St. Francis College Women's Film Festival


Women's Film Festival



2019 St. Francis College Women's Film Festival Schedule

MARCH 26 PRE-FESTIVAL EVENT
3pm: Alice Howell Silent Slapstick Program
Piano Accompaniment by Ben Model Presented in collaboration with the 2019 SFC Women's Film Festival, held April 4th - 6th; The festival is a celebration of women's media production that features panels, workshops and screenings of short films and immersive media created by women from around the world.

Virtual Reality Experiences on Display Throughout the Festival

Title

Director

Country

Filamu Maude Clavier USA
Asian in America: A Symbolic Meal Jenny Dorsey  USA
Thin Line Rony Kahana USA

APRIL 4  - All events in Founders Hall
11:30am - 12:30pm: Opening Panel - The Future is Intersectional
This panel will open the festival with a discussion of how feminism and women's filmmaking is inherently intersectional, with multiple identities intersecting for filmmakers, festival programers and  the filmmaking community.

Featuring:
Filmmaker Isabel Sandoval
Isabel
is a New York-based Filipino filmmaker. She has produced, written and directed two full-length features, including the Filipino-language Señorita (2011), which premiered in competition at the Locarno Film Festival in Switzerland and was nominated for Best Picture by the Young Critics Circle of the Philippines. Her second feature film, Apparition (2012), a period drama about cloistered Filipino nuns during the Marcos regime was widely acclaimed in its Philippine theatrical release and won a number of international awards, including the Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NetPAC) Award at the 2012 Hawaii International Film Festival as well as the Audience Award at the 2013 Deauville Asian Film Festival in France. Variety Magazine touts Apparition as an “outstanding sophomore feature...[an] intelligently scripted and deeply moving mood piece.” She is in post-production on her third dramatic feature, "Lingua Franca". Her fourth, "Park Avenue, is slated to be in production in summer 2019, and she is a recent Tribeca All Access Grantee. Isabel has a MBA from the New York University Stern School of Business and has a background in CPG brand management.

Filmmaker and Festival Director of the Mystic Film Festival Shareen Anderson

Shareen Anderson is a filmmaker and TV producer based in Brooklyn, New York and Mystic, Connecticut. She’s developed and produced a wide-range of documentary films and series for networks, such as A&E, PBS, Netflix, Fusion, Esquire, TLC, Al Jazeera English, and Discovery. Most recently, she created and executive produced “The Murder of Laci Peterson”, a six-part limited documentary series for A&E. She also created and executive produced “Saving Soweto”, an eight-part documentary series for Al Jazeera English. “Return To The USS Atlanta”, which she directed and produced, was screened on Netflix and PBS, and her first feature documentary, Charents: In Search of My Armenian Poet, won the Audience Choice Award at the Pomegranate Film Festival in Toronto, Canada, and aired on PBS in 2016. While living in Johannesburg, South Africa she co-founded the Jozi Film Festival in 2012 and was a co-director until 2015. The festival is still going strong and continues to be run by local filmmakers. She launched the Mystic Film Festival in 2018 and is excited to see it go into its second year.

Filmmaker, SFC Alumna & Media Educator Sade Falebita
Sade Falebita is a multimedia producer and educator on a mission to nurture potential, educate, and empower creatives. She graduated from St. Francis College with a B.A. in Film and Broadcasting and B.S./M.S. in Accounting. Sade also obtained an M.S. in Journalism from Columbia University, where she reported on a wide range of hard news and features exploring issues including civil rights, immigration, healthcare, and poverty. Her unique background in communications incorporated with conducting multimillion dollar financial audits, has permitted her to have a keen understanding on how to effectively inform and engage audiences and clients alike. Sade frequently shares her personal experiences in media and finance through public speaking engagements in workshops, offering key career and professional development advice and reinforcing the power of community engagement. Her passion for teaching has led her to success as a storyteller and mentor, in particular in her current role as Associate Director of Youth Programs at Downtown Community Television Center.

12:30pm - 1:30pm: Lunch

1:30pm - 3pm: Seed & Spark sponsors Crowdfunding to Build Independence with Christina Raia
Learn the tools for creative independence by studying the techniques of successful crowdfunding campaigns: how to identify your audiences, bring them on board as followers and eventual funders, build meaningful partnerships to scale your reach, and create the most enticing possible pitch to audiences. Then, you'll get the down low on learning how to read between the lines of the data you gather while crowdfunding to increase the value of your IP and retain creative control.

