FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

If I work for Sony Pictures or one of its Sony affiliates/productions, am I eligible to apply?
You may be eligible to apply for the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM if you work for Sony Pictures or one of its Sony affiliates/productions.


Do I need to have professional directing experience to apply?
Professional directing experience is preferred, but not required.


Must I submit a Work Resume/Bio or Statement of Intent if I have not worked as a professional director?
Yes. Applications that do not include these documents will be automatically rejected by the online application system.


Must I submit letters of recommendation from TV or film professionals?
Letters of recommendation from entertainment and media industry professionals are required. The entertainment and media industry professionals must have viewed and be familiar with your work.


Do I need to be a member of the DGA to apply?
No, DGA membership is not required. Both DGA members and non-members are eligible to apply.


What are appropriate video submissions?
Applicants should submit a single sample of work that they have directed in the past 3 calendar years. All applicants must provide ONE completed narrative piece that demonstrates excellent linear story-telling skills with an observable beginning, middle and end and indicates an aptitude for scripted episodic TV.

Examples of appropriate directing samples include the following:
  • A narrative short film or video that has been exhibited at a top tier film festival
  • TV pilot created for traditional television distribution.
  • TV episode made for series distributed via traditional broadcast, cable or SVOD channels.
  • Feature-length movie that has either received distribution or was accepted to a top-tier film festival.
  • Digital short or digitally distributed webisode that has generated no less than 10,000 views online.
  • Commercial spot that has aired nationally or locally. No spec commercials.
  • Music video created for Billboard ranked musical artists.

    All submissions must be final sweetened cuts. Trailers, rough cuts and compilation reels will not be accepted.


    May I submit more than 1 video sample?
    No. We will accept only a single example of work.


    What should I do if I have problems with the online application website?
    Please contact SPT_Diverse_Directors@spe.sony.com and describe in detail your problem with the website.


    Will I be able to receive feedback on my application?
    No. Due to the high volume of applications we are unable to provide you with individual feedback.


    Will you confirm receipt of my application?
    Yes, upon successful application submission, a confirmation window will open to let you know that we have received your application.


    Will I be informed if I am not selected for the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM?
    While we will not be able to respond to phone call or email inquiries due to the high volume of applications, we will send you an email informing you if you are not among those selected to participate in the program.


    If I am accepted into the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM, when will I be notified?
    Those finally selected to enter the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM will be notified by August 31st, 2016.


    What is the duration of the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM?
    Participants are in the program for 1 complete Fall to Spring TV broadcast season, 2016-2017. Individual shadow assignments may last 3 or more weeks.


    Is the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM a full-time employment opportunity?
    No. A program participant will be paid a weekly stipend only if he or she is offered a shadow assignment. The stipend will be paid only during the weeks the participant is actively shadowing. Participants may consider additional employment while simultaneously participating in the program.


    Will I be paid for my time in the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM?
    Those participants who secure a shadow assignment on an episode, which will include pre-production, production and post-production (3 or more weeks), will be paid a weekly stipend when actively shadowing on any aspect of the production.


    Will the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM pay for travel and accommodations for the program?
    No. Travel to and from Los Angeles and accommodations in Los Angeles during the Industry Insights portion of the program will be the participant’s sole responsibility. However, in the event a Program Fellow is selected to shadow on a series that shoots in a distant location, he or she will receive airfare, hotel accommodations and a per diem for the duration of the distant location portion of their shadow assignment.


    If I don’t live or work in the United States, can I be accepted as a participant in the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM?
    To be accepted as a program participant, you must be able to submit verification that you have the legal right to work in the United States for the duration of the program.


    What type of TV series do SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM participants shadow?
    Participants may potentially shadow DGA directors working on 1 hour and ½ hour scripted SPT episodic series in various genres.


    Will SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM participants be able to choose which series they shadow on?
    No. Shadow assignments are determined at the discretion of SPT.


    Will participation in the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM guarantee me an opportunity to direct a scripted TV episode?
    No. While shadow assignments and other aspects of the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM will provide you with excellent training and exposure to the industry, production executives and the production process, there is no guarantee that you will be invited to direct an SPT scripted episode.


    Who are the TV industry personnel involved with the SPT DIVERSE DIRECTORS PROGRAM?
    Participants will meet with various TV industry personnel, including SPT studio creative executives, showrunners, producers, crew members, below-the-line personnel and DGA episodic directors.