Boston students hit LA for the Oscars

by Andrew Stanton / Beacon Correspondent • February 23, 2017

Students attending Emerson’s Oscar Talk in Los Angeles will have an opportunity to learn about the film industry from working professionals in their field.

The two-day program at Emerson’s Los Angeles campus just days before the Academy Awards will feature several panels covering topics such as promoting diversity, the business of movies, and the European perspective of the Oscars, according to the Oscar Talk website.

Students will also have an opportunity to attend a networking event with Owen Eagan, professor of communication studies, who planned the event, and Dicky Eagan, a writer for the Late Late Show, according to the Oscar Talk website.

Students will stay for the awards show Sunday night and return to Boston Monday morning, according to Alexandria Martinez, a junior political communications major. Martinez works in the communication studies department with Eagen.

About 10 Emerson students will attend Oscar Talk, Martinez said.

“It’s a good experience if you’ve never been out to LA,” Martinez said. “You get to see the LA campus. Also, you get to explore more and learn more about the culture of the Oscars, about [public relations], and what it takes to be in LA if it’s your career path.”

Raul Reis, dean of the school of communication, will moderate a panel about diversity in the film industry. Reis said the panel will address issues such as gender imbalance and the lack of racial diversity in the film industry.

The program will feature several panelists including African American Film Critics Association President Gil L. Roberts, producer Rasha Goel, director Judith Colell Pallarès, and many more.

“One reason students would want to go is to make relationships and getting to know some of the leaders of the industry,” said Gregory Payne, chair of the department of communication studies.

Madison Mortell, a junior journalism major, studied at Emerson LA last fall and said she hopes to expand her connections through the networking event.

“This event is really great for people who are trying to get their foot in the door,” Mortell said.

Ava Feneberger, a freshman visual and media arts major, said she is excited to learn more about the film industry and see the LA campus. Events like Oscar Talk are the best way to get the most out of your Emerson experience, Feneberger said.