the project


I admit I was a lucky kid. I was raised in a film industry family and spent my time exploring studio backlots, soaking in the wisdom of veteran artists & craftsmen, and falling in love with the art & craft of moviemaking. One day I spotted the great Orson Welles, and asked him what advice he’d give to an aspiring filmmaker. He thought about it for a moment, gave me that insouciant ‘Harry Lime’ smile, and quipped “Apprentice in every department and learn how to use the tools, so you can speak the language of movies; the rest is pure imagination.”

Following Orson Welles’s advice helped me build successful careers in both filmmaking & education. Now we're ‘paying it forward’ for the next generation.

During the Golden Age of Hollywood, the Studio System used apprenticeships to nurture young talent and sustain their workforces, but that system is long gone. The CineMentors, Episodic Series Mentoring Project, re-boots the Studio System model by bringing veteran craftspeople-mentors, together with groups of student-mentees, to produce an episodic television series.

And because this is the 21st century, we take the entire process online, building an educational platform that uses an exciting combination of live streams, chats, taped tutorials, and MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses), to train mentees across the globe.

The entertainment industry is a tough business to break into, especially for groups that have suffered from past discrimination, like people of color, women, LGBTQ, and youth from challenging socio-economic backgrounds. These job-seekers need a stunning combination of connections, skill, experience, and luck to start a career - and this project is designed to give them access to the people, training, tools & support they need to succeed!

How it works

The concept is simple: Bring mentors and mentees together using a combination of hands-on and virtual training, that uses dynamic occupational education curriculum to help mentees jump start their careers in professional media production.

·  On-set mentees will be selected from a diverse pool of students from participating k-12 schools, colleges, and our independent study program, and will be paid as Teaching Assistants, engaged in a work-study program. Online mentee slots are unlimited, and open to anybody with the desire to learn & participate - especially students from diverse  backgrounds. 

On-set mentees will also participate in a Reality TV Series starring our mentors and production staff, that documents the entire journey from intern to emerging professional.

·  Mentees are assigned to specific craft & job assignments in one of ten occupational hubs - with our on-set mentees acting as paid moderators for their online counterparts. Mentee groups work and study with their specific department & craft mentors then rotate into a new hub when an episode is completed.

·  Occupational hubs include: Producing & Production; Development & Writing; Directing & Performance; Camera-Grip-Electric; Sound & SPFX; Production Design & Props; Costume Design; Make-up & Hair; Locations & Transportation; Editorial-Music-VFX. 

During each rotation, mentees participate in live stream & taped ‘working’ tutorials and MOOCs designed to connect what they learn on set, to what they see on screen. And since the series storyline revolves around young characters, our mentees will join the creative team & cast in regular ‘Writer’s Room’ sessions to collaborate on character development, performance styles, story arcs, technical approach, and production design choices.

Future Expansion

Once the first season is wrapped up, we will edit all the live video streams, and combine them with training modules & MOOCs to give current mentees a chance to catch up on anything they’ve missed, and to give future mentees a complete series of exciting master courses in series production. 

Season two will offer our season one mentees the opportunity to specialize in a specific craft department & job, and provide access to advanced curriculum designed to expand their skillset & knowledge-base, to help them land industry jobs.

Future Forward: 

We will use the educational & vocational concepts, best practices and multi-media approach used in our our groundbreaking Television Mentoring program, to expand into Gaming, Movies, VR, AR and professional Ad production.


We plan to complete the current ‘proof of concept’ phase by mid 2020, then secure project funding, launch the online platform, and start series production & mentee training 

by late Summer. 

The project will be supported by revenue from domestic & foreign Dramatic & Reality TV program sales, Educational Content downloads, paid online mentee subscriptions, Industry and foundation sponsorships, and special mentoring events.

For more information, email: 

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