“Solving the complex issues of on-screen representation requires fresh, authentic and innovative perspectives from inside and outside the entertainment industry. Crafting narratives that reflect the vast diversity of global audiences have historically been, and continue to be, a driving force for change. Spellcheck for Bias seamlessly integrates these efforts into the creative process has already impacted the way characters are included and portrayed on screen.”

Janine Jones-Clark is Executive Vice President, Filmmaker & Content Strategies for the Universal Filmed Entertainment Group. Reporting to Universal Pictures’ President Peter Cramer, the team is aligned with Production Development to partner with filmmakers, producers and development executives to increase the Studio’s inclusive pool of breakout talent and be a resource to content creators in embracing NBCUniversal’s commitment to authentic storytelling across Universal Pictures, Focus Features and DreamWorks Animation.    

With a focus on above-the-line talent, the group develops strategies to attract writers, directors, actors and voice talent by curating opportunities that meet the needs of filmmakers and producers.  Crafted with producers Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner, the Global Writers Residency meets Working Title’s desire to develop storytellers with global perspectives.  Similarly, the Universal Filmmakers Project: NO DRAMA, launched in partnership with Jordan Peele’s Monkeypaw Productions and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), is powered by Peele’s drive to increase the pool of genre-centric writer/directors. 

Filmmaker & Content Strategies also serves as an essential resource to creators across the Studio by ensuring narratives reflect cultural and societal authenticity.  The group has impacted several titles across Universal, Focus Features and DreamWorks Animation including “Minions: Rise of Gru,” “Kung Fu Panda 4” and “Wicked.” The group is fully embedded in the production process, providing socially-relevant feedback early on. In addition to providing feedback and engaging interest group consultants, the team leads the Film Group’s commitment to the Geena Davis Institute’s Spellcheck for Bias initiative.  This resource provides analysis of pre-production scripts with the purpose of identifying opportunities for greater representation as well as identification of biases, tropes and stereotypes. Jones-Clark also sits on the organization’s board of directors.  

She came to Universal in 2017 to launch Global Talent Development & Inclusion, a first-of-its-kind department for a film studio. Under the leadership of NBCUniversal Studio Group Chairman & Chief Creative Officer Donna Langley, the business-led group created programs, initiatives and strategies that ensured inclusion was at the forefront of the Film Group’s work culture and content creation. In just seven years, Jones-Clark and her team generated crucial access points and opportunities for more than 200 breakthrough talent who took part in experiences that included: live action and animation writing and directing programs; the first and only studio composer initiative; and the Universal Below-the-Line Traineeship.  Nearly 75% of that alumni talent have secured production credits across the industry, with 78% percent of those credits from NBCUniversal content. Highlights include Juel Taylor, co-writer of Universal and Peacock’s “Shooting Stars,” based on Lebron James and Buzz Bissinger’s book of the same name and composer Amie Doherty becoming the first female composer to score a DreamWorks Animation feature with “Spirit Untamed.”

Prior to Universal, Jones-Clark had successful careers in television publicity and current programming at FOX, NBC and The WB. She then transitioned into talent development, where she applied her marketing and content creation skills to broaden Hollywood’s pool of talent. Jones-Clark spent 10 years at Disney|ABC, where she executed writing and directing programs attracting breakthrough talent such as Academy Award® nominated writer/director/producer Ryan Coogler (Marvel’s “Black Panther” franchise, “Judas” and the “Black Messiah”); actress/producer/director Regina King (“One Night in Miami,” “Shirley”); producer/writer Sierra Teller Ornelas (“Rutherford Falls,” “Superstore”); and director Jude Weng (“Finding Ohana,” “Black-ish”).

Jones-Clark received her Bachelor of Arts degree with a dual major in Mass Communications and Sociology from the University of California, Berkeley. A Los Angeles native, she still resides in the city with her husband.