Chat w/ Jennifer Sharp, director of 'Una Great Movie' | Brooklyn FilmFest

UNA GREAT MOVIE playing at Brooklyn Film Festival 2019, is a beautiful movie about a black American woman traveling to Mexico, slowly becomes a romantic comedy with an all-white cast. A quirky cerebral look into commercialism and greed, juxtaposed with a heartwarming movie that challenges stereotypes. Una Great Movie uses comedy to reflect on relevant contemporary issues. It is fun and humorous with a unique storytelling style that incorporates a professional cast mixed with local Mexican non-actors.

We talked to the director and writer of the film Jennifer Sharp. Here are the excerpts

- What made you make this film?

The initial inspiration was based on a small town in Mexico that I found in 1999 while traveling with a friend. I loved the town and the people and was inspired to make a movie there.  I wanted to share the magic of that place and how it felt as a black woman in Mexico. For the next 16 years I tried relentlessly to get the movie made, during which time the script transformed over and over again. Finally becoming what it is now, which actually mixes my true experiences in Hollywood trying to get the movie made, with the beautiful Mexican story that I had been wanting to make for years.

- What was the biggest challenges in making this film? How did you overcome them?

The biggest challenge (out of many) would be producing a movie in Mexico and having to find an entire crew in a country, where I knew absolutely nothing about the film industry. I had many situations where I had to speak fluent Spanish, and I wasn't sure if I could handle those situations. But mother is the necessity of invention for sure, and when I needed to up my Spanish speaking skills to have an hour long meeting with the mayor of the town, I just did it. The brain is pretty amazing!

- What film and filmmakers inspire you?

Charlie Kaufman is a genius and his movie Synechdoche, although it had little commercial success, I believe is the truest portrayal of life I have ever seen in a movie.

- How has been your experience at BFF?

I am super impressed with the quality of every movie I have seen so far at the Brooklyn film Festival and I'm excited to spend the week seeing more and meeting more filmmakers. The staff are welcoming and excited about the event and supportive. It's been a wonderful experience and has been a great way to kick off my festival experience. I love their commitment to the theme this year of highlighting diverse and creative films that are against the norm.

- What's your most favorite and least favorite thing about New York?

I love the energy here and the ability to get anywhere in the city without driving. I live in LA, so it hinders the lifestyle trying to avoid traffic or not driving after you go out to a party. New York is more accessible with the city at your disposal!

My least favorite thing is the amount of people and lack of nature. Yes, there are parks, but I like cities with more green spaces all around without having to go to a public park.

Chat w/ Julian Shaw, Director of 'Use Me' | Brooklyn Film Festival

Use Me had its WORLD PREMIERE Sunday, June 02 at Brooklyn Film Festival. It’s a gripping thriller film about an ambitious documentary filmmaker discovers the darkest parts of himself when he turns his camera on a beautiful woman who humiliates men for money.

We had a chat with the director and star of the film, Julian Shaw. Here are the excerpts.

- What made you make a film of such "taboo" subject?

I'm attracted to provocative subject matter, and I personally enjoy the world of BDSM, but my goal wasn't just to titillate the audience - that is only entertaining for so long. I was drawn to the extreme emotional states that are involved in fantasy roleplay, and also the potential for such extreme fantasies to go terribly wrong when brought into reality. I discovered Ceara Lynch online and became fascinated by her. I pitched a documentary to her but after meeting up in Portland and filming some documentary material with her I realised she had the capacity and x factor to be the center of a fictionalized movie. I had made two documentaries already and I was ready to take on a new challenge. She was equally game. 

- What was the biggest challenges in making this film? How did you overcome them?

I'm a New Zealand-born Australian, so one of the biggest logistical hurdles was moving across the world to Portland to make the movie! It has been the biggest adventure in my life, and I fell in love along the way - they have been the best years of my life but also the hardest. Like all filmmakers, funding is challenging. The creative side of it is one thing but even a very intimate movie can cost a million bucks. Directing myself to a performance that I found acceptable was definitely challenging and I drew on my collaborators like Portland-based co-producer AJ Gordon to be honest and make sure I was getting what I needed out of myself. You don't want to get to the edit room and hate your leading man - even if it's you! Ceara is a born performer but not a trained actor, so we also had to find our own language and shorthand which was a little different to how I directed working actors like Joe Reitman and Jazlyn Yoder.

- What did you learn/discover about this world while making this film?

That domination and submission are two sides of the same coin.

- What film and filmmakers inspire you?

Nightcrawler did a great job of exploring a seedy netherworld in a truthful way. I also like protagonists who may not be 'likeable' but are compelling. I could have made my character more likeable to be honest, but it felt blander. I really decided to embrace the ambiguity of all these characters. Looked at various films that blend fact and fiction formally - Man Bites Dog, The Girlfriend Experience. My producer Jonathon Green encouraged me to revisit the 80s Scorsese movie After Hours - a great example of the 'one way trip to hell' downward spiral narrative. My favorite filmmakers do not make films in my style - part of growing is moving past influence and finding your own voice. I feel I'm now starting to do that after making films since I was a teenager.

- How has been your experience at BFF?

Amazing vibe, hot crowds - and come on... what other city would you rather have your World Premiere?

- What's your most favorite and least favorite thing about New York?

There's always something to do. I saw Bryan Cranston in Network on Broadway last night. Seeing Colbert live on Tuesday. Walked to the Guggenheim yesterday. There is no other city on earth with such a plethora of options at your disposal. My least favorite thing is also related to my favorite thing... sometimes the relentless pace can be exhausting. I make sure to take time out to meditate and do yoga to recharge.


Use Me BBF page with trailer & tickets:

Use Me on Facebook: 

Use Me on Twitter:

Use Me on Insta:



Rom Com Fest, a new Los Angeles based film festival which celebrates love through film and experiences, announced the lineup for its inaugural festival which will take place June 20-23, 2019. The lineup includes special themed screenings of iconic romantic comedies, as well as a competition lineup of new romantic comedies, and a number of unique themed events and activities. The program was announced today by the festival’s Founder and Executive Director Miraya Berke.

The experiential festival is a reimagining of a traditional film festival - pairing rosé and desserts with films, encouraging that its audiences show up dressed in themed attire, and holding memorable events and activities that bring together those that love and/or create romantic comedy films. Rom Com Fest will take place primarily at the Downtown Independent Theater in Los Angeles, with select events at other venues.

Highlights of the festival include a special curated screening and fireside chat with actress Rachel Bloom (CW’s “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”) on her favorite classic rom com film NEVER BEEN KISSED, as well as anniversary screenings including 10 THINGS I HATE ABOUT YOU, featuring a special Q&A with the film’s writers Kirsten “Kiwi” Smith and Karen McCullah (writers of LEGALLY BLONDE, SHE’S THE MAN), as well as a screening of BRIDE WARS, featuring a special Q&A with the film’s writers, both of whom are also acclaimed actresses known for memorable roles in romantic comedies and TV shows - June Diane Raphael (LONG SHOT, Netflix’s “Grace and Frankie”) and Casey Wilson (Showtime’s “Black Monday”).

The festival will also hold the west coast premiere of actor Joseph Cross’ directorial debut SUMMER NIGHT (starring Lana Condor, Analeigh Tipton, Victoria Justice, Justin Chatwin and Ellar Coltrane).

Special event highlights during the festival include a Mortified live comedy show, a live read of the winner of the Rom Com Fest screenplay competition (presented by Scriptd), as well as a live taping of WhoHaha’s “Dirty Girl” Podcast - a company co-founded by producer/actress Elizabeth Banks.

The festival was organized and curated by its Founder and Executive Director, Miraya Berke. Berke is a female entrepreneur, the founder of Pop Productions event boutique studio (whose mission is to create events that spark joy & delight), and the founder of Dessert Goals, the popular dessert festival that is held in New York and Los Angeles. With a background in events and partnerships and a personal love of romantic comedies, Berke is passionate about the romantic comedy genre and its legitimization in the eyes of film fans, filmmakers, and critics, in addition to the pure enjoyment of the films themselves. Rom Com Fest aims to showcase empowering and realistic stories that have dynamic female characters.

“We all need something uplifting to escape to. Routinely dismissed by film critics as a lesser genre artistically, romantic comedies are universally beloved and are a true art form, being some of the most classic and beautiful films that we know today.” said Berke. “I’m thrilled to be able to bring the Los Angeles community together to experience these films in a new, fun and creative atmosphere.”

The festival will present both jury prizes and an audience award prize (presented by Frolic, The fastest growing entertainment media brand for the modern Romance fan) to its competition lineup for features and short films.

Badges and individual screening/event tickets are on sale as of today (May 7th) online at Tickets range from $12.00 to $15.00 USD per ticket, and you can save by bring a date/best friend, with a “party of two” paired discount.

Follow @RomComFest on Instagram for updates.

The full lineup of Rom Com Fest 2019 includes:


10 THINGS I HATE ABOUT YOU (20TH ANNIVERSARY), directed by Gil Junger / written by Karen McCullah & Kirsten Smith (1999) - A pretty, popular teenager can't go out on a date until her ill-tempered older sister does. With Heath Ledger, Julia Stiles, Joseph Gordon-Levitt. CLOSING NIGHT FILM.

Q&A to follow with the film’s writers Kirsten “Kiwi” Smith and Karen McCullah, followed by a “10 THINGS I LOVE ABOUT YOU” love letter writing pop up craft activity.

BRIDE WARS (10TH ANNIVERSARY), directed by Gary Winick / written by Casey Wilson & June Diane Raphael and Greg DePaul (2009) - Two best friends become rivals when they schedule their respective weddings on the same day. With Anne Hathaway, Kate Hudson and Chris Pratt.

Q&A to follow with the film’s writers - actresses June Diane Raphael and Casey Wilson. Bridal party theme - attendees are encouraged to dress in white, those dressed up will receive complimentary ring pops and wedding-themed dessert.

HIS GIRL FRIDAY, written and directed by Howard Hawks (1940) - A newspaper editor uses every trick in the book to keep his ace reporter ex-wife from remarrying. With Cary Grant, Rosalind Russell and Ralph Bellamy.

Complimentary My Mo Mochi Ice Cream will be served before the screening, along with a Rom Com Fest themed compliment card craft. The Los Angeles Women's Film Collective will discuss the future of romantic comedies following the screening.

HOW STELLA GOT HER GROOVE BACK, directed by Kevin Rodney Sullivan / written by Terry McMillan & Ron Bass (1998) - Stella is a highly successful, forty-something San Francisco stock broker who is persuaded by her colorful New York girlfriend Delilah to take a well deserved, first-class vacation to Jamaica. As she soaks in the beauty of the island, she encounters a strapping, young islander, Winston Shakespeare. His pursuits for her turn into a hot and steamy romance that forces Stella to take personal inventory of her life and try to find a balance between her desire for love and companionship, and the responsibilities of mother and corporate executive.  With Angela Bassett, Taye Diggs, Regina King and Whoopi Goldberg.

Pajama-party themed late night screening - attendees are encouraged to wear their PJs and will receive a complimentary bottle of CBD gummies, courtesy of Not Pot. Screening presented by Not Pot.

NEVER BEEN KISSED (20TH ANNIVERSARY), directed by Raja Gosnell / written by Abby Kohn & Marc Silverstein (1999) - A newspaper reporter enrolls in high school as part of research for a story. With Drew Barrymore and David Arquette.

Special screening curated by actress Rachel Bloom. A fireside chat with Bloom and Festival Director Miraya Berke will follow the screening. A conversational Heart Lapel Pin craft activity hosted by Makers Mess will also proceed the screening.


IN REALITY, written and directed by Ann Lupo (USA) - Despite boasting rich friendships and a creative job, young filmmaker Ann is consumed by the fantasy of finding true love. Just when she thinks she’s found it, she is friend-zoned and the disappointment of rejection shoots her down a deep rabbit hole of unrequited love. Looking for a way to climb out, Ann picks up a camera and sets her sights inward. She confronts multiple characters within her conscious, from a maniacal game show host to a glamorous cabaret performer, that guide her through her investigation of the relationship and her own neuroses. Blending docu-style interview with comedy, drama and hyperbolic fantasies, Ann creates an elaborate, eccentric world that manages to be as intensely relatable as it is one of a kind. With Ann Lupo, Miles G. Jackson and Kimiko Glenn.

1920s era themed screening - attendees are encouraged to wear flapper attire to celebrate the 20s. Q&A to follow with Ann Lupo - the film’s writer, director, producer and star.

ONE BEDROOM, written and directed by Darien Sills-Evans (USA) - Breaking up is easy.  Moving out is hard. Especially when there's a New York City apartment involved. After five years of ups and downs, an African American 30-something couple in a gentrifying neighborhood spend their final afternoon in Brooklyn arguing, reminiscing and then eventually deciding if they're moving out together or in separate directions. With Darien Sills-Evans, Stephen Hill and Devin Nelson.

Complimentary My Mo Mochi Ice Cream will be served before the screening, along with a Tealight Candle making craft activity, hosted by Makers Mess. Q&A to follow with Darien Sills-Evans - the film’s writer, director, producer and star.

SUMMER NIGHT, directed by Joseph Cross / written by Jordan Jolliff and Joseph Cross (USA) - In a small town, a young, tight-knit group of friends fall in and out of love over the course of one intoxicating, music-filled summer night. With Justin Chatwin, Analeigh Tipton, Victoria Justice, Lana Condor, and Ellar Coltrane. OPENING NIGHT FILM.

Dessert Goals Fest pop up featuring summer themed treats and music trivia activity to proceed the screening.

TRACKS, directed by Jamie Patterson / written by Jamie Patterson, Chris Willoughby, April Pearson and Finn Bruce (UK) - A young couple try to save their failing relationship by interrailing around Europe together. Things don't quite go to plan and they find themselves in all sorts of awkward situations. With April Pearson, Skye Lourie and Chris Willoughby.

Dessert Goals Fest pop up to proceed the screening, along with a travel journal craft hosted by Makers Mess.

TWO IN THE BUSH, directed by Laura Madalinski / written by Kelly Haas and  Laura Madalinski (USA) - After losing her job, Emily arrives home early from work to find her girlfriend in the throes of passion with someone else. In an instant, her entire life is turned upside down. Moving in with her best friend, Emily lands a new gig working for a dominatrix, and promptly falls for her new boss, and her boss’s boyfriend. In this wise and witty look at the world of bisexuality, polyamory, and dungeons, filmmaker Laura Madalinski asks us to consider what risks are worth taking for love. With Sarah Mitchell, Travis Delgado and Caitlin Aase.

Short film GIRL FRIEND will play before the feature film.

Complimentary Chameleon Cold Brew Coffee to be served before the screening.


Complimentary My Mochi Ice Cream to be served before the screening, along with craft activities hosted by Makers Mess. Q&A to follow screenings, with select filmmakers in attendance.

A JAMAIS, POUR TOUJOURS, written and directed by Louis St-Pierre (Canada) - Marianne and Maxime are meant for each other. They fit like pieces of a puzzle, understand and love one another, but...

ALMOST CHARMING, written and directed by Taylor Carnes (USA) - Inspired by the Pixar style, 'Almost Charming' is a modern-day fairytale told through pantomime and music. The story follows Beth, a young woman working as a children's party princess, on her journey to get the attention of her real-life prince charming.

ANXIETY’S WILMA, written and directed by Alexandra Kyle (USA) - A short romantic comedy about a young woman and her anxiety. With Martin Starr and Alexandra Kyle.

GIRL FRIEND, written and directed by Laura Holliday (USA) - A neurotic young woman attempts to be cool and go with the flow when she learns that the guy she is dating doesn't believe in monogamy.
*Plays before TWO IN THE BUSH

ON SECOND THOUGHT, written and directed by Nora Jobling (USA) - A New York couple looks back on their relationship from the day they met to the day they split. Seeing the same moments from both perspectives, On Second Thought ponders how love can beat the odds when love is 50/50 and hindsight is 20/20.

REKINDLED, directed by Erin Brown Thomas / written by Kelly Vrooman (USA) - After a string of failed relationships, successful career woman Kate gets the chance via a magical Groupon to rekindle romance with the love of her life -- her high school boyfriend. But as she soon discovers, the 40% discount is there for a reason…

THE CURSE, written and directed by Dave Berenato (USA) - While at a Halloween party preparing for the online hookup of a lifetime, things get a little weird after Kyle bumps into a witch in the bathroom.

THE NOODLE MAN, directed by Pati Valadez / written by Jan Epstein Schwaid (USA) - A struggling actor turned street food noodle cook lies about his career in an attempt to win over the girl next door.


Enjoy this special love-fueled edition of the MORTIFIED live comedy show. Witness adults sharing the embarrassing things they wrote as kids, in front of total strangers. Awkward crushes, painful first kisses and more. Now in its 16th year, MORTIFIED produces stage shows in 20 cities worldwide, TV and film projects (Netflix, Sundance), books, as well as a podcast.

In partnership with Scriptd, a story platform and script database that connects screenwriters with fans and the industry to find/promote/actualize the next big script, The Rom Com Fest screenplay competition, which received over seventy submissions in 2019, will do a live read of the winning script. Cast to be announced.

In partnership with Elizabeth Bank’s company WhoHaha, a creative community and digital content studio that celebrates and elevates women in comedy, Rom Com Fest will be hosting a special live podcast taping of Dirty Girl. Dirty Girl is feminist, body & sex positive podcast and tells the stories of funny, brave women who like to get dirty. The one hour live podcast will feature women sharing stories of their love life that relate to rom coms.

Thursday, June 20th at Kim Sing Theater - the opening Night Party will feature Dessert Goals vendors, local food partners including authentic Street Pad Thai, Brooklinen bedding photo activations and a Bubbly Bar. The opening night party will be open to badge holders and industry.

Sunday, June 23 at 9:30pm at The Ace Hotel Rooftop - the closing night party will be open to badge holders, industry, as well as the public.

The perfect pair to any rom com is a sweet treat. A selection of Dessert Goals vendors from NYC and LA will be available for sale throughout the festival including: Twisted, Two Chicks In The Mix, Stuffed Cookies, Jessie's Nutty Cups, Amborella Organics, Cake Bams, Squish Marshmallows & more.

Engage with activities in the theater lobby throughout the weekend before film screenings start. Activities will include love letter writing, crafts with Makers Mess & more. Connect with a community of other rom com lovers and pass on the importance of love. 

Firelight Media Documentary Lab Announces National Open Call for 2019

The Documentary Lab, An Incubator Program for Diverse Filmmakers, Marks Its 10th Anniversary in 2019

Firelight Media announced the 2019 Open Call for submissions to the 10th year of its Documentary Lab program. The Documentary Lab, launched by Firelight co-founder Stanley Nelson in 2009, is an 18-month fellowship supporting filmmakers of color with mentorship from prominent non-fiction leaders, film funding resources, professional development workshops and networking opportunities. The deadline for all submissions is June 17, 2019.

“A lot has changed since we first started the Documentary Lab ten years ago. Documentaries have become popular, the number of distribution platforms have doubled, and almost everyone agrees that we are experiencing the golden age of documentaries,” says Firelight Vice President and Documentary Lab Director Loira Limbal. “Yet, there are still structural barriers for filmmakers of color to enter into the field. Ten years later we remain steadfast in our belief in the importance of people of color being able to tell their own stories. The Documentary Lab Open Call is an exciting time for us at Firelight because it puts us in direct contact with hundreds of emerging filmmakers of color from all over the U.S. telling nuanced and complex stories informed by their own lived experiences.”

With this anniversary, Firelight’s Documentary Lab moves into its second decade of important work in amplifying underrepresented voices while celebrating key milestones of growth. Unrivaled in its representation of filmmakers of color, the Documentary Lab nurtures an inclusive network of talented unique storytellers to receive ongoing support from conception to completion. Considering the challenges for emerging diverse filmmakers Firelight Media also offers the Next Step Media Fund – a grant supporting fellows in the final phase of production with up to $25,000 towards necessary travel, shooting, editing, and more.

"For 18 months, Firelight offered project support with a level of intention and commitment that allowed me to mostly move calmly through the filmmaking process knowing that I had some of the best talents in the industry to turn to for advice, feedback, and resources when facing challenges great and small,” said Doc Lab alum Jackie Olive on her experience making her film Always in Season.

Previous notable fellows and films include Jason DaSilva’s When I Walk (2013) which won a Jury Award at Hot Docs and went on to win an Emmy Award in 2015; Malika Zouhali-Worrall’s Thank You for Playing (2015) which won two Emmys after receiving the Tribeca Jury Award for Best Documentary Feature; and Sabaah Folayan and Damon Davis’s Whose Streets (2017) which was nominated for Peabody, Gotham and Critics’ Choice Awards.

It’s already been a landmark year for Firelight Media’s Documentary Lab, starting with its presence at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival where two of its fellows world premiered films – Jeffrey Palmer’s Words from a Bear and Jackie Olive’s Always in Season which won the Special Jury Award for Moral Urgency. Stanley Nelson also debuted Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool there, his 10th feature to premiere at Sundance  a record for a documentarian. Most recently Doc Lab fellow Yu Gu premiered her documentary feature A Woman’s Work: The NFL’s Cheerleader Problem at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival.

Principal funding for the Documentary Lab has been provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting with additional support from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Open Society Foundations, the Wyncote Foundation, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, and the NY State Council on the Arts.

To find out more about the Documentary Lab application process and eligibility requirements please visit:

Alia Shawkat Joins Lucid Dreams Productions, THE KEY | TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL 2019

The Key, a mysterious virtual reality journey from Lucid Dreams Productions’ director Celine Tricart and producer Gloria Bradbury today announced that they have tapped Alia Shawkat to narrate the experience. Shawkat, best known for her roles on Arrested Development and Search Party, will be the voice to carry audience members through the experience that presents the viewer with moments of intense choice to unlock the mystery of the key.

The Key will world premiere at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival as a juried selection in the Immersive Storyscapes category. The interactive virtual reality experience shares a journey through dreams, where Shawkat will guide viewers through four different environments as they face challenging moments prompting them to make difficult and dangerous decisions as they make their way to safety.

“We are thrilled to be working with Alia on “The Key”. With her high attention to detail, she brings the voice we needed to complete this project. Finding the exact quantity of information you need to communicate in a VR experience is tricky. Alia’s voice provides the emotion to balance out the intricate details I’m communicating with the script,” said director Celine Tricart.

“Alia’s background is a great fit for the project and we are impressed by the type of artist she is, well rounded and present. With VR, sound is an important part of the experience, and Alia will deliver the nuances we envision. As someone who strives to empower change for more social fairness and justice, it is clear that the theme of our story resonates with her. Celine and I believe in the beauty and strength of diversity and Alia represents all that.” said producer, Gloria Bradbury.

The Key invites its audience to pursue their own journey into darkness making their way to light. A room-scale interactive experience, The Key holds a special message that is not revealed until the end, when the twists and turns selected by the viewer uncover the past that necessitated making so many difficult and delicate decisions under pressure.

The Key is created and directed by Celine Tricart and produced by Gloria Bradbury, made in partnership with the Oculus VR for Good Creators Lab. The experience will world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival in the Immersive Virtual Arcade with screening beginning Friday, April 26th through Saturday, May 4th. Tickets to experience The Key can be purchased on the festival website HERE.


Lucid Dreams Productions is a production company specializing in new technologies and the future of storytelling. Celine Tricart co-directed and produced Maria Bello’s “Sun Ladies” VR experience about the women Yazidi fighting ISIS in Iraq which world premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and screened at SXSW, HotDocs, Cannes NEXT, Beijing Film Festival and more. For the project, Tricart traveled through ISIS-held territory to meet the women soldiers at the border between Iraq and Syria and record their stories. “Sun Ladies” won Best VR Documentary at the World VR Forum and a Lumiere Award for Best 360 Film. In 2019, Tricart premieres “The Key”, her first room-scale interactive VR experience as part of the Storyscapes competition at the Tribeca Film Festival.


Creators Lab from Oculus pairs rising filmmakers with nonprofits to use the power of VR to tell stories and help people around the world better understand each other. Through VR, we aim to bring greater awareness to challenges people face around the globe. Now it its third year, Creators Lab projects have debuted around the world with premieres at festivals such as Tribeca Film Festival, SXSW Film Festival, Sheffield Doc Fest, and Venice International Film Festival. Creators Lab is part of Oculus VR for Good, a broader initiative dedicated to harnessing the power of VR to drive positive social change.


Don Mischer Productions and Done+Dusted will co-produce the 71st PRIMETIME EMMY AWARDS®, airing LIVE coast-to-coast from the Microsoft Theater at L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles on Sunday, Sept. 22 (8:00-11:00 PM ET live/5:00-8:00 PM PT live) on FOX.

“This marks the first Emmy Awards for FOX Entertainment as a new company, and we are taking a fresh direction by bringing together the two best, most inventive and most disruptive production companies to join forces on the show,” said Rob Wade, President of Alternative Entertainment and Specials, FOX Entertainment.  “Don Mischer Productions and Done+Dusted both brought incredible ideas to the table, and we are lucky enough to have the two teams collaborate on this television event.”

Frank Scherma, Television Academy Chairman and CEO, added, “Television is in a period of unprecedented growth and has emerged as the world’s premier entertainment choice across a multitude of spectacular platforms. As a consequence, the Emmy telecast has tremendous significance and should reflect the innovation and inventiveness that television embodies. Don Mischer Productions and Done+Dusted are the resources to help fuel that transformation.”

“We love producing the Emmys and celebrating the best television of the year,” said Don Mischer, Charlie Haykel and Juliane Hare of Don Mischer Productions. “We’ve known Done+Dusted’s Hamish Hamilton and Ian Stewart for many years and have admired their work for quite some time. So, when our friends at FOX proposed this unconventional marriage, we also thought what better way for us to have the opportunity to learn and steal all of D+D’s masterful production secrets.”

“With the total respect felt by all of us at Done+Dusted for all the great people at Don Mischer Productions, this felt like the perfect opportunity to put partisan production aside and work together to see if we can find ways to develop a new-look Emmys on new-look FOX,” said Done+Dusted President Ian Stewart.  “Not to mention it gives us a chance to learn and steal all of Don and the team’s masterful production secrets.”

Nominations for the 71st PRIMETIME EMMY AWARDS will be announced the morning of Tuesday, July 16.

For more information and updates on the 71st EMMY AWARDS, go to and follow @TelevisionAcad on TwitterInstagramFacebookTumblr and Snapchat.  

About Don Mischer Productions

Don Mischer Productions (DMP) is an internationally acclaimed production company for television and live events. Led by Don Mischer, Charlie Haykel and Juliane Hare, DMP has consistently produced programs that share the best of the human experience, whether it be the work of our most acclaimed artists or the celebration of our greatest international events. DMP is always at the forefront of their craft, with an eye to innovate and advance the art form. 

Some of their marquee productions include the Academy Awards; Super Bowl halftime shows (Prince, The Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney and Bruce Springsteen, among others); We Are One: The Obama Inaugural Celebration at the Lincoln Memorial; The Emmy Awards; The Billboard Music Awards;  and the Opening Ceremonies of both the Winter and Summer Olympic Games.  Other productions include Seth Rogen’s Hilarity For Charity; Rock The Troops with Dwayne Johnson; and the Breakthrough Prize.

About Done+Dusted

Done+Dusted has devised and produced broadcast content, events and experiences, in every corner of the globe. Based in LA and London, D+D has built a global reputation for producing spectacular experiences on behalf of nations, broadcasters, brands, artists, gamers, leaders and educators.  

D+D’s credits include the Emmys, the London Olympics and Paralympics Opening and Closing Ceremonies, the UAE National Day Celebrations, the British Fashion Awards, the BAFTA Television Awards and the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. Along the way, they have collaborated with many of the most successful artists on the planet in film, television, music and sport. 

On April 1, 2019, D+D turned 21 – if you need them, they have gone to the pub because they are finally old enough to drink. 

