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July 31, 2013 | By DiAngelea Millar
The American Film Institute has nearly tripled its funding for scholarships in an effort to compete with larger film schools and to help students pay for the institute's $47,000 in annual tuition. In the past, AFI found it was attracting candidates for its program and then losing them to schools that offered better financial aid. The school often had to look past the list of students it had already accepted, to an alternate list, to fill out its student body. “We had lost a number of fellows who wanted to go to AFI to schools with more robust scholarship programs,” said Bob Gazzale, the CEO of AFI.  To combat that, the AFI Board of Directors set the challenge to raise more money for scholarships and successfully received more than $6.2 million from donors.
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ENTERTAINMENT
March 4, 2014 | By Dawn C. Chmielewski
As a child, Shannon Studstill sold gum to her classmates to finance her weekly trips to the video game arcade. That early investment in "Pac-Man" and "Defender" would pay huge dividends. Studstill, one of the most powerful women in the male-dominated world of video games, now runs Sony Santa Monica Studio, the development group responsible for the company's hit franchise "God of War" and the publisher of such critically acclaimed independent titles as "Journey. " The 43-year-old executive is an anomaly in an industry known for its underrepresentation of women.
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ENTERTAINMENT
October 3, 2013 | By Susan King
Two-time Oscar-winning actress Jane Fonda has been named the recipient of the American Film Institute's 42nd Life Achievement Award. The award will be presented at a gala tribute on June 5. Her father, actor Henry Fonda, was the AFI Life Achievement winner in 1978. "Jane Fonda is American film royalty," said Howard Stringer, chairman of the AFI's board of trustees. "A bright light first introduced to the world as the daughter of Henry Fonda, the world watched as she found her own voice and forged her own path as an actor and a cultural icon.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 27, 2014 | By Oliver Gettell
Not many first-time filmmakers get invited to the White House to show their work, but on Friday a group of K-12 auteurs will do just that at the inaugural White House Student Film Festival.  Hosted by President Obama, the festival will showcase student-created films about how technology is used in their classrooms and what role technology will play in education in the future. More than 2,000 videos were submitted after the festival was announced in November, and the finalists, as well as their parents and teachers, have been invited to have their movies screened in the White House's East Room.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 5, 2012 | By Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
Filmmakers are natural raconteurs — they have to be — at least when talking about their films. There are the money men who must be convinced to invest, the studios they need to sign on for distribution, the actors they want to hire and the press and public they hope will see the finished film and like it. The American Film Institute captures all that and more in "Conversations at the American Film Institute with the Great Moviemakers: The...
ENTERTAINMENT
July 4, 1991 | ROBERT EPSTEIN
Today we send up a rocket for the independents among us, those Americans who do their own things as they swim upstream listening to the sounds of different drummers. The subtext is making it sometimes in an often brutal commercial world. Gregg Araki makes movies and is called by some the king of L.A. guerrilla filmmakers. He turns out feature-length films that cost under $5,000 for audiences that just might fill up a telephone booth.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 22, 2005 | From Associated Press
Marlon Brando was a contender in the American Film Institute's list of best quotes from U.S. movies. But No. 1 was Rhett Butler's parting shot to Scarlett O'Hara: "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn." Clark Gable's line to Vivien Leigh in 1939's "Gone With the Wind" led the AFI's list, announced in the organization's annual top-100 special that was to air on CBS Tuesday night. Brando had the No. 2 and No.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 25, 2009 | John Horn
It was launched in the Rose Garden by President Lyndon B. Johnson to advance and preserve the art of the moving image. For decades, the American Film Institute thrived doing just that. Now, like almost every other nonprofit organization knocked sideways by the recession, AFI finds itself having to script its own comeback story. Much of AFI's campus near Griffith Park has neither air conditioning nor heating. AFI's last televised Top 100 show lost more than $1 million, and the cable ratings for its Life Achievement Award are plunging.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 14, 2009 | By Susan King
Sunday was a big day for "The Hurt Locker," the gripping wartime drama about a bomb diffusion unit in Iraq. Within hours, the Los Angeles Film Critics Assn. and the American Film Institute both named the independent production the year's best drama. L.A. critics bestowed the film's director, Kathryn Bigelow, with a best director prize as well. FOR THE RECORD: Movie awards: An article in Monday's Calendar about the Los Angeles Film Critics Assn. and American Film Institute awards said "The Hurt Locker" is about a "bomb diffusion unit" in Iraq.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 20, 1999 | ROBERT W. WELKOS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Warren Beatty joked that Dustin Hoffman's big break came in "The Graduate" after director Mike Nichols "made a breakthrough discovery that Al Pacino and Dustin Hoffman were, in fact, not the same person." Jon Voight said that even though it had been three decades since he and Hoffman co-starred in "Midnight Cowboy," any time he ventures into New York City for more than a day someone invariably drives up and says, "Hey, Jon! How's Dustin?"
