Later this month, 30 students from the RTA School of Media at Toronto’s Ryerson University will head to Los Angeles for a two week intensive course on writing and producing for the US market. RTA in LA is a for-credit program that will give the students hands-on experience and networking opportunities with senior staff in the US film, television and media industries.
Offered in partnership with University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), this exclusive program is available to Ryerson students only. RTA in LA will run from August 19 to 31 and will include 60 hours of lectures and seminars, in addition to tours, meetings and networking functions with industry insiders in L.A.
The 30 RTA students will have the opportunity to meet with a number of industry professionals including award-winning producers, writers, show-runners, management and talent agencies, as well as network executives. Participating executives include:
Tom Nunan, Executive Producer, Network Executive. (TV Series: Crash, Angela’s Eyes Features: The Illusionist)
· John Pasquin, Executive Producer/ Director (TV Series: Home Improvement, Last Man Standing, Rules of Engagement Features: The Santa Clause, Miss Congeniality 2)
· Robert Moresco, Oscar-winning Writer (Crash, Million Dollar Baby)
· Cathy Schulman, Oscar-winning Executive/ Producer (Crash, The Illusionist, Salvation Boulevard, Angela’s Eyes)
· Joel Surnow, Executive Producer/Writer (The Kennedys, 24)
· Joe Russo, Emmy Award-winning Executive Producer/Director of (Television series: Arrested Development, Community and Happy Endings Feature: You, Me and Dupree)
· David Gale, Executive Vice President, MTVX at MTV Networks
· Barbara Boyle, Executive/ Producer (Phenomenon, Cinema Paradiso, My Left Foot)
“RTA is educating media leaders for a global market. This course and the exposure it will provide to the US industry will help demystify the LA scene,” says Charles Falzon, Chair of the RTA School of Media at Ryerson. “Our students will learn that they can produce creative work for any market, including the U.S.”
In addition to meeting with industry executives, students will be able to spend time on the sets of two current US productions; ABC’s new sit-com Animal Practice, where they will meet Executive Producer Joe Russo, and reality show Hell’s Kitchen to meet Executive Producer and RTA alumni, Arthur Smith. The two-week long program culminates with Ryerson students pitching their ideas to a group of network executives.
Ryerson University is designing the course content which will focus on television, with an emphasis on the roles of show runners and producers from hit television sitcoms. Course leaders will be Falzon and RTA’s James Nadler. UCLA will provide the facilities and faculty. It is hoped that this will become an annual program for RTA students.