Program 1 | April 4, 2019 | 3:30pm

Film Director Country
Orpheus & Eurydice Flora Chilton Hungary
Chinese New Year in New York Alessandra Flynn USA
Tangle Marzieh Meisami Azad Iran
Ah Yoginee Ayul India
The House of Water Lili White USA
Selkie  Amy Frear USA
Middle Lands  Maria Conte Italy
Mission Dadu Tanisha Agarwal India

5pm - 6pm: Reception

6pm - 8pm: Seed & Spark sponsors The Distribution Down Low with Christina Raia
We’re shattering the mystique around film distribution. Join us as we break down the current landscape of distribution for independent film and TV, including the economics of different avenues to take, the right questions to ask potential partners, and what needs to be done from pre-production through post-production to set yourself up for successful distribution.

APRIL 5 All Events in Founder’s Hall
10am - 12pm:  Screening 2 - Short Films in Competition

Program 2 | April 5, 2019 | 10am

Film Director Country
Memoirs of Saira and Salim Eshwarya Grover India
Two of Every Kind Efrat Chen Weiss & Naor Zana Israel
Hidden Half Marzieh Meisami Azad Iran
Pick Me Up Layal Akiki Lebanon
Take My Breath Away Gloria Endres de Oliveira, writer/director Germany
Next, Please Alexandra Rieser Austria
Z-Born Shaan Couture USA
Am I Pretty Jennifer Proctor USA
Ladies' Night: Love & Basketball Time Cecere & Josie Brennan USA
Admazons Cathleen Carr & Julie Sharbutt, writers/producers USA

12pm: Lunch

12:30pm - 2:30pm:  Screening 3 - Short Films in Competition

Program 3 | April 5, 2019 | 12:30pm

Film Director Country
Mirror Begonha Vicario Spain
Wonderland Tiffanie Hsu     USA
Faith Tatyana Federovskaya  Russia
Scapegoat Cian Luo Taiwan
The Story of Everything Sharon A. Mooney USA
The 800lb Gorilla Dana Verde USA
Our House Emily Hanson  USA
Matter Out of Place Oona Taper USA
Heather Has Four Moms Jeanette Buck     USA

3pm - 5pm: Feature Film Screening Wanda (Barbara Loden, 1970), introduced by Professor Scott Weiss
A neglected masterpiece, Wanda is the only feature film made by director Barbara Loden, who also stars in the title role.Wanda won the best Foreign Film Award at the Venice Film Festival when it was released in 1970. The film tells the story of an unhappy housewife in a hardscrabble coal mining community in rural Pennsylvania who leaves her husband and strikes out on her own. This groundbreaking work languished in obscurity for decades, but has recently been restored and placed on the Library of Congress’ National Film Registry. Trailer: https://vimeo.com/275159804

5:30pm: Reception

6:30PM:  Screening 4 - Short Films in Competition, including documentary short “50 Years of Women at St. Francis College”

Program 4 | April 5, 2019|  6:30pm

Film Director Country
Come Home with Me Jo Enver Singapore
Eli: A Portrait Lumen Nguyen     Germany
Seasonal Guests Doro Carl Germany
Now or Never Rose Schimm Canada
Symptoms Courtney Gains & Karen DeGennaro USA
The High Wire Kristy Hasen USA
50 Years of Women at SFC Daniele Francavilla USA

APRIL 6 All Events in Maroney Theatre, 7th Floor

11am - 1pm:  Screening & Discussion: The Future is Female: DC TV’s Female Youth Media Makers
A screening and talkback accentuating the power of women in DCTV’s award-winning Youth Media Program, past and present. Emerging artists from the Youth Media Program, translate the contentious and transformative experiences of our time to original films. The showcase explores the shifting landscape of women's voices, tackling gender inequality in front of the camera and behind the scenes.

