I’m excited to serve as a juror, and feel like I’m in fine company!
Derek Connolly | Screenwriter
Derek Connolly is currently writing Second Act for Alexander Payne’s company Ad Hominem and Fox Searchlight, which is his first solo project since winning the Independent Spirit Award for Best First Screenplay and the Sundance Film Festival Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award for Safety Not Guaranteed. The film was released by FilmDistrict. Derek is also co-writing Jurassic Park 4 with Colin Trevorrow for Universal Pictures. He co-wrote Intelligent Life for Big Beach Films, and also co-wrote Flight of the Navigator and Hank with Colin, both at Disney. He spent a year writing for Pixar in the Bay Area before moving back to Los Angeles. Derek grew up in Miami before attending film school at NYU.
Stephen Stanley | Ketchup Enterainment
Stephen Stanley has a broad background in independent film finance and distribution. He is currently Head of Acquisitions at US Distributor Ketchup Entertainment, where he has overseen the development of the company’s initial slate. Prior to joining Ketchup, he spent five years at The Gersh Agency working within Gersh’s Film Finance and Distribution division, where he assisted in the sale of a diverse array of titles and helped to package and structure multiple features. Stephen received an MFA in Film and Television Production from the Savannah College of Art and Design in 2007.
Dave Bossert | Walt Disney Animation Studios
Dave Bossert is a Producer, Creative Director and Head of Special Projects at Walt Disney Animation Studios. He is currently overseeing numerous other projects for various divisions across The Walt Disney Company globally. Dave works in a variety of animation techniques including 2D, CG, & Live Action combinations; 3D & specialty projection formats.
Philip d’Amecourt | WME
Phil d’Amecourt is a partner at WME and an agent in its Motion Picture Department. His clients include Neill Blomkamp, Jonah Nolan, Ben Wheatley, Wally Pfister, James Watkins, the Russo brothers, Drew Pearce, David Caspe, Jeremy Brock, Rhett Reese & Paul Wernick, and Katie Dippold, among others. A Washington, D.C. native, d’Amecourt attended the University of Colorado, subsequently working at Clear Channel and then Tribune Company there before moving to Los Angeles in 2001, when he started in the Endeavor mailroom.
Mike Simpson | WME
Mike Simpson is a partner at WME and an agent in its motion picture department. His clients include filmmakers Timur Bekmambetov, Tim Burton, Wes Craven, Gareth Edwards, Mike Judge, Jonah Nolan, Chan-wook Park, Trey Parker & Matt Stone, Kevin Reynolds, Walter Salles, Barry Sonnenfeld, Quentin Tarantino, among others. After receiving a Master of Arts from the University of Texas, Simpson entered the William Morris agent training program in 1979. He went on to serve as an executive vice president and co-head of the motion pictures department at the William Morris Agency, where he was also a member of the company’s board of directors.
Daniel Vang | Benderspink
Daniel Vang started at William Morris as a feature film literary assistant where he worked for two years before eventually landing at Benderspink (We’re the Millers, The Hangover, American Pie) as a literary manager in both film and TV. Daniel graduated from the Savannah College of Art and Design and hates long walks on the beach.