The Caucus For Producers, Writers & Director’s 34thAnnual Caucus Awards Dinner

Actor James Pickens, Jr., starring role as Dr. Richard Webber on ABC’s Grey’s Anatony and the Co-Host of NBC’s Extra & Host of FOX’s NFL Kick Off Show Charissa Thompson

*Actor James Pickens, Jr., starring role as  Dr. Richard Webber on ABC’s Grey’s Anatony and the Co-Host of NBC’s Extra & Host of FOX’s NFL Kick Off Show Charissa Thompson are this years’ Co-Hosts for The Caucus For Producers, Writers & Director’s 34thAnnual Caucus Awards Dinner on Thursday, December 1, 2016, 6:30 PM held at the Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90049.

Co-chairs Robert Papazian and Tanya Hart, along with Executive Producer Chuck Fries, and Producers Lee Miller and Vin Di Bona, The Caucus for Producers, Writers & Directors are planning a memorable awards show this year.

Caucus Awards

Honorees include, Michael T. Fries, Co-Chair/President/CEO Liberty Global will be presented the Executive of the Year Award, Roy Price; Vice President and Head of Amazon Studios with the New Visions Award, Producer Stephanie Allain; Homegrown Pictures the Chair’s Award, and Executive Producer/Director/Educator Kevin Bright will receive the Caucus Awards Lifetime Achievement Award and Professor & Founder Fun Little Movies Frank Chindamo will be presented the Caucus Distinguished Service Award.

The Caucus’ new motto is “Leading the Evolution” and that is what they have been doing for over 40 years. They have always been innovators and have helped those that just needed an opportunity to open the doors to their dreams in the entertainment industry.

For the past 34 years the Caucus has hosted the Caucus Awards. Last year they had the foresight to honor TV executive John Landgraf, President and General Manager of FX Networkwho won big at 2016 68th Emmy Awards with 18 awards powered by the hot limited series “The People v. O.J. Simpson”.

Each year The Caucus Awards honors outstanding creative television and new media talent at their Annual Caucus Awards Dinner. Awards are presented to outstanding individuals and three winners of the Caucus Honors from the list of nominees.

The Caucus Foundation’s student Gold Circle Award is presented to two grant recipients for their 2015/16 student films. In promoting the upcoming generation of television and new media content creators, The Caucus will also present the Television and New Media Award to a university’s creative team for an exceptional project.

A significant portion of the proceeds from the dinner will benefit The Caucus Foundation, which has provided grants and awards of $1.5 million to 154 worthy students to complete their film, television or new media projects.

The 2016 Caucus Honors Award Nominees are as follows:


Kenya Barris

Sam Esmail

Vince Gilligan

Nahnatchka Khan, Jake Kasdan & Melvin Mar

Marta Kauffman & Howard J. Morris

Jill Soloway


David Benioff & D.B. Weiss

Alec Berg

Vince Gilligan

Derek Haas & Michael Brant

Noah Hawley

Robert & Michelle King


Susanne Bier

Alan Carter

Thomas Carter

Michael Cuesta

David Hollander

James Widdoes

About James Pickens, Jr.

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, James Pickens, Jr. started acting at the Karamu House, distinguished as the oldest African-American theater in the United States.

For his role on “Grey’s Anatomy,” he is a winner of a Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Drama Ensemble and, most recently, won an NAACP Image Award, which he describes as “especially gratifying after seven consecutive nominations!”

Well known to television audiences for his recurring roles on such series as “NYPD Blue,” “The X-Files,” “The Practice,” “Philly,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Six Feet Under,” “The West Wing,” “Rosanne”and “Beverly Hills 90210,” Pickens also starred opposite Rob Lowe in “The Lyons Den” (NBC) and with William H. Macy and Felicity Huffman in “A Slight Case of Murder” (TNT).

On the big screen he has been directed by some of the film industries finest, including Steven Soderbergh in “Traffic,”Oliver Stone in “Nixon” and Warren Beatty in “Bulworth,” and he appeared in four Barry Levinson films — “Sleepers,” “Sphere,” “Jimmy Hollywood” and “Liberty Heights.”

He portrayed slain civil rights leader Medgar Evers in “Ghosts of Mississippi” (directed by Rob Reiner), and played Angela Bassett’s ex-husband in “How Stella Got Her Groove Back.”

Other films include “Menace II Society,” “Home Room,” “Gridlock’d” and “Just Wright,” starring Queen Latifah and Common. He has appeared in “42,” the feature about baseball legend Jackie Robinson, which starred Harrison Ford and was directed by Brian Helgeland.

About Charissa Jean Thompson

Charissa Thompson is an American television host and sportscaster with Fox Sports 1 and NBC. She is one of the co-hosts on for the syndicated entertainment news show Extra. Previously, Thompson worked for Fox Sports in her first stint, and Versus, as well as for GSN and the Big Ten Network.

She was the co-host of SportsNation along with Marcellus Wiley until her departure for Fox Sports in June 2013. She became the host of Fox Sports Live on the new Fox Sports 1 network. She left ESPN in June 2013 to return to Fox Sports.  In 2014, Charissa joined Mario Lopez and Tracy Edmonds as a co-host on the syndicated television show Extra.

In 2016, it was announced that Thompson would be a host on the Netflix reality show Ultimate Beastmaster.

About The Caucus For Producers, Writers & Directors

Linking the best of Hollywood’s and Television’s creative content providers (i.e. the top 100 Television producers, writers and program directors of Primetime, Daytime and Children’s programming) with the rest of the web world!  For the past 42 years in Network Television (and now in Cable and Satellite Television as well), The Caucus has provided a forum for the best and the brightest creative talent in Hollywood to network together as the ‘creative conscience’ of the Television industry.

The Caucus, as the leaders of the creative Television community, has always stood for better and more meaningful television.  That means Television Programs produced, written and directed in a working environment that supports the best product that we can create for our audience.

Current members of The Caucus also include Tom Hanks, JJ Abrams, Chuck Fries, James Burrows, Bob Papazian, Vin Di Bona, Suzanne de Passe, Charles Floyd Johnson, Dennis Doty, Norman Powell, Lee Miller and other leading producers, writers and directors. For additional information on The Caucus and awards, visit:





Edna Sims
[email protected]