Issue 222 | July 2023


In this issue:



  • Ruth Mulan Chu Chao Harvardwood AAPI Artist Fellowship Winners 2023
  • Inaugural Jonathan Sethna Harvardwood LGBTQ+ Fellowship - Call for Applications
  • Harvardwood Summer Internship Program 2023
  • Featured Job: Music Central Assistant - New York (Endeavor) - NY


  • Alumni Profiles: Teresa Hsiao AB '07 (writer, producer)
  • Industry News
  • New Members' Welcome
  • Exclusive Q&A with Sabrina Wu AB '20 (actor, writer)
  • Meet the Chapter Heads: Savannah 


  • Harvardwood and H4A Present: JOY RIDE Screening and Q&A with Co-Writers/Producers Teresa Hsiao and Cherry Chevapravatdumrong
  • Harvardwood Presents: Film/TV Production Panel - The Artists Behind the Camera
  • Last Month at Harvardwood

Become a Harvardwood member as we further engage in socially active programming, discourse, and action to help change the entertainment industry.

Want to submit your success(es) to Harvardwood HIGHLIGHTS? Do so by posting here

As we approach July here at Harvardwood, we continue to keep applications open for Harvardwood Summer Internship Program 2023 for our anxiously procrastinating readers. We are also taking applications for the Inaugural Jonathan Sethna Harvardwood LGBTQ+ Fellowship, so be sure to take your shot at free money for the gays, theys, and plus etceras! 

In addition, we offer events this month including a Physical Production Panel with Jennifer CarriereLiz RyanSue Chan and Andrew Sachs. Check out this stacked roster below, I know I will be coming empty brained, ready to absorb knowledge and get inspired!

As always, we want to hear from you, our members -- if you have an idea for an event or programming, please tell us about it here. If you have an announcement about your work or someone else's, please share it here (members) and it will appear in our Weekly and/or next HIGHLIGHTS issue.

Please consider donating to Harvardwood
. Your donations are tax deductible!

Best wishes,

Grace Shi
Operations and Communications Associate
[email protected]

Ruth Mulan Chu Chao Harvardwood AAPI Artist Fellowship Winners 2023

Harvardwood is pleased to announce that filmmaker Joseph Lee AB ‘22, visual artist Ava Jinying Salzman AB ‘23, and filmmaker/writer Samantha Mari Woolf AB ‘23 have been named as the inaugural Ruth Mulan Chu Chao Harvardwood AAPI Artist Fellows

Joseph Lee is a filmmaker and director whose stories are deeply rooted in his experiences with his Korean-American heritage and his family's struggles with financial hardship and disability. His work has been shown at LAAPFF and NFFTY, and he is the grand prize winner of the Shore Scripts Short Film Competition. He has directed and developed content for clients such as Janet Yang Productions, Jubilee Media, and Hearst Media. In his free time, he writes children's books with his brother and is a competitive archer.

Ava Jinying Salzman is a visual artist, writer, graphic novelist, and multidisciplinary artist from Los Angeles, California. Her lifelong passion lies in uncovering the stories that haunt us: in giving artistic form to the ghosts and monsters of our pasts, so that we might confront and embrace them. Her latest project is an original graphic novel dealing with the ghosts of a more personal history. 

Sam Woolf is a writer and aspiring multi-hyphenate. Due to a love of folktales and her half-Japanese background, Sam is drawn to stories that connect multiple worlds and differing perspectives. This passion usually manifests as magical realist screenplays about ghosts––characters that might exist between life and death. 

Each Fellow will receive a multi-thousand-dollar project grant  in support of their proposed artistic endeavors. The Ruth Mulan Chu Chao Harvardwood AAPI Artist Fellowship was created in 2023 with a gift from Angela Chao (AB ‘95, MBA ‘01) in honor of her mother, Ruth Mulan Chu Chao. 

Mrs. Ruth Mulan Chu Chao was a philanthropist, mother of six daughters, and lifelong advocate for equitable education. Like her namesake, Chinese folk heroine Hua Mulan, Mrs. Chao faced adversity with extraordinary grace, courage, and determination. In 2016 she became the first woman and Asian American to have a building named in her honor at Harvard University.

