Emerging Director Program

Emerging Director Program on Facebook

The Emerging Director Program is designed to take directors accomplished in their respective fields (features, commercials, music videos) and give them the opportunity to work alongside episodic television directors.  The selected directors will foster relationships and fine tune their art to fit the television format.

The NBCU Emerging Director Program continues to provide opportunity for experienced directors to make the transition to television. Built from a need to open up the pool of directors with whom NBCU works, the Program accepts only 100 nominees per year (first come, first serve). We ultimately select a small group of finalists to shadow NBC Universal shows, such as Community, Parenthood, Grimm and Chicago Fire. The final decision on who shadows and on which show lies with the participating shows themselves. Our directors gain invaluable experience and the preparation needed to make them capable of directing one of our episodes.

While in the program, directors are assigned up to three episodes of one (or more) NBCU scripted show from production prep to post.  The director is responsible for working alongside the show’s director(s) in every aspect. Responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following:

• Giving input on setting shots and giving direction (where appropriate) to cast and crew.
• Helping to prioritize and order shooting schedule.
• Tracking shot orders and notes for the directors.
• Providing feedback on performances.
• Sitting alongside the director during the editing process to finish the episode.
• Consulting with director and producers during prep on shooting script, production design and casting.


We usually open for nominations in the Fall, and notify finalists in the Spring.

To watch for updates on when we will be accepting nominations for the 2018 Emerging Director Program, please follow the NBCUNI TIPS Facebook page and the NBCUniversal Emerging Director Program Facebook page.


What’s the Process?

1. Nomination

Industry professionals may nominate directors who they feel are accomplished in their respective fields, by submitting their nomination letters online. We only accept the first 100 nominees (first come, first serve).

2. Submission of Portfolio Materials

Once a director is confirmed as one of the 100 nominees, we will contact the directing nominees directly and provide them with a link to upload their materials.  Nominees are required to submit:

  • A bio
  • A resume/CV
  • A directing reel
  • 1-3 samples representing the director’s best work (features, short films, music videos, etc.–completed works preferred)
  • OPTIONAL: 1-2 additional letters of recommendation

3. Selection of Finalists

10 finalists will be notified in the spring for potential shadowing during the upcoming season.

4. Selection of Directors

Finalists’ portfolios will be sent to participating NBCUniversal shows.  Each show then select which finalist they would like to take on as an Emerging Director who will shadow for up to three episodes on the show, from pre- to post-production.

NBCU will provide a weekly stipend, along with airfare and hotel accommodation for non-locals during the program.


Questions? Check out out our FAQ