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 11, 2014 | By Valerie J. Nelson
Shirley Temple Black, who as the most popular child movie star of all time lifted a filmgoing nation's spirits during the Depression and then grew up to be a diplomat, has died. She was 85. Black died late Monday at her home in Woodside, Calif., according to publicist Cheryl J. Kagan. No cause was given. From 1935 through 1938, the curly-haired moppet billed as Shirley Temple was the top box-office draw in the nation. She saved what became 20th Century Fox studios from bankruptcy and made more than 40 movies before she turned 12. PHOTOS: Shirley Temple Black Hollywood recognized the enchanting, dimpled scene-stealer's importance to the industry with a “special award” -- a miniature Oscar -- at the Academy Awards for 1934, the year she sang and danced her way into America's collective heart.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 15, 2013 | By Jessica Gelt
Peter O'Toole, the legendary star of stage and screen who shot to stardom with his performance as T.E. Lawrence in David Lean's epic film "Lawrence of Arabia," died Saturday at age 81. The charismatic actor had a career that spanned more than half a century and included eight Academy Award nominations and an honorary Oscar in 2003. So many of his performances moved viewers to laughter and tears. Here are just five that we won't soon forget. "Lawrence of Arabia" (1962). This epic ranks No. 7 on the American Film Institute's list of the greatest films of all time.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 2, 2013 | By Susan King
Film and television director Robert Mandel ("F/X," "Lost") is stepping down as dean of the AFI Conservatory at the end of June 2014, the American Film Institute announced Monday. After nine years as academic head of the graduate-level film school, Mandel will be returning to directing while remaining on the faculty. Mandel is an alumnus of the conservatory's class of 1979. "Mandel embodies the ideal of the AFI Conservatory: storytellers who have enjoyed great acclaim returning to share their trials and triumphs with storytellers of the future," AFI President Bob Gazzale said in a statement.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 18, 2013 | By Susan King
Syd Field, described by many in the film community as the "guru of all screenwriters," has died at age 77. According to his website , Field died Sunday of hemolytic anemia at his Beverly Hills home, surrounded by his wife, family and friends. Field was the author of eight books, mostly notably "Screenplay: The Basics of Film Writing," considered the the industry's most authoritative guide to screenwriting. It is credited with helping establish the now traditional three-act structure for feature film scripts.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 18, 2013 | By Carolyn Kellogg
Syd Field, author of one of the most essential guides to screenwriting, has died at age 77. According to his website , Field passed away at home in Beverly Hills on Sunday. Originally published in 1979, "Screenplay" quickly became a bestselling staple of the trade. It was updated many times, most recently in 2005, and has been translated into 23 languages. He was a popular speaker and held workshops and seminars for writers hoping to grasp Hollywood's magic formula. Writers who learned from Field -- including Tina Fey, John Singleton, and Frank Darabont -- worked in all genres of film and television.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 13, 2013 | By Glenn Whipp
Do you meet the "Fockers" guy? Or do you like Spike? How about a biopic and a chance to shake hands with the daughter of the film's subject? Or perhaps you'd like to listen to some toe-tapping musical performances from the Coen brothers' "Inside Llewyn Davis. " Or tune into modern hipster folk singer Jose Gonzalez. Or rewatch "12 Years a Slave" and (gulp) learn about modern human trafficking. Or ... or ... or ... Even in an awards season already overstuffed with brunches and cocktail parties, fetes and meet-and-greets, Wednesday night's calendar seems just plain insane in the membrane , an example of the extreme measures studios are taking this crowded Oscar season to attract academy members and well-connected movie lovers.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 16, 2004 | Susan King, Times Staff Writer
George Lucas, the filmmaker who gave the world light sabers, the Force, Wookiees and THX sound, was selected Friday by the American Film Institute's Board of Trustees to receive its 33rd annual Life Achievement Award, its highest honor for a career in film.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 21, 1998 | ROBERT W. WELKOS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
As a boy growing up in Connorsville, Ind., Robert Wise said he would make regular trips to the three movie houses in town and sit transfixed in the dark "watching those silent yet eloquent shadows" on the screen. "I never guessed I would have the power to influence others as those images influenced me," Wise recalled. "Movies have been my life's work, the only vocation I've ever known."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 9, 2013 | By David Colker and Steven Zeitchik
Film critic Stanley Kauffmann, who in the 20th century helped define movie reviews as an intellectual form, died of pneumonia Wednesday at St. Luke's Hospital in New York. He was 97. His death was announced by the New Republic, the politics and culture magazine that published his criticism for more than five decades. Although Kauffmann's commentary tended toward the intellectual and often went against the grain - finding fault in heralded movies such as "The Godfather," "Pulp Fiction" and "Full Metal Jacket" - he championed the rise of serious cinema in the late 1950s and 1960s.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 3, 2013 | By Susan King
Two-time Oscar-winning actress Jane Fonda has been named the recipient of the American Film Institute's 42nd Life Achievement Award. The award will be presented at a gala tribute on June 5. Her father, actor Henry Fonda, was the AFI Life Achievement winner in 1978. "Jane Fonda is American film royalty," said Howard Stringer, chairman of the AFI's board of trustees. "A bright light first introduced to the world as the daughter of Henry Fonda, the world watched as she found her own voice and forged her own path as an actor and a cultural icon.
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