Join NFMLA on March 25th as they celebrate their monthly film festival with a special InFocus: Female Directors
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
In honor of Women’s History Month, NFMLA presents another installment of its InFocus series, with a spotlight on Female Directors.The first two film programs of the evening present brilliant meditations on lost love, regret, happiness, and the underlying, relentless force of time. These talented female directors give us everything ranging from narrative stories depicting loss of innocence and psychotic soccer moms to a powerful documentary content that accentuates important social and domestic issues. Closing out the evening is a third shorts program featuring riveting character-driven dramas from Switzerland, Belgium, and the USA, which are all dynamic and visually stunning.
Shorts Program #1: InFocus: Female Directors
Death in a Day - directed by Lin Wang
Coming from an artistic family, writer/director Lin Wang has always been interested in expression. She received a degree in Film and Directing from the Shanghai Theatre Academy, the New York Film Academy, and the Chapman University. Her short Death in a Day is dedicated to her uncle, who lost his battle against liver cancer shortly after he had been diagnosed, to his family, and to all of those who struggled going through his long and painful death.
Fog - directed by Chelsea Woods
Chelsea Woods is a writer/director from Los Angeles and a graduate of the University of Chicago, where her thesis film Elevated received honors. She began her career in film and television working on director Ava DuVernay's second feature, Middle of Nowhere, and worked in production on television shows including Touch, Criminal Minds, and Jane the Virgin. In 2015, Chelsea was one of the ten participants of AFI’s Directing Workshop for Women where she wrote and directed Fog.
Dryland - directed by Liv Prior Colliander
Liv Prior Colliander is a Danish director and writer currently based in Los Angeles. She recently earned her MFA in directing from the American Film Institute, where she was the sole recipient of the Alessandro F. Uzielli Scholarship. Her thesis film Dryland is currently screening at festivals, including the Reykjavik International Film Festival as a 2016 Golden Egg Finalist, the American Film Festival in Poland, and the Soho International Film Festival. Over the past decade, Liv worked beside some of the Denmark’s finest filmmakers. She graduated from the European Film College in 2006, followed by studies at the Short and Documentary Film School in Denmark as a directing fellow in 2006 and 2008.
Jack & Em - directed by Kaitlin Owens
Kaitlin Owens is an actress, writer, and director. Jack & Em is her first short film and was funded through Kickstarter. “It is a love story about loss and grief”, Kaitlin states, “It’s about finding a balance. That sometimes, no matter how badly we want to hold onto those we lose, that it’s easy to lose ourselves in that process.”
Don't Mess With Julie Whitfield - directed by Amy Barham
Los Angeles based writer/director Amy Barham graduated from Southampton University in her native England with a degree in English and Film Studies and spent the next decade working as a producer and development executive in the UK before moving to Los Angeles in 2011 to pursue her dream of becoming a screenwriter and director. Since coming to Los Angeles, Amy has worked as part of the creative development team on Mission Impossible 5 and Sherlock Holmes 3, as well as having several of her own film and television projects in active development in both the UK and the US. Don’t Mess With Julie Whitfield, her first film as a writer and director, stars Casey Wilson (Happy Endings, Gone Girl) and Mary Elizabeth Ellis (It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The Grinder).
Shorts Program #2: InFocus: Female Directors
SURVIVING INTERNATIONAL BOULEVARD: Domestic Child Sex Trafficking - directed by Sian Gowan
Sian Taylor Gowan, Founder of Red Scarf Films, makes her directorial debut with Surviving International Boulevard, bringing attention to the plight of local children and teens being sex trafficked in our midst. With a passion for social cause work and a professional background in non-profit advertising and outreach, she combines her creative production skills and non-profit experience in her filmmaking. Thus, Sian has created Red Scarf Films in order to produce social cause films for awareness and community action.
So F*cking Happy For You - directed by Lina Suh
Linda Suh grew up in the American Midwest, New York City, and Seoul, Korea. She received a BFA in Dramatic Writing from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. So F*ucking Happy For You is the first short film she directed independently. It has been featured on Short of the Week and Nowness Pick. She is in development on a dramatic feature film she wrote and will direct as a co-production with South Korea, and is also attached to direct a half-hour dark comedy pilot in Los Angeles.
Speak - directed by Laura Seay
A Seattle Native, director/writer/actor Laura Seay holds unwavering loyalty to the Seahawks, REI, and pretentious third wave coffee. As an actress, she has appeared in several feature films and network shows; including Judd Apatow’s coming-of-age romp Superbad, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, CBS’S NCIS, and NCIS:NOLA. Speak is her directorial debut. In 2016, the short screened at Portland Film Festival, Nantucket Film Festival, and the IFS Film Festival.
