York Women in Film & Television includes many powerful, dynamic and diverse
entertainment industry leaders among its membership. As we celebrate our Spring Membership Drive –
with 50% off our initiation fee now through May 15 – we’re spotlighting several members this month.
First up: Annetta Marion. An award-winning
director, Primetime Emmy-nominated producer and current NYWIFT board member, Annetta
Marion’s experience in television and film includes documentary and reality
television, as well as narrative film, commercials, music videos, and internet
content. Marion is currently directing the acclaimed TV series Oprah’s Master Class, profiling entertainment icons
including Tim McGraw, Vanessa Williams, Cicely Tyson, Berry Gordy, and Lenny
Kravitz. She was the showrunner on season three of the series when it was
nominated for a Primetime Emmy, a first for the network. Annetta’s
producing experience includes ESPN’s 30-for-30
feature documentary You Don’t Know Bo,
which earned the highest-ever rating in the network’s history. She’s a
graduate of AFI’s Directing Workshop for Women and a member of both the Director’s
Guild of America and the Producer’s Guild of America.
When did you join NYWIFT? Where were you in your career?
joined NYWIFT in 2006. I had just gotten home after a year in LA at AFI’s Directing
Workshop for Women. I was working as a line producer mostly at that point, but
working hard to transition to working as a director.
Do you feel joining NYWIFT has helped your career? What are the top things you get from being a NYWIFT member?
biggest thing for sure is getting to know the other members. Now that I’m more involved with NYWIFT as a Board member, I think it will help my career and professional development more and more. The best thing you
can do is work on a committee to really get to know other members. I’m currently on the membership committee and I really like what we’re doing. I like the panels
and screenings too.
Where do you see the opportunity for women in the industry today?
Our industry, as well as many others, has a long way to go. Parity is when the average woman can get as far as the average man with the same amount of effort, and we’re totally far from that.
What are your thoughts on all the recent buzz around the dearth of women in front of and behind the camera? How would you shake things up?
I’m glad there’s all this buzz, but I really want something tangible to come from it, not just more lip service. I’d take a play from the NFL’s playbook (haha sports metaphor!) and require the showrunners, networks, etc. to interview women candidates for director spots.
What excites you about the network of women you’ve met?
are so amazing and so accomplished. I’m learning so much.
Can you describe an important NYWIFT moment for you?
around the table at my first Board retreat and thinking “Wow, I’m so stoked to
be a part of this group!”
– EILEEN NEWMAN
Want to join New York Women in Film & Television as we fight for equality in the entertainment industry? Meet and network with amazing members like Annetta? Visit nywift.org/join now through May 15 and take advantage of our special Spring Membership Drive discount.
Welcome to NYWIFT, Melisa Ramos! Melisa is a filmmaker and professor from Puerto Rico, bringing 14 years of post-production and motion graphics experience to New York. Her first production, Puerto Rican Voices, a docu-series about the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. Following Puerto Rican Voices, Melisa continued to share Puerto Rican and Latin American stories. In 2020, she directed and produced From Performers to Spectators, a doc-series showcasing New York City performers during lockdown. She is currently in production on Hoop Warrior, her first feature film. Read all about Melisa’s journey as an editor and artist here!READ MORE
Welcome to NYWIFT, Aisha Amin! Aisha is an NYC-based writer and director. As a director, her work expands across narrative, documentary, and experimental forms to tell authentic stories built from real experiences. Her past film projects have explored and highlighted overlooked communities particularly in New York City, including formerly incarcerated mothers and communities struggling with the presence of gentrification in their neighborhoods. Amongst her directing, Aisha is an emerging screenwriting and was selected to participate in Cine Qua Non’s 2022 Screenwriting Lab. She is a 2022 recipient of NYFA’s Tomorrowland Grant and a 2021 recipient of the NYFA Women's Fund grant. She was a recipient of the 2019-2020 Sally Burns Shenkman Woman Filmmaker Fellowship at the Jacob Burns Film Center where she directed two short documentaries. She is also a recipient of The Shed's Open Call Fellowship where she expanded her film practice to installation art. Aisha spoke to us about her favorite styles of storytelling, the intersection of narrative and documentary, and her latest projects.READ MORE
Welcome to NYWIFT, Lorena R. Valenica! Lorena R. Valencia is a Mexican writer-director based in New York. Her directorial debut and MFA thesis film, Cuanacaquilitl (Dandelion), received the 2022 National Board of Review Student Award and is an Official Selection in several international film festivals, including the Morelia International Film Festival, the Atlanta Film Festival, the New York Latino Film Festival, and the NewFilmmakers Los Angeles Film Festival. Lorena is passionate about both narrative and documentary storytelling and is interested in addressing issues such as reproductive rights, identity, and belonging. Currently, she is directing Mi Ranchito, a documentary short film that explores resilience and love for the land, while she is developing her debut feature film, Mayahuel. Lorena spoke to us about inspiring empathy through storