MELISSA FINELL (Writer/Director) is an award-winning director and screenwriter based in Los Angeles. Sensitivity Trainingis her first feature film. Ithad its world premiere at the Los Angeles Film Festival, where it was named a “Can’t Miss” film at the festival by the Hollywood Reporter. Her script for Sensitivity Training won an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Production Grant and a Samuel Goldwyn Writing Award. The film will be released in Fall 2017. Mel is a graduate of UCLA’s MFA program in Film and Television Directing and a former Film Independent Project Involve Directing Fellow.Mel’s short film “Disaster Preparedness” was a Semi-Finalist for the Student Academy Awards and has been airing on PBS Stations across the country as part of KQED’s “Film School Shorts” series. The film premiered at Palm Springs International ShortFest, where it was named an Audience Favorite and screened in the “Best of the Fest” program. The film also screened at Mill Valley, Cleveland, Frameline, and NewFest; it won the “Best Short Film” Jury Award at the Seattle Gay & Lesbian Film Festival and was selected for “Best of Fest” at Outfest and nominated for the Iris Prize. “Disaster Preparedness” is available on the “Film School Shorts” Youtube Channel. Melissa’s upcoming second feature The Salutatorianis in development with Gunpowder & Sky. She is currently writing the screenplay for the American remake of Miss Granny, the popular South Korean comedy, with Tyler Perry’s 34th Street Films producing and CJ Entertainment financing.Originally from New York, Melissa received her B.A. in Women’s Studies at Smith College and studied sketch comedy writing at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater. She is represented by Madhouse Entertainment.