Participant Names/Films
Aracelie Colon [High Expectations, Simple Night]
Jalyssa Jimenez [The Next Stop]
Miranda-Sofia Ranghelli-Duran [WITHOUT]
Colette Robicheaux [Etherized]
Showcase of Past Films
Kira Britt [Evolution]
Alyssa Dyal [Lifeline]
Sandra Appiah [Reflections in Thailand]

1pm: Lunch

1:30pm - 3:30pm: Virtual Reality Panel and Screening curated by Lisa Russell: The Future is NOW: Women in AR & VR

This panel will feature Stina Hamlin, Sadah Espii Proctor and Lisa Russell and will allow participants to view their work.

Lisa Russell, Moderator is an Emmy-winning filmmaker and arts curator who has been producing films and curating creative events for UN/NGO agencies for the past 15 years. As Founder of Create2030, a creative agency dedicated to engaging artists and creatives in the UN-led Sustainable Development Goals, Lisa is curating immersive experiences for the social good for the upcoming Women Deliver Film Festival, the UN's SDGs in Action Film Festival and the St Francis College Women's Film Fest.

Stina Hamlin, cofounder of STATE of Mind Media & Director of Post Production at East Coast Digital, Inc., is an award-winning VR creator and television producer who has worked with organizations including UNICEF, Doctors Without Borders, and USA Today.  She is of Cherokee and Irish descent, and her focus is creating projects that amplify Indigenous voices and creating media that educates and supports in the fight to protect the water and Mother Earth.  Currently she is working on XR project, Blood Memory: The Experience, and is a new member of the 2018-2019 cohort at New Inc. in New York City.

Sadah Espii Proctor is a VR director and sound/media designer for theatre and immersive experiences. She specializations in multimedia performances, 360 video and audio production, and interactive audiovisuals systems. Her work leans towards global stories of women, social issues, and the African Diaspora, often with an Afrofuturist/Cyberpunk lens. Previous collaborations include Kimbra and Sophia Brous (EXO-TECH), Sasha Velour, Neycha, Soul Science Lab, Murray Hidary, and Hi-ARTS. Proctor is the director of VR documentary Girl Icon (SXSW, Tribeca), which was created as part of Oculus’ VR For Good Creators Lab in partnership with Malala Fund. She received her M.F.A. in Performance and Interactive Arts from Brooklyn College and is a proud alumna of Virginia Tech.

4pm - 6pm: Screening 5 - Short Films in Competition

Program 5 | April 6, 2019 | 4pm

Film Director Country
Beyond Dreamers Yazemin Yilmaz USA
Starvation Zahra Rostampour   Iran
Pride Bianca Pezo  USA
Schoolhouse Glock Jasmine Lecount-McClanahan USA
A Scratch for Every Itch Maryanne Galvin USA
Panic Attack Eileen O'Meara USA
Tender Britt Sodersjerna  USA
The Trail Shana Darabie USA
6,743 Count My Voice Shristi Josti     Nepal
For A Better Life Yasmin Mistry USA
Gaslighting Tina Matzat Germany
Spring Has Sprung Alexandra Kenny USA

6:30pm - 8:30pm: Closing Panel & Awards Ceremony
Singer Mijori Goodwin of Create 2030 , a n organization that links artists to work toward UN Sustainability goals, will open and close our awards ceremony for all films in competition with her amazing performances. The evening will continue with a screening of “Giving Birth in America: New York,” a short created by Every Mother Counts, an organization founded by Christy Turlington Burns to help raise awareness about maternal mortality rates and the effort to make pregnancy safer for women around the world. Nan Strauss, director of Policy and Advocacy at Every Mother Counts will be present to talk about the film and their mission.

Women's Film Festival, April 4-6, 2019

2019 SFC Women's Film Fest Prizes

  1. Kodak Prize 
    “Take My Breath Away” by Gloria Endres De Oliveira
     
  2. Youth Award (made by a person who is under 19 and has not started college)
    “Schoolhouse Glock” by Jasmine Lecount-McClanahan
     
  3. Student Narrative Award
    “Middle Lands” by Maria Conte
     
  4. Student Documentary Award
    “Memoirs of Saira & Salim” by Eshwarya Grover
     
  5. Professional Narrative Award
    “Selkie” by Amy Frear
     
  6. Professional Documentary Award
    “Seasonal Guests” by Doro Carl
     
  7. Professional Animation Award
    “Panic Attack” by Eileen O'Meara
    “Tangle” by Malihe Ghloamzadeh
     
  8. Student Animation Award
    “Two of Every Kind” by Asaf Yecheskel 
     
  9. Experimental Award
    “ Matter Out of Place” by Oona Taper
     
  10. Virtual Reality Award
    “Filamu” by Maud Clavier
     
  11. SFC Student Award
    “Chinese New Year in New York” by Alessandra Flynn

Mission

We are committed to celebrating emerging and established female filmmakers. We strive to recognize new and original voices within the St. Francis College community and other university communities, as well as in the international emerging film community. Our goal is to create a bridge between female college filmmakers and professional female filmmakers which will encourage collaboration, cooperation, and coordination.