About the Television Academy

The Television Academy seeks to expand the horizons of television excellence. Through the programs, publications and events of the Academy and its Foundation, it strives to empower storytellers who shape the evolving television space. And it celebrates those who have excelled by recognizing their achievements through accolades and awards, including television's most coveted prize, the Emmy Award. For more information, please visit

About FOX Entertainment

FOX Entertainment, a unit of the newly formed FOX Corporation, is home to some of the highest-rated and most acclaimed series on television, including the season’s #1 new show, THE MASKED SINGER, and 9-1-1, EMPIRE, LAST MAN STANDING, THE ORVILLE, THE RESIDENT, THE PASSAGE, LETHAL WEAPON, GOTHAM, STAR, THE GIFTED, THE COOL KIDS, REL, PROVEN INNOCENT, THE SIMPSONS, FAMILY GUY, BOB’S BURGERS, HELL’S KITCHEN, MASTERCHEF, MASTERCHEF JUNIOR, BEAT SHAZAM, SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE, GORDON RAMSAY’S 24 HOURS TO HELL AND BACK and MENTAL SAMURAI; as well as upcoming series PARADISE HOTEL, SPIN THE WHEEL and 90210. FOX airs 15 hours of primetime programming a week, as well as major sports events. Through the FOX NOW app, FOX viewers can watch full episodes of their favorite FOX shows on a variety of digital platforms, while enjoying enhanced interactive and social capabilities around those shows. Download the FOX NOW app at  To watch primetime programming live on the web, visit “Like” FOX on Facebook at and follow the network on Twitter @FOXTV. For additional information about FOX, please visit

Firelight Media Documentary Lab Announces Groundwork Initiative in Puerto Rico April 12-14, 2019

2019 Marks the 10th Anniversary of Firelight’s Doc Lab - An Incubator for Diverse Filmmakers

Firelight Media has announced program details for its Documentary Lab’s Groundwork initiative in San Juan, Puerto Rico taking place April 12-14, 2019. The Doc Lab, launched by Firelight co-founders Stanley Nelson and Marcia Smith in 2009, is an 18-month fellowship that supports filmmakers of color with mentorship from prominent leaders in the industry, film funding, professional development workshops and networking opportunities. The Groundwork Day Lab, which launched in 2017, is a regional lab initiative that supports diverse, early career documentary filmmakers living and working in underrepresented regions of the U.S. Co-produced with local partners, Groundwork is designed to connect budding local filmmakers with industry leaders and to help position budding local filmmakers with bigger opportunities at a national scale.

Groundwork Puerto Rico will be co-produced with AdocPR (Association of Puerto Rican Documentary Filmmakers) and Sistema TV-WMTJ (a PBS member station located in San Juan). The weekend’s program will begin on Friday with a public screening of The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution at the Ana G. Méndez University Theatre, followed by a Q&A with director and executive producer Stanley Nelson, moderated by Dr. Marta Moreno Vega, Founder of The Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute. The weekend will also include workshops, work-in-progress screenings and feedback sessions for the nominated local filmmakers, which will be led in Spanish by Firelight Vice President and Doc Lab Director, Loira Limbal.

“We are thrilled to partner with AdocPR and Sistema TV to support filmmakers living and creating in Puerto Rico during such a critical time,” said Loira Limbal, Firelight’s Vice President and Documentary Lab Director. “Puerto Rico is facing unprecedented challenges due to the economic crisis and Hurricane Maria and these filmmakers are essential to the recovery process.”

It’s already been a landmark year for Firelight Media, starting with its presence at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival where Stanley Nelson premiered Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool, his 10th feature to premiere at the fest (a record for a documentarian), along with two Doc Lab fellows’ film premieres – Jeffrey Palmer’s Words from a Bear and Jackie Olive’s Always in Season which won the Special Jury Award for Moral Urgency (US Documentary). Miles Davis will continue to screen at film festivals throughout the spring and Nelson’s next film BOSS: The Black Experience in Business airs April 23 on PBS. 

This year also marks the 10th Anniversary of Firelight’s Documentary Lab and since its inception over 70 filmmakers have gone through the program and more than $650,000 in grants has been spent on 40 documentary projects. More than just a workshop, the Documentary Lab is unrivaled in its representation of diverse filmmakers, creating an exclusive network of talented unique storytellers that receive ongoing support from a project’s conception to its completion.

In all, high profile accolades for past Doc Lab films include over 30 broadcast/distribution deals with POV, Independent Lens, WORLD, OWN, Netflix, and Discovery ID; one Peabody award and several nominations, four Emmy wins and several nominations, and 13 world premieres at Sundance or Tribeca Film Festivals. Documentary Lab alumni include: Dawn Porter (Spies of Mississippi), Deborah Esquenazi (Southwest of Salem: The Story of the San Antonio Four), and Lyric Cabral ((T)error). Recent Doc Lab fellow Yu Gu will premiere her documentary feature A Woman’s Work: The NFL’s Cheerleader Problem later this month at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival.

Principal funding for the Documentary Lab has been provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting with additional support from the MacArthur Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Open Society Foundations, the Wyncote Foundation, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, and the NY State Council on the Arts.

To find out more about Firelight’s Documentary Lab and Groundwork Initiative please visit:


Firelight Media was born in 2000 to address the deficit of films made by and about diverse communities, particularly people of color. Founded and led by MacArthur “genius” Fellow Stanley Nelson and award-winning writer and philanthropy executive Marcia Smith in Harlem, NY, the organization has gone on to produce over 25 hours of primetime programming for public television, receive every major broadcast award, and have its first theatrical release (The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution).

Through its Documentary Lab and Impact Producer Fellowship, Firelight is dedicated to developing talented documentary filmmakers that advance underrepresented stories, moving them from the margins to the forefront of mainstream media through high quality, powerful productions.



Galas Include World Premiere of ‘Between Me and My Mind’ featuring

Phish’s Trey Anastasio with special music performance 

Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival World Premiere of ‘The Good, The Bad, The Hungry’

The Tribeca Film Festival, presented by AT&T, announced today that Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle’s Yesterday, from Universal Pictures and Working Title, will world premiere as the closing night selection of the Festival’s 18th edition. Tribeca also announced this year’s Gala Anniversaries, including a never-before-seen restored version of Francis Ford Coppola’s cinematic masterpiece, Apocalypse Now, and the 30th anniversary and cast reunion of the iconic ‘80s coming-of-age film Say Anything… There will be additional Galas with the world premiere of Between Me and My Mind about Phish lead singer Trey Anastasio, followed by a special musical performance by the Trey Anastasio Band at the Beacon Theatre, as well as Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival opener The Good, The Bad, The Hungry. Tickets for events at the Beacon Theatre go on sale March 19 at 11:00AM ET; Single tickets for all other Festival events go on sale March 26 at 11:00AM ET. The Tribeca Film Festival takes place from April 24 - May 5, 2019.

The previously announced 25th anniversary of Reality Bites will now bring together director Ben Stiller, writer Helen Childress, with cast including Ethan Hawke, Winona Ryder, Janeane Garofalo, Steve Zahn, and more surprise guests from the film. These film anniversaries and reunions are completed by the 35th anniversary of This Is Spinal Tap. In addition, Tribeca will give audiences a chance to see Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) on the big screen with a free family event on ‘Star Wars Day’ - May the 4th Be with You.

This year’s Closing Night film will continue Tribeca’s tradition of showcasing great storytelling with acclaimed director Danny Boyle’s highly anticipated film, Yesterday. The rock-n-roll comedy, with a screenplay by Oscar-nominated screenwriter Richard Curtis, follows Jack Malik (Himesh Patel, BBC’s Eastenders), a struggling singer-songwriter in a tiny English seaside town whose dreams of fame are rapidly fading, despite the fierce devotion and support of his childhood best friend, Ellie (Lily James, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again). Then, after a freak bus accident during a mysterious global blackout, Jack wakes up to discover that The Beatles have never existed … and he finds himself with a very complicated problem, indeed. The film stars Himesh Patel, Lily James, Kate McKinnon, and Ed Sheeran.

“This isn’t a time travel movie but it feels like introducing the Beatles music to America for the first time-again,” Danny Boyle says. Absolutely delighted that our film has been chosen to be the closing film of the Tribeca Film Festival. A great honor in a great city.”

Tribeca will celebrate the 40th anniversary of Francis Ford Coppola’s renowned film Apocalypse Now as a Gala presentation at the Beacon Theatre. For the first time ever, audiences will see Apocalypse Now: Final Cut, remastered in 4K Ultra HD with Dolby Vision® and Dolby Atmos® from a 4K scan of the original negative.

“Restoring Apocalypse Now: Final Cut forty years later has been a tremendous undertaking and joy that I am thrilled to be able to share with the world for the first time at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival. The audience will be able to see, hear and feel this film how I always hoped it could be—from the first ‘bang’ to the final whimper,” said Francis Ford Coppola.

Director Cameron Crowe and executive producer James L. Brooks and the Say Anything… cast will be on hand to discuss the film - and that iconic boombox scene - following a special screening marking its 30th anniversary.

Cameron Crowe said, “Can’t believe it’s been 30 years since we made Say Anything…The movie grew out of many inspiring conversations with James L. Brooks, and a quest to bring a new kind of romantic couple to the screen. Out of those many afternoons came the script, the opportunity to direct my own screenplay, and the great adventure of working with these wonderful actors, among them John Mahoney, Lili Taylor, Joan and John Cusack, and Ione Skye. And, of course, Eric Stoltz as The Rooster. We also had the gift of Peter Gabriel allowing us to use his extremely personal song, “In Your Eyes.” No other song ever worked coming out of that boombox. Big thanks to Paula Weinstein and the Tribeca Film Festival for bringing us together for this Anniversary Screening, and a chance to watch the movie again on the big screen with old friends and a brand-new audience.”

“This year, we are bringing some of the most iconic storytellers of our time back to the ‘big screen’ for our audiences by creating events and reunions for beloved films,” said Tribeca EVP Paula Weinstein.

Tickets go on sale Tuesday, March 19 at 11:00 AM ET for the events at the Beacon Theatre: Apocalypse Now: Final Cut, This is Spinal Tap, Between Me and My Mind.

Tickets for Reality Bites, Say Anything..., and The Good, The Bad, The Hungry go on sale Tuesday, March 26 at 11:00 AM ET.

The film selections for Closing Night, Galas, Anniversary selections and the Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival Gala are as follows:


Yesterday, directed by Danny Boyle, screenplay by Richard Curtis, story by Jack Barth and Richard Curtis, produced by Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Bernie Bellew, Matthew James Wilkinson, Richard Curtis, Danny Boyle. (UK) - World Premiere.

Yesterday, everyone knew The Beatles. Today, only Jack remembers their songs. He’s about to become a very big deal. From Academy Award®-winning director Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire, Trainspotting, 28 Days Later) and Richard Curtis, the Oscar-nominated screenwriter of Four Weddings and a Funeral, Love Actually and Notting Hill, comes a rock-n-roll comedy about music, dreams, friendship, and the long and winding road that leads to the love of your life.

Jack Malik (Himesh Patel, BBC’s Eastenders) is a struggling singer-songwriter in a tiny English seaside town whose dreams of fame are rapidly fading, despite the fierce devotion and support of his childhood best friend, Ellie (Lily James, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again). Then, after a freak bus accident during a mysterious global blackout, Jack wakes up to discover that The Beatles have never existed … and he finds himself with a very complicated problem, indeed.

Performing songs by the greatest band in history to a world that has never heard them, and with a little help from his steel-hearted American agent, Debra (Emmy winner Kate McKinnon), Jack’s fame explodes. But as his star rises, he risks losing Ellie — the one person who always believed in him. With the door between his old life and his new closing, Jack will need to get back to where he once belonged and prove that all you need is love. A Universal Pictures release.

DATE:  Saturday, May 4

TIME:  6:00 PM

LOCATION:  BMCC Tribeca Performing Arts Center


Between Me and My Mind, directed by Steven Cantor. Produced by Jamie Schutz. (USA) - World Premiere, Feature Documentary. Driven by a constant need to create, Phish frontman Trey Anastasio takes on new projects, including some of his most personal music to date as well as Phish’s ambitious New Year’s Eve show at Madison Square Garden

●        After the Premiere Screening: a special performance by Trey Anastasio Band

DATE: Friday, April 26

TIME: 8:00 PM

LOCATION:  Beacon Theatre


Apocalypse Now - 40th Anniversary & Restoration

Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now will celebrate its 40th Anniversary at the Festival with a screening of a new, never-before-seen restored version of the film, entitled Apocalypse Now: Final Cut. Remastered from the original negative in 4K Ultra HD, the film will be brought to life with Dolby Vision® and Dolby Atmos®, delivering spectacular colors and highlights that are up to 40 times brighter and blacks that are 10 times darker, and Dolby Atmos, producing moving audio that flows all around you with breathtaking realism. The Beacon Theatre will also be outfitted for this exclusive occasion with Meyer VLFC (Very Low Frequency Control), a ground-breaking loudspeaker system engineered to output audio frequencies below the limits of human hearing, giving the audience a truly visceral experience.

Nominated for eight Academy Awards®, Francis Ford Coppola’s stunning vision of the heart of darkness in all of us remains a classic and compelling Vietnam War epic. Martin Sheen stars as Army Captain Willard, a troubled man sent on a dangerous and mesmerizing odyssey into Cambodia to assassinate a renegade American Colonel named Kurtz (Marlon Brando), who has succumbed to the horrors of war and barricaded himself in a remote outpost. [Released August 15, 1979]

●       After the Screening: An evening with Francis Ford Coppola who will reflect on the film and discuss its elaborate restoration.

DATE:  Sunday, April 28

TIME:  5:00 PM

LOCATION: Beacon Theatre

Say Anything... - 30th Anniversary

Thirty years ago, Cameron Crowe shifted the landscape of romantic comedies with his remarkable and deeply felt debut that chronicled, with tender and warm-hearted authenticity, a vivid tale of first love. Charting the blooming romance between recent high-school graduates Lloyd (John Cusack) and Diane (Ione Sky), Crowe gave audiences one of cinema’s most indelible and enduring romantic movie moments: a lovesick boy, standing outside a girl’s window, asking her to love him with the help of Peter Gabriel and a boombox. Three decades later, Say Anything... continues to give off the affectionate, enveloping glow of first love. [Released April 1, 1989]

●       After the Screening: A conversation with director Cameron Crowe, executive producer James L. Brooks, and cast members John Cusack and Ione Skye.

