Powerhouse Ladies in Entertainment & Tech

Powerhouse Ladies in Entertainment & Tech

Join us for a panel discussion where we shine a spotlight on, and celebrate the hurdles and successes of, women in Entertainment & Tech. The panelists will also offer advice to students who are exploring careers in these creative spaces!

Panelists Include:

Robin Mayemura, Skydance VP of Corporate & Interactive Talent Acquisition

Magali Lamourelle, Amazon Sr. Product Manager | XCM Engagement Marketing

Breyon Johnson, Better Youth Grad Skydance Animation + Live Action Intern

A Director’s Journey: Conversation with Award-winning Director Pete Chatmon

A Director's Journey: Conversation with Award-winning Director Pete Chatmon

Join us for an in-depth conversation with director Pete Chatmon! Moderated by LAFS Faculty, Jay Zabriskie, the conversation will include best practices for working with a creative team, and the how & why behind the choices directors make for their audience. They will also discuss Pete Chatmon’s new book, “Transitions: A Director’s Journey and Motivational Handbook,” inspiring new directors.

Pete’s credits include: Insecure, Silicon Valley, You, Atypical, Grey’s Anatomy, Black-ish, A Million Little Things, Station 19, Mixed-ish, Single Parents, All Rise, Blindspotting, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Grown-ish, The Last OG, Greenleaf, and Mythic Quest.


With a deft ability to balance both half-hour single-camera comedies and one-hour dramas, PeteChatmon has directed episodes of HBO Max’s The Flight Attendant, Insecure, Silicon Valley, and Love Life, Netflix’s You and Atypical, ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy, Black-ish, A Million Little Things, Station 19, Mixed-ish and Single Parents, CBS’s All Rise and The Unicorn, Starz’ Blindspotting, FX’s It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, FreeForm’s Grown-ish, TBS’s The Last OG, OWN’s Greenleaf, and the Apple TV+ series Mythic Quest. He is in development on The Education of Matt Barnes with Showtime, for which he will direct the pilot and serve as executive producer and is currently co-executive producer and producing director on Reasonable Doubt, the first project to be produced via Hulu’s Onyx Collective. His debut feature as writer/director, “Premium”, starred Dorian Missick, Zoe Saldana, and Hill Harper and premiered on Showtime after a limited theatrical run. Chatmon also wrote, produced, and directed “761st”, a documentary on the first black tank battalion in WWII, narrated by Andre Braugher. He received the Tribeca Film Institute “All Access” Program’s Creative Promise Narrative Award for the heist screenplay “$FREE.99”. Through TheDirector, his Digital Studio, he has directed, shot, and edited content for advertising agencies and Fortune 500 brands. Chatmon’s career began in 2001 with the Sundance selection of his NYU thesis film, “3D”, starring Kerry Washington. His most recent short film, “BlackCard”, premiered on HBO, and his narrative podcast, “Wednesday Morning” engaged voters around the 2020 election. He is developing several episodic concepts and feature films while booking episodes for the upcoming cable, broadcast, and streaming seasons. His podcast, “Let’s Shoot! with Pete Chatmon” is available on YouTube, iTunes, and all podcast platforms. His debut book, “Transitions: A Director’s Journey and Motivational Handbook” was recently released by Michael Wiese Productions, publisher of the world’s best-selling books for independent filmmakers.

Follow him on Instagram and Twitter @petechatmon.


Book: https://www.amazon.com/Transitions-Directors-Journey-Motivational-Handbook/dp/161593331X/

Website: https://petechatmon.com/

Changing the Face of PR Panel

Changing the Face of PR Panel

Join us for a roundtable discussion featuring black executives from Warner Media, Netflix and Starz. In their roles at these companies, these execs focus on inclusivity, while elevating the importance of authentic and intentional representation in the industry.

Military Conversations with Animation Alumnus, David Estes

Military Conversations with Animation Alumnus, David Estes

Join us for “Military Conversations” feature Animation alumni David Estes, as we catch up with him and learn about his journey in the world of animation and his latest projects.

Check out his game and work!

YouTube: http://youtube.com/c/DavidEstesCreations

Animation Studio Manager (My Game): https://store.steampowered.com/app/1720240/Animation_Studio_Manager/

IMDb: https://www.imdb.com/name/nm4592295/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/DavidECreations

Exploring the World of Multicultural Marketing with HBO

Exploring the World of Multicultural Marketing with HBO

Don’t miss our exclusive virtual conversation featuring Jessica Vargas – Director, Multicultural Marketing, at HBO and HBO Max, in her role, Jessica focuses on inclusivity while developing authentic and intentional campaigns that reflect the diverse world that we live in. With the launch of HBO’s ambicultural movement and campaign, Pa’lante!, she is helping to shape the future of HBO and multi-cultural marketing. You won’t want to miss this chat!

Moderated by Evelyn Brito

Jessica Vargas Director, Multicultural Marketing, HBO Max and HBO

Jessica Vargas is director, Multicultural Marketing, at HBO Max and HBO, working across the HBO Max portfolio, responsible for the strategic and creative oversight of targeted marketing efforts and business initiatives to the network’s Latino audiences. This includes HBO, HBO Latino, and all of HBO’s digital platforms. ​

Among her most recent accomplishments at HBO Max and HBO, Jessica led the successful launch of HBO Max’s new audience initiative, Pa’lante! an always-on social platform to engage the Latinx audience with the purpose of representing, celebrating, and empowering the community and ultimately driving retention, loyalty, and viewership growth. She also recently spearheaded the launch of “Are You Listening?” a content series inspired by the HBO award-winning series Habla and the Pa’lante Promise, a way to support Latino creatives through a partnership with WarnerMedia’s OneFifty. In the past 3 years, she has also launched a Latino Stand-Up competition, a Latinx Short-Film competition, and a New York City school program bringing the arts to students of color.