 

Goals

  1. To inspire discourse among women regarding the expression of women’s image in film, as well as to explore the role of women in the history and evolving art of filmmaking.

  2. Examine emerging film storytelling trends, and artistic viewpoints of female student and professional filmmakers.

augusta palmer

Augusta Palmer
Director / Co-Curator

Augusta Palmer, director of the SFC Women’s Film Festival is an Associate Professor of Communication Arts at St. Francis College in Brooklyn. She is a filmmaker and scholar who holds a Ph. D. in Cinema Studies from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. As a documentarian, she is best known for The Hand of Fatima (2009), a feature documentary about music, mysticism, and family history. Her award-winning documentary and experimental video work has screened in national and international festivals, as well as at venues like New York's Anthology Film Archives. Her first fiction short, A is for Aye-Aye: An Abecedarian Adventure has been screened at children’s film festivals from New York to New Zealand. She is currently at work on a new feature documentary, The Blues Society, which is about blues and bohemia in 1960s America.

Twitter

2018 Film Festival

2018 Festival Supporters & Partners

entrepreneurship

  • Department of Communication Arts
  • Women’s and Gender Studies Minor
  • Honors Program
  • Office of the Academic Dean

2018 Panel Discussions

St. Francis College Women's Film Festival
From The Silent Era To Virtual Reality

March 19 - 23, 2018

Festival Winners
  • Best Narrative Short by a Female Non-Student - ur dead to me, Yonoko Li
  • Best Narrative Short by a Female Student - Tira Misu (SFC) Co-Directors Marina Esparza & Shala Franciosa
  • Best Documentary Short by a Female Non-Student - Voices From Kaw Thoo Lei, Martha Gorzycki
  • Best Documentary Short by a Female Student - LGBTQ Comes Out to SFC Concetta D’Angelo/Producer Michele Montecalvo
  • Best Animated Short by a Female Non-Student - Meeting Macguffin, Catya Plate
  • Best Animated Short by a Female Student - Laymun, Catherine Prowse
  • Best Virtual Reality Work - Fly, Ji-Young Kang
  • Best Experimental Film - Nothing A Little Soap and Water Can’t Fix, Jennifer Proctor

Audience Awards

  • Audience Award for Documentary - The Road Less Traveled, Marissa Plaia & Family Unwritten, Yasmin Mistry
  • Audience Award for Fiction - Tira Misu (SFC) Co-Directors Marina Esparza & Shala Franciosa
  • Audience Award for Animation - Laymun, Catherine Prowse