DATE:  Tuesday, April 30

TIME: 8:00 PM

LOCATION:  BMCC Tribeca Performing Arts Center

Reality Bites - 25th Anniversary 

Winona Ryder and Ethan Hawke star in Ben Stiller’s 1994 feature film directorial debut, the iconic comedy-drama that defined a generation of independent moviegoing-and-moviegoers with its achingly-relatable portrait of early 90’s disaffected youth struggling to live and love amid the brutal reality of (almost) adulthood.

In the film, written by Helen Childress, Lelaina Pierce (Ryder) navigates her post-college disillusionment by turning the camera on her friends: the free-spirited Vickie (Janeane Garofalo); Sammy (Steve Zahn), struggling to come out to his conservative parents; and the passionate but direction-less Troy (Hawke), with whom Lelaina is romantically-entwined until video executive Michael (Stiller, who co-stars) arrives with the promise of both budding romance and the chance for Lelaina to cash in on her dreams—but at what expense?

Reality Bites may have been for and about Generation X, but has proven itself a timeless, decades-spanning classic. [Released February 18, 1994]

●       After the Screening: A conversation reuniting director Ben Stiller, writer Helen Childress, actors Ethan Hawke, Winona Ryder, Janeane Garofalo, Steve Zahn, producer Michael Shamberg, and executive producer Stacey Sher.

DATE:  Saturday, May 4

TIME:  2:00 PM

LOCATION:  BMCC Tribeca Performing Arts Center

This Is Spinal Tap - 35th Anniversary

Spinal Tap is the loudest band in England and they’re making a comeback with a North American tour promoting their new album “Smell the Glove.” Marty DiBergi (Rob Reiner) sets out to make a documentary of the legendary rock band’s exploits on the road, featuring front men Nigel Tufnel (Christopher Guest) and David St. Hubbins (Michael McKean) and bassist Derek Smalls (Harry Shearer), bearing witness to the highs and lows of what makes a musician into a rock star. [Released March 2, 1984]

●       After the Screening: This Is Spinal Tap stars and creators Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, Harry Shearer, and Rob Reiner, will pay tribute to the band with a special musical performance and a conversation to follow.

DATE:  Saturday, April 27

TIME:  8:00 PM

LOCATION:  Beacon Theatre 


The Good, The Bad, The Hungry, directed by Nicole Lucas Haimes. (USA) - World Premiere, Feature Documentary. Fortitude. Honor. Tradition. Two rivals address the years of animosity that defined their careers and their shared dream of achieving greatness on the world’s biggest stage: the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest. An ESPN Films release.

DATE:  Friday, April 26

TIME: 6:00 PM

LOCATION: BMCC Tribeca Performing Arts Center 


Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977)

Nineteen years after the formation of the Empire, Luke Skywalker is thrust into the struggle of the Rebel Alliance when he meets Obi-Wan Kenobi, who has lived for years in seclusion on the desert planet of Tatooine. Obi-Wan begins Luke's Jedi training as Luke joins him on a daring mission to rescue the beautiful Rebel leader Princess Leia from the clutches of the evil Empire. Although Obi-Wan sacrifices himself in a lightsaber duel with Darth Vader, his former apprentice, Luke proves that the Force is with him by destroying the Empire's dreaded Death Star.

This is a first-come-first-serve free family event. Costumes are welcomed. May the 4th be with you.

DATE:  Saturday, May 4

TIME:  10:00 AM

LOCATION: BMCC Tribeca Performing Arts Center 

Passes and Tickets for the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival

Advance selection ticket packages are now on sale. All packages can be purchased online at, or by telephone at (646) 502-5296 or toll-free at (866) 941-FEST (3378).

Also available for purchase now is The Hudson Pass, an all-access pass to screenings and talks taking place at BMCC, Regal Battery Park Stadium, Village East Cinema, and SVA theaters as well as full access to all events at the Festival Hub at Spring Studios, which includes VR and Immersive projects, Movies Plus screenings and access to festival lounges.

Single tickets cost $24.00 for evening and weekend screenings, $12.00 for weekday matinee screenings, $30.00 for Tribeca TV and Movies Plus $40.00 for Tribeca Talks panels and $40.00 for Tribeca Immersive. Single ticket sales begin Tuesday, March 26 and can be purchased online through our film guide or through the call center.

Tickets for events at The Beacon Theatre are available for purchase online starting March 19.

Packages and passes are now available for purchase on the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival App, on:

●       iTunes:

●       Google Play: 

About the Tribeca Film Festival:

The Tribeca Film Festival, presented by AT&T, brings visionaries and diverse audiences together to celebrate storytelling in all its forms, including film, TV, VR, gaming, music, and online work. With strong roots in independent film, Tribeca is a platform for creative expression and immersive entertainment. The Festival champions emerging and established voices; discovers award-winning filmmakers and creators; curates innovative experiences; and introduces new technology and ideas through premieres, exhibitions, talks, and live performances.

The Festival was founded by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal, and Craig Hatkoff in 2001 to spur the economic and cultural revitalization of lower Manhattan following the attacks on the World Trade Center. Now in its 18th year, the Festival has evolved into a destination for creativity that reimagines the cinematic experience and explores how art can unite communities. The 18th annual edition will take place April 24 - May 5, 2019.

Hashtag: #Tribeca2019
Twitter: @Tribeca
Instagram: @tribeca

About 2019 Tribeca Film Festival Partners:

As Presenting Sponsor of the Tribeca Film Festival, AT&T is committed to supporting the Festival and the art of filmmaking through access and innovation, while expanding opportunities to diverse creators around the globe. AT&T helps millions connect to their passions – no matter where they are. This year, AT&T and Tribeca will once again collaborate to give the world access to stories from underrepresented filmmakers that deserve to be seen. “AT&T Presents Untold Stories” is an inclusive film program in collaboration with Tribeca - a multi-year, multi-tier alliance between AT&T and Tribeca along with the year-round nonprofit Tribeca Film Institute.

The Tribeca Film Festival is pleased to announce its 2019 Partners: 23andMe, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, Bai Beverages, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC), BVLGARI, CHANEL, Diageo, ESPN, IMDb, Kia, Merck, Montefiore, National CineMedia (NCM), Nespresso, New York Magazine, NYC Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment, Prime Video Direct, P&G, PwC, Spring Studios New York, Squarespace, and Status Sparkling Wine.


Star studded cast includes Nick Cannon, Jennifer Coolidge, Kenan Thompson, E.G. Daily and Whoopi Goldberg

LOS ANGELES (March 12, 2019)  Exodus Film Group announced today they will partner with Nick Cannon and his Ncredible Entertainment banner to produce a full-length animated feature, Pierre The Pigeon-Hawk.  Exodus’ John D. Eraklis is set to direct. Nick Cannon (“Wild ‘n Out”, “The Masked Singer”) will voice the lead character, oversee the music and produce under his Ncredible Entertainment banner with Michael Goldman serving as Executive Producer.  Academy Award Winner Whoopi Goldberg (Ghost, Sister Act, The Lion King) will voice Nick’s mother in the film while Jennifer Coolidge (Best in ShowLegally Blonde) will voice his aunt.  Kenan Thompson (“SNL”, The Grinch) voices Sniff- A hilarious, street-savvy, smooth talking city squirrel and E.G. Daily (“The Rugrats”, The Emoji Movie) is also featured.  The film is being produced and financed by Ciaran Crampton and Chase Muratore of NYC based, Sugar Water Entertainment.  Exodus will provide production services and handling sales. 

Set in NYC, Pierre The Pigeon-Hawk is a musically driven animated comedy that promotes diversity, inclusion, and community.  Born as a product of forbidden love between a hawk and a pigeon…Pierre is rejected by both the pigeon and hawk communities.  Dejected and confused, Pierre sets out on a mission to find out where he belongs.  During his adventure, he unites with a band of unlikely friends including a bear that has recently escaped from the Central Park Zoo, an owl whose genius is outweighed only by his madness, and a pair of rag tag, pop-cultured city squirrels with attitude.  Amidst a journey of self-discovery, Pierre finds the courage to inspire animals from all backgrounds to change their ways and open their minds to a new way of thinking.  It will take a hybrid bird to unite a hybrid world.

Cannon said, “It’s always such a pleasure working with friends and combining forces with industry veterans to create fun content for all ages.”

Sugar Water Entertainment’s Ciaran Crampton said, “We couldn’t be more excited to be working with John and Nick and their seasoned teams at Exodus and Ncredible to bring this comedic, powerful and timely tale to life. This film will use music, laughter and terrific visual images to create thought provoking emotions that will be shared by audiences young and old.”

Cannon currently hosts and executive produces Fox’s record-breaking series “The Masked Singer,” and made regular appearances on hit comedies including “30 Rock,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” “Chappelle’s Show,” as well as hosting eight seasons of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent.” Film credits include Spile Lee’s Chi-Raq, Drumline, Bobby,and Men in Black II, among others.

Cannon is represented by CAA, Michael Goldman and Del, Shaw, Moonves, Tanaka, Finkelstein & Lezcanowill. Goldberg is repped by WME; Coolidge is repped by UTA; Thompson is repped by UTA, Michael Goldman and Del, Shaw, Moonves, Tanaka, Finkelstein & Lezcano and Daily is repped by Innovative Artists.

Exodus Film Group is a boutique production company based in Venice Beach, California. Exodus develops and produces a wide range of projects in both animation and live-action for all media. Exodus’ past productions include the animated features, "Igor", "The Hero of Color City", and "Bunyan & Babe”.

Founded by Nick Cannon in 2009, Ncredible Entertainment has quickly become a powerhouse brand in the entertainment industry. Ncredible Entertainment continues to demonstrate the kind of intuitive feel for cross-promoted multimedia initiatives that thrives in today’s 2.0 creative environment. Under this banner, he produces numerous TV and film projects, including Nickelodeon’s Make It PopTeenNick Top 10, and React To That. The rapid growth of Ncredible Entertainment has established projects in TV, Film, Music, along with Products & Services and a growing Management division. 

SR Socially Relevant™ Film Festival NY 2019 Opens Friday 3/15 with 'The Merger' US Premiere

• The Merger, Cinema Australia 2018 Audience Award winner, has US Premiere at SRFF
• Refugee-focused opening night program also includes It Will Be Chaos Doc

[NEW YORK, NY] SR Socially Relevant Film Festival 2019(SRFF 2019) marks its Sixth Edition opening night with Mark Grentell's critically acclaimed feature film, The Merger. The Australian production follows a struggling football club that recruits local refugees, finding new players and new purpose. The Merger, a US premiere, shows at Cinema Village on March 15, 2019, at 7:00 pm. Tickets via Eventcombo.

The film, adapted from Damian Callinan's solo stage production, is the winner of the Cinema Australia 2018 Audience Award. The uplifting comedy tells a story of a small town that is waging an ideological battle over inclusiveness versus xenophobia. As bonds are formed and memories are made with the new members, the quirky club shows the town how much good can come from helping others. Watch the trailer here.

Also showing on opening night is the NY premiere of Lorena Luciano and Filippo Piscopo's documentary, It Will Be Chaos, with a following Q&A. In the film we are introduced to the Eritrean refugee, Aregai, as he guides us through Italy's faltering immigration system. After the evening's screenings, SRFF 2019 will host an after party at Le Midi Bar & Restaurant, a limited number of tickets are available here.

SR Socially Relevant™ Film Festival NY 's 6th edition is scheduled to run March 15-21, 2019, at Cinema Village and neighboring venues. Watch the festival trailer here (

Highlights of SRFF 2019 include a documentary feature film on 2018 Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Denis Mukwege, called The Man Who Mends Women directed by Thierry Michel, followed by a panel on Women and Children in Conflict Zones, presided over by UN UnderSecretary General special representative for Sexual Violence, Pramila Patten, and with the participation of other distinguished panelists CSW chair Susan O'Malley, The Children of Panzi director Cathleen de Kerchove and more. The film screening is preceded by a reception.
The narrative film slate offers six titles, the documentary feature slate has 14 films, and there are 32 shorts that complete the balance of 52 highly select films on offer. Industry workshops, panels and networking opportunities, not to forget parties and happy hours, make SRFF 2019 another unforgettable year.

Visit for schedule, synopses, bios, and sponsors.

SR Socially Relevant ™ Film Festival New York is a 501(c) 3 non-profit film festival founded by actress Nora Armani. The Mission of the SR Film Festival is to shine the spotlight on filmmakers who tell compelling, socially relevant™, human interest stories dealing with social issues. SR™ believes in the power of cinema in raising awareness and promoting positive social change. Submissions re-open May 2019.
The mission of SRFF is the promotion of films and filmmakers that deal with socially relevant film content. In its first five years, the festival has successfully served as a platform for 287 films from 35 countries, has offered industry panels covering such topics as distribution, storytelling, diversity casting, funding, marketing, low budget filmmaking, filming in New York, and scriptwriting, and has presented over 40 awards to deserving talented filmmakers from all over the world and has helped them reach larger audiences year after year. SRFF believes that positive social change can happen through the impact of Socially Relevant™ films on people.


Annual Award to Recognize Exemplary Accomplishment in Historical Documentaries Next Generation Angels Prize for Young Filmmakers to be Presented in Partnership with National History Day

The Better Angels Society, the Library of Congress, and the Crimson Lion/Lavine Family Foundation today announced the Library of Congress Lavine/Ken Burns Prize for Film, an annual award to recognize exemplary accomplishment in historical documentaries.

The award, which will be presented each fall at a gala at the Library of Congress, will recognize a filmmaker whose documentary uses original research and compelling narrative to tell stories that touch on some aspect of American history.  More information about the award and requirements for submission can be found at:  The winner will receive a $200,000 finishing grant to help with the final production of the film. The submission deadline for the inaugural prize is June 1.

