- Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019
WeForShe – a woman’s advocacy group focused on creating practical ways to establish more gender equality in television – today announced its 2019 WriteHer List. The fifth annual list features scripts curated from hundreds of nominations by network and studio execs, showrunners, producers and directors and highlights the depth and breadth of female-written, female-driven unproduced, available, television scripts.
Culled from a record 500 plus nominations, the 2019 WriteHer List reflects an over 50% increase in industry engagement. Scripts are evaluated based on a variety of criteria including diversity of cast, the Bechdel Test and the number and quality of female roles. This year’s list incorporates great comedies, family dramas, sci-fi and horror narratives from a wide spectrum of traditionally underrepresented voices.
“We are thrilled to see how the engagement has grown with the community year over year. We are also proud to see our former honorees joining the ranks of so many incredible tv shows, such as THIS IS US, 13 REASONS WHY, THE PASSAGE, ABBY’S and others. And are absolutely overjoyed for the debut of upcoming shows RED LINE (CBS) and DICKINSON (Apple) that were featured on our previous WriteHer List,” said WeForShe co-founder Claudia Maittlen-Harris.
Since its inception in 2015, the WriteHer List has emerged as a go-to resource for executives seeking female-driven quality pilot scripts written by women. Highlighting up-and-coming and establish talented women, the list seeks to answer the endemic gender equality issue in representation on television.
The 2019 WriteHer List (Alphabetical by Script Name)
1-900-BITCHIN by Yael Galena
ALMOST OLYMPIAN by Emma Jay
BBBW by Tiffany Ezuma
BIRDIE by Simran Baidwan
BLISSFIELD by Marguerite MacIntyre
CASUALTIES by Van B Nguyen
DISRUPTED by Arielle Diaz
LA COYOTE by Rebecca Feldman
OUTTA FLORIDA by Lavetta Cannon
PASADENA by Eve Crusto
REJIG by Nneka Samuel
SAFE SPACE by Julie Mandel-Folly
SHE SAID... by Kimberly Rose-Wolter
THE APOLOGY TOUR by Deanna Shumaker
THE BOOK OF RUTH by Gillian Horvath
THE NEW KINGS OF WEST HOLLYWOOD by Emma Dudley
THORNS by Caroline Levich & Michelle Badillo
VESTA by Jenny Deiker Restivo
WINTEROVERS by Nilanjana Bose-Ciupinska & Jakub Ciupinski
WOMAN OF MYSTERY by Tess Rafferty
ONES TO WATCH (Alphabetical by Script Name)
A MATTER OF PRINCIPLE by Meg Jackson
DAMNED by Karolyn Carnie
PERFECT by Spindrift Beck
PLOT by Megan Gray
THE CANTERBURY TALES by Nicole Avenia
The WriteHer list has spawned a series of success stories in its quest to create a more balanced field of writers on television in the US. 2016 Honoree Hayley Tyler, currently Co-Executive Producer on the hit Netflix series 13 REASONS WHY, said "It's more important than ever to empower female storytellers and create content with complex female characters driving the narrative. The WriteHer List provides a fantastic opportunity for new voices to be heard by industry executives, helping to change the TV landscape."
“I’m so grateful for WeForShe's persistence in bridging the gender gap, shining a light on otherwise unseen female talent, and building a community of storytellers and execs who believe in fostering diversity in entertainment both on and offscreen,” shared Jenny Lynn WriteHer List 2015 Honoree and now co-producer on MAYAN’S. “It’s through WeForShe’s WriteHer List that my work finally got in the right hands and helped me land representation and employment.”
Some key success stories of alumnae of the list include:
- RED LINE (2016 WriteHer List) , by Caitlin Parrish and Erica Weiss, is set up at CBS with Ava DuVernay executive producing with Berlanti Productions and starring Noah Wyle.
- DICKINSON (2016 Write Her List), by Alena Smith, has been ordered to series at Apple, starring Hailee Steinfeld.
- Eboni Freeman (2018 WriteHer List) was staffed on THIS IS US soon after the list’s release.
- Lorna Osunsanmi (2017 WriteHer List) was staffed on Hulu’s THE PATH after the list’s release and her episode of ALL AMERICAN on the CW airs on February 6.
- Thembi Banks and Rochee Jeffries (2016 WriteHer list) went on to be staffed on DAYTIME DIVAS, STEP UP and SMILF and write and direct projects of their own. Banks is currently co-producer on the UNTITLED HILDE LYSIAK PROJECT for Apple and is set to write THE UNTITLED DOUBLE DUTCH PROJECT at Universal based on an original idea for producer Malcolm D. Lee (Girls Trip).
- Blair Butler (2016 WriteHer List), known for her work on the FRESH INK and other segments on the G4 program ATTACK OF THE SHOW, was tapped to develop for four feature horror films including Hell Fest and The Steps, recently announced for Bad Robot.
- Jenny Lynn (2015 WHL) just joined THE MAYANS as co-producer
- Jacquie Walters and Taylor Cox (2018 WHL) staffed on ABBY's after being featured on the list. NBC's ABBY's is premiering March 28th.
- Elizabeth Higgins Clark's 2018 WHL script INTENDED was optioned by Participant Media and is in development. Currently, she is staffed on Netflix’s SPINNING OUT.
WeForShe is an organization formed by women in media, for women in media, with a mission to achieve gender balanced television. The organization is behind the annual WriteHer List, a go-to resource for the top female-driven scripts available in television, whose nominees have gone on to have their scripts produced, be staffed on shows, gain new representation, and secure development meetings. WeForShe created the DirectHer Program, with a goal to facilitate more women working behind the camera directing episodic television. Founded by four women - global platform strategist Annalea Rawicz Arnold, Gersh agent Katy McCaffrey, writer and comedian Claudia Maittlen-Harris, and actress Jenni Blong – the advisory board is comprised of women spanning multiple disciplines including Jo DiSante, Vice President of Current Programming at ABC Entertainment Group, Miura Kite, SVP of Narrative Television at Participant Media, actress and women’s right activist Sharon Lawrence, programming executive and executive producer Maggie Malina, and RIZZOLI & ISLES creator Janet Tamaro. For more information, please visit www.weforshe.org