LOS ANGELES, CA (October 9, 2018) – NATPE, the National Association of Television Program Executives, will present the first ever “Living the Dream: A Career in Content” event in partnership with the NAACP, (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) and the NHFA (National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts). The event will be held on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday, January 21, 2019, one day before NATPE Miami 2019 commences, at the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach Florida.
The special event is designed to assist students, young professionals and others with a desire to enter the entertainment and media industries to learn more about how their dreams can become a reality. Both the NHFA and the NAACP are committed to raising awareness of diversity and inclusion in front and behind the camera as well as in all creative content with the overall mission to ensure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate race-based discrimination. The organizations both have programs to inspire today’s youth and are committed to furthering awareness of multi-cultural content, diversity in media, and inspiring youth to follow their dreams.
World-renowned producer, director, actor and screenwriter Tyler Perry, will deliver the Keynote Address. Mr. Perry is an outstanding example of an individual who began his career with very little and through extraordinary talent and dedication has risen to the top of the industry in all areas of his multi-talented skills. Mr. Perry’s remarks will be followed by a panel headlined by CSI: Los Angeles’ Esai Morales, showrunner for USA’s “Queen of the South”, Benjamin Lobato and Netflix’ “One Day at a Time” showrunner Gloria Calderon Kellett, as well as other leading talent, executives, producers and writers who have embedded storylines of diversity in their works. The final portion of the day’s presentations will be followed by a “Celebration of Creativity”, in which three pre-selected students will present story ideas dealing with diversity live onstage to a panel of industry-leading development executives. The three budding young filmmakers will be selected from the NAACP’s Hollywood Bureau film education program, which searches the country for talented young people in a variety of disciplines, and the NHFA’s whose PitchDC and PitchNY programs showcase authentic and original content ideas from NHFA student scholars, alumni and associates.
“This will be a very special day. A day to honor Martin Luther King Jr. and to inspire and empower young people as they begin a career in entertainment and media. We are honored to be presenting this event, headlined by Tyler Perry, and in association with two of the most respected organizations in America,” said JP Bommel, President and CEO, NATPE. “I know that those that will attend will be enriched with greater knowledge about the opportunities that lie before them.”
“Martin Luther King, like Cesar Chavez, spent their lives working to become the change they asked us all to become in our beloved country,” said Felix Sanchez, NHFA Chairman and Co-founder, “during these trying times, we look to storytellers to reveal the true narrative of our nation. We applaud NATPE for its leadership to advance these principles.”
“Joining forces with NATPE on Martin Luther King Jr’s birthday is right in line with the efforts we put forth to bring diversity to the forefront of everyone’s minds, especially in the world of entertainment,” said Derrick Johnson, President and CEO, NAACP. “We are honored to bring students together to hear from one of the greatest creative and business minds of our generation in Tyler Perry, and are excited to reveal the rest of the programming, which will feature top talent and executives from television, as we draw closer to the event.”
All proceeds from the event will go to the NATPE Educational Foundation to support educational initiatives. NATPE will invite students from Miami-area universities and high schools who are interested in getting into the entertainment/media business to the event. Industry execs attending NATPE will also be in attendance to network and engage with students. The NATPE Educational Foundation and its programs are focused on creating new professional opportunities for young professionals looking to pursue a career in Hollywood.