Angela Chao, Mrs. Chao’s youngest daughter and CEO of Foremost Group, states: "My mother was an inspiration to my sisters and me. She worked very hard and made many sacrifices to support her daughters' educations and potential in life. It is my hope that this fellowship will help honor her legacy and inspire others to embrace her values and generosity.  She would have been proud to support a cause that provides opportunities for AAPI students to make their voices heard and break down barriers as an important step toward celebrating and protecting our heritage and the Asian American Pacific Islander community.”

Harvardwood Founder Mia Riverton Alpert (AB ‘99) said, "Angela Chao has long been a champion for the arts and the AAPI community. This generous and impactful Fellowship in honor of her mother, Mrs. Ruth Mulan Chu Chao, continues a legacy of extraordinary leadership and demonstrates a deep commitment to supporting AAPI artists, bringing their rich and diverse stories to global audiences."

Click here for more info!

Inaugural Jonathan Sethna Harvardwood LGBTQ+ Fellowship - Call for Applications

Harvardwood is excited to announce the inaugural Jonathan Sethna Harvardwood LGBTQ+ Fellowship for projects that elevate LGBTQ+ characters, themes, and stories by creatives and screenwriters who are Harvard University alumni.

The purpose of the Fellowship is to polish, develop, elevate, and amplify projects for the screen with LGBTQIA+ characters, themes, and stories. The gift, generously donated by Jonathan Sethna (HGSE ’03), will support at least two projects. The minimum amount of grant funding is $5,000. In addition to grant funds, Fellows will receive one-on-one guidance and mentorship from Harvard Alumni that want to empower artists to make the world a better place through their stories. 

The inaugural Sethna Harvardwood Fellow(s) will be announced by August 31, 2023, and the Fellowship will run from September 1, 2023 through August 31, 2024. Applicants may be at any stage of their career, and their chosen project must be a project for the screen (fiction or nonfiction, film or television). However, applicants can hold any relation to the work: writer, director, producer, etc.  

Applications will be accepted starting on July 1, 2023 and will be due July 31, 2023.

Click here for more info!

Click here to apply!

Harvardwood Summer Internship Program 2023

The 2023 Harvardwood Summer Internship Program (HSIP) is well underway!  Now in its 20th year, HSIP provides a list of summer internship opportunities in the arts, media, and entertainment to interested Harvard students. Over 100 companies have participated in HSIP since its inception, including ABC, Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, CAA, Digital Domain, Disney, Dreamworks, HBO Films, Lionsgate, Mirabai Films, Miramax, National Geographic Films, Red Wagon Productions, Skybound Entertainment, Untitled Entertainment, Valhalla Motion Pictures and many others.
In addition, HSIP facilitates career-related activities throughout the summer for participating students and companies virtually and/or in-person in Los Angeles and other cities with multiple students. Program events may include film screenings, industry panels, social gatherings and speaker events.
If you are a student interning in the arts, media and entertainment this summer, please email us to be included in upcoming HSIP events:  [email protected]

Featured Job: Music Central Assistant - New York (Endeavor) - NY

Job Description: 

Global Music/Talent agency seeks ambitious and career-oriented persons for entry-level and assistant level positions in the Music department. Rotating assistants will be eligible to apply for assistant desks after training is completed. Hired individuals may also become eligible for the Music Trainee Program to become a music agent.

Click here for more info!


Alumni Profile: Teresa Hsiao AB '07 (writer, producer)

Join us for an event with Teresa here!

by Laura Frustaci

Teresa Hsiao AB '07 is an American television producer and writer. As a screenwriter and producer, Teresa Hsiao is known for WHAT'S UP WARTHOGS! (2011), FAMILY GUY (2014), AMERICAN DAD!, FRESH OFF THE BOAT (2019), BLACK MONDAY (2019), AWKWAFINA IS NORA FROM QUEENS (2020), and she has co-written and produced JOY RIDE (2023).