Jessica has also led the development of award-winning marketing campaigns for Habla y Vota (Mosaic Media Image Award for Advocacy & New York Festival Award Certificate), El Hipnotizador (Festival Iberoamericano de Promociones y Eventos (Grand Prix Crystal)), Alejandro Sanz + Carlos Santana (National Association for Multi-ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC) Excellence in Multicultural Marketing Award (EMMA)), and Yandel (New York Festival Award, Bronze World Medal).

​Jessica joined HBO as a marketing associate, Affiliate Operations, in 2010, where she was responsible for the development and implementation of provider-specific print and media campaigns for acquisition and retention marketing activity related to segment marketing, documentaries, sports, retail and new product launches. In 2012, Jessica was promoted to marketing manager and in 2015, the Multicultural marketing team was restructured and placed under the Consumer Marketing division of HBO.

​Before her career at HBO, Jessica worked at Reader’s Digest and Parenting Magazine where she partnered with sales reps to respond to RFPs, offering and executing merchandising proposals for such brands as Neutrogena, Kraft, Motts, Pepperidge Farm, and Clorox. At Reader’s Digest she got her first taste of Hispanic Marketing when she developed custom integrated marketing presentations for Selecciones and selecionnes.com, the Hispanic magazine part of Reader’s Digest.

Jessica holds a BA in International Business with a minor in French from The State University of New York at New Paltz. She is a member of Chi Alpha Epsilon (XAE), Educational Opportunity Program National Honor Society. For more information, please visit www.vargasjessica.com.

Eyes on the Prize with Official Latino Film Festival Founder, Danny Hastings

Eyes on the Prize with Official Latino Film Festival Founder, Danny Hastings

Don’t miss our exclusive chat with filmmaker Danny Hastings. Danny created the Official Latino Film Festival in 2015, in response to the lack of Latinx representation in Hollywood films and TV shows. Its mission is to showcase, nurture, and support the emerging creative Latinx filmmakers who produce, direct and/or write their films in the United States.

Barrier Breakers: Building Your Empire with Alumni Alex Ferrufino & David Mansanalez

Barrier Breakers: Building Your Empire with Alumni Alex Ferrufino & David Mansanalez

Fresh off his 2021 Spotlight Academy honor, Alex Ferrufino, is back with his business partner and fellow alum, David Mansanalez to share all about their latest project, In Broad Daylight, running a small business, and everything you need to know about the unions that run the film industry.

In conjunction with Hispanic Heritage + Latinx month we’re excited to bring you a discussion with LAFS alumni Alex Ferrufino and David Mansanalez. 2021 Spotlight Academy Inductee, Alex Ferrufino and his team at 4 Ways Entertainment don’t stop! They’re back to share the scoop about their latest project, In Broad Daylight, the ins-and-outs of running of your own production company, and everything you need to know about unions. You won’t want to miss this one!

Creating a Legacy Series With Widens Dorsainville aka Pkolo

Creating a Legacy Series With Widens Dorsainville aka Pkolo

Join us for an exclusive conversation with the multi-talented music producer, and LARS Alumni Widens Dorsainville. We’ll not only pick his brain about working in the industry but we’ll be celebrating his gold certified record!

Widens Dorsainville, also known as Pkolo “The Producer”, has been creating music since he was a child. Through experiences like this, he realized that music was a universal language that affected all people, whether they were in the industry, studying in school, or living on the street. Recognizing musicʼs broad appeal, Pkolo was inspired to channel his creativity through the medium of music, and he was determined to create that which would strongly affect those around him. In the year 1999, Pkolo relocated to New Jersey after separating from his family, who resided in Haiti. He found himself surrounded with various cultures and new experiences that he had never been exposed to. Curious and enthusiastic, he delved into these new experiences with an open mind. It was during this time that he discovered his true love.

PKOLO is now a music producer who previously worked for Bad Boy Entertainment (2012-2014) and co produced “You Be Killin Em” for multi platinum artist Fabolous in 2012. Operating from Elizabeth, New Jersey PKOLO has worked with and developed breakout artists such as Foushee, Kanis, and 2milly to name a few. PKOLO is currently stepping out into the limelight as he continues to craft his signature high-energy hits. Widens Aka Pkolo is now working on the new DMX Movie soundtrack “Doggmen” which subject to be out by 2022.

The 3rd Annual Spotlight Awards

The 3rd Annual Spotlight Awards

Get ready to celebrate the 3rd Annual Spotlight Awards on September 2, 2021. Six alumni will be inducted into The Los Angeles Film School Spotlight Academy. Watch the ceremony on YouTube!

Every year the Spotlight Awards ceremony inaugurates a new class into #LAFSSpotlight on the final day of FAME Week. These individuals have shown their unyielding commitment to excellence in their professional careers and selfless contribution to our students. We are proud to announce Kevin Atkinson, Corey Drake, Angelina Faulkner, Alex Ferrufino, Ari Levine, and Daniel Zaidenstadt as our Spotlight Academy Class of 2021.