LAUSD school to become film and TV academy

LOS ANGELES — An LAUSD school will soon be home to a new film and TV academy backed by A-list celebrities.

Roybal Learning Center was selected as the school and part of its mission is to help diversify Hollywood.

What You Need To Know

  • According to an annual report by UCLA, Hollywood is becoming more diverse but certain roles still lag behind
  • The academy will start in the fall
  • It is backed by investments from A-list celebrities who will serve on the school’s board

Current student Albert Rutledge has been in the school’s film class for three years. He’s excited the class will soon become an academy.

“It allows me to tell people’s stories or even my own through a camera,” he said.

The Roybal High School Film and Television Academy is backed by investment from A-list celebrities who will serve on the school’s board. Artists like Don Cheadle, Eva Longoria and George Clooney have all played a part in creating the school.

The goal of the school within a school is to help more Black and brown students get to Hollywood. On a campus that’s majority minority, film teacher Gregory Smith hopes his students will get to tell more authentic stories in the future.

“Everybody has a story to tell and historically, those stories that have been promoted have been promoted by certain people,” Smith said. “So the more we get more diversity in the people who make decisions about the stories that are shown, the more stories we’ll get.”

According to an annual report by UCLA, Hollywood is becoming more diverse. People of color now represent nearly 40% of film leads. But certain roles, like director, still lag behind. Less than three out of every 10 film directors are people of color.

The academy will enlist industry leaders and talent to contribute to the school and create jobs in order to create a pipeline to Hollywood.

The academy will start in the fall. Students can apply by contacting Roybal Learning Center. The academy will start with ninth- and 10th-grade students and include grades 11 and 12 in following years.