FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contact:

Martin Russell Johnson

Martin@Kitsinc.org

(818) 945-2009

CELEBS COME TOGETHER TO SUPPORT KIDS IN THE SPOTLIGHT

Ty Burrell, Kellee Stewart, Malcolm-Jamal Warner, and other Hollywood pros

volunteer to judge a National Short Screenplay Competition for foster youth

BURBANK, Calif. (April 20, 2020) – As the country shelters in place to flatten the COVID-19 curve,

Kids In The Spotlight (K.I.T.S.) is taking its Screenwriting & Filmmaking program nationally to service

foster youth from across the United States. For those unfamiliar with Kids In The Spotlight, for the past

decade the organization has used its 10-to-15-week Screenwriting & Filmmaking program to help

hundreds of local foster youth rediscover their voices and confront their traumatic experiences.

“I’ve been a K.I.T.S. Ambassador for years now and have had the opportunity to watch this program

change the lives of these kids,” said long-time supporter, Ty Burrell. “I’m so happy that K.I.T.S. will be

there to show these young men and women how to channel their imaginations to reframe the realities of

their world during this time of uncertainty.

The K.I.T.S. National Short Screenplay Competition was created to ensure that the cognitive, creative,

and social needs of transitional-age (18 to 22) foster youth from around the country are being met. The

winning short script will be turned into a short film produced by industry professionals, and the

organization is offering a free, five-week Virtual Screenwriting Course to teach them how to use their

personal stories to craft a screenplay that can connect and inspire others.

Entertainment industry professionals—such as longtime K.I.T.S. Ambassadors Kellee Stewart, and Mo

McRae—have confirmed their participation as the judges that will read submissions alongside a few of

the organization’s other dedicated team of ambassadors. Some of the additional entertainment industry

judges include Mary Lou Belli, Malcolm-Jamal Warner, Kiki Melendez, NAACP Hollywood Bureau

Director Robin Harrison, Hollywood Foreign Press Association Representative Lilly Lui, and former

K.I.T.S. Youth Mary Montoya, who was also one of the stars of the HBO Documentary, Foster.

The deadline to apply to the National Short Screenplay Competition is Saturday, April 25th, and the

winner of the competition will be announced on June 26th.

To enter into the competition, youth can visit https://bit.ly/3cmtFgo.

About Kids In The Spotlight

Kids In The Spotlight’s mission is to help foster youth confront, address, and overcome their

psychological, emotional, and developmental trauma through transformative filmmaking—providing

them with the skills needed to maintain employment, pursue higher education, and become stable and

productive members of society. To learn more about Kids In The Spotlight and how your donation will

combat crises such as homelessness, incarceration, sex trafficking, unemployment, and mental health

issues, please visit www.kitsinc.org. You can also reach Martin Russell Johnson, Program Director, at

Martin@kitsinc.org or (818) 945-2009.

Press Release - https://bit.ly/34K6JF6

Competition Flyer - https://bit.ly/3ev2OR1

Competition Enrollment Link - https://bit.ly/3cmtFgo

KITS Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/kidsinthespotlight/

KITS Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/kidsinthespotlight/

KITS Twitter - https://twitter.com/kidsinspotlight

KIDS IN THE SPOTLIGHT FILM SHARES HOPE AND INSPIRATION

Cyverius, a film written and starring foster youth, provides enjoyment for families stuck at home

 

BURBANK, Calif. (March 30, 2020) – Last year, a group of kids living in the Hillsides Group Home in Pasadena wrote a script during a 10-week Screenwriting and Filmmaking program provided by Kids In The Spotlight (KITS) a regionally-based nonprofit organization. The youth wrote an ambitious sci-fi short script about a global pandemic that pushed them to explore the depths of their imagination.

 

“Cyverius” was produced by a professional film crew, and one of the foster youth writers landed a dream role as the star of the film. Completing the project on a shoe-string budget, the film debuted for a packed audience at Paramount Studios last November. No one could have imagined just how relevant, timely, and important this film would become less than a year later.

 

“It is an overwhelming joy to see our youth tell a story that celebrates and values humanity, despite the challenges they faced growing up in foster care,” said KITS Executive Director, Tige Charity. “Even though we provide them with the opportunity to tell their stories, their way, these kids chose to use their creativity to positively impact their world with a story about hope and harmony.”

 

Set in the distant future, “Cyverius” tells the story of two young scientists whose integrity and compassion are tested as they travel to a foreign planet in search of a cure to save their world from a global pandemic. The highly ambitions film was an audience favorite at the 2019 KITS Awards.

 

“A good story, like “Cyverius,” can motivate people to take action and help ensure the well-being of others,” said Charity. “Over the coming months, we will be asked to think of others before we think of ourselves. We must recognize small opportunities of selflessness to act upon—such as practicing social distancing, leaving enough supplies for others, and lending a helping hand to the less fortunate or less capable.”

 

To watch “Cyverius” please visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Svpntq7vCo8&t=3s, and feel free to share the film with anyone who needs a little bit of hope right now.

 

About Kits In The Spotlight
Kids In The Spotlight’s mission is to help foster youth confront, address, and overcome their psychological, emotional, and developmental trauma through transformative filmmaking—providing them with the therapy needed to maintain employment, pursue higher education, and become stable and productive members of society.  To learn more about Kids In The Spotlight and how your donation will combat crises such as homelessness, incarceration, sex trafficking, unemployment, and mental health issues, please visit www.kitsinc.org. You can also reach Martin Russell Johnson, Program Director, at Martin@kitsinc.org or (818) 945-2009.

 

Press Release - https://bit.ly/2QQkEUp

Cyverius Photos - https://bit.ly/2UlOl1Q

KITS Films & Media Catalog - https://vimeo.com/kitsinc

KITS Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/kidsinthespotlight/

KITS Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/kidsinthespotlight/

KITS Twitter - https://twitter.com/kidsinspotlight

 

KITS is a 501(C)3 nonprofit organization that provides foster youth with a chance to change the trajectory of their lives. Donations are welcome to help continue the incredible impact the program offers these special children. A donation can be made by texting GIVE to (818) 239-7010 or online at www.kitsinc.org.

 

Media Contact:

Martin Russell Johnson

Martin@Kitsinc.org

(818) 945-2009

 

 

 

 

 

© 2009-2020 Kids in the Spotlight, Inc. 

Kids in the Spotlight is a California 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation

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