Project Greenlight Studio Forms Advisory Board to Promote Diversity

Move comes on heels of Season 4 of HBO docuseries where racial issues were front and center

Just months after the conclusion of a brouhaha over race and diversity during Season 4 of HBO’s “Project Greenlight” docuseries, Project Greenlight Digital Studios on Thursday announced that it has formed an 18-person advisory board to help tackle such issues.

The board members will “provide a unique perspective, guidance and mentorship to greenlighters … the Advisory Board only further highlights Project Greenlight Digital Studio’s commitment to facilitate new ways for diverse voices to tell their stories.”

Diversity within the film industry became a primary story point during last fall’s season when “Project Greenlight” executive producer Matt Damon clashed with producer Effie Brown, who became a champion for diversity on the indie film that was the series’ focus. She faced opposition from director Jason Mann, consultants Peter and Bobby Farrelly and others.

Brown, who is African American, is notably absent from the list of advisory board members.

The board will consist of Catherine Hardwicke (“Twilight”), Mike Farah, President of Production for Funny or Die, Writer, Actress and Host Tamara Krinsky, Producer and Former WGA President Patric Verrone (“Futurama”), Producer Wendy Calhoun (“Empire,” “Nashville”), Producer Shannon McIntosh (“The Hateful Eight”), Digital Media Expert Sarah “Sully” Ullman (“The Jungle”), Indiewire’s Women & Hollywood blog creator Melissa Silverstein, Emily Best (founder; Seed & Spark), Mark Ordesky (Executive VP Production for New Line Cinema, Exec Producer of “The Lord of the Rings”), Producer and Co-CFO Jane Fleming (Women in Film International), Kelly Edwards (VP of Talent Development & Programming at HBO), Franklin Leonard (Founder, The Black List), Erica Oyama (Creator, “Burning Love”), Luisa Leschin (Executive Producer & Writer, “Just Add Magic,” “East Los High”), Luke Ryan (Producer & Creative Executive, Hot Tub Time Machine) and Allie Esslinger (Producer, Founder of Section II).

“Our Advisory Board reinforces Project Greenlight’s belief that talent can not only come from anywhere but also go everywhere,” said Perrin Chiles, CEO of Project Greenlight parent company Adaptive Studios in a statement.

“The members on the advisory board were hand-picked to give our creative community more avenues into Hollywood. From working on Academy Award-winning films to producing viral digital videos seen all over the world, our Advisory Board represents some of the best and brightest in the entertainment business today.”

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