Believe it or not, Teresa Hsiao (AB ‘07), one of the sharp minds behind the new raunchy comedy JOY RIDE (opening in theaters on July 7th), never imagined that the film would actually get made. The film’s origin story goes like this: Teresa, Cherry Chevapravatdumrong, and Adele Lim are old friends who kept saying to each other, ‘Wouldn’t it be fun to write a movie together that we would have wanted to see growing up?’ and then one day, they actually decided to write it. The three would gather at Adele’s house and put beats on a board, trying to make each other laugh. Once they had plotted out a rough idea for the film, Cherry and Teresa went on to write the script on spec. “We wanted to make a movie that you’ve never seen,” Teresa explains. “Asian people on screen saying these jokes, being insane, messy, and crazy.”

Ultimately, the pair took it out to producers and decided to team up with Point Grey Pictures, Seth Rogen’s production company. Point Grey had produced many successful R-rated comedies like GOOD BOYS, NEIGHBORS, and SAUSAGE PARTY – and they agreed to Teresa, Cherry, and Adele signing on as producers on the film as well. “As producers, we had more sway in how the movie turned out. As writers, we were on set the whole time, and it was all hands on deck through the entire process.” The film has since premiered with 100% approval on Rotten Tomatoes, which Teresa said feels pretty fake. “Give me one criticism, I want one person to say that it sucked,” she laughs.

Writing and producing a film is not where college-aged Teresa would have pictured herself. During college she studied Economics and initially worked in equity research. “I did the very practical thing and worked for a summer in 2006 at Lehman Brothers, one of the top tier investment banks at the time,” Teresa recalls, thinking she had chosen a “safe” career path. “Then they went bankrupt and it triggered a huge government bailout. So, the safe path ended up not being so safe.” But writing was never something that had even crossed Teresa’s mind in college. “It felt like a separate entity from me, because you rarely saw Asian women onscreen or doing comedy,” Teresa explains. “But after I did the safe thing and it didn’t work out, I started writing scripts on the side. Then I saw an ad in Harvardwood Weekly looking for comedy writers, so I sent my script in and got hired on a Canadian kids show called WHAT'S UP WARTHOGS!”. 

The writers ended up pumping out 20 episodes in 12 weeks, but it was the first time Teresa had been paid to write. “Through that, I got an agent, and the next staffing season I got hired on FAMILY GUY,” Teresa recalls. On FAMILY GUY, Teresa learned what it was to be a “writer”. “You’re not writing,” she comments. “You’re sitting on a couch and pitching jokes and a writers’ assistant is writing down everything you say.” However, Teresa was pleasantly surprised at how collaborative it was: “Your best joke might not be in your episode, and your episode might be full of other peoples’ jokes. [And] that’s what was nice about writing the movie with Cherry. We both came from a TV background. The best idea wins. You have to have no ego.”

So, certain aspects of writing for TV transferred over to the film process quite nicely for Teresa. But in terms of her long and successful history in TV, Teresa’s played the roles of both writer and a co-creator, which are definitely distinct from one another. “When you’re a writer on a show and it’s someone else’s show, you’re just pitching ideas and trying to be helpful. Someone else makes the decision about what direction you’re going in,” Teresa notes. “There are different levels of responsibility. When you’re writing on a show, someone makes decisions for you about what to write. When creating and showrunning, you have to pitch ideas and make all the decisions.”

When Teresa first made the jump from writer to showrunner on AWKWAFINA IS NORA FROM QUEENS, she said that a lot of people were there helping and supporting her through it. “You’re a leader of the hundreds of people who work for you on the crew. You’re putting out fires on set,” Teresa says. “It’s like ‘We lost this location, the actor has comments, the wardrobe doesn't have this shirt’, so many things you have to deal with on a daily basis. It’s chaos at every point.” Sounds like… fun? Yes, it is, Teresa confirms.

So how does one maneuver from writing pilots in their spare time to being a showrunner, producer, and screenwriter extraordinaire? “The biggest piece of advice,” Teresa says, “is if there ever is the chance for you to be on set and just sponge it in, do it. Try and see something through from the writing stage to shooting it. You learn so much knowing what goes from page to screen.” And, Teresa’s other major piece of advice? “It’s tough to be able to start writing,” she acknowledges. “The starting and the finishing I always find really hard. It’s okay to give yourself permission to not write. Go and live your life, experience things, turn your brain off, walk around the block, go on vacation if you’re able to. So many of your ideas are going to come out of living life versus just sitting in front of a computer screen.” As creatives, sometimes the pressure to constantly be creating can get too heavy. It’s okay to just… take a step away. And finally, Teresa leaves us with this nugget of wisdom: “The virtue of being a writer is that our work never ends.”