A Knock at the Door - directed by Katrina Rennells and Wendie Weldon
Katrina Rennells and Wendie Weldon are both actresses, writers, and directors. Katrina, a Los Angeles native, has an extensive resume in theater, as well as having written short films.. She was the 2nd AD for the Los Angeles CineFest winning and LA WebFest nominated webseries Slighty Dramatic, and wrote/directed the short film My Best Friend, in which Wendie starred. Wendie was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, and moved to Los Angeles three years ago in order to pursue a career in film. Wendie just wrapped the feature film Curse of Midnight, in which she starred as the lead, and she is currently producing her own web series, Worst Friends Forever.
A Hard World for Little Things - directed by Sonja Bertucci
Sonja Bertucci is a Los Angeles based filmmaker and scholar. She has an MFA in Film and Video from the California Institute of the Arts as well as a PhD in French Literature and Film Studies from UC Berkeley. Originally from France, she has taught at numerous institutions in the US (including Occidental College, Temple University, UC Berkeley, and Duke University). In dialogue with her academic research, her films take poetic-experimental approach to documentary filmmaking and have focused so far on the question of ephemerality, representations of grief and loss, and the struggle for personal and communal survival within a web of geopolitical events that diminish possibilities for agency.
Driver's Ed. - directed by Chase Norman
Up-and-coming filmmaker Chase Norman graduated from UCLA with Driver’s Ed as her thesis film. The film depicts a shy, overweight young woman who leaves the safety of her home for an unwelcoming high school classroom. This short film is Chase’s directorial debut. Additionally, Chase has worked as a writer and in the sound department.
Fanny Pack - directed by Uttera Singh
Drama has always been a part of Uttera Singh’s life. On the day she was born, her mother, who was nine months pregnant, was hit by a firecracker, and her father rescued her and rushed her to the hospital to deliver the baby. That fiery spirit is still very much alive in her. Uttera is a 2016 MFA graduate of the USC School of Cinematic Arts, where she was chosen as one of the directors on the USC/James Franco feature film Mad Whale starring Camilla Belle, Dominic Rains, and James Franco. She has just finished directing her thesis film Fanny Pack starring Brian George (Big Bang Theory, Seinfeld).
Shorts Program #3:
JUSQU'AUX ETOILES - directed by Janine Piguet
Actress/writer/director Janine Piguet has started her career as an actress in several theater companies in France and the UK with which she toured all over both countries. She got hired in the International Program of European Act in partnership with the Rada, The Actor’s center, La Comédie française, and the Mitstadttheater Berlin. Simultaneously, she wrote her first feature script with Rufus for Emotion picture. She got the inspiration for her short Jusqu’aux étoiles comes from her family background - they’re professional musicians.
JIMBO - directed by Rodrigo Zanforlin
Rodrigo Zanforlin was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and since his early ages his passion for music, poetry, nature, new medias and mystery took him to many trips and journey all over the world. He has degrees in Multimedia from PUC-SP - focus and extended research on New Media. His academic career includes three years of studying Art and Advertising, two years of Photography at Panamericana School of Arts, and a Master in Fine Arts at the New York Film Academy. His films, photographs, and work are a cinematic reflection of his life, and his perspectives about his experiences.
Our God Machine - directed by Dana Jones
Born and raised in Southern California, Dana James Jones is a Los Angeles based writer and director. He made his short first film at age 12, using Stop Motion and Star Wars Legos. About his fourth short film, Our God Machine, he states, “it’s a passionate collaboration of friends. This science fiction thriller was independently funded and came together quickly, as everyone involved was very excited by the project.”
Un Signe, Un Geste - directed by Don Duncan
Don Duncan is an Irish director and journalist, currently based in Brussels. He has lived and travelled all over Europe, Asia, North America, and the Middle East. He graduated in Modern Literature from Trinity College in Dublin, and received a Master's degree in Journalism from Columbia University, New York as well as in Directing from L’INSAS, the Belgian Cinema School.
Located in Downtown LA, South Park Center is the Presenting Venue Sponsor of the NewFilmmakers LA film festival. Founded in 2007, NFMLA has screened 1750+ films from over 69 countries. The organization provides a forum where filmmakers can be recognized with title supporters Sony Pictures Entertainment, DreamWorks, SAG-AFTRA and FilmLA.
For information or to reserve tickets to the NewFilmmakers LA March 25th, 2017 Film Festival, please visit http://www.NFMLA.org