The Writers Place Cofounders
In addition to co-founding The Writers Place, Paula Brancato is a published poet, playwright and screenwriter, living in New York and Los Angeles. A second generation Sicilian-American, she was one of the first women executives on Wall Street, a film producer in Hollywood, a music industry CFO and strategic planner for the World Bank.
Brancato’s film company, Brancato Productions, executive produced the feature film SOMEWHERE IN THE CITY, starring Sandra Bernhard, which won the Karlovy Vary (Czech) film festival and HER FATHER’S DAUGHTER, a Sundance finalist. Her film awards include: Angelciti Film Festival, African American Film Festival, Remi Worldfest and American Screenwriting awards.
Brancato has written 12 screenplays for hire/option including: SUBTERFUGE, optioned for packaging by CAA; ELLEN JERSEY, Stein Productions; THE FAB FIVE, a parody of Harvard Business School commissioned by alums; LOVE YOU TO DEATH, sequel to CRIMES OF PASSION; THE WANTING (16 screenwriting awards); and ALPHA BABE. Her literary awards include: The National Screenwriters, WINFEMME, Organization of Black Screenwriters, Chesterfield H. Jones Foundation, Asheville and Pacific Northwest Writers awards, and Chesterfield and Nicholl’s semi-finals.
Brancato currently teaches screenwriting at the University of Southern California. She is also working on her first novel, NEVER IRON NAKED, and is slated to direct the film SHOWBUNNIES, an homage to bunny rabbits. Brancato received her M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School, where she was a Godfrey-Cabot fellow. She is a graduate of Hunter College and the Los Angeles Film School.
Doctor James E. Fischer, cofounder of The Writers Place, is also an award-winning screenwriter, a novelist, a producer and a director, happily married and living in Pensacola. Dr. Fischer's military action-thriller, The Dark Ages, was published in 1996. He re-published Ignoble – The Dark Ages Trilogy, volume I, in 2005 and Malignance – The Dark Ages Trilogy, volume II, in 2007 and will continue until the entire three-phased story is in place. See www.sturmenkrieg.com. He is co-writer of SUBTERFUGE, optioned for packaging by CAA, and THE WANTING (16 screenwriting awards).
Dr. Fischer’s literary awards include: The Hollywood Scriptwriters Institute, National Screenwriters, WINFEMME, Organization of Black Screenwriters, Houston International Film Festival (2nd place), BDR 2000, and the 2003 American Screenwriting Award. Dr. Fischer has, in addition, acted in 38 stage plays, independent films, teleplays, industrials, and commercials combined. He has directed 18 stage plays and 5 television productions. He trained as an actor/director at the Lee Strasberg Theater Institute in New York and at Herbert Berghoff (HB) Studios.
Additionally, Dr. Fischer is an adjunct, online professor with Corinthian Colleges, Inc., teaching Computer Applications, Network Managing and Systems Analysis & Design.
A past member of the Psychological Operations Association and the International Association of Airborne Veterans, Dr. Fischer earned two Master Degrees (Unconventional Warfare & Strategic Intelligence) from The American Military University in Virginia. He earned a third Master Degree (Management Information Systems) from Northcentral University in Arizona -- where he was also awarded his Ph.D. on completion of his dissertation entitled Propaganda and the Internet.