“I’ve been very fortunate to spend my career focused on our country’s history,” said Ken Burns.  “While each film is different, they all ask the same question about who we are as a people.  History is of course fraught with complexity and is often divisive. But somehow by confronting this history together, and the many stories that make it up, we become closer.  I’m honored and humbled to join the Library of Congress, The Better Angels andJeannie and Jonathan Lavine and the Crimson Lion/Lavine Family Foundation to help other filmmakers working in this space share their stories.  By supporting their work, and diverse stories and voices, I’m hopeful we can engage new generations of Americans in understanding our past.” 

“Documentary film is one of the most engaging media for bringing our nation’s history to life,” said Carla Hayden, Librarian of Congress. “As Ken has demonstrated prolifically and beautifully through his work over the years, piecing together historic photographs, manuscripts, music, oral histories and other primary source materials into a narrative moving image can capture our hearts and minds like nothing else. The Library is a treasure trove of these materials, and I hope this new prize elevates awareness of the Library as an inspirational national resource among documentary filmmakers of the present and the future. We are honored to join The Better Angels, Ken and the Crimson Lion/Lavine Family Foundation to launch this award.”

“We believe an understanding of history is critical to a healthy and functioning democracy,” noted Jeannie and Jonathan Lavine.  “We are exceptionally proud of the support we have provided Ken and his team.  We are equally excited about building on this work and creating a new program in partnership with our colleagues at The Better Angels Society and the Library of Congress. This prize will recognize other filmmakers working in this space and the stories that they can share with the millions of Americans who have learned about America’s past from the extraordinary work of Ken Burns.”  Jeannie Lavine works on several national boards, including The Better Angels Society’s Board of Directors. Jonathan Lavine is the Co-Managing Partner of Bain Capital and a Co-Chair of the Trustees of Columbia University. 

Interested filmmakers are invited to apply for the award through the website at:

To be eligible for the award, films must meet the following criteria:

1. The project must be a late stage documentary film with a running time of 60 minutes or more.

2. The subject matter of the film must be American history.

3. The applicant must have previously produced or directed at least one long-form documentary for broadcast or online distribution.

4. The applicant must submit 20 minutes of a rough or fine cut AND a script of a full-length rough or fine cut at time of submission of application. (Note: Upon request, applicant will need to be able to provide a full-length rough or fine cut for review.)

5. Industrial, promotional, branded content or instructional films are not eligible.

In addition to the Library of Congress Lavine/Ken Burns Prize for Film, The Better Angels will partner with National History Day, to award the Next Generation Angels Awards recognizing six individual documentary filmmakers in the junior and senior divisions.  These include an award named in memory of Anne Harrington, a colleague who handled outreach and education for Burns’s films who passed away in 2018.  Finalists will be recognized at the National History Day National Contest held each June at the University of Maryland, College Park, and will return for special programming to honor them and showcase their work in the fall. Winners will be invited to attend the Library of Congress award gala in Washington, D.C. as well.  More information about the award is also available at:

About Ken Burns

Ken Burns has been making documentary films for over forty years.  Since the Academy Award nominated Brooklyn Bridge in 1981, Ken has gone on to direct and produce some of the most acclaimed historical documentaries ever made, including The Civil War; Baseball; Jazz; The Statue of Liberty; Huey Long; Lewis & Clark: The Journey of the Corps of Discovery; Frank Lloyd Wright; Mark Twain; Unforgivable Blackness:  The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson; The War; The National Parks:  America’s Best Idea; The Roosevelts:  An Intimate HistoryJackie Robinson; Defying the Nazis:  The Sharps’ War; The Vietnam War, and, most recently, The Mayo Clinic:  Faith - Hope - Science.  Ken’s films have been honored with dozens of major awards, including sixteen Emmy Awards, two Grammy Awards and two Oscar nominations; and in September of 2008, at the News & Documentary Emmy Awards, Ken was honored by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences with a Lifetime Achievement Award.

About The Better Angels Society

The Better Angels Society is a non-profit organization dedicated to educating Americans about their history through documentary film. Their mission is to educate, engage and provoke thoughtful discussion among people of every political persuasion and ideology. They work to ensure historically significant films are completed, broadcast, promoted, and shared in ways that reach and inform as many people as possible through robust educational and civic outreach. The Society is currently raising funds for films in production and planned over the next ten years.

The Better Angels Society is also working to ensure that the next generation of documentary filmmakers, inspired by Ken Burns and his team, receive the education, mentoring, training, and support they need to continue his legacy.

About The Crimson Lion/Lavine Family Foundation

Jeannie and Jonathan Lavine established the Crimson Lion/Lavine Family Foundation to focus a significant portion of their philanthropic efforts toward leveling the playing field for individuals and families. The Foundation works to address pressing social challenges in the areas of education, community and public service, health and welfare, discrimination and poverty. The Foundation supports the multi-disciplinary efforts of organizations that serve to strengthen society through research, innovation, public policy, direct service and advocacy.

About the Library of Congress

The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States—and extensive materials from around the world—both on-site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office.  Explore collections, reference services and other programs and plan a visit at, access the official site for U.S. federal legislative information at and register creative works of authorship at


Taylor Swift to Receive Tour of the Year Award for her Reputation Stadium Tour

iHeartMedia and Fox Entertainment (FOX) announced today that the 2019 iHEARTRADIO MUSIC AWARDS will feature performances by Alicia Keys, Ariana Grande, Halsey, Garth Brooks, John Legend and Kacey Musgraves, with more to be announced. The live, two-hourevent airs Thursday, March 14 (8:00-10:00 PM ET live/PT tape-delayed) on FOX from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. The sixth annual iHEARTRADIO MUSIC AWARDS will also air live on iHeartMedia radio stations nationwide and iHeartRadio, the all-in-one digital music, podcast, on demand and live-streaming radio service.

iHeartMedia also announced that Taylor Swift will receive the iHeartRadio Tour of the Year Award for her Reputation Stadium Tour. With more than two million tickets sold in the U.S. and grossing $266 million, it is the highest-selling U.S. tour in history by any artist. The Taylor Swift Reputation Stadium Tour broke Swift’s own record for highest-grossing tour by a woman. It was critically acclaimed for its cutting-edge, large-scale production value that gave tens of thousands of fans in attendance each night a rare and intimate glimpse at what makes Swift one of today’s greatest performers. The tour, which kicked off in May 2018 in Glendale, AZ, also traveled to Canada, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Asia, and was made into a special concert film for Netflix. Swift will be in attendance to accept her award.

Nominees for the 2019 iHEARTRADIO MUSIC AWARDS were announced on January 9. Artists receiving multiple nominations include Cardi B, Drake, Ariana Grande, Shawn Mendes, Post Malone, Maroon 5 and Imagine Dragons. For a full list of categories, visit

In addition to being a compelling celebration of music and artists, the 2019 iHEARTRADIO MUSIC AWARDS will again celebrate the fans, giving iHeartRadio listeners the opportunity to decide winners in several new and established categories. Fan voting will determine this year’s Best Fan Army, presented by Taco Bell®; Best Lyrics; Best Cover Song; Best Music Video; the Social Star Award; Best Solo Breakout; Cutest Musician’s Pet; and the first-ever Song That Left Us Shook and Favorite Tour Photographer awards.

Social voting began on January 9 and will close on March 7. Fans can vote on Twitter using the appropriate category and nominee hashtags or by visiting

This year’s awards will feature a broad array of categories, including Artist of the Year, Best Duo/Group of the Year and individual winners for Album of the Year in music’s biggest genres, including Pop, Country, Alternative Rock, Rock, Dance, Hip-Hop, R&B, Latin and Regional Mexican formats. For the third year, the 2019 Best New Artist awards will be grouped by music format and format winners will then become finalists for the top title of Best New Artist. 

Proud partners of the 2019 iHEARTRADIO MUSIC AWARDS include the feature film “Five Feet Apart” in theaters March 15, L'Oréal Paris, Taco Bell®, TikTok and Total Wireless, with more to be announced.

Executive producers for the iHEARTRADIO MUSIC AWARDS are Joel Gallen for Tenth Planet and John Sykes, Tom Poleman and Lee Rolontz for iHeartMedia. 

For breaking news and exclusive iHeartRadio Music Awards content visit or follow #iHeartAwards on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Tickets are currently on sale to the general public at

About iHeartMedia

iHeartMedia is the number one audio company in the United States, reaching nine out of 10 Americans every month – and with its quarter of a billion monthly listeners, has a greater reach than any other media company in the U.S. The company’s leadership position in audio extends across multiple platforms including 850 live broadcast stations; streaming music, radio and on demand via its iHeartRadio digital service available across more than 250 platforms and 2,000 devices including smart speakers, digital auto dashes, tablets, wearables, smartphones, virtual assistants, TVs and gaming consoles; through its influencers; social; branded iconic live music events; and podcasts as the #1 commercial podcast publisher globally. iHeartMedia also leads the audio industry in analytics and attribution technology for its marketing partners, using data from its massive consumer base. iHeartMedia is a division of iHeartMedia, Inc. (PINK: IHRTQ). for more company information.

About Microsoft Theater

Microsoft Theater hosts over 120 music, family, dance and comedy acts, award shows, televised productions, conventions and product launches with over 500,000 guests passing through the doors annually. The 7,100-seat theater offers guests mid-sized intimacy, with no seat further from the stage than 220 feet. Microsoft Theater offers 12,000 square feet of VIP & hospitality areas, 10 dressing rooms and state of the art technology making it is a favorite indoor venue for performers and fans alike. Since opening in October 2007 with six sold out shows featuring the Eagles and Dixie Chicks, Microsoft Theater has hosted concerts starring the most popular artists including Alan Jackson, Katy Perry, Charlie Wilson, Juan Gabriel, Aretha Franklin, Ed Sheeran, John Fogerty, Gabriel Iglesias, Kanye West, Marc Anthony, Sesame Street Live, John Legend, The Avett Brothers, Neil Young, Steely Dan, Trey Songz, Kelly Clarkson, Rush, Yanni, Nicki Minaj, Juanes, Cat Stevens, The American Idol Finale shows, Michael Jackson’s This is It, Straight Outta ComptonThe Hunger Gamesand Twilight Movie Premieres and many more. Microsoft Theater is home to the American Music Awards, ESPYs, Primetime Emmy Awards, BET Awards, People’s Choice Awards, Radio Disney Music Awards, 2010, 2011 & 2015 MTV Video Music Awards, 2014 & 2015 MTV Movie Awards and the 2013 Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame.

Microsoft Theater is centrally located within L.A. LIVE is a 4 million square foot / $3 billion downtown Los Angeles sports and entertainment district adjacent to STAPLES Center and the Los Angeles Convention Center featuring Microsoft Theater, a 7,100-seat live theatre, a 2,300 capacity live music venue, a 54-story, 1001-room convention “headquarters” destination (featuring The Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles and JW Marriott Los Angeles at L.A. LIVE  hotels and 224 luxury condominiums – The Ritz-Carlton Residences at L.A. LIVE – all in a single tower) , the GRAMMY Museum, the 14-screen Regal Cinemas L.A. LIVE Stadium 14 theatre, broadcast facilities for ESPN along with entertainment, residential, restaurant and office space.

2019 Indie Spirit Awards - A Snapshot!

It was a clear, cool and sunny Saturday afternoon on Feb 23rd in Los Angeles for the 2019 Indie Spirit Awards! An important award season event, often an Oscar predictor, which is a day before the Academy Awards. 

Attendees were styling and there was no shortage of food and drink before and during the ceremony!

Some big wins were:

If Beale Street Could Talk - Took home 3 awards!

Best Picture
Best Supporting Actress  - Regina King
Best Director - Barry Jenkins

Alfonso Cuaron - Best International Film for Roma 
Glenn Close - Best Actress for The Wife

Boots Riley - Best First Feature for Sorry To Bother You

Richard E. Grant - Best Supporting  Actor for Can You Ever Forgive Me


Academy Award® winning director Roger Ross Williams’ film celebrates the historic New York City cultural landmark where musical legends were discovered

Features interviews with Pharrell Williams, Jamie Foxx, Patti LaBelle, Ta-Nehisi Coates and more

The Tribeca Film Festival, presented by AT&T, will open its 18th edition with the world premiere of the HBO Documentary Film The Apollo. Helmed by Academy and Emmy Award-winning director Roger Ross WilliamsThe Apollo chronicles the unique history and contemporary legacy of the New York City landmark, the Apollo Theater. The film will debut at the iconic theater itself on Wednesday, April 24, 2019and later this year on HBO. The feature-length documentary weaves together archival footage, music, comedy and dance performances, and behind-the-scenes verité with the team that makes the theater run. The Apollo features interviews with artists including Patti LaBelle, Pharrell Williams, Smokey Robinson, and Jamie Foxx. The documentary is produced by Lisa CortésNigel Sinclair’s White Horse Pictures, and Williams. The 2019 Tribeca Film Festival runs April 24-May 5.

The Apollo covers the rich history of the storied performance space over its 85 years and follows a new production of Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me as it comes to the theater’s grand stage. The creation of this vibrant multi-media stage show frames the way in which The Apollo explores the current struggle of black lives in America, the role that art plays in that struggle and the broad range of African American achievement that the Apollo Theater represents.

The Apollo Theater is internationally renowned for having influenced American and pop culture more than any other entertainment venue. The space has created opportunities for new talent to be seen and has served as a launchpad for a myriad of artists including Billie Holiday, Aretha Franklin, Ella Fitzgerald, Diana Ross & The Supremes, Stevie Wonder, The Jackson 5, Luther Vandross, Dave Chappelle, Lauryn Hill, Jimi Hendrix, and more. 

“We’re excited to finally be going uptown to play the Apollo,” said Jane Rosenthal, Co-Founder and CEO of the Tribeca Film Festival. “The Apollo gives audiences an inside look at the major role this institution has played for the past 85 years. It’s seen the emergence of everything from Jazz to R&B to Soul and Gospel - all quintessential American music genres, and this is the time to remind people of our nation’s rich history. ”

The Apollo is about so much more than just music, it’s about how we used music and art to lift ourselves out of oppression,“ commented director Roger Ross Williams.  “The story of the Apollo is the story of the evolution of black American identity and how it grew to become the defining cultural movement of our time.  I was fortunate to make my first film with HBO and I am thrilled to be coming back home with The Apollo. Premiering at The Tribeca Film Festival, at the Apollo Theater in Harlem is a dream come true.”

