2023 Winners of Harvardwood Writers Competition & Most Staffable TV Writers

Harvardwood has announced its latest set of Writers Competition winners, also naming its Most Staffable TV Writer for 2023.

The official arts, media, and entertainment alumni organization for Harvard University, Harvardwood looks to spotlight talented up-and-coming writers from diverse backgrounds and to connect them with mentors, as well as producers, agencies, and management companies.

Writer-producers participating in this year’s program as mentors include Neal Baer (ERDesignated Survivor), Emily Halpern (80 for BradyBooksmart), and Jeff Schaffer (Dave, Curb Your Enthusiasm).

The winners of Harvardwood’s competition were chosen via a blind judging process. In addition to one-on-one mentorship, each will receive a cash prize.

In recent years, participants in the Harvardwood Writers Program and Competition have seen success with pilot sales to ABC, the CW, Disney+, Jim Henson Company, Netflix, Showtime, Sony, Syfy, and TV Land, in addition to blind script deals at ABC Studios and Warner Bros. Harvardwood writers have been staffed on over two dozen shows, and recent shows include: Almost Paradise (WGN), American Dad (Fox), Animaniacs (Hulu), Awkwafina is Nora from Queens (Comedy Central), Billions (Showtime), Bridgerton (Netflix), DC's Legends of Tomorrow (CW), Emergence (ABC), Family Guy (FOX), Fear the Walking Dead (AMC), The Flash (CW), Future Man (Hulu), The Goldbergs (ABC), Gotham (Fox), Grey's Anatomy (ABC), The Handmaid's Tale (Hulu), Homeland (Showtime), How To Get Away With Murder (ABC), In The Dark (CW), Jane the Virgin (CW), Manhunt: Deadly Games (CBS), Manifest (Netflix), Marvel’s Runaways (Hulu), Power (Starz), Queen Sugar (OWN),The Resident (FOX), Shadowhunters (Freeform), Stargirl (CW), The Simpsons (Fox), Tab Time (YouTube), and The Society (Netflix). Among our feature film writers, successes include writing for: Circle of Confusion, Electric Entertainment, Lionsgate, Marvel Films, and Netflix.

Participants have secured representation at 3 Arts, Apostle, Benderspink, Brant Rose Agency, Brillstein Entertainment Partners, CAA, Circle of Confusion, Echo Lake, Gersh, ICM, Madhouse Entertainment, Management 360, Mosaic, Original Artists, UTA, WME, and others.

Here is the list of the winners of the 2023 Harvardwood Writers Competition.

FEATURE Category Winners (tied for first place):

EMERY & ELLSWORTH MAKE A PICTURE by Madi Stine (adventure)

Logline: In 1911, when brothers Emery and Ellsworth Kolb take a motion picture camera down 1,200 miles of unrelenting river to make the world's first outdoor adventure film, they are met with more adventure than they bargained for, realizing the biggest obstacles lie not in the wilderness, but in each other.

Madi Stine is an award-winning writer/director based in Los Angeles. She’s interested in stories about dreamers who see the magic in the everyday. A graduate of Harvard (BA, English and Visual & Environmental Studies) and Columbia (MFA, Screenwriting/Directing), Madi's short films have screened internationally, her writing has placed in various competitions, and she's been a participant of the CineStory Feature Retreat and Cine Qua Non's Script Revision Lab.

SHORT TIME by Anthony Zonfrelli (drama)

Logline: A washed-up, dropout wrestling referee in his 30s goes back to finish high school and win a state championship like his late father, hoping to seize the moment he ran from fifteen years ago...albeit this time as an "adult." 

Anthony felt he was destined for greatness after winning the Massachusetts Baby America Pageant as a toddler. After decades of wrestling, he’s now older (and uglier). He loves to reach people with his writing, specializing in scripts rich in heart and exemplifying his charismatic, smart, and darkly weird sense of humor. Anthony is both a Harvard alum and, to his parents' chagrin, a comedian, having performed in hundreds of standup and improv shows across the world. He grew up on a cranberry bog, leaving him only with his imagination. And cranberries.




FUCKBOI by Warner James Wood (one-hour drama)

Logline: A limited series set between the Hollywood Hills and Skid Row, FUCKBOI tells the story of three unlikely heroes from totally different walks of life who must band together to triumph over one man’s deadly abuse of power and take down the unjust systems that enabled him. Inspired by true events.

Warner James Wood was raised in the Appalachian Mountains before receiving his undergraduate degree in Human Evolutionary Biology from Harvard University. After, he took an MFA in Poetry from the Helen Zell Writers’ Program, worked on Wall Street as a structured derivatives trader, and finally moved to Los Angeles to complete a graduate screenwriting fellowship through the American Film Institute as a Geffen Fellow. Currently, he works for his mentor, Mark Fish (SCANDAL), developing Blake Crouch’s New York Times bestseller, RECURSION, for Shondaland & Netflix. 


Warner James Wood (FUCKBOI

Warner James Wood was awarded the additional honor of "Most Staffable Writer" because his outstanding TV pilot was incubated in the Harvardwood Writers Program.

For more information about any of these scripts or writers, please contact [email protected]

Click here for the Harvardwood Writers Competition announcement in Deadline.

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