We’re happy to announce our support of the the new Commercial Directors Diversity Program SHOWCASE!
The AICP and DGA have been discussing lack of diversity among commercial directors for a long time and in their last round of negotiations – “We decided to stop talking, and do something about it. From those discussions the Commercial Directors Diversity Program (CDDP) was founded, with a commitment to truly effect change.”

If you’re a director who is unsigned and wants a fair chance for your work to be seen, please SUBMIT your work to the CDDP SHOWCASE.

The submission is free of charge and the first Showcase will take place on January 11, 2017.
Alma Har’el, Founder of Free The Bid, will be on the jury and we will promote the showcase here on the site.



ABOUT: The Commercial Directors Diversity Program (CDDP) presents showcases of unsigned women and minority directors to the AICP membership on a regular basis

The goal is to introduce diverse talent to the industry, and foster relationships between selected directors and production companies. The program was created through an AICP and DGA partnership.

WHO CAN ENTER: Any minority or women directors who are not signed to a production company for commercial representation are invited to enter their work to be considered for inclusion in the Showcase.

ENTRIES: There is no cost to enter. The deadline to enter for consideration in Showcase #1 is November 28, 2016. Entrants can submit up to three entries of three minutes each. All genres welcome. Showcase #1 will debut on January 11, 2017.

SHOWCASE #1 PREMIERE: The CDDP Showcase #1 event is on January 11th, 2017 at the DGA Theater in Los Angeles. Directors selected for the Showcase need not be present. All worked featured in Showcase #1 – and future installments – will also live on the CDDP website.


We asked Matt Miller President & CEO 
of AICP for some details and would love to hear your thoughts and feedback. 

Here is our interview with him. 

1. How did this idea for the showcase came about?
During the course of collective bargaining, the AICP and DGA discuss areas of mutual concern that can benefit our constituents (in addition to the normal arm-wrestling of negotiations).  Lack of diversity among commercial directors had been an ongoing discussion. In the last round of negotiations, we decided to stop talking, and do something about it. From those discussions the Commercial Directors Diversity Program (CDDP) was founded, with a commitment to truly effect change.

2. Why now? and what inspired it?
The issues surrounding a dearth of diversity are no longer secondary concerns, and are now rightly discussed on all levels of business in a forthright way.  People seem to have come to the realization that it is the responsibility of all businesses to diversify. In our industry it is truly most important for all parties that our talent pool diversifies so that we have many perspectives to tell brand stories and connect with our audiences. 

3.How will the winners of the showcase benefit from it? 
We believe that the many programs that have flourished throughout the country to help grow diverse directorial talent have done a great job, however many have not taught the business side, or how to apply their directorial talent to a career in marketing communications.  The CDDP and these showcases will allow commercial production companies unprecedented access to a concentration of talented filmmakers, and allow the production industry to do what it does so well: identify talent, shape a director’s careers and represent them to agencies and marketers for appropriate projects.

4. How will AICP members view the Showcased work and contact the featured directors?
The CDDP Showcase #1 event is on January 11th, 2017 at the DGA Theater in Los Angeles. All directors (and work) featured in Showcase #1 – and future installments – will also live on the  CDDP website, to be unveiled the night of the Showcase. In addition to housing the projects of the showcased directors, it has their contact information. All AICP member production companies (almost 400) can easily access the site, view projects and establish contact with the directors, allowing them to foster relationships that will hopefully lead to signings.

5. How often do you hope to do the showcase?
We are aiming for 2-4 per year, but that will depend on what we learn with the first Showcase on January 11, 2017.

6. What kind of work are you looking to discover?
We are hoping to find unique storytellers and styles across the board.  AICP member companies do all sorts of work in commercials, content, animation, and design, to name just a few.  We are looking for directors who can demonstrate their capabilities to use their talents to effectively communicate and bring ideas to life. From there, it will be up to production companies to work with them and ready them for representation. 

7. Do you feel from your perspective that the work Free The Bid has been doing is making a change?
I believe it already has.  One of the missing pieces we have been struggling with in setting up the activities of the CDDP has been the question of: “If production companies sign more talent from diverse backgrounds for representation, will agencies and marketers give them a chance and hire them when presented as an option for a project?”.  Free The Bid has already shown us that agencies and marketers are ready to make that commitment.  This has brought to the forefront that there is demand—the CDDP was conceived to help our industry fill the pipeline.

8. What other initiative would you like to see?
Currently we are set up to identify talent and hopefully work as a catalyst to getting them connected with the right production company for them.  In the future, we will certainly try to dig deeper and nurture young people as would- be filmmakers.

In addition, while AICP and the DGA have long been accelerating the careers of a wide range of Assistant Directors into the industry through the DGA Assistant Directors Training Program – and AICP has been supporting such programs as Streetlights in Los Angeles and The Made in New York PA Training Program to recruit low-income students  into the production ranks since their inceptions –  I would like to see us push other unions to add greater diversity to the crew base in all crafts and working categories.