After a stint in acquisitions at Fox Searchlight, Adèle Borden ’08 has started a new job as a Narrative Assistant in the film department at Participant. “They’re the production company behind Roma, Greenbook, Spotlight, and more.,” she explained. “Generally speaking, they produce indie-spirited movies with a social cause in the middle.”
In her role, she assists in the development, production, and post-production of feature films on the Participant slate. Next to come out is Todd Haynes’ film Dark Waters, starring Mark Ruffalo and Anna Hathaway. Adèle, who got her BA at Wesleyan University and MFA at University of Southern California, has already found roles and experience at Amazon Studios, the Creative Artists Agency, the Sundance Institute, Brad Pitt’s production company Plan B, and John Wells Productions. Adèle has produced a handful of shorts and music videos with Wesleyan and USC alums, and somewhere in the middle of all that, did yoga training to teach on both land and stand up paddle board.
“When I was at Wesleyan, I started getting involved in short film productions, and made a lot of friends who were working in film,” Adèle explained. “When I graduated, I spent a year traveling around Southeast Asia and India, taking photographs and figuring out my next step. I ended up moving to New York and started working in production — commercials, luxury fashion films, photo shoots, that kind of thing”.
“But as I spent more time producing short films with friends on the side, I realized I wanted to get into longer-form content,” she continued. “So, I applied to graduate school, thinking the best thing I could do was build a strong foundation and establish myself on the West Coast. I moved to LA to start at USC’s Peter Stark Producing Program in 2016.”
And after graduation, I decided to stay in LA and where I had the opportunity to start full-time at Fox Searchlight, a company I had interned with.”
“With all of that in mind, one might get anxious for Adèle, wondering aloud how she keeps things in order and in check. “You really have to love the work,” she said of the pace in Hollywood. “Otherwise, this would be a tough job. It’s long hours at the office, and even more at festivals, where you go 10-14 days straight, no nights or weekends off.”
“But, it’s really exciting,” she added with a smile.
To keep things in balance, Adèle had to learn to shift into a lower gear, too: “I teach yoga on the weekend, and try to make time for local hikes and excursions.
“Work is really important to me, but I also love being active and healthy and finding a community around that.”
But Adèle loves being part of the Hollywood community as well. “I didn’t realize until I started working in film and went back to school just how many people it takes to make a movie,” she said.
“There are so many people in the post-production, marketing, distribution — it goes on and on. There are so many moving pieces, and I’m happy to be a small piece of that.”
However, after reading all of the above, do you think Adèle is satisfied with a small piece of Hollywood?