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  • 7/15/2015

    Rita Mahtoubian Is Not A Terrorist among 5 narrative feature film projects selected for Sundance Institute's weeklong Creative Film Producing Initiative.

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  • 5/15/2015

    “Transparent” creator Jill Soloway delivered the keynote address to the students of AFI’s Directing Workshop for Women’s 2015 Showcase Thursday night at the Directors Guild of America.

    Soloway began her remarks to the filmmakers and their guests by praising the recent action taken by the ACLU in support of female directors. “Guys, it’s an amazing time for women right now!” Soloway said. “ACLU thing! Let’s sue Hollywood! Sue ‘em all! Sue those mothaf***as!”

    The rest of her speech was similarly empowering and expletive-laden. She encouraged the filmmakers to embrace their gender as they go forward. “I came into most of my power as a filmmaker when I realized that all I needed to do was make a safe space for people to have feelings,” she said. “And that is feminine energy…Rub your f***ed-up-ness all over your scripts. Add some shame and some embarrassment. Rub your shame all over your script and then dare yourself to shoot it. Seriously.”

    “Instead of waiting for the industry to change or waiting for the guys to change, instead storm the gates, grab hands with each other, run like Red Rover to those lifeguard chairs,” Soloway went on. “Snarl at the bases of those watchtowers like starving beast dogs. Snarl like wild lady-dogs. Wrestle the male directors out of the chairs, then put the chair back up and sit in it.”

    Soloway ended her impassioned speech with a few well-placed jabs at the industry. “I do want to remind people that gender parity is not, like, 50/50. Gender parity would mean that for the next 100 years, women direct 95% of the movies. And then in year 101, we go to 50/50. That would be gender parity. But the only way things are really going to change is when we’re all wilder and louder and riskier and sillier and unexpectedly overflowing with surprise. And soon, what everybody is going to say is, ‘We have to find a woman director to make this. Because women are just so much f***ing better at it.’”

    After Soloway brought the house down, the eight short films by the DWW’s class of 2014 screened: “Election Night,” directed by Tessa Blake; “Tortoise,” directed by Jean Lee; “Share,” directed by Pippa Bianco; “Ma/ddy,” directed by Devon Kirkpatrick; “Up Here,” directed by Kantu Lentz; “The Haircut,” directed by Alexis O. Korycinski; “Rita Mahtoubian Is Not a Terrorist,” directed by Roja Gashtili and Julia Lerman; and “Zelos,” directed by Thoranna Sigurdardottir.

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  • 3/6/2015

    New York audiences will truly be treated to an embarrassment of riches by our Shorts Program at the 2015 Tribeca Film Festival, presented by AT&T. Curated from 3076 submissions, this year’s program of 60 short films from 18 different countries includes a record 40 world premieres.

    The Festival is happy to welcome back some stellar TFF alumni including filmmakers David Darg and Bryn Mooser who, along with producer Olivia Wilde, return for the fourth time with their short doc, Body Team 12, about the Ebola outbreak. Producer Ellen Bar (Ballet 422, TFF 2014) embraces the narrative form with her short, Early Sunday Morning, starring American Ballet Theatre dancers Isabella Boylston and James Whiteside. Miss Meadows (TFF 2014) star Katie Holmes will make her directorial debut with the sports doc, Eternal Princess, about the life of gymnast Nadia Comaneci.

    The 2015 Shorts Program will be divided into 9 programs: 5 narrative, 3 documentary and 1 combination of both genres. The ‘Gallery Opening’ program celebrates the creative and the cerebral with films from artists like JR and Daniel Arsham. If you’re not in NYC, you can still enjoy select titles from our 2015 Shorts Program. The 7 films in the ‘FML’ program all will be available three hours after their premieres as part of the Tribeca Online Festival. These shorts deal with wearable tech, online dating, homeland security and the issues of living a digital life.

    Don’t forget! Recipients of the Tribeca Film Festival’s Best Narrative Short and Best Documentary Short Awards will qualify for consideration in the Short Films category of the Annual Academy Awards provided the films comply with the Academy rules. Last year’s Festival winner for Best Narrative Short, The Phone Call, won this year’s Academy Award for the Best Live-Action Short. So there is a good chance that a few 2016 Oscar winners will be screened at this year’s Festival! 

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  • 3/27/2014

    Kimberly Peirce, director of Boys Don't Cry, will deliver the keynote address at the American Film Institute's annual AFI Directing Workshop for Women showcase, which will be held April 29 at the Directors Guild of America. The invitation-only event will present the work of eight directors who recently completed the 2013 AFI DWW program: Aubree Bernier-Clarke, Cusi Cram, Sarah Doyle, Anne Hamilton, Tiffanie Hsu, Erin Li, Kristine Namkung and Janine Salinas Schoenberg. New participants for 2014 will be welcomed as the 40th anniversary class. They are: Pippa Bianco, Tessa Blake, Roja Gashtili, Julia Lerman, Devon Kirkpatrick, Alexis Korycinski, Jean Lee, Kantu Lentz, Bola Ogun and Thoranna Sigurdardottir. Peirce and directors Patty Jenkins and Jamie Babbit will serve as mentors for the 2014 program. At the showcase, new filmmaker grants from Creative District and Indiegogo also will be announced.

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