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John Cho, Cary Elwes, Aja Naomi King, Alia Shawkat to Perform at Academy Nicholl Fellowship Live Read


Actors John Cho, Cary Elwes, Aja Naomi King and Alia Shawkat will perform a live reading of selected scenes from this year’s five winning scripts at the 2016 Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting Awards Presentation & Live Read on Thursday, November 3, at 7:30 p.m. at the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills. Effie Brown (Dear White People) will produce the event, and Rodrigo Garcia (Last Days in the Desert) will be directing for the fourth consecutive year.

The evening’s presentation is dedicated to the late Anton Yelchin, who participated in the first Nicholl Live Read event in 2013 alongside fellow actors Elle Fanning, Taraji P. Henson and Jason Isaacs.

Cho most recently starred in the summer blockbuster Star Trek Beyond. His other credits include Grandma, Identity Thief and Star Trek Into Darkness. Cho came into the mainstream spotlight with the hit comedies Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle and American Pie. He also appeared in the 1999 Best Picture winner American Beauty.

Elwes can be seen in the upcoming features Billionaire Boys Club, The Queen of Spain and We Don’t Belong Here. His other film credits include Being Charlie, Robin Hood: Men in Tights and The Princess Bride. Elwes was a producer and co-writer on the feature Elvis & Nixon, released earlier this year. He currently stars in the television series The Art of More.

King can currently be seen in the biographical feature The Birth of a Nation. Her other film credits include The Rewrite, Four and Damsels in Distress. She currently stars in the television series How to Get Away with Murder.

Shawkat can next be seen starring in TBS’ dark comedy series Search Party, which was selected as part of the Official TV Selection for the 2016 SXSW Film Festival. Her film credits include The Intervention, Green Room, Whip It and Amreeka. She may be best known for her role as Maeby Fünke in the Emmy Award-winning comedy series Arrested Development.

Presenters for the evening’s program are five members of the Academy Nicholl Fellowships Committee: producer Julia Chasman (25th Hour), animation director Jennifer Yuh Nelson (Kung Fu Panda 3), writer Misan Sagay (Belle), actor Eva Marie Saint (On the Waterfront) and producer Peter Samuelson (Arlington Road).

Last month four individual screenwriters and one writing team were selected from 6,915 entries as winners of the 2016 Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting competition.  The winners are (listed alphabetically by author):

Michele Atkins, Talking about the Sky (Seattle, WA)
Spencer Harvey and Lloyd Harvey, Photo Booth (Balgowlah, Australia)
Geeta Malik, Dinner with Friends (Los Angeles, CA)
Elizabeth Oyebode, Tween the Ropes (Sunnyvale, CA)
Justin Piasecki, Death of an Ortolan (Los Angeles, CA)

Each of the winners will receive a $35,000 prize, the first installment of which will be distributed at the Live Read event.  Since 1986, 147 Nicholl fellowships have been awarded. Fellowships are presented with the understanding that the recipients will each complete a feature-length screenplay during their fellowship year.

Admission to the 2016 Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting Awards Presentation & Live Read is free. Advance tickets are recommended, and are available here.

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