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Monkeypaw Partners With TIFF & Universal Filmmakers Project To Launch “No Drama” Initiative For Short Films

Monkeypaw Productions is partnering with the Toronto Film Festival and the Universal Filmmakers Project for the “No Drama” initiative, designed to cultivate new talent by selecting up to six writer-directors to create short films.

The unique aspect of the program is the potential for the shorts to be developed into full-length projects under the guidance of Monkeypaw and Universal Pictures.

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“No Drama” is a global initiative that will have digital and physical touchpoints with the Monkeypaw, Universal and TIFF Industry teams. Selected filmmakers will receive a $50,000 grant to produce their short, exposure to the major studio production process, access to creative and production executives to develop their professional networks, and the opportunity to screen their projects during TIFF in 2025.

“A good monster story comes from a perspective that’s very personal and very vulnerable. It’s a story that is so deeply personal that you think no one else can relate to it,” said Monkeypaw’s Jordan Peele, whose debut 2017 film Get Out launched him as an important new voice in cinema. “That’s exactly the purpose of ‘No Drama’ – to challenge filmmakers to turn their deepest fears into fun, thrilling stories that need to be told.”

“Jordan and his team at Monkeypaw are visionary filmmakers who are committed to using their platform to identify and uplift emerging talent across the industry. We are proud to join TIFF in supporting Monkeypaw’s ‘No Drama’ initiative and can’t wait to see the results from its first group of exciting filmmakers,” Universal Pictures president Peter Cramer said.

“We’re proud to launch this groundbreaking initiative, ‘No Drama,’ with our longstanding partner Universal,” said Cameron Bailey, CEO of TIFF. “Having one of the best storytellers like Jordan Peele and his talented team at Monkeypaw on board, is another step in transforming cinema. By supporting emerging filmmakers in the early phases of their careers, TIFF is dedicated to fostering innovation and pushing the boundaries of storytelling. We’re looking forward to unveiling these short films during our 50th edition of the Toronto International Film Festival in 2025.”

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