News & Notes

Brown Wins, Repped, Broadcast

By Kayona Ebony Brown
Last July, I won the Roadmap Writers Diversity Initiative, after which I met a bunch of execs who requested to read the pilot script I was pitching throughout the program. One of those people was a junior exec at Showtime. We hit it off, talked several times, and then this January, she randomly emailed me asking if I like sports. “I love sports more than anyone not working in the field!” I said. So she told me that a friend of hers at CBS was looking for a writer…
I sent them some sample material, I interviewed with the execs and producers, and was hired, all within the course of one weekend! That piece they needed a writer for was the BEFORE JACKIE a short film starring Viola Davis, which aired during the Super Bowl pre-game show. It tells the story of the NFL’s “Jackie Robinson moment”–how football was integrated. Watch it here.
That piece was extremely well-received. So, they called me back for the NCAA Tournament Finals to contribute to the pre-game tease, starring Jon Hamm. You can see it here.
Meanwhile, Joey, CEO of Roadmap, continued to push my screenplays. With great writing samples in both TV and film, along with the Super Bowl film, I met with a lot of managers and agents. In March, I chose manager Ryan Cunningham at Anonymous Content to help grow my career as a multi-hyphenate.
Being such a big sports fan, this is a dream come true to be able to take part in this rather unexpected capacity. I’m looking forward to doing more with CBS, as well as other opportunities to make sports-related narrative films, like my WNBA-centered feature film–a film with necessary themes that takes place alongside a brand where the attention is well overdue. You can learn more about Kayona at her website.

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