“The Apollo Theater is a symbol of the creative spirit of New York and beyond, and I’m very happy that we’re kicking off our 18th Festival celebrating it with this documentary from Roger Ross Williams,” said Tribeca Co-Founder Robert De Niro.

The Apollo, directed by Academy Award-winning and Tribeca alumnus Roger Ross Williams (Music by Prudence; Life, Animated) and is produced by Lisa Cortés (Precious), White Horse’s Nigel Sinclair (George Harrison: Living in the Material WorldUndefeated), Jeanne Elfant Festa (Foo Fighters: Back and Forth, Pavarotti) and Cassidy Hartmann (The Beatles: Eight Days A Week, Pavarotti) along with Williams.

The Apollo will have additional screenings during the Festival. Passes and packages to attend the Festival go on sale on February 19, 2019.

The 2019 Tribeca Film Festival will announce its feature film slate on March 5.

  • Hashtag: #Tribeca2019

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About The Filmmakers:

The producers Lisa Cortés, Nigel Sinclair, Jeanne Elfant Festa, Cassidy Hartmann and Roger Ross Williams have assembled an outstanding creative team with editors Jean Tsien, ACE (Miss Sharon Jones!, Shut Up & Sing) and John S. Fisher and Grammy-Award-winning composer Robert Glasper (Miles Ahead13th) who is composing the score. Hartmann and Tsien also co-wrote the documentary. 

Nicholas Ferrall of White Horse and Dan Cogan of Impact Partners are Executive producing the film alongside Julie Goldman of Motto Pictures, and the Apollo Theater’s Jonelle Procope. Jenny Raskin and Geralyn Dreyfous will also Executive Produce for Impact Partners, along with the Embrey Family Foundation, the Lagralane Group, and Ken Pelletier. Carlene C. Laughlin and Dave Knott are also Executive Producing. Cynthia Sexton and David Blackman will Executive Produce for Polygram Entertainment. MACRO’s Charles D. King, Kim Roth, and Poppy Hanks will also executive produce, along with Jayson Jackson.

Impact Partners is financing the film along with the Chicago Media Project, Universal Music Group’s Polygram Entertainment, MACRO, 164 OWR, Bert Marcus Productions, and the Ford Foundation.

About Tribeca Film Festival past opening nights:

Since its inception 18 years ago, Tribeca Film Festival has opened with a range of films, both narrative and documentary, that celebrate cinema and storytelling: 2018 – Love, Gilda (Documentary); 2017 – Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives (Documentary); 2016 – The First Monday in May(Documentary); 2015 – Live from New York! (Documentary) with a live performance from Ludacris; 2014 – Nas: Time is Ill-matic (Documentary) with a live performance from Nas; 2013 – Mistaken for Strangers (Documentary) with a live performance from The National; 2012 – The Five-Year Engagement(Narrative); 2011 – The Union (Documentary) with a live Elton John performance; 2010 – Shrek Forever After (Narrative); 2009 – Whatever Works(Narrative); 2008 – Baby Mama (Narrative); 2007 – SOS (Shorts program); 2006 – United 93 (Narrative); 2005 – The Interpreter (Narrative); 2004 –Raising Helen (Narrative); 2003 – Down with Love (Narrative); 2002 – About a Boy (Narrative).

About the Tribeca Film Festival:            

The Tribeca Film Festival, presented by AT&T, brings visionaries and diverse audiences together to celebrate storytelling in all its forms, including film, TV, VR, gaming, music, and online work. With strong roots in independent film, Tribeca is a platform for creative expression and immersive entertainment. The Festival champions emerging and established voices; discovers award-winning filmmakers and creators; curates innovative experiences; and introduces new technology and ideas through premieres, exhibitions, talks, and live performances.      
The Festival was founded by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal, and Craig Hatkoff in 2001 to spur the economic and cultural revitalization of lower Manhattan following the attacks on the World Trade Center. Now in its 18th year, the Festival has evolved into a destination for creativity that reimagines the cinematic experience and explores how art can unite communities. The 18th annual edition will take place April 24 - May 5, 2019. 


About 2019 Tribeca Film Festival Partners:       

As Presenting Sponsor of the Tribeca Film Festival, AT&T is committed to supporting the Festival and the art of filmmaking through access and innovation, while expanding opportunities to diverse creators around the globe. AT&T helps millions connect to their passions – no matter where they are. This year, AT&T and Tribeca will once again collaborate to give the world access to stories from underrepresented filmmakers that deserve to be seen. “AT&T Presents Untold Stories” is an inclusive film program in collaboration with Tribeca - a multi-year, multi-tier alliance between AT&T and Tribeca along with the year-round nonprofit Tribeca Film Institute.

The Tribeca Film Festival is pleased to announce its 2019 Partners: 23andMe, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, Bai Beverages, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC), BVLGARI, CHANEL, Diageo, ESPN, IMDb, Kia, Montefiore, National CineMedia (NCM), Nespresso, New York Magazine, NYC Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment, Prime Video Direct, PwC, Spring Studios New York, Squarespace, and Status Sparkling Wine.

Socially Relevant™ Film Festival NY Reveals Sixth Edition Official Selection

  • 60 feature, short and documentary films from 30 countries

  • Expert panels on film industry and social issues

  • Women directed films on the forefront

SR Socially Relevant Film Festival 2019 (SRFF 2019) unveiled its SRFF 2019 Official Selection in the presence of a group of film critics and journalists at Pisticci Restaurant. The festival’s Sixth season brings international and local films, industry workshops and panels, and other events dedicated to social issues to New York. SRFF 2019 will be held from March 15 to 21, 2019 at Cinema Village and neighboring venues. $6 early bird tickets and $100 all-access passes are available now in limited quantities until full price tickets kick-in on February 28.   

The Official Selection to be screened in the heart of Greenwich Village covers a diverse mix of seven narrative features, 14 documentaries, close to 40 shorts, and more. There will also be a script-writing contest with readings from finalist scripts. The films represent 30 countries. Visit for full slate and film details. The schedule will be published soon.

The selected narrative feature films are:

• A Thousand Pieces by Véronique Mériadec (France)

• Coming Home by Daria Shumakova (Russian Federation, Armenia)

• Big Earth (Hotel California) by Patrick Merz, Benno Gut (Germany)

• Doing Money by Lynsey Miller (UK)

• I’m Not Blond by Hassan Hamza (France)

• Yeva by Anahid Abad (Iran, Armenia)

• The Merger by Mark Grentell (Australia)

Highlights from the selected documentary features (full list on website) include:

• Backlash (Switzerland)

• Danseur (USA)

• It will Be Chaos (USA, Italy)

• Monument of Pride (The Netherlands)

• Piripkura (Brazil)

• Seeing is Believing: Women Direct (USA)  

Themes for selected short film groupings include:

• Across the Border, Capital Punishment, Drug Addiction, Freedom, Health in Life and Death, Pollution and the Environment, Women and Choice

Monday March 18, features a Spotlight Screening of the documentary film by Thierry Michel on 2018 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Dr. Denis Mukwege and his work. The film is called The Man Who Mends Women and depicts the life of the doctor who risks his life helping women victims of rape in the 20-year war and conflict in DR Congo. The film is followed by a panel discussing the UN SDG’s specifically on women in collaboration with the UN.  


SR Socially Relevant ™ Film Festival New York is a 501(c)3 non-profit film festival founded by actress Nora Armani. The Mission of the SR Film Festival is to shine the spotlight on filmmakers who tell compelling, socially relevant™, human interest stories, across a broad range of social issues. The festival was created as a response to the proliferation of violence and violent forms of storytelling in media and entertainment. SR™ believes in the power of cinema in raising awareness towards social issues and promoting positive social change. During its first five years, the festival showcased 287 films from 35 countries. Submissions are received from all over the world.

Annual Newport Beach UK Honours Kicks Off BAFTA Weekend With Celebration of UK Creative Talent

Honorees include Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes, Lesley Manville, Rob Brydon, Lily Cole, as well as the film Stan & Ollie, new talent, and more


In a star-studded celebration of the best of UK talent from film, television, and music, the Newport Beach Film Festival kicked off BAFTA weekend with the Newport Beach Film Festival UK Honours on Feb. 7 at The Langham London.

For 20 years, the Newport Beach Film Festival, one of the fasted growing luxury lifestyle film festivals in the United States, has included a dedicated UK showcase during its 10-day program.  Starting in 2015, the film festival and Visit Newport Beach partnered to elevate the connection to the UK industry by honoring talent via the Newport Beach Film Festival UK Honours held in London just ahead of the BAFTA Awards. Honours include Arts Champions, Breakout Talent, Artists of Distinction, Icons, and Outstanding Achievement in Cinema.

In addition, starting in 2017, Variety, the entertainment industry bible, partnered to use the opportunity to present their annual list of 10 Brits to Watch.

2019 Newport Beach Film Festival UK Honours Honorees


Stan & Ollie – Jon S. Baird, Jeff Pope


The Favourite


Julian Fellowes (Downton Abbey), Lesley Manville (Phantom Thread, All or Nothing), John Llyod (Blackadder, Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy)


Rob Brydon (Gavin & Stacey, The Trip), Lily Cole (Balls, Snow White and the Huntsman), Richard Dormer (Game of Thrones, Fortitude), Joanne Froggatt (Downton Abbey, Liar), Laura Carmichael (Downton Abbey, A United Kingdom)


Naomi Ackie (Lady Macbeth, The Bisexual), Ellie Bamber (Nocturnal Animals, High Resolution), Hannah John-Kamen (Ant-Man and the Wasp, Ready Player One), Louis Ashbourne Serkis (The Kid Who Would be King, Mowgli)


MediCinema, Women in Film and Television

Presented by Jenelle Riley, deputy awards and features editor, Variety’s 2019 10 Brits to Watch included Rhianne Barreto, Raffey Cassidy, Paapa Essiedu, Jess Glynne, Kirby Howell-Baptiste, Billy Howle, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Jessica Swale, Joivan Wade, and Fionn Whitehead. Profiles of the talent appear in the magazine’s Feb. 5 issue and on

Images from the event can be found via Getty and here:

Event EPK can be downloaded here (available until Feb. 14, 2019):

Event EPK can be viewed here:

By-line: Newport Beach Film Festival UK Honours


About Newport Beach

Situated between Los Angeles and San Diego and nestled among golden stretches of pristine Pacific coastline, Newport Beach epitomizes the casual yet sophisticated lifestyle of Southern California. This idyllic seaside destination is widely celebrated for its natural beauty that sets the scene for a vibrant yachting community alongside stylish accommodations, eclectic coastal cuisine, and world-class shopping. Comprised of ten distinct district neighborhoods, each lend a unique culture, charm, natural beauty, and history to the city. Ranked among the “Top 10 Resort Towns in the U.S.,” Newport Beach is also distinguished as one of the country’s “Top 10 Best Family Beaches.”

About The Newport Beach Film Festival

Celebrated as one of the leading lifestyle film festivals in the United States, the Newport Beach Film Festival (NBFF) seeks to bring to Orange County the best of classic and contemporary filmmaking from around the world. Committed to enlightening the public with a first-class international film program, a forum for cultural understanding and enriching educational opportunities, the NBFF focuses on showcasing a diverse collection of studio and independent films from around the globe. The 20th annual Newport Beach Film Festival runs April 25 – May 2 and will spotlight over 300 films from more than 50 different countries.

 About Variety

Recognized and respected throughout the world of show business, Variety is the premier source of entertainment news. Since 1905, the most influential leaders in the industry have turned to Variety for timely, credible and straightforward news and analysis — information vital to their professions.


Festival to Open with Julia Hart’s “Fast Color”

 “Knock Down The House,” directed by Rachel Lears to Close Festival

Amy Berg’s “This Is Personal” to Screen as Documentary Centerpiece;

Carol Morley’s “Out Of Blue” to Screen as Narrative Centerpiece

9th Annual Festival Takes Place February 28 - March 3, 2019

The Athena Film Festival (AFF) at Barnard College announced today its film slate, including opening night, closing night, and centerpiece films, as well as additional programming for the 2019 festival. The ninth annual festival, co-founded by the Athena Center for Leadership Studies at Barnard College and Women and Hollywood, will take place February 28 to March 3, 2019, at Barnard College in New York City. AFF showcases films, television and content that tell the extraordinary stories of fierce and fearless female leaders from all walks of life. Stories of ambition, courage, and resilience amplify the voices of strong, bold women, curating a public discourse on gender equality, and changing the cultural conventions surrounding leadership.

The festival will open on Thursday, February 28, with the New York premiere of “Fast Color.” The film, directed by Julia Hart and written by Hart and Jordan Horowitz, stars Gugu Mbatha-Raw as a hero forced to run when her superhuman abilities are discovered. Years after abandoning her family, the only place she has left to hide is home. Lorraine Toussaint and David Strathairn co-star.

The festival will close on Sunday, March 3, with the New York premiere of the documentary “Knock Down The House,” directed by Rachel Lears, and featuring NY Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The film centers on a young bartender in the Bronx, a coal miner’s daughter in West Virginia, a grieving mother in Nevada, and a registered nurse in Missouri, as they build a movement comprised of insurgent Congressional candidates who challenge powerful incumbents. One of their races ultimately becomes the most surprising political upset in recent American history.


The festival’s Documentary and Narrative Centerpieces were also announced. The Documentary Centerpiece, “This Is Personal,” is directed by Amy Berg, featuring Tamika Mallory and Erika Andiola. While the 2016 election catalyzed the Women’s March and a new era of feminist activism, Tamika and Erika have been fighting for their communities for years. Their stories expose the fundamental connection between the personal and the political, and ask, how can intersectionality birth a new social justice movement? The Narrative Centerpiece, “Out Of Blue,” written and directed by Carol Morley, will have its U.S. premiere at the festival. Patricia Clarkson stars as Detective Mike Hoolihan, who is called to investigate the shooting of a leading astrophysicist. As Mike tumbles down the rabbit hole of the disturbing case, she finds herself grappling with cosmic secrets that may hold the key to unraveling the crime, while throwing into doubt her very understanding of reality.