Dayna_Wilkinson_headshot.jpgLaura Frustaci ('21) is an NYC-based actor and writer. She recently completed a yearlong Harvard Postgraduate Traveling fellowship in Edinburgh, Scotland, where she wrote her first full-length play. While at Harvard, Laura studied English and performed with the Hasty Pudding Theatricals, the HRDC, On Thin Ice, and the American Repertory Theater.

Industry News

AMC Theaters is set to screen BLACK ICE, the documentary that unthaws the hidden history of racism against Black hockey players. The deal was negotiated by Roadside’s co-president Howard Cohen (AB ’81).

NEIGHBORS director Nicholas Stoller (AB ‘98) reunites with Rose Byrne and Seth Rogen in PLATONIC, the engaging new Apple TV+ series.

The romance movie CHARLIE HARPER, starring CODA breakout Emilia Jones and Toby Wallace and produced by Marty Bowen (AB ‘91), has sold to various international markets after being presented to buyers at the Cannes film market.

With the conclusion of season 4 of the hit TV series SUCCESSION, composer Nicholas Britell (AB ‘03) has released a 25-piece original soundtrack that accompanied the season.

Hans Canosa (AB ‘93) produces the new film HIDDEN STRIKE, starring John Cena and Jackie Chan.

According to a new report, Jason Scott Lee will be returning in Disney+’s live-action LILO AND STITCH produced by Dan Lin (MBA ‘99) and executive produced by Ryan Halprin (AB ‘12). The actor provided the voice of David in the original animated film.

Music legend Clive Davis (HLS ‘56) has a documentary about the Arista records founder currently underway, tentatively titled THE GREATEST PARTY EVER.

Ace Entertainment’s YA Romance LOVE IN TAIPEI based on the NYT bestselling book LOVEBOAT, TAIPEI by Abigail Hing Wen (AB ‘99), will premiere on Paramount+ this summer!

TBS is rewarding MIRACLE WORKERS fans by setting a new official premiere date for its fourth season, aptly titled MIRACLE WORKES:END TIMES executive produced by Simon Rich (AB ‘06). The series will premiere Monday, July 10 at 10pm ET.

Ryan Reynolds & Kenneth Branagh are set to star in MAYDAY, a new action-adventure film directed by Jonathan Goldstein (AB ‘95) and John Francis Daley for Apple and Skydance.

Brian King (SOMEBODY SOMEWHERE) has been tapped for a key recurring role opposite Jesse L. Martin in NBC drama series THE IRRATIONAL from Arika Lisanne Mittman and written by Mark Goffman (MPP ‘94).

TheBody says that Mira Nair (AB ‘79)’s musical adaptation of her feature film MONSOON WEDDING is an invitation to feminine and Queer liberation. The show played at St. Ann’s Warehouse until June 25.

Kelly Rowland, Omarion, Latto and NLE Choppa are all set to guest star in the final season of GROWN-ISH starring and executive produced by Yara Shahidi (AB ‘22).

Oscar-winning director-producer Ed Zwick (AB ‘74) is writing a memoir, HITS, FLOPS, AND OTHER ILLUSIONS, which will cover all the highs and the lows and in-betweens.

The upcoming film LANDSCAPE WITH INVISIBLE HAND, produced by Jeremy Kleiner (AB ‘98), centers on a teenage romance that takes place in a future where aliens have taken over Earth and are really interested in seeing human romantic love unfold in real time. 

Prolific genre producer Steven Schneider (GSA ‘06, AM ‘06) of Room 101, Inc. and Spooky Pictures, is teaming with Malkier Studios on a slate of horror films. Schneider’s credits include PARANORMAL ACTIVITY, BLAIR WITCH, and M. Night Shyamalan’s OLD.

SOUND OF FREEDOM,, the new film starring Mira Sorvino (AB ‘89), is a harrowing but important film exposing the reality of human trafficking. The film releases on July 4.

