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Pritzker Pucker Studio Lab for the Promotion and Creation of Mental Health via Cinematic Arts

The Pritzker Pucker Studio Lab creates, supports, and examines original narrative screenwriting, television writing, and media making centered around mental health. Student filmmakers, faculty, and board members will engage with the studio lab through new works creation, courses, and special events aimed at tackling complex topics, amplifying marginalized voices, challenging stereotypes, modeling best behaviors on stage and screen, and pursuing healing through innovation and inquiry.

The studio lab is made possible by a generous gift from the Pritzker Pucker Family Foundation and is housed in the School of Communication at Northwestern University.

Important information: 

We are now commissioning screenplays (up to $2,000) and films (up to $5,000) from sophomores, juniors, and graduate students and inaugurating a new three-course writing sequence this winter taught by the program’s director, David E. Tolchinsky. As part of this program, we will be providing new film equipment for awardees and writing instruction for all.

For film projects: think small crews and project scope. Adherence is required to all RTVF production procedures and COVID-19 protocols.  Learn more through the Production Handbook and COVID Guidelines]

If accepted to the program, you agree to abide by all policies, take the required winter, spring, and fall course, and attend all associated events/workshops. You understand that project funds will be disbursed according to a schedule emulating professional practice.

Applications are now closed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is this opportunity open to freshmen/first-years?

Alas, no, but you can apply in your second and/or third year.

The good news is the winter course has a public component. On Thursday evenings, 7-9 p.m., we will be holding public lectures, discussions, and screenings around mental health/mental illness. All are welcome. Announcements are forthcoming

Is this opportunity open to seniors/fourth-years?

Alas, no, since you have to be in residence/enrolled through fall of 2022.  The good news is the winter course has a public component. On Thursday evenings, 7-9 p.m., we will be holding public lectures, discussions, and screenings around mental health/mental illness. All are welcome. Announcements are forthcoming

Is this opportunity open to graduate students?

If you are in residence in 2021-2022 and fall of 2022 and are cleared to take coursework, yes. If not, The good news is the winter course has a public component. On Thursday evenings, 7-9 p.m., we will be holding public lectures, discussions, and screenings around mental health/mental illness. All are welcome. Announcements are forthcoming

How can I get involved as a faculty member?

Reach out to the Lab’s director, Dave Tolchinsky.  We’re excited to have faculty offer up lectures, participate in the public discussions, and/or devise a course that might be of interest in an auxiliary way.  Also, if you have suggestions for guests, organizations, or news outlets across screenwriting, television writing, media making, social science, media scholarship, anthropology, etc., please reach out to Dave Tolchinsky. Our dream is to make this Northwestern effort the beginning of a national/international sea change in how mental health is depicted.