2018 Festival Preview

2018 Film Schedule

Program 1: March 19, 6pm

Title

Director

Country

ur dead to me

Yonoko Li

New Zealand

Spinosaurus

Tessa Hoffe

Scotland

The Road Less Traveled

Marissa Plaia

US

165708

Josephine Massarella

Canada

Family Rewritten

Yasmin Mistry

US

Nothing a Little Soap & Water Can’t Fix

Jennifer Proctor

US

LGBTQ Comes Out to SFC

Concetta D’Angelo

Michele MonteCalvo

US

Laymun

Catherine Prowse

UK


Program 2: March 20, 3:30pm

Title

Director

Country

Risk

Lauren E. Johnson

US

Cultural Appropriation

Simran Sharma

US

The Story of a Motorbike

Junqing Duanmu

China

Celia

Clare Maceda

US

Celebrating 55 by Protesting 45

Mary Dalton

US

I Wait

Megan Gonzalez

US

#MeToo PSA

Alexandra Kenny & Alyssa Hernandez

US

Program 3 March 23, 1:20 pm

Title

Director

Country

Ok, Mum

Eva Lanska

UK

Meeting MacGuffin

Catya Plate

US

Voices from Kaw Thoo Lei

Marth Gorzycki

US

Commercial for the Queen of Meatloaf

Dina Fiasconaro

US


Program 4: March 22, 12 noon

Title

Director

Country

The Living Girdle

Judith Henry

US

Elephant

Shannon Plumb

US

Lana

Amy Podmore

US

Theme & Variations

Yulia Lanina

US

Fall

Kathryn Ramey

US

Kicking Up Dust

Angela Ellsworth

US

Untitled

Ana Dantas

Brazil

Our Summer Made Her Light Escape

Sasha Waters-Freyer

US

Take the Wild

Krista Davis & Cari Tangendal

Canada


Program 5: March 22, 4:30pm

Title

Director

Country

Ace and Anxious

Bri Castellini

US

25%

Pamela Mathues

Spain

For Mom

Savannah Joeckel

US

Filipina

Maribel Apuya

US

Ready for a Baby

Anastasia Dyakova

Australia

Tira Misu

Marina Esparza

US

2018 Festival Schedule

Monday, March 19 - FOUNDERS HALL

  • 2:00pm - Screening of Shoes (1916) by silent film director Lois Weber with live piano accompaniment by the amazing Ben Model
  • 4:00pm - Panel on the Past, Present, and Future of Women's Film Production with:
    • Academy Award nominee Immy Humes,
    • VR Innovator Theresa Loong, and
    • Kate Saccone of the Women Film Pioneer's Project at Columbia University
  • 5:15pm - Opening Reception
  • 6:00pm - Screening Program #1

Tuesday, March 20- FOUNDERS HALL

  • 11:10am - Social Media Charm School, a workshop on how to craft your personal brand in social media led by Seed & Spark crowdfunding guru Christina Raia
  • 1:20-3:20pm - Pitch Workshop led by Seed & Spark crowdfunding guru Christina Raia. Learn how to pitch your film or business from a pitch master
  • 3:30-4:30pm - Screening Program #2
  • 4:30-6:00pm - From #MeToo to #ActToo: Taking Action for Culture Change - Callahan Center
    • Join Mary Iannone (Breakthrough US) & Urvashi Gandhi (Breakthrough India) representatives from Breakthrough, a global human rights nonprofit, to discuss the future of #MeToo in both the United States and India. They'll discuss how to turn this powerful moment into a sustainable movement to create real culture change. Iannone and Gandhi will run through workshop ideas for daily actions anyone can take to change our environments, disrupt gender norms, and help to ensure no one else ever has to say #MeToo.

Thursday, March 22 FOUNDERS HALL

  • 12:00pm - Experimental Shorts Program curated by Roberta Bonisson
    • Program#4
  • 1:20pm - Breaking Boundaries: VR & Immersive Story Telling Panel with
    • Lisa Russell
    • Christian Delsol
    • Ellen Pearlman

  • 2:30pm - VR Viewing
  • 3:30pm - Panel - Filmmaking & entrepreneurship: Manage your Entertainment Business with
    • Thembisa Mshaka,
    • Lauren Magura of Cinematcher, and
    • Marie-Helene Carleton of ScreeningRoom.org
  • 4:30pm - Screening Program #5
  • 5:30pm - Awards Ceremony
  • 6:30pm - Reception

NOTE: NEW DATE

Friday, March 23 - MARONEY FORUM FOR ARTS, CULTURE & EDUCATION

  • 11:30am-1:00pm - Rising Up: #GALSNGEAR presents Global Perspectives on the Celluloid Ceiling
    • Filmmaker and Celluloid Ceiling author Gabrielle Kelly and
    • Editor Meaghan Wilbur from 2 Dope Queens (HBO)
  • 1:20pm - Screening Program #3
  • 3:00pm - Making Media for Social Change: Screening & Panel with
    • documentary Filmmaker Lisa Russell, who will be screening Heroines of Health,
    • and Leslie Wright from the Zonta Club of New York, who will introduce an excerpt from Little Stones by Sophia Cruz.

