Our organization and mission

Reel Start was founded in 2016 by Filmmaker Evan Goldberg (Superbad, The Boys, The Disaster Artist) and Educator Adrienne Slover.
They became friends in university, and quickly connected over their shared love of working with youth and helping others.
Ever since, they’ve worked together to inspire and empower students from underrepresented communities.


They created Reel Start to build a path from the classroom to the film industry- giving students the chance to turn their stories into films, and their passion for filmmaking into a lifelong pursuit.


Every year, professionals from all over the film industry donate their time to Reel Start.
They teach workshops, meet with the students, and help out on the films-

sometimes even starring in them. They’re the people who make Reel Start possible.

Matthew Castellanos

Volunteer Director – LA 2018

“It’s so necessary for kids to understand that filmmaking is a very possible outlet for them. The youth we worked with have so much to say and such a perspective that needs to be amplified. Coming from South Central myself, it was a joy to see my people experience the making of their own short film.“

Christopher Spellman

Volunteer Production Designer – LA 2017 & 2018

“The greatest part of my involvement is when a student sees that there are so many different aspects of the filmmaking process and then wants to participate in it. It’s when they realize there are a number of ways that this could be a real, concrete opportunity.”

Marsha Greene

Volunteer Writing Mentor – Toronto 2019

“I found it so gratifying to help the students find and develop their voices as storytellers. But in a greater sense, I believe it’s vital for young people to see that having a career in the arts is possible, and the many avenues in the film and television industry that are available to them.”

Lauren Collins

Volunteer Actor – Toronto 2018 & 2019

“Growing up on film sets, I learned SO much. Not just about acting but about all the many moving pieces that work together to bring a production to life. Film sets are also a fantastic way to meet people you might not have crossed paths with otherwise, where inclusion and tolerance are of utmost importance. Working with the kids in the classroom and on set was incredibly fun and eye opening. Their willingness to learn and contribute, and their creativity, blew me away.”

Mandi Price

Volunteer Post Producer – Toronto 2019

“Witnessing the moment when someone discovers their passion is truly remarkable. The students go through the entire process of filmmaking and learn from the best in the industry. Not many professionals can say Emmy & Oscar Award winners worked on their films. But these students can. It’s their story we’re here to support and breathe life into, in any way that we can. Storytelling in any form is an expression of truth, and Reel Start makes that possible not only for these high school kids, but for us grown up kids as well.”

Our organization

We’re a group of filmmakers and educators who believe that film has the power to create meaningful change in the world.

Evan Goldberg


“I think the film industry often seems out of reach, but it’s often so much closer and more real a possibility than people appreciate. I want to help youth understand the possible paths that film and television provide for them.”

Adrienne Slover


“I’m proud of the fact that Reel Starts exists. We are trying to teach students through this program to pursue their dreams, and that they can achieve anything they put their minds towards.”

Ethan Shapanka

Executive Director

“I feel incredibly fortunate to be part of developing the next generation of creators and craftspeople.”

Join us today.

We’re changing the status quo so that there’s a place for voices from every background in the film industry. We believe that now more than ever, diverse points of view are absolutely vital.
Donate, and help us change the world through film.