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UFVA 2017 Conference Keynote Events Announced!

Friday, June 9, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Andrea Meyer
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UFVA is thrilled to announce the keynote speakers for the 2017 conference will be Reggie Rock Bythewood and Gina Prince-Bythewood. Following a screening of their hit Fox Television show “Shots Fired” and a Q&A with the creators, the Directors Guild of America will host a presentation of its Visual History Program.


The events will take place on Sunday, July 30, 2017 

9:00am Screening of “Shots Fired” (Fox Television)

9:50am Meet the “Shots Fired” creative team, creator/writer/producers Reggie Rock Bythewood and Gina Prince-Bythewood

11:30-12 Presentation of the Directors Guild of America’s Visual History Program


Gina Prince-Bythewood wrote and directed the widely acclaimed feature film “Love & Basketball,” which premiered at the 2000 Sundance Film Festival. Prince-Bythewood won an Independent Spirit Award for Best First Screenplay and a Humanitas Prize for her work on the film. She followed that success with the cable film “Disappearing Acts.”

In 2008, she wrote and directed the celebrated adaptation of the best-selling novel “The Secret Life of Bees.” The all-star cast included Dakota Fanning, Queen Latifah, Paul Bettany, Jennifer Hudson, Sophie Okonedo and Alicia Keys. The film won two People’s Choice Awards and two NAACP Image Awards.

Her third feature, 2014’s “Beyond the Lights,” garnered an Academy Award nomination for best song.

Prince-Bythewood studied at University of California Los Angeles’ School of Theater, Film and Television, where she received the Gene Reynolds Scholarship for Directing and the Ray Stark Memorial Scholarship for Outstanding Undergraduate. Upon her graduation, she was hired as a writer on the television series “A Different World.” She continued to write and produce for network television on series such as “Felicity,” “South Central” and “Sweet Justice,” before making the transition to directing. Her television directorial debut was the “Schoolbreak” special “What About Your Friends,” which won Prince-Bythewood an NAACP Image Award for Best Children’s Special and two Emmy Award nominations for writing and directing. She also won a Community Service Emmy Award for her work with the Rap-it-Up campaign. Up next, Prince-Bythewood will co-write and direct the film adaptation of “An Untamed State.”


Reggie Rock Bythewood made his feature film directorial debut on the acclaimed indie film “Dancing in September.” He also directed the film “Biker Boyz”; the documentary “Daddy’s Girls,” starring Laila Ali; the 30 FOR 30 documentary, “One Night in Vegas”; and “Gun Hill,” the cable film for which he won the 2014 NAACP Image Award.

A Bronx native, Bythewood graduated from Marymount Manhattan College with a B.F.A. in theater. He also co-founded the New York City-based theater company, The Tribe.

Bythewood began his screenwriting career as one of the first members of Walt Disney’s prestigious Writers Fellowship Program. From there, he was hired as a writer on the hit comedy series “A Different World.” He went on to write and produce Dick Wolf’s drama series, “New York Undercover.” He also did production rewrites for action films produced by Joel Silver. After attending the Million Man March, Bythewood wrote the screenplay for Spike Lee’s indie film, “Get on the Bus.” He received a written-by credit on the 2009 film “Notorious.”