2017 Film Festival

2017 Festival Schedule

Tuesday, March 28 - 9:30am - 4:00pm

  • 9:30am Opening address
  • 9:45am Film Screenings
  • 11:00am - 12:30pm Panel discussion - Women's Filmmaking Past, Present, Future: Why Women's Media Making Matters
    • Ally Acker - Film Historian, Filmmaker, author Reel Women, a two volume work on Women in Cinema from the Silent Era to 2010
    • Debra Zimmerman - Executive Director, Women Make Movies
    • Isabel Sandoval - Director, Apparition
  • 12:30-2:00pm Film Screenings
  • 2:00pm - 3:30pm Crowdfunding Workshop - Financing your Film
    • WORKSHOP LEADER: Christina Raia of Seed and Spark - social media /audience building and maintenance
  • 4:00pm -5:30pm Filmmaker Roundtable Event
    • Building Bridges – The Art of Networking (Festival filmmakers only)
    • April Yvette Thompson (Producer: Blue Caprice, Mother of George, Gun Hill Road)

  • Wednesday March 29th 11:00-6:30pm

    • 11:00am - 3pm Film Screenings with Q & A
    • 3:00pm- 4:00pm Panel Discussion - Making it Happen: Filmmaking as Entrepreneurship
      • Stacey Holman
        • Producer, Tell Them We are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities and Mary Lou Williams: The Lady Who Swings the Band
        • Director, Dressed Like Kings
      • Lauren Magura - Cinematcher, a new app for finding crew members for film shoots
      • Lisa Russell - StoryShifter
    • 4:00pm-5:45pm Film Screenings
    • 5:45pm-6:30pm Awards ceremony and reception

    Awards & Prizes

    • Best Narrative Short by a Female Student
    • Best Documentary Short by a Female Student
    • Best Narrative Short by a Female Non-Student
    • Best Documentary Short by a Female Non-Student
    • Best Documentary by an SFC Student
    • Best Animated Film by a Female Student
    • Best Animated Film by a Female Non-Student

Schedule of Films

day one film schedule

day 2 film schedule

magaly colimon christopher

Magaly Colimon-Christopher

Co-Founder/Director

"It started with an impression I got that young female artists were more reticent to express themselves than I was when I was their age. This impression evolved into a desire to give them a platform to be seen and heard. The desire sparked a conversation with Augusta Palmer, during which I discovered I wasn't the only professor who was concerned about the muted voice of female film students. Augusta and I went back-and-forth analyzing the pros and cons of co-founding a film festival, until a rush of determination and optimism turned a series of conversations into hours of co-planning, team work and co-recruiting. Our collaboration resulted in the first ever St. Francis College Women's Film Festival in 2016."

In addition to co-directing the festival, Magaly is an Adjunct Professor in St. Francis College's Communications Art Department. Magaly is also a professional actress/writer/director. Her acting credits include national commercials, prime time television, and regional theater productions. Magaly's directing credits include "Yes Madame" (screening selection at the Pan African Film Festival, Martha's Vineyard Film Festival, Reel Sisters Film Festival, and BHERC Film Festival). Her director/writer credits also include BN4REAL (web series), short film HER TORY (short film), and 2Divas and a Camera (short film series). St. Francis College has recently produced staged readings of her plays THE HUNTING SEASON and BAMBOO UNDER RUBBLE. She is a true East Coaster. She earned her BA at Columbia College, her MBA from Binghamton University, and her MFA from Yale School of Drama.

2017 Festival Opening Remarks

Panel Discussion: Why Women's Media Making Matters

Partners

The Independent Filmmaker Project The Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) is proudly supporting the St. Francis College Women's Film Festival by awarding one-year memberships to IFP for all of our prize winners.
cinematcher
screening room
Alamo Drafthouse Downtown Brooklyn

Panelists

Ally Acker

Ally Acker is a filmmaker and poet. Her most recent film is Reel Herstory: The REAL Story of Reel Women, hosted by Jodie Foster, based on her two-book collection, Reel Women: Pioneers of the Cinema, The First Hundred Years. The original 1989 edition was hailed groundbreaking as the first book on the market to reveal the transformational role women played in film since 1896. Acker also directed the ten documentary collection, Filmmakers on Film. Acker’s last film, The Flowering of the Crone: Leonora Carrington, Another Reality, is the only film produced in the U.S. about the great Surrealist. Acker appears in The Women Who Run Hollywood, which premiered at Cannes last May.

Debra Zimmerman

Debra Zimmerman has been the Executive Director of Women Make Movies since 1983. For 10 of the last 11 years films from WMM have won or been nominated for Oscars. She is in great demand around the world as a speaker on independent film distribution, marketing and financing. She is a member of numerous Advisory Boards for many media organizations, a jury member for many international film festivals, and regularly sits on foundation and government funding panels. She is the recipient of New York Women in Film and Television's Loreen Arbus Award and the Hot Doc's Doc Mogul Award, given to those who "over the course of their career has made an essential contribution to the creative vitality of the documentary industry, both in his or her country or abroad."

Isabel Sandoval

Isabel Sandoval is a New York-based Filipino filmmaker. Her second feature film, "Apparition", won the Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NetPAC) Award at the recently-concluded 2012 Hawaii International Film Festival after having its international premiere in competition at the 2012 Busan International Film Festival (New Currents category). U.S. trade magazine Variety gave "Apparition" a rave review: an "outstanding" sophomore feature that is "intelligently scripted" and "deeply moving". In July 2013, The Museum of Modern Art screened "Apparition" for a week as part of their ContemporAsian series.

Christina Raia

Christina Raia is a New York City based Writer/Director, the Founder of CongestedCat Productions and a Crowdfunding Specialist at Seed&Spark. Her work, a collection of short films, a web series, and a feature film, has gained a large online following through multiple crowdfunding campaigns. She has been covered by press outlets such as Indiewire, AfterEllen, and BuzzFeed. She also turned her desire to foster collaboration and engagement in the local film community into IndieWorks, a monthly film screening series showcasing and supporting the work of other independent filmmakers in New York.

Seed & Spark

Seed&Spark is the world’s only streaming and crowdfunding destination, supporting inclusive films and film-related projects with funding, audience building, and distribution. At the heart of our popular “Crowdfunding to Build Independence” workshop is our dedication to connecting filmmakers with their audiences. Identifying, and then enthusiastically engaging, your supporters is essential to a career of successfully funding and distributing your films. That's why in our class, we teach you how to find and engage your fans, run an effective crowdfunding campaign, and then distribute your film—all while preparing you to make your next film. Because after all, this class isn’t about crowdfunding: it’s about career building. Your film career starts here!

April Yvette Thompson

SimonSays Entertainment's Director of Development, April Yvette Thompson is a Tony-winning producer/writer/actor working across media. Producer: Blue Caprice, Mother of George, Gun Hill Road, Porgy & Bess, Jitney. Actor: Blue Caprice, Gotham, Blue Bloods, The Exonerated Accidental Husband, Law & Order. Broadway/Off Broadway: Clybourne Park, Medea, King Lear, Macbeth, Liberty City, Fit for a Queen. Playwright: Good Bread Alley & Liberty City (Drama Desk, Outer Critics, Lucille Lortel noms). Education: Vassar College & Rutgers University.

Stacey Holman

Stacey L. Holman is a Harlem based independent producer/director whose work has screened Nationally and Internationally. She recently wrapped on the PBS documentary Tell Them We Are Rising the Story of Black Colleges and Universities as Producer which premiered at this year's Sundance Film Festival. In addition, she produced and directed the award-winning shorts Mirar Mirror and Girl Talk and has produced content for Centric TV. Stacey’s work also expands to South Africa where she’s finishing a documentary, Dressed Like Kings, on a group of fashionable Zulu men. She’s a graduate of Dillard University and NYU Tisch School of the Arts.

Lauren Magura

Lauren is the founder and CEO of the entertainment job matching app Cinematcher. She came up with the idea of Cinematcher through her passion for connecting people within the entertainment industry. The true dedication of everyone in the industry, and the need for a simpler hiring process influenced Lauren to put Cinematcher into motion. Lauren has a background from Universal Pictures in marketing and film and oversees all aspects of Cinematcher.

Lisa Russell

Lisa Russell is an Emmy-winning filmmaker with a Masters in Public Health who has been producing films and creative advocacy campaigns on pressing global development topics for UN/NGO agencies for the past 10+ years. With a passion for arts and storytelling to help change narratives of humanitarian type content, Lisa has released "StoryShifter", a new online platform for the social good, driven by machine learning and data analytics. Lisa currently lives in Brooklyn and is a teaching artist for young spoken word artists and also leads digital storytelling workshops. For more info visit www.lisarussellfilms.com. Twitter: @lisarussellfilm