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Student writes for 'Archer'

Dan O'Brien
February 20, 2013

Kondrat

Tesha Kondrat '13 co-wrote two episodes of Archer.

Tesha Kondrat ’13 is seeing the fruits of her labor getting laughed at—but that’s OK with her.

The Writing for Film and Television major co-wrote an episode of the hit FX show Archer that aired on February 7.

It’s the second time the 21-year-old’s name has appeared on the credits of the highly successful animated series.

“It’s a big deal for me,” Kondrat said. “I was lucky to work with one of the most respected writers in television right now.”

Archer creator, executive producer, and writer Adam Reed connected with Associate Professor James Macak back in 2011—initially to speak to his class in a conference call—and agreed to view writing by some of the students.

Without warning, Reed asked if Kondrat would be interested in becoming the first-ever college intern to work on Archer.

However, Kondrat, of Grosse Point, Michigan, was selected at the beginning of her summer break—just as she began working for the season at a salmon factory in a remote part of Alaska with limited phone and Internet service.

In a twist of fate, the factory unexpectedly closed—and Kondrat learned Reed was interested in her when she made a two-minute phone call to her family on a pay phone that was used by some 300 other people.

“I was crying with all of these [people] looking at me like I’m some kind of freak,” Kondrat said.

Kondrat spent the rest of that summer in Atlanta, where she lived in a furnished apartment provided by Archer near its production studios. She co-wrote the episode, “El Contador,” which aired January 26, 2012.

She was invited back to intern again last summer, when she co-wrote, “Midnight Ron,” which aired February 7.

Archer has grown from a cult following into the most-watched telecast for adults and men ages 18–49 in its fourth season premiere episode last month.

The stories in Archer center on an international spy agency where, according to IMDB, “global crises are merely opportunities for its highly trained employees to confuse, undermine, betray, and royally screw each other.”

The all-star cast of vocal actors includes H. Jon Benjamin (Family Guy; Bob’s Burgers) as the main character, Sterling Archer; Chris Parnell (Saturday Night Live); and Jessica Walter (Arrested Development).

“It was an incredible experience to collaborate with [Reed],” Kondrat said. “He is one of the few writers who is able to bring absolute hilarity and intellect into his script, yet make it the most viewed show by men 18–35.”

Reed also created Sealab 2021 and Frisky Dingo, which aired late at night on the Cartoon Network from 2000 to 2005 and 2006 to 2008, respectively.

“He’s a guy with tons of experiences, he’s a travel buff, he was an English literary major, and he brings all that insight and intellect into a script for a whole new level of entertainment,” Kondrat said.

Kondrat is participating in Emerson’s Los Angeles Program this semester and is interning with a production company run by Jason Reitman and another production company, Very Important Productions, which is working on a web series. 

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