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Shea Mirzai

RespectAbility Entertainment Professionals Lab, Summer 2020

Shea Mirzai headshot looking out a window

Shea Mirzai

First generation Persian-American and LGBTQ+ writer/producer, Shea Mirzai is a four-time honoree of Franklin Leonard’s annual Black List. Mirzai has written features for Will Smith and Overbrook Productions and Tucker Tooley of Tooley Entertainment. He is also Executive Producer of Nat Geo’s ORIGINS: THE JOURNEY OF HUMANKIND.

In 2019, after selling action-drama feature spec RUTH to AGC Studios and being hired to reboot the AMERICAN PIE franchise at Universal, Mirzai has launched Space Coyote Productions, a full-service production company in which he is the founder & CEO.

A graduate of the University of California, Irvine with a joint B.A. in Film & Media Studies and African-American Studies, Mirzai combined the two into a unique program emphasizing Race & Representation. He cut his teeth in the film industry in glorious Hollywood, USA working for mini-major studio Relativity Media first as a Story Analyst and, later, as Head of the Story Department from 2008-2015. Mirzai is repped by Joe Riley at Zero Gravity Management and Chad Christopher at GGSSC.


After an extensive search and interview process, 30 individuals were invited to participate in RespectAbility’s Summer 2020 Lab for Entertainment Professionals. This 5-week, 15-session virtual summer Lab series for people interested in – and with experience in – development, production and post-production, including careers as writers, directors, producers, cinematographers, animators and other production roles, will take place June 16 – July 16, 2020. Participants include diverse people with physical, cognitive, sensory, mental health and other disabilities. Learn more:

This program, which continues building the talent pipeline of young professionals with disabilities looking to work behind the scenes, is made possible with support by:

  • Platinum Sponsors: Murray/Reese Foundation and The Walt Disney Company
  • Gold Sponsors: Cast & Crew, Comcast NBCUniversal and Final Draft
  • Silver Sponsors: Fox Corporation and Sony Pictures Entertainment

Meet the Author

Eric Ascher

Eric Ascher is the Communications Associate for RespectAbility. He is responsible for supporting RespectAbility’s Vice President, Communications in developing and implementing advocacy efforts and communications of various types. Ascher manages RespectAbility’s social media channels, website and emails; organizes and develops webinars; and supervises Communications Fellows.

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