“We are thrilled to announce our phenomenal lineup of films for this year’s festival,” said Melissa Silverstein, co-founder and artistic director of the festival and founder of Women and Hollywood. “The Athena Film Festival’s goal is to showcase the diverse work of women leaders, and this year, we have some incredible films and stories that aim to change the narrative and highlight important topics.”

The festival will feature a curated program of narrative, documentary and short films, including: “Can You Ever Forgive Me?,” directed by Marielle Heller and starring Melissa McCarthy; “On The Basis Of Sex” (2014 Athena List Winner), directed by Mimi Leder and starring Felicity Jones and Armie Hammer; “The Favourite,” directed by Yorgos Lanthimos and starring Olivia Colman, Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone; “Jinn,” written and directed by Nijla Mu'min and starring Zoe Renee; “The Miseducation Of Cameron Post,” written and directed by Desiree Akhavan and starring Chloë Grace Moretz; “Rafiki,” written and directed by Wanuri Kahiu; “On Her Shoulders,” directed Alexandria Bombach and featuring Nadia Murad; “Whispering Truth To Power,” directed by Shameela Seedat and featuring Thuli Madonsela; “Worlds Of Ursula K. Le Guin,” directed by Arwen Curry and featuring Ursula K. Le Guin. Shorts include: “7 Planets,” written and directed by Milda Baginskaite; “Heed The Call,” written and directed by Laura G. Chirinos; “Masks,” written and directed by Mahaliyah Ayla O; and “A Woman’s Place,” directed by Jen Zhouwenyue Xu.

Over the last nine years, the Festival has welcomed more than 35,000 people from all over the world to 200+ screenings.  In 2018, 46 films were screened, including 17 features, 13 documentaries, and 16 shorts. Distinguished guests such as Billie Jean King, JJ Abrams, Lena Dunham, Amma Asante, Barbara Kopple, and Bridget Everett, among many others were welcomed at the Festival.

Additional programming and 2019 honorees will be announced in the coming weeks.

The 2019 festival co-chairs include J.J. Abrams P’22, Julie Parker Benello ’92, Debra Martin Chase, Geralyn Dreyfous, Ava DuVernay, Paul Feig, Greta Gerwig ’06, Sherry Lansing, Jon Levin P’13, Katie McGrath P’22, Pat Mitchell, Sheila Nevins ’60, David Oyelowo, Gina Prince-Bythewood, Susan Rovner ’91, Regina K. Scully and Rachel Weisz. 

Tickets and passes are on sale now. Please visit for regular updates and more information.




A Private War

Director: Matthew Heineman

Writers: Marie Brenner and Arash Amel

One of the most celebrated war correspondents of our time, Marie Colvin is an utterly fearless and rebellious spirit, driven to the frontlines of conflicts across the globe to give voice to the voiceless. 

Ask for Jane

Director: Rachel Carey

Writers: Rachel Carey and Cait Cortelyou ‘09

The true story of determined women in the 1960s who quietly provided the phone number of reliable abortion doctors to women in need. Operating like a spy network, using blindfolds, code names, and secret locations, the Jane Collective helped over 11,000 women receive safe, illegal abortions until they were legalized in 1973.

Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Director: Marielle Heller

Writers: Nicole Holofcener and Jeff Whitty

Based on a true story, Melissa McCarthy stars as Lee Israel, the best-selling celebrity biographer who makes her living profiling the likes of Katharine Hepburn and Tallulah Bankhead. Unable to get a new publishing gig, Lee turns to artistic deception, abetted by her loyal friend Jack.

Don’t Talk To Irene

Director and writer: Pat Mills

When an overweight and unpopular teenager is suspended from school, she must endure two weeks of community service at a nearby retirement home. She secretly signs up the residents for a dance-themed reality show to prove that you don't have to be perfect to be perfectly awesome. 


Director: Julia Hart

Writers: Julia Hart and Jordan Horowitz   

This fantasy, superhero re-mix stars Gugu Mbatha-Raw as a hero forced to run when her superhuman abilities are discovered. Years after abandoning her family, the only place she has left to hide is home. Lorraine Toussaint and David Strathairn co-star.


Director and writer: Nijla Mu'min

In writer-director Nijla Mu’min’s debut feature, an African-American teenager’s world is turned upside down when her mother, a popular TV meteorologist, abruptly converts to Islam, prompting both mother and daughter to reevaluate their identities.

On The Basis of Sex

Director: Mimi Leder

Writer: Daniel Stiepleman

The compelling story of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s early years, as she crafts a national legal strategy to win equal rights for women and fights to succeed in a profession notably hostile to women. The screenplay was a 2014 Athena List winner. 


Director and Writer: Carol Morley
Detective Mike Hoolihan (Patricia Clarkson) is called to investigate the shooting of a leading astrophysicist. As Mike tumbles down the rabbit hole of the disturbing case, she finds herself grappling with cosmic secrets that may hold the key to unraveling the crime, while throwing into doubt her very understanding of reality.


Director and writer: Wanuri Kahiu

In their community “good Kenyan girls become good Kenyan wives," but Kena and Ziki long for something more. When love blossoms between them, the two girls are forced to choose between happiness and safety.


Director: Sean Hanish

Writer: Dmitry Portnoy

Based on a remarkable true story, when an Afghan woman flees her home after being persecuted by the Taliban, immigration attorney Judy Wood (Michelle Monaghan) takes her case. In the process, she changes U.S. asylum law and saves the lives of countless people.

Support The Girls

Director and writer: Andrew Bujalski

The general manager at a highway-side ''sports bar with curves" who has incurable optimism and faith in her girls, her customers, and herself, is tested over the course of a long, strange day.

The Favourite

Director: Yorgos Lanthimos

Writers: Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara

Set in early 18th-century England, this award winning comedy-drama stars Olivia Colman as Queen Anne and Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone as cousins whose quarreling take center stage as each jockeys to be the court favourite of a frail and mercurial Queen Anne.

The Miseducation of Cameron Post

Director: Desiree Akhavan

Writers: Desiree Akhavan and Cecilia Frugiuele

In this drama directed by Desiree Akhavan, Chloë Grace Moretz plays a teenager sent away to a remote “treatment center” after being caught in the backseat with the prom queen. As she is subjected to questionable gay conversion therapies, she finds both challenges from and solace in fellow residents.

Working Woman

Director: Michal Aviad

Writers: Michal Aviad, Sharon Azulay Eyal, Michal Vinik

Orna’s life at work becomes unbearable when her boss, a major Israeli developer, makes inappropriate advances. Caught between the need to support her family and the increasingly disturbing behavior of her boss, Orna fights for her job and her sense of self-worth.



Director: Paula Eiselt

Set in the Hasidic enclave of Borough Park, Brooklyn, a tenacious group of Hasidic women challenge stereotypes and power structures in their tight-knit community by creating the first all-female volunteer ambulance corps in New York City. This film was a 2015 Athena Work in Progress film.

Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché

Director: Pamela B. Green

In 1896, Alice Guy-Blaché was the first female film director at age 23. She went on to write, direct, produce, or edit more than 1000 films and became one of the early film industry’s biggest stars. Then she vanished from history.

Dykes, Camera, Action!

Director: Caroline Berler

Stonewall, the feminist movement, and the experimental cinema of the 1970s, set the stage for lesbian filmmakers to transform how society views queerness. In this moving and often hilarious film, lesbian filmmakers share their stories and discuss how they express their queer identity through film. 

Lady Parts Justice in the New World Order

Director: Ruth Leitman

Led by The Daily Show’s co-creator Lizz Winstead, the Lady Parts Justice League barnstorms the country to support abortion providers and defend women’s reproductive rights. Using comedy as the ultimate weapon to mobilize voters for the 2018 elections, they use a boots-on-the-ground strategy to protect bodily autonomy for all.

Life Without Basketball

Directors: Tim O'Donnell, Jon Mercer

After the International Basketball Federation forbids head coverings, making it impossible for Muslim women to maintain their religious convictions while on the court, Bilqis Abdul-Qaadir fights to change the rules. With her victory, she becomes the first Division I basketball player to play wearing the hijab and inspires the young Muslim women she coaches.


Director: Rachel Lears

A young bartender in the Bronx, a coal miner’s daughter in West Virginia, a grieving mother in Nevada and a registered nurse in Missouri build a movement of insurgent candidates challenging powerful incumbents in Congress. One of their races will become the most surprising political upset in recent American history.


Director: Cynthia Lowen

The proliferation of cyber harassment spreads from the web to the most intimate corners of women’s lives. As the internet becomes the next frontier of civil rights, three women who are targets of harassment confront digital abuse and strive for equality and justice online. The film was a 2017 Athena Work in Progress film. 

Nothing Without Us: The Women Who Will End AIDS

Director: Harriet Hirshorn

A compelling portrait of the inspiring and remarkable women at the forefront of the global AIDS movement who work tirelessly to end the 30-year old pandemic and help women around the world at risk of HIV and AIDS.

On Her Shoulders

Director: Alexandria Bombach

With deep compassion and an elegance that matches her calm and steely demeanor, 23 year-old Nadia Murad survives the 2014 genocide of the Yazidis in Northern Iraq and escapes ISIS to become a relentless beacon of hope for her people.

The Feminist

Director: Hampus Linder

This personal and compelling portrait follows Gudrun Schyman, spokesperson of Sweden’s Feminist Initiative political party as she moves between small towns, refugee camps, and the corridors of power. In the process, she inspires women across the globe and becomes one of Sweden’s most influential politicians.

The Great Mother

Directors: Dave LaMattina and Chad Walker

When two U.S. born children share that their mother is being deported, immigration activist Nora Sandigo steps up to become their legal guardian, saving them from the fate of  “immigration orphans’’ trapped in the foster care system. Six years later, Nora’s charges have grown to nearly 1,000 children.


Director: Amy Berg

While the 2016 election catalyzed the Women’s March and a new era of feminist activism, Tamika Mallory and Erika Andiola have been fighting for their communities for years.Their stories expose the fundamental connection between the personal and the political, and asks: how can intersectionality birth a new social justice movement?

Warrior Women

Directors: Elizabeth A. Castle and Christina D. King

Madonna Thunder Hawk, unapologetic organizer of the American Indian Movement,  has cultivated a ragtag gang of activist children—including her daughter Marcy—into the We Will Remember survival group. Through their story, the film highlights the struggle for native rights and how activists pass their legacies from generation to generation.

What She Said: The Art of Pauline Kael

Director: Rob Garver

This nuanced portrait of Pauline Kael, among the most famous and divisive film critics of all time, uses never-before-seen archival film, wide-ranging interviews and her own writings voiced by Sarah Jessica Parker, to capture her complexity while revisiting late-twentieth-century cinema through her lens.

Whispering Truth to Power

Director: Shameela Seedat

After her appointment as South Africa’s Public Protector in 2009, Thuli Madonsela immediately faces violent protests, court interdicts, political and personal attacks, and death threats, as this remarkably steadfast woman seeks justice in a country still coming to terms with its apartheid past.

Worlds of Ursula K. Le Guin

Director: Arwen Curry

Explore the remarkable life and legacy of the late feminist author Ursula K. Le Guin. She holds her ground on the margins of “respectable” literature until the sheer excellence of her work forces the mainstream to embrace her science fiction and fantastic writings.



Director and writer: Milda Baginskaite

A young girl dreams to escape planet Earth.

A Woman’s Place

Director: Jen Zhouwenyue Xu

Three female chefs grapple with barriers in the male-dominated food service industry.   


Director: Demi Waldron

Six women cinematographers share the complexities of working in an industry that rarely hires women.

Come & Take It

Directors: Ellen Spiro, PJ Raval

America’s most irreverent anti-gun activists create the Great Texas Dildo Revolt.  #CocksNotGlocks.

Cross My Heart

Director: Sontenish Myers

While visiting her family in Jamaica, an American teenager becomes her cousin's confidant, changing the way she sees the people she loves.


Director and writer: Jeannie Donohoe

The new teenager in town shows up at the boys basketball tryouts and instantly makes an impression. Will talent and drive be enough to make the team?

Giving Birth in America: California

Director: Clancy McCarty

A Mexican farmworker, pregnant with her third child, seeks prenatal care from a clinic in the “Strawberry Capital” of California.

Happy Today

Director: Giulio Tonincelli

In Northern Uganda, a midwife accompanies new mothers through the physical pain and intense emotion of giving birth.


Director and writer: Laura G. Chirinos

In the midst of World War II, a young woman must decide if she is willing to defy both social expectations and her family by joining the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps.

I’m Just Here

Director: Lara Aslanian

Writer: Mari Savinar

A suicide helpline operator fields an unforgettable call from a young, queer woman.


Directors: Ulrika Bandeira, Julia Gumpert, and Olivia Kastebring

Feminist activists use dance to challenge popular notions of modern femininity.

Lotte That Silhouette Girl

Directors: Carla Patullo, Elizabeth Beecherl

With music, magic and a stirring narration by Lotte herself, Lotte that Silhouette Girl tells the tale of one of animations' foremost pioneers, German Film Director, Lotte Reiniger.


Director and writer: Mahaliyah Ayla O

A closeted medical student’s secret is threatened when out on a date with her girlfriend. 

Newport Gun Girls - NEW YORK PREMIERE

Director: Lauren Orme 

Writer: Nigel Crowle

The story of a forgotten group of Welsh women who worked at an ordnance factory during World War II.


Director and writer: Danielle Naassana

A young girl feels self-conscious about wearing a hijab at her new school.

One Small Step

Directors: Bobby Pontillas, Andrew Chesworth 

Writer: Andrew Chesworth

In this animated short, an ambitious girl aspires to be an astronaut, guided by her supportive father.

Rise and Shine

Director: Ben Dai 

Writer: Andrew Robinson

Waking up after years in a deep sleep, the last surviving scientist in Antarctica must use her ingenuity and science to survive.

Sister Hearts

Director: Mohammad Gorjestani

After thirteen years in prison (six in solitary), an ex-offender opens Sister Hearts, the largest thrift store in New Orleans, and offers a path forward for women like her.


Director: Aftab Abbasi

A Pakistani wheat farmer shatters stereotypes with her courage and resilience.

While I Yet Live

Director: Maris Curran

Acclaimed quilters from Gee’s Bend, Alabama, talk about love, religion, and the fight for civil rights, as they continue the tradition that brought them together.


She Flies By Her Own Wings

Project Creator: Jesse (Jesus) Ayala

Driven by the military tenet of “Leave No One Behind,” Shannon Scott, a proud transgender veteran, seeks justice for those vets who championed equality before her.

Sun Ladies

Project Creator: Celine Tricart

Meet Xate Singali, captain of the Sun Ladies, a female-only fighting unit that risks everything to protect the Yazidi community from violent attacks by ISIS.


Going to Mars: The Nikki Giovanni Project
Directed by:  Michele Stephenson

The story of acclaimed poet, Nikki Giovanni and the revolutionary historical periods through which she lived—reveals the enduring influence of one of America’s greatest artists and social commentators.


Project creators: Hannah Rosenzweig, Wendy Sachs and Tanya Selvaratnam

Tired of being ignored, angered by government policies, and anxious about the future, thousands of women were inspired to run for office in what became an historic midterm election.


The Athena Film Festival at Barnard College, is a weekend of inspiring films that tell the extraordinary stories of fierce and fearless female leaders from all walks of life – stories of ambition, courage, and resilience. We amplify the voices and stories of strong, bold women, curating a public discourse on gender equality, and changing the cultural conventions surrounding leadership.

As the only film festival specifically focused on women’s leadership, the Athena Film Festival provides a forum for dialogue about and an opportunity to showcase what it means to be a powerful woman today, inspiring women and girls in the process.


Established at Barnard College in 2009, the Athena Center for Leadership Studies is a catalyst for the education, development and advancement of inspired and courageous women leaders worldwide.


Women and Hollywood educates, advocates, and agitates for gender parity across the entertainment industry. Over the last 11 years, it has grown to be one of the most respected sites focused on women's issues and popular culture, and its founder, Melissa Silverstein, has become a well-respected leader on the subject.


Barnard provides a singular educational experience, as a world-renowned college focused on excellence across the arts and sciences, with all the academic resources of Columbia University and the City of New York as an extended classroom. Founded in 1889, Barnard was one of the few colleges in the nation where women could receive the same rigorous and challenging education available to men. Today, Barnard is one of the most selective academic institutions in the country and remains devoted to empowering extraordinary women to become even more exceptional.


Artemis Rising Foundation is dedicated to supporting projects that transform our culture through media, education and the arts. Founder & CEO, Regina K. Scully.

The Athena Film Festival is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.



Kyra Sedgwick BTS 'Girls Weekend'

Kyra Sedgwick BTS 'Girls Weekend'

Winner(s) Signed to First Look Development Deal with Big Swing Productions; Submissions Open Today

Broadening its mission to cultivate opportunities for and about women, SeriesFest, the non-profit organization, has partnered with Emmy®- and Golden Globe®- winner and DGA nominee Kyra Sedgwick, Meredith Bagby and Valerie Stadler, co-founders of the television and film shingle, Big Swing Productions, for its “Women Writing Competition.” SeriesFest, dedicated to supporting the art of episodic storytelling with year-round initiatives, will celebrate the partnership with Big Swing Productions at the Sundance Film Festival today with an invite-only reception honoring female creatives at the forefront of serialized storytelling.

Seeking new series and narratives from female creators about real, complex, recognizable characters, scriptwriters have from January 28, 2019 to July 26, 2019 to submit original work at The winner of the competition will receive a year-long development deal with Big Swing Productions and the opportunity for a live read of the script with professional actors.

SeriesFest launched the “Women Writing Competition” in 2016 with Rose McGowan and her production company, Damage Inc. Productions under the Featuring Women Platform. Winner Sarah Sellman presented her original “Cottonwood” script at a special live event at the 40th Denver Film Festival. 

“We couldn’t ask for a more like-minded partner for the ‘Women Writing Competition’ than Kyra and Big Swing Productions,” commented Randi Kleiner and Kaily Smith Westbrook, SeriesFest co-founders. “Their mission, like ours, is to amplify these often-unknown voices and their work embodies exactly what this initiative, and SeriesFest, is all about. We’re excited to work with them to discover new female screenwriters and lead the charge in providing meaningful opportunities for women the storytelling space.” 

“Big Swing is thrilled to be partnering with SeriesFest to elevate women’s voices and presence in television,” added Sedgwick. “Everyone views the world through our own experiences, triumphs and failures. We are excited to see and share your stories through your lens.” 

BTS Girls Weekend with Sedgwick

BTS Girls Weekend with Sedgwick

Submissions and entry fees are due by July 26, 2019. All submissions will be reviewed by a panel of judges and finalists will be notified by Fall 2019.  To be eligible for the contest, entrants must be aged 18 years or older. Limit one entry per person. Each entry must include only one (1) script. Entries must be written in English and scripts must not be encumbered by any obligation to, or option held by a third party.  For additional details about submissions, please go to

In 2018, under the Featuring Women Platform, SeriesFest launched the “Jan Marino Scholarship” to support women over age 55 enrolled in the Stephens College M.F.A. in Television and Screenwriting program, and the “Women Directing Mentorship” initiative partnering with Shondaland.


SeriesFest ( is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the art of episodic storytelling. With year-round initiatives and professional development opportunities focused on diverse and under-served voices, education programs for students ages 10-18, and an annual festival which gives emerging artists a platform and place for discovery, SeriesFest is where new voices and storytellers have found a home. SeriesFest: Season 5 will take place June 21-26, 2019 in Denver, Colorado – the birthplace of cable television. With a musical performance and network premiere at the world famous Red Rocks Amphitheatre and six days of in-competition screenings, panels, and network sneak peeks and premieres, the festival showcases compelling and creative content while celebrating television history and engaging in meaningful dialogue about serialized storytelling. SeriesFest is collecting submissions now through March 4, 2019 for Season 5 competitions. Visit for more information on competition categories, key dates, entry fees, guidelines and prizes.



Formed in 2018 by Kyra Sedgwick, Meredith Bagby and Valerie Stadler, Big Swing Productions is committed to celebrating new heroes and amplifying bold voices. Focusing on stories with heart and purpose, we believe that when talent meets opportunity, magic happens. We all deserve the chance to take a BIG SWING.

Big Swing Productions’ series, “Girls Weekend,” makes its debut at Sundance Film Festival 2019. The series, directed by Sedgwick and created and stars Ali Liebegott, follows a queer daughter’s return home to Las Vegas for the weekend with her estranged, homophobic sister and people-pleasing mother. Her gun-toting dad lets it slip that her mother’s cancer is back with a vengeance, forcing her to decide whether or not she can rejoin her family.


Sony Pictures Classics announced today that they have acquired rights in North America, The Middle East, Scandinavia, India, South Africa, Benelux, Turkey, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, Latin America to DAVID CROSBY: REMEMBER MY NAME, produced by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Cameron Crowe.  The film, by first time director A.J. Eaton, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in the U.S. Documentary Competition.

A revealing and deeply personal documentary exploring the life and creative renaissance of music icon David Crosby. A cultural force for over fifty years, Crosby faced uncertain future after the 2015 dissolution of Crosby, Stills and Nash. Racked with health issues and personal obstacles, Crosby forged a new path at the age of 77. With unflinching honesty, self-examination, regret, fear, exuberance and an unshakable belief in family and the transformative nature of music, Crosby shares his often-challenging journey with humor and bite. 

BM and Vinyl Films produced the film, in association with PCH Films.  Cameron Crowe, Michele Farinola, and Greg Mariotti produced with executive producers Kathy Rivkin Daum, Justus Haerder, James Keach, Jill Mazursky and Norm Waitt.

Said Cameron Crowe, “I couldn’t be happier that Tom and Michael acquired our film.  I’ve always admired their work. With their extraordinary track record and passion for independent cinema, SPC is the perfect home for our film. We are looking forward to sharing David’s inspiring story with his loyal fans and legions of new ones.”

“It doesn’t get much better than this. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank BMG, David for his candor and generosity of spirit, and I can’t thank Cameron and Vinyl Films enough for their hands-on approach to making this most personal movie sing,” stated A.J. Eaton.   

CAA Media Finance sold the film on behalf of BMG and the filmmakers.


Michael Barker and Tom Bernard serve as co-presidents of Sony Pictures Classics—an autonomous division of Sony Pictures Entertainment they founded with Marcie Bloom in January 1992—which distributes, produces, and acquires independent films from around the world.  Barker and Bernard have released prestigious films that have won 39 Academy Awards® (35 of those at Sony Pictures Classics) and have garnered 169 Academy Award® nominations (151 at Sony Pictures Classics) including Best Picture nominations for CALL ME BY YOUR NAME, WHIPLASH, AMOUR, MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, AN EDUCATION, CAPOTE, HOWARDS END, AND CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON.

BMG is the new model music company founded by Bertelsmann in 2008. Key to its innovative approach is representing the traditionally separate music publishing and recording rights off the same state-of-the-art platform internationally. Over the past four years, BMG’s endeavor into films projects yielded its first feature-length documentary, Bad Reputation, a film on Joan Jett. Additional recent BMG films include The Show’s The Thing, a documentary about the legendary promoters and agents; The Children of The Revolution, a documentary film celebrating the music of T. Rex; and Rudeboy: The Story of Trojan Records, a celebration of the music, history and cultural legacy of the pioneering British record label. Owned by international media, services and education company Bertelsmann, BMG is a multi-platform perspective, integrated technology platform and commitment to help artists maximize their income.


Vinyl Films is Cameron Crowe’s film and music production company. Started in 1996, it includes such feature films as Jerry MaguireAlmost FamousVanilla SkyElizabethtown and the feature documentaries Pearl Jam Twenty and Elton John: The Union. Their specialty vinyl music releases include the never-before-available soundtrack to Hal Ashby’s Harold and Maude. Crowe and his producing partner, Greg Mariotti have a number of upcoming projects in the works, including Crowe’s own next film.

PCH Films, based in Los Angeles, California, is a multimedia company founded by James Keach in 2002. The company develops, produces, and finances feature films, TV and documentaries. Credits include Walk the LineGlen Campbell: I’ll Be Me, Augie, and Turning Point.


Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE's global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution; television production and distribution; home entertainment acquisition and distribution; a global channel network; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of entertainment in more than 142 countries. For additional information, go to 


Courtesy: SundanceTV

Today, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) hosted a special “Women Breaking Barriers: Where Are We Now?” panel at the SundanceTV Headquarters, moderated by HFPA member Elisabeth Sereda. Panelists included accomplished women and men from various fields in the film industry including Jenna Elfman (Golden Globe-winning actress), Cassian Elwes (Award-winning producer, “Mudbound”), Kyra Sedgwick (Golden Globe-winning actress), and Octavia Spencer (Golden Globe-winning actress and producer). Sundance Institute’s Executive Director Keri Putnam and HFPA member Silvia Bizio opened the panel with a brief Q&A followed by an HFPA announcement that the organization will continue to show support to the Sundance Institute’s Women’s programs by donating $50,000. To date, the HFPA has donated $100,000 to this program.

During the discussion, panelists spoke about the progress made in the last year and how to continue the momentum moving forward towards gender parity in the industry. 

Spencer, who has expressed gratitude to Jessica Chastain in the past for making a stand for equal pay, said today, “We need advocates and allies in negotiating.” She continued, “When I was negotiating my deal for Madam C.J., Lebron James had to intervene. We need all of our male counterparts to be in the fight with us.”

Continuing on the topic of men joining the conversation, Elwes spoke about the learning curve in Hollywood and relayed an anecdote from a recent conversation with a lawyer negotiating on behalf of a male co-star during which the lawyer was fighting for his client to make more than his female counterpart. Cassian received a round of applause after explaining that the conversation concluded with Elwes stating,” I have two words for you, man, Time’s Up.”

Sedgwick ended the panel with a message to all women in the entertainment industry.  “Women always have to work harder than men because we’re in a patriarchal system. So, we have to work harder.” Sedgwick added, “If you’re in a woman in power in Hollywood right now and you’re not reaching down and pulling up another woman, you’re f*cking up.”

 For more than 25 years, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has donated over $33 million to entertainment related charities, scholarship programs and humanitarian efforts. Grant recipients of the HFPA fall in four major areas: nurturing the development of young artists in film and television through support for scholarships, fellowships and education; preserving the culture and history of motion pictures by supporting film preservation; promoting cultural exchange and understanding through support for major programs and exhibitions that utilize film to ignite critical dialogue; and supporting special projects, educational and cultural activities connected with the entertainment industry. The HFPA began giving grants as early as 1989 to institutions such as University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), University of Southern California (USC) and the American Cinematheque, which continue to receive support today. The HFPA has created endowments at Los Angeles colleges and universities to help underserved students such as Los Angeles Community College and California State University, Northridge. 

Licensing fees obtained from the Golden Globe Awards® has allowed the HFPA to support over 80 nonprofits focused on these pillars as well as journalistic organizations committed to freedom of speech and organizations that support natural disaster relief and other international and humanitarian crises.  

About the Hollywood Foreign Press Association

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) was founded in 1943 as the Hollywood Foreign Correspondents Association (HFCA) by a group of entertainment journalists representing world media in Hollywood, who realized the need to unite and organize to gain the recognition and access to studios and talent accorded to the domestic press. All qualified journalists were accepted, with the bold goal of “Unity Without Discrimination of Religion or Race.” A year later, the HFCA created the Golden Globe Awards which, to this day, the entire membership selects, votes on and awards every year for outstanding achievements in motion pictures and television. Members of the HFPA represent 56 countries with a combined readership of 250 million in some of the world’s most respected publications. Each year, the organization holds the third most watched awards show on television, the Golden Globe® Awards, which has enabled the organization to donate more than $33 million to 80 entertainment-related charities, scholarship programs and humanitarian efforts over the last 25 years. For more information, please visit and follow us on Twitter (@GoldenGlobes), Instagram (@GoldenGlobes), and Facebook (