My Native Admission Statement: Jessica Silvetti is an award-winning writer and director. Originally from Mexico City, of Spanish descent and raised in the US, she's been shaped by different cultures and views life through a bilingual lens. She attended NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, where she received a BFA in Theatre. After a few years in NYC, she relocated to Los Angeles to merge her love of writing and filmmaking. She is Co-Founder of Light and Shadow Pictures.
How did you get into the industry?
I grew up in an artistic household. My grandfather was a musician, my grandmother a lyricist, my aunt an actress and my mom worked in production. The entertainment industry was where I wanted to be. I began as an actress and went to NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts where I received a BFA in Theatre. Though initially I focused on acting, I always had a passion for writing and took some additional writing courses while at school. Ultimately, acting and writing led me to filmmaking.
Any emerging industry trends?
Women… but we’re not just a trend.
Diversity… but not just a trend.
I hope to be part of the voices that make these ‘trends’ an ongoing part of our industry.
Any industry opportunities or challenges?
I love how so many people have taken to social media to reach out to one another and connect with groups that can be beneficial to achieving goals for their projects. That’s an awesome opportunity.
Challenges… funding. Finding funding to make the stories you want to tell. More opportunities on that front are welcome!
Inspiration for the business idea and your vision for the business?
There’s constant inspiration in the world around us -- the stories I hear or read and the people I meet. There are also many stories from my own experience that I want to explore and envision making into films. I keep a lot of journals, notes and an organized calendar to make those things come to fruition.
I think putting plans into action and speaking them out loud makes you accountable and helps sharpen the vision of what you’re after. Also, by speaking with others about your projects you make connections to people who may be able to help you along the way or point you in the right direction.
What’s next for the Business in the near future?
I’m working on getting funds to direct a feature film which I also wrote. The screenplay has done well in a few competitions and I’m working on putting certain elements in place to make it happen. The story is about two violinists.
Simultaneously, I’m pitching a TV show that I created with my husband, Ethan Kogan, who’s also my creative partner. It’s a freakish fairytale of sorts and we’re just starting to meet with people to see who’s in. We’d love to connect with Guillermo del Toro – it would be amazing to make this nightmarish world come to life alongside him… a girl can dream!
How do you motivate others?
Making them feel valued and heard.
Being clear with my vision and goals.
Creating a collaborative environment when working together.
Career advice to those in your industry?
Don’t give up. Be proactive. Take time to reflect and breathe. If you fall, get back up and try again. Have fun along the way. Be genuine.
What do I do best?
I listen. I work on being a good listener and not being judgmental of others.
What are my aspirations?
I want to write and direct stories that make a difference in people’s lives. Even when it’s a comedy. I love for people to relate and connect to the characters from the stories I create. I hope it enriches lives in one way or another.
My Current Passions?
My family/friends. My dog. The violin.
Writing and directing -- of course.
My Daily Thoughts:
Step out of your comfort zone. Don’t be afraid to reach out and ask.
Laugh, it’s good for your heart.
Take time alone to reflect and recharge.
Don’t complain, it’s a waste of energy.
Look for solutions and alternatives.
Check in with my family and loved ones.
My Favorite People/ Role Models?
Good people with kind hearts and generous minds.
Favorite breakfast meal & restaurant?
This one is hard. I love lots of different foods.
Currently, favorite restaurant is Rossoblu in downtown LA – so good!
My Pic of the Day: My dog!