, president of physical productions, added, “Everyone would list the department heads that were available. People list, this just makes sure the ‘preferred’ list contains [familiar and new names]. Saying, ‘Here are some new candidates, we’ve met them, here’s their job,’ it’s more of a personal connection. “
EDIT : PIC, in partnership with the Editors Guild, the Handy Foundation, and the Urban League of Los Angeles, hired People from outside the traditional pipeline work as apprentice editors and develop them further in that field.” For those who weren’t on the roster, it was really difficult to get into the editing room and get the experience they needed to grow in their careers, So we’re using apprenticeships as a great entry point into editing,” says Katie Barreira, Senior Coordinator, Post Production, Film Group. “Handy Foundation is able to give people from underserved communities the tools to work confidently in the We realized that by working with guilds we could place people from off-rosters into these positions and thus provide for people to grow on this path. ”
Music: PIC partners with Format Entertainment and Math Club to bring music executives and original music creators Diversification of channels, respectively.
Production Accounting : Latest PIC program with LA Urban League and Cal Los Angeles State recruits interns who work with Lionsgate’s in-house production finance team for eight weeks to learn about film accounting, with the goal of staffing the studio’s films. “We noticed a need [for production accountants], but Accounting is one of those fields where you don’t even know it’s your way into movies,” says Carmen Frost, manager of production finance for Film Group. “It’s a cool way to introduce it to new people. ; we’ve reached out to universities and people who are already interested in accounting and say, ‘Hey, this is a whole new field. ‘”
Barreira, Clevenger, Frost and Leonetti were initial team members from coordinator to president’s colleagues began meeting virtually at 2020 to discuss How to improve the diversity of our respective teams. “For about a year, we tried to come up with a lot of unsuccessful initiatives, and then when COVID happened, it actually gave us time to realign our previous failures,” Leonetti said “We had a committee of about six or seven people that reviewed various parts of the filmmaking process. Although technically I run the physical production group, we try to have a decentralized approach to determine which ideas win.
Adds Barreira, “We kept thinking back and forth: Could we not just have an apprentice on the show, but also a VFX PA?” If something goes wrong, we just let it be. “
The core PIC committee has about seven or eight staff members now and meets every other week to update each other on the status of productions using PIC Where? Which local group do we work with in Winnipeg, Vancouver, Atlanta or Mobile? ’ said Leonetti. ‘There is a job, I call it maintenance, and then sometimes, well, what are we not thinking about? How do we push ourselves? “
Meanwhile, the PIC committee is resolutely pragmatic. “What Matt really got us focused on was, what are the actionable items we can do? Given that it’s part of your job and you have a thousand other things to do every day, what’s feasible? “All of these small changes add up to a truly inclusive initiative.” “
Another distinguishing feature of Lionsgate’s PIC program that sets it apart from other studios’ pipeline diversification plans is that it is run by executives — many of them white — from the film conglomerate, rather than diversity staff (Lionsgate does have a Chief Diversity Officer and Head of Inclusive Content for its film group, who oversees the internal and content-oriented DEI strategy.) Over the past three years, PIC has grown from grassroots Volunteer work for the film team transitioned into a statutory duty to staff on the film team – a move, Leonetti explains, to ensure the sustainability of the programme.
“When we made the first personnel changes , the [responsibility] is lost. We all realized we needed to make sure there was continuity to this, so we made it part of the job description for all the coordinators on the team, whether it was visual effects, post production or production. It’s part of the job, like answering the phone or scheduling the schedule, to make sure the program is running,” he said. Make sure we have candidates. We’ve been staffing all the time, part of the staffing is also this project. “
“Now that we have this template, it’s become second nature to us,” Barreira said of the time and labor costs of finding new talent instead of relying on traditional contact lists. “
Working at PIC is an active, hands-on responsibility, as evidenced by the number of times its core organizers’ names come up PIC alumni testimonials, from receiving a recruiting offer from Frost From emails and interviews, to keeping in touch with Barreira and Clevenger.” “[Barreira] has made the biggest difference in my career, whenever I’m interested in something, she finds people I know Do that and set up a meeting for us,” Brown said. “Jamie Clevenger and I had a call this week, just caught up, and she was probably the quickest to say, ‘What are you doing? What’s going on in your life? Both have been very supportive of me both professionally and personally.
He added that the PIC program not only changed his own career trajectory, but empowered him to move on. “As a member of the LGBTQ+ community and hearing impaired, I am underrepresented ’, but there’s a privilege to being a white male,” said Brown, who is preparing to start his own production company in Alabama. As a member of the LG PIC community, I see people paying attention to these voices. Alabama has a story about it, it’s not an inclusive place, but we can make it an inclusive place. People from Los Angeles came here to make films and chose me to be part of this awesome opportunity so I could do the same in the state and get those voices exposed.
Brown’s ambition demonstrates the replicable qualities of Lionsgate’s PIC planning model: intentionality, alliances, and integration with the company’s core business areas. “We’re not experts, by any means. Most of us are just coordinators, senior coordinators and executives who really care about the work we do and the social issues we face all the time,” Barrera said. “I don’t think you need to be an HR expert to start Grassroots organizations. Having experience working in production and being passionate about seeing more inclusivity in your field can create something like this, which is what happened. We just make time. ”