Screenwriter, Ally Kornfeld is a celebrated comedy writer and producer, known for her success in the digital media space that’s disrupting the entertainment industry and transforming the way we watch TV.
Known for her TXT Stories on Facebook Watch, an episodic short form series told through text messages between families, friends, icons and even objects, Ally’s stories reach millions of people across varying demographics to popular success. “It’s an exciting time for what many are saying is television’s golden age, and writing for a platform that’s taking off globally is an honor and a responsibility.”
As Facebook Watch’s shows are growing steadily, with more than 400 million monthly users and TXT Stories alone have 3 million followers, she is thrilled that her work gets so much attention.
Having honed her comedy chops for years on the stage in New York City’s Magnet Theater, a theater started by Improv veterans Armando Diaz and Ed Herbstman, who hail from the comedy teachings of Del Close in Chicago, she worked with comedy teams that put up half an hour of new material every three weeks.
“It was a grueling schedule, but the rewards and lessons were invaluable.” Soon her writing was chosen to be performed at festivals like Montreal Sketchfest, Chicago Sketchfest, and the Boston Comedy Arts Festival.
“I could have traveled and produced sketch shows with my team happily for the rest of my career.” But her win at a national pitch completion at the ATX Television festival, soon put her on the map to expand her work to a greater audience that film and television allow for.
Prior to writing for the stage and screen, Ally studied at Amy Poehler’s famous New York Theater, UCB. Ally says “I would basically live at the theater. A group of us teamed up and would watch the sketch shows in Chelsea weekly, taking note and discussing what the game of each scene was, talking about how we would change it or what worked or didn’t on the way back to the subway late at night.”
What stunned her was the sheer amount of talent she was seeing produced on stage, that the rest of the world never got to see. “Comedic genius moments would live and die for that one show that one night.” Having worked in Australia on national and Hollywood productions such as Daybreakers (Lionsgate), The Starter Wife (NBC Universal) and Jodie Foster’s Nim’s Island, she realized if she changed mediums, she could help bring this talent and laughter to the world.
More recently, her working with Television’s greats like Jeffery Lieber, show runner of The Originals, the co-creator of ABC’s hit show Lost, and YouTube Star, Charlie McDonnell has certainly elevated her reach, and already she’s helped pen an episode of a comedy series for the CW Seed.
But it’s her coveted position writing for Facebook Watch, that gets her most excited, due to audience members being able to connect with each other through live comment threads and sharing. “This interaction tends to grow a community. It’s the perfect medium to combine the audience feedback you can get at a live theater show, with the convenience and reach of film and television.”
Ally’s pieces are sharp, subversive and delightful. Known for her ability to take on current trends and see the humor to them, she recently co-wrote and produced a new digital comedy pilot The Influencers with Co-Lab Productions, which makes fun and relishes the lucrative world of digital influencers.
When asked why she keeps creating and expanding the ways storytelling can be consumed she says “Deep down, we are all more alike than we are different. We all have the same questions about life, the same yearnings and need to be heard and understood. Stories are a powerful way that help us feel connected. It’s something that helped me a lot in my life and it’s incredible to a part of it for others, especially as the way we consume stories keeps evolving.” Keep a lookout for her work on Warigami and The Influencers, starring Desiree Staples coming later this year.