In case you missed it, Netflix released its first look of the AVATAR: THE LAST AIRBENDER live-action series, which is executive produced by Dan Lin (AB ‘99)!

From the creators of GAME OF THRONES comes a stunning new blockbuster series unlike anything you’ve seen before: THREE BODY PROBLEM, based on the Hugo Award-winning novel THE THREE BODY PROBLEM and executive produced by Jeremy Kleiner (AB '98)!

New Members' Welcome

Harvardwood warmly welcomes all members who joined the organization last month:

  • Justine Borer, College, NY
  • Marissa Long, College, BOS/Campus
  • Eric Chen, College, NY
  • Bob Kolodney, College, DC
  • Tricia Ann Keens Douglas, NY
  • Maria Ratanova, GSAS, LA
  • Nikki Beard, Staff Member, BOS/Campus
  • Adrienne Chan, College
  • Chiao Wen Lan, HMS, SF/Bay Area
  • Yanson Chang, College, LA
  • Stuart Johnson, College, NY
  • Thomas Traugott, College, LA
  • Laura Monacelli, GSBA, BOS/Campus
  • Cooper Prawdzik, College, Chicago
  • Joy Butler, HLS, NY
  • Martin Flusser, College, NY
  • Tom Baker, Ext., Seattle/Vancouver
  • Eleanor Gaus, Ext., NY

Exclusive Q&A with Sabrina Wu AB '20 (actor, writer)

Sabrina Wu AB '20 is an actor, writer, and stand-up. They star in the upcoming movie JOY RIDE, directed by Adele Lim and produced by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. Sabrina has written for the Disney+ show DOOGIE KAMEALOHA M.D. and two other unannounced shows for FX and Netflix. Their stand-up has been featured on the Tonight Show. In 2022, they were named a New Face of Comedy by the prestigious Just For Laughs festival in Montreal. Most recently, Variety listed Sabrina as a Top 10 Comics to Watch of 2023.

Q: Congratulations on Joy Ride! It’s a really exciting and groundbreaking film, as we’ve heard from cast + creative team interviews (and the stellar critical reception thus far– 100% on Rotten Tomatoes!). Can you talk a little bit about why the script resonated with you personally?

Some of my favorite movies growing up were ensemble comedies like Bridesmaids and Pitch Perfect. When I read the script, I knew this movie would be special in the way those movies were. Packed with jokes you’ll want to quote to your friends later and populated by characters you genuinely love and root for.

Q: The film has been described as Bridesmaids meets Crazy Rich Asians in this SFGate article. Do you feel like that’s accurate? What are you most excited for audiences to see?

I think Bridesmaids is a great comparison. We are an ensemble R-rated comedy. Crazy Rich Asians is a family-friendly rom-com, so to say they’re similar is a stretch. Crazy Rich Asians would have been an amazing title for our film though. I’m a huge fan of Stephanie Hsu, and I’m really excited for everyone to see Stephanie crush a role so different than the one she had in Everything Everywhere All at Once.

Q: A lot of the movie takes place as the four main characters travel throughout Asia. Were you able to film onsite? What was that experience like?

Yes. It was truly so special getting to film in the beautiful parts of Asia like Vancouver, Canada. My immigrant Chinese parents were always telling me about the Cascade Mountains growing up. 

Q: You’ve also written for TV. What similarities or differences did you find between being in a writers room and being on set as an actor? Do you prefer one over the other, or were they both equally collaborative experiences?

For the most part, they’re entirely different experiences. Staffing in a writer’s room is essentially an office job. Because Joy Ride was so uniquely collaborative, the actors were encouraged to  improvise on set and pitch jokes. In that sense, there were some elements of being on set that reminded me of being in a comedy writer’s room.

Q: Before Joy Ride, your performance experience was mostly improv and stand-up comedy (like on The Tonight Show). You mentioned in previous interviews that you filmed over 100 takes for your audition. How exactly did you find yourself auditioning for Joy Ride? What was the process like transitioning from standup comedy to film acting, and was it challenging to adjust to a different medium (recorded versus live performance)?

