Brooklyn College’s Ben Snyder wins best screenplay at Tribeca Festival

He's taught screenplay writing at the college since 2018

July 11, 2022 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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Brooklyn College Film lecturer and writer/director Ben Snyder has won Best Screenplay at Tribeca Film Festival for his feature, “Allswell.”

Entered in the Narrative Feature category, the film was co-written and based on real-life scenarios from lead actor Elizabeth Rodriguez. The film is an emotionally charged dramedy chronicling three Nuyorican sisters navigating the challenges of single motherhood, career, and family, all while finding humor and solace within the bonds of sisterhood. 

The film follows Snyder’s acclaimed 2016 feature and directorial debut, 11:55, which was co-written with Ari Issler and Victor Almanzar, a military veteran, and tells the story of a U.S. Marine returning to his hometown, where he struggles to escape his violent past. 

“As a filmmaker, I’ve been grappling with the extractive nature of narrative storytelling and exploring how we can democratize the development and ownership of a story,” Snyder said. “11:55, for me, was a look at late-stage capitalism by way of an anti-Western. Allswell is a family dramedy about trauma and redemption. Both films were developed with the cast and inspired by real events from their lives.” 

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Brooklyn College Film lecturer and writer/director Ben Snyder. Photo courtesy of Brooklyn College

A review of the film in the entertainment news website The Wrap said, “Describing the plot of Allswell doesn’t accurately convey the film’s impressive, utterly natural experience. The actors hit no false notes, interacting with each other with an unmistakable aura of shared experience. Humor and pathos blend seamlessly, so that even life’s small moments are at least a little bit riveting.” 

Snyder has taught screenwriting at Brooklyn College since 2018. His short films have screened at film festivals, including at Cannes, Aspen, and Austin, as well as featured on PBS. He was the story consultant for the Sundance award-winning documentary The Wolfpack and has developed television for BET, Channel 4, and Lionsgate Entertainment. Snyder was also a writer for the Netflix series Grand Army and a producer for the HBO series Betty

Brooklyn College has been an important institution in the borough for more than 90 years. Today, it has approximately 16,000 students in more than 100 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in the arts, humanities, sciences, education and business. It is part of the CUNY system.

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