GEI Provides Access to Opportunity

Group Effort Initiative (GEI) was launched and financed by Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively in August 2020. Run through their companies, Maximum Effort and B for Effort, GEI strives to create a pipeline for members of underrepresented communities to get real experience towards lasting careers within the entertainment industry.

The Adam Project GEI PA Trainees
The Adam Project

Reynolds and Lively kicked off the program by placing eight trainees on Reynolds’ Netflix action-adventure film, The Adam Project, directed by Shawn Levy and filmed in Vancouver, Canada. GEI funded the trainees’ salaries and housing during production, allowing them to work within a variety of departments including Art, Assistant Director, Camera, Construction, Makeup, Production Office, Set Decoration and VFX.

The trainees were able to learn from department heads and industry professionals and gain practical, resume-building experience that many parlayed into another job, hopefully en route to a long lasting career in the entertainment industry.

Following The Adam Project, GEI continued to place trainees in productions across the United States including Atlanta, Boston, Cleveland, Long Island, Los Angeles, New York City, and Winnipeg with partners like Apple and Netflix.

How We Have Evolved

In June 2021, GEI merged with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Evolve Entertainment Fund (Evolve), a public-private partnership dedicated to building career pathways into film, television, and music for women, people of color, and low-income Angelenos through paid internships, focused mentoring, and an ongoing series of workshops and panels.

To date, GEI, with the Evolve merger, has directly secured 709 paid internships and 84 corporate full-time jobs, partnered with 85 productions to provide 121 production assistant jobs to participants, and hosted 39 educational experiences.

Participants with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti
GEI Annual Bootcamp Picture

Our Group Effort

The merger of GEI and Evolve will expand the reach of Evolve beyond Los Angeles to other cities in the United States and around the world, and will open both corporate and below-the-line opportunities to participants over the age of 18. Through this partnership, the expansion will look to double the number of participants over the next three years to provide over 1,000 internships and 150 full-time job opportunities.

GEI By The Numbers

Race

Gender Identity

United States and Canada map

*GEI plans to expand globally in 2022

33%

of participants identify as queer/LGBTQ

55%

of our participants are first in their families to go to college

3%

of our participants have disclosed having a disability