I auditioned for Joy Ride almost three years ago. I was represented by WME as only a TV writer/comic then, but I was always interested in acting. I had taken acting courses at Harvard and had been in amateur productions while in school and after graduating. I asked my agents to start letting me submit tapes because I thought there was a chance I could do it, and why not? It’s very typical for a stand-up to try their hand at acting. 

Stand-up and film acting are different enough that I didn’t think of myself as “transitioning” from one to the other. I did have to learn while shooting Joy Ride how to keep my energy up as a performer. Doing stand-up requires short bursts of energy and the laughter from a crowd can really fuel you. Film shoots are often 12 hours long and those watching are trying to keep quiet so as to not ruin the footage.

Q: Was it very different playing a “character” who’s not yourself? Or do you find when doing standup you’re also playing a sort of character? Was your “method” of preparing similar? 

That’s interesting. I guess in both mediums I’m playing a character. When I do stand-up, I’m playing a particular version of myself. A version I try to keep as close to the real me as possible. And if I notice myself changing as a person in real life, I try to make appropriate adjustments to my delivery and writing. 

When I’m playing Deadeye or other characters, I do all sorts of nerdy acting homework. I think about their objectives and tactics within a scene. I recall my own memories and emotions that help me tap into their headspace. I think of the characters as versions of myself. But far away versions.

Q: What’s next for you? Would you do more film (or TV!) acting, or are you looking to return to writing and/or stand-up comedy?

I’ll always be trying to juggle stand-up, acting, and writing. In the immediate future, I’m hoping Joy Ride will allow me to take on more acting roles in the film and TV space. Am also working on an hour of stand-up that I want to take on the road. On the writing side, I sold a pilot script to 20th Century a while back. When the strike is over and every single one of the WGA’s demands are met and more, I’m excited to keep working on that project with them.

Q: Finally, what do you like to do in your free time?

All I do is grind.

Meet the Chapter Heads: Savannah

Harvardwood would like to honor our Savannah Chapter Head, Francis Xavier Hayes (College).

Francis X. is an HGSE Alum and Cantab native. While at the Ed School, he served on the Community Committee that sponsored the Cambridge Common Concerts, a showcase for the early careers of such as James Taylor, Joan Baez and the Allman Brothers. The Concerts were a near decade-long series ( 60s to mid 70s ) of free open-air live rock and folk music Sunday Concerts.

As the elected Chair of Cambridge’s Model Cities Program he founded the Cambridge Community Learning Center and organized the nation’s first HUD-approved “Great Society“ Housing Community Development Corporation in cooperation with the Harvard Graduate School of Design and MIT’s Department of Architecture. Together they succeeded in engineering and deploying  a modular system of urban infill modular housing which saw widespread use in the US and globally.

More recently, having co-located to Savannah, Ga he was tapped to serve as International Chairman of The Pulaski Jubilee for which he was honored with a Cavalier Cross by Poland’s President, Aleksander Kwasniewski. The Jubilee, from 2000 to 2005,  facilitated the over 2 Century delayed funeral for Brig. General Count Casimir Pulaski, “Father Of The American Cavalry,“ when remains, interred in Savannah, were identified as being his, but absent confirming DNA evidence.

However, since recent DNA work has proven same are truly Pulaski’s, Francis now heads the planning and organizational efforts for international observances of same attached to the upcoming Lafayette Bicentennial in 2024 & 2025. By way of linkage, General Marquis de Lafayette laid the cornerstone for Savannah’s Pulaski Monument in 1825. Pulaski and Lafayette were friends during their military careers serving under George Washington.

For his work producing Pulaski related observances, Francis was also named an “Amicus Poloniae Laureate“ by Poland’s Ambassador to the US, Janus Reiter.

Other honorific awards for his civic and cultural leadership efforts include those granted by The Dante Alighieri Society of Massachusetts and the Sons Of The American Revolution.

Engaged civically, he recruited and engaged both Charles W. Eliot II, Landscape Architect at the Design School, and The Arnold Arboretum ‘s Gordon P. Dewolf in launching Cambridge’s first ever lower income neighborhood street and park mass planting of specimen size trees.

He then joined with feminist Ramona Barth, actor Lori James, R. Buckminster Fuller and others in establishing Maine’s Margaret Fuller Foundation. 

While resident in Cambridge, he also restored the Timothy Fuller (father of 19th century feminist Margaret) House. That personal interest in historic preservation contributed to his being appointed a member of the Cambridge Historical Commission’s “Architectural Survey,“ Cambridgeport Advisory Committee.

A movie he scripted / coproduced and narrated about innovative program solutions to urban community development challenges “The Cambridge Model“ premiered at MIT’s Kresge Auditorium’s Little Theatre. 

Other film involvements include his collaboration with Norman Mailer on his now cult status movie, “Tough Guys Don’t Dance!” which starred Ryan O’Neal and Isabella Rossellini. Francis’ Provincetown, Cape Cod residence was the location for much of the film, as was Norman’s after its furnishing by Francis.

Francis was invited by Dean Krister Stendhal to serve as a member of the Harvard Divinity School Planning Committee. He’s also been a featured speaker at the Harvard Extension’s Annual Visiting Committee Dinner.

As Special Assistant to the Cambridge City Manager, James Sullivan, he led and facilitated responses to university-sourced requests for municipal mentors. At Harvard these included The College and Law, Education, Design, Business, Public Health, Engineering Government and Divinity Schools. In certain instances he served as a mentor himself solo, or in cooperation with other Harvard Alumni.

For example, he partnered with Alumnus Ralph Hoagland, Founder of CVS, to help students jointly enrolled at both the Law and Business Schools. Ralph’s other passion was film. He established and long ran Cambridge’s Orson Wells Cinema.

Francis is now actively engaged professionally in film and digital media development in both the US and internationally (Ireland, Poland & Hong Kong / Greater Bay China) especially opportunities with a governmental production incentive utilization focus. Besides being a Harvardwood Chapter Head, he’s the Founding President Emeritus of The Harvard Club of Savannah and Coastal Georgia.

On the MIT front Francis maintains long-nurtured working associations with the Venture, now Enterprise / “E“ Forum whose creation he assisted. Likewise with the School of Architecture and Planning.

Email the Savannah Chapter Head to get involved!

Harvardwood and H4A Present: JOY RIDE Screening and Q&A with Co-Writers/Producers Teresa Hsiao and Cherry Chevapravatdumrong

Wednesday, July 5th 6pm PT (in person)
AMC Century City (10250 Santa Monica Blvd)

Join Harvardwood and the Harvard Asian American Alumni Alliance for a preview screening of JOY RIDE and a post-screening Q&A with Co-Writers/Producers Teresa Hsiao and Cherry Chevapravatdumrong! Teresa (Harvard ’07) and Cherry (Yale ‘99) will discuss their experience writing, selling, and making the critically-acclaimed comedy JOY RIDE. Afterwards, come mingle over food and drinks (not included) at Meizhou Dongpo, around the corner from AMC!

More info HERE

Harvardwood Presents: Film/TV Production Panel - The Artists Behind the Camera

Thursday, July 6 at 5pm PT / 8pm ET (virtual)

Join us for a virtual conversation about the behind-the-scenes magic of physical production from the perspectives of a cinematographer, producer, 1st AD, script supervisor, and more! We will hear from industry guests Liz Ryan (AB ’81), Jennifer Carriere, Sue Chan (AB ’92), and Andrew Sachs (AB ’97).

Jennifer Carriere

Jennifer Carriere has made hundreds of episodes of network television and dozens of films as a Script Supervisor and Producer. Becoming an excellent Script Supervisor led her directly to becoming a high-volume TV Producer. A former engineer with a love of systems and solving problems, Jennifer created a highly disruptive and efficient method for breaking aspiring filmmakers into Hollywood the fast way, via the powerful and overlooked Script Supervisor role - a position for which the film job market is fiery hot.  

Liz Ryan (AB ’81)

Liz Ryan is a production manager who Co-Chairs the Directors Guild of America’s Womens Committee, and sits on both the boards of the Directors Guild-Producers Pension and Health Plans and the Directors Guild-Producers Training Plan. She has served as a member of the DGA National Board, and on the Guild’s Negotiating Committees responsible for the collective bargaining agreements with the AMPTP in 2011, 2014, 2017 and 2020. In 2008 Ryan received the DGA’s prestigious Frank Capra Achievement Award in recognition of her career achievements and service to the Guild. Starting as a Directors Guild of America Trainee in New York City, Ryan has since worked on over 70 movie and television productions throughout the world as a director, producer, production manager or assistant director. Her credits include the movies The Green Mile, Alien 3, Brokedown Palace, Waiting for Guffman, and the television series Station 19, Crazy Ex Girlfriend, The Office, and Freak and Geeks among others. She is currently developing her own projects. Prior to her work in Hollywood, she worked as a reporter and photographer for Time Magazine and the New York Times.

Sue Chan (AB ’92)

Sue was born in New York City and raised in central New Jersey where her parents co-owned the only Chinese restaurant in town. After studying design with a minor in East Asian Studies, she and her husband moved to San Francisco where she found work first in architecture, then in theater before entering film and television. She splits her residence between Los Angeles and Connecticut. Over the past 25 years, she has worked in both independent and studio film projects as well as short form and long form T.V. and commercials.

Select film design credits: Landscape with Invisible Hand with director Cory Findley for MGM/Plan B/Annapurna. Where the Crawdads Sing for Sony 3000, Shang-Chi for Marvel Studios, Shirley (U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Auteur Filmmaking in 2020) for Killer Films, The Half of It for Netflix, The Etruscan’s Smile with Oscar Nominated Directors Oded Binum and Mihal Brezis, Colossal with Oscar nominated director Nacho Vigalondo, The Congress with Oscar-nominated director Ari Folman (selected for the director’s fortnight at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival).

Series design credits include Patriot Season 2 for Amazon Studios, the Fox T.V. series The Grinder and Weird Loners as well as a pilot for Greg Daniels, the producer of The Office.

Andrew Sachs (AB ’97)

Andrew Sachs brings hands-on creative and technical experience as a director of photography to his work as a producer. He is currently Line Producer on a documentary series with Campfire Studios and recently served as Line Producer for the Showtime Docuseries “Boys in Blue” directed by Pete Berg.

As Head of Production at Dirty Robber during the pandemic, he produced two Netflix Original docuseries, “Heist” and “We Are The Champions,” and the Oscar-winning live action scripted short film “Two Distant Strangers,” which was acquired by Netflix. At Dirty Robber, Andrew also oversaw production of commercial work for Nike and facilitated the expansion of documentary series production capacity, which included the Emmy-winning series “Tom vs Time” for Facebook Watch and Emmy-nominated programs “Breaking 2” for National Geographic Network and globetrotting “Why We Fight” series for ESPN.

Previously, Andrew founded and operated production company Walking Pictures and produced branded, corporate, and independent feature films, including the LA Film Critics Award-winning “The David Whiting Story” (2014). Andrew’s experience as a director of photography spans documentary, branded content, music videos, and independent feature films including the “live on stage, on film” adaptation of the classic anti-war text “Johnny Got His Gun” (2008, starring Ben McKenzie) and stoner detective noir “Sunken City” (2012). Born and raised in New York City, Andrew graduated magna cum laude from Harvard with a degree in Visual and  Environmental Studies (now AVFS). At Harvard, acclaimed documentary filmmaker Robb Moss and legendary director Dusan Makaveyev provided lasting inspiration.

More info HERE

Last Month at Harvardwood

Last month at Harvardwood we toured the Perelman Performing Arts Center (PAC NYC), celebrated Pride 2023 with Echo Lake Entertainment, got real life advice with Peter Blake, and much more! 

We also remembered to brush our teeth every night this month, but these are just some of the many events we had the pleasure of hosting last month at Harvardwood


List of All Upcoming Harvardwood Events Here

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In these unprecedented times, we are doubling down on providing impactful programming that not only helps our membership build and further entertainment careers, but create socially active habits and spheres of influence and knowledge. The entertainment industry is changing before our eyes, and our recent programming is just the tip of the iceberg. We'd love your help in furthering this mission. In various capacities, we work hard to create programming that you, the membership, would like to be engaged with. Please consider joining Harvardwood and becoming an active member of our arts, media, and entertainment community



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