After Berkeley, Jessica Sharzer gained M.F.A. in Film & Television from the NYU Tisch School of the Arts (2002).
While at Berkeley, she made a film on the Russian poet Marina Tsvetaeva, which premiered in Dwinelle Hall to the audience of Berkeley Slavic students. She made her professional directorial feature debut with Speak, based on the novel by Laurie Halse Anderson. The film premiered at Sundance in 2004 and was later simulcast on Lifetime and Showtime. Speak was nominated for a Writers Guild Award and a Directors Guild Award in 2005. Sharzer has written screenplays for Universal, Showtime, HBO Films, Endgame Entertainment and for television. In 2007, she has directed Showtime’s drama The L Word. She is on the faculty of the Kanbar Institute of Film & Television of the NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.