Mike Fleming

WME has signed a trio of aspiring directors who emerged from the Sundance Labs program last January. All of them will be shooting features this year.

David Lowery, who wrote/directed Pioneers, a short that won the Grand Jury Award at SXSW will shoot Aint Them Bodies Saints, the film that shoots this summer with Rooney Mara, Ben Foster and Casey Affleck starring.

Jonas Carpignano’s short films have shown at numerous festivals; Bayou Black, starring Michael K. Williams, played the Woodstock Film Festival and his latest, A Chjana, won the Controcampo Italiano Award for Best Short at Venice last year. Jonas’s feature length version of A Chjana was recently accepted to the Sundance Screenwriters Lab and the Berlinale Talent Campus. Jonas, an MFA candidate at the Tisch School of Arts, will shoot the feature later this year.

Ryan Coogler, out of USC, has played numerous fests with his short Locks and Gap & Fig.  He developed his first film Fruitvale at the Sundance Lab. The film shoots next month in Oakland, with The Help’s Octavia Spencer starring. Forest Whitaker is producing a film that tells the true story of Oscar Grant, the 22-year old Bay Area resident who crosses paths with friends, enemies, family on the last day of the 2008…. and the unfortunate events that followed.