afi alumni – American Film Institute

Alfonso Gomez-Rejon and Frederick Elmes on Filming HUNTERS and What They Learned at AFI

Growing up on the Texas/Mexico border in the ‘80s, director Alfonso Gomez-Rejon’s (AFI Class of 1995) first introduction to the work of legendary cinematographer Frederick Elmes (AFI Class of 1972) was a worn-out VHS tape of BLUE VELVET. Describing Elmes’ filmmaking as “hypnotic,” Gomez-Rejon continued his initiation with other films shot by Elmes – ERASERHEAD,…

The CARES Act and What It Means for AFI Alumni 

On March 27, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security “CARES” Act was signed into legislation in order to offset the economic hardships brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. Below are a few key provisions that we hope will be beneficial to AFI Alumni: A Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program that will last through December 31,…

AFI Alumni Projects Online

With movie audiences across the country taking COVID-19 precautions and staying at home, AFI would like to take this opportunity to celebrate the recent work of alumni. And you can help support our alumni too! Whether it’s a long-awaited digital premiere or a first-run theatrical release headed to VOD early, be sure to check out…

Industry and Community Resources for AFI Alumni

With the impact of the coronavirus slowing our community to a standstill, AFI is committed to helping Conservatory alumni during this challenging time. Below are community resources for different sectors of the industry and links to grants and relief funds, as well as health and mental health resources. Please email us at Alumni@AFI.com if you…

AFI Alum Heidi Levitt On Collaborating With Directors and Casting Sally Potter’s New Film

AFI alumna Heidi Levitt (Class of 1987) has established herself as a versatile casting director and producer, crisscrossing artistic mediums from theater to television to film to commercials. Her new film, THE ROADS NOT TAKEN, recently had its World Premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival. Reuniting with director Sally Potter for the fourth time,…

Production Designer Yong Ok Lee on her Sundance films MINARI and THE FAREWELL

Following her work on the critically-acclaimed THE FAREWELL – a 2019 AFI AWARDS recipient, AFI alum Yong Ok Lee (Production Design, Class of 2013) returned to Sundance for the second year in a row with MINARI – which won the U.S. dramatic grand jury prize and the dramatic audience award at this year’s festival. The film, inspired by director…

AFI Alumni Projects to Screen at SXSW 2020

SXSW Film Festival announced their 2020 lineup and we’re proud of the many alumni who will be representing the AFI Conservatory and keeping it weird in Austin this March. Here is the full list of the alumni and their projects that will be screening at SXSW 2020:   BE WATER Cinematographer: Caleb Heller (AFI Class…

AFI Alums earn Oscar Noms

On January 13, 2020, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced the nominees for the 92nd Academy Awards®.  Congratulations to the following AFI Conservatory alumni for their Oscar nominations: Scott Silver (AFI Class of 1992) Best Adapted Screenplay – JOKER Robert Richardson (AFI Class of 1979) Best Cinematography – ONCE UPON A TIME…IN…

AFI Alum Scott Silver Scores BAFTA and WGA Nominations for JOKER

Congratulations to AFI alum and Academy Award®-nominated screenwriter Scott Silver who received a BAFTA nomination and a WGA nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay for co-writing JOKER, alongside writer/director Todd Phillips. This marks his second BAFTA and WGA nominations, after he was nominated for Best Original Screenplay for THE FIGHTER in 2011. JOKER, which premiered at…

Alex Michaelides On Writing “The Silent Patient,” Uma Thurman’s Advice & Plan B Optioning the Movie Rights

When Alex Michaelides (AFI Class of 2004) released his first novel “The Silent Patient” earlier this year, he not only had a taut and spellbinding psychological thriller on his hands, but also a hit novel that debuted at #1 on The New York Times Best Sellers List. Michaelides studied English literature at Cambridge University, received…

AFI Alumni Shortlisted for Academy Awards

Congratulations to the AFI thesis film MILLER & SON which has been shortlisted for an Academy Award® in the Live Action Short Film category! It was just two months ago that MILLER AND SON director Asher Jelinsky (AFI Class of 2018) won a Gold Medal at the Student Academy Awards®. And STAY CLOSE, a labor…

Television Academy Honors AFI Conservatory Thesis Films

Another proud moment for AFI Conservatory Alumni! Two AFI thesis films – THEY WON’T LAST and BALLON – received nominations from the Television Academy’s 40th Annual College Television Awards for excellence in college student-produced films. And  the AFI film FORT IRWIN was named as the recipient of the 2020 Loreen Arbus Focus on Disability Scholarship….
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