A Hollywood legacy

Paul (fourth from right) poses with 2006 interns; also pictured is Peyton Reed `86 (seventh from right), whose recent directing credits include the movie Ant-Man.

“It keeps me from being a bitter, jaded old writer.”

Paul Edwards has directed the Hollywood Internship Program in the Department of Communication for more than two decades. With screenwriting credits that include television’s Quincy M.E., Knight Rider and 21 Jump Street, the double Carolina graduate (B.A. ’71, history; M.A. ’78, communications) has much wisdom to share with UNC students who head west each summer to get a taste of working in the entertainment industry.

Most important, Edwards says, he does for them what no one did for him when he moved out to Los Angeles in 1979: provide a network of contacts, including many UNC alumni, who have made their mark in Hollywood and can start the students on their way to successful careers.

“I’m at a point in life when you begin to think about your legacy,” Edwards says. “This will be my legacy to the university which has meant so much to me.”

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The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, the organization that awards the Oscars, has supported the Hollywood Internship Program with more than $200,000 in grants and in-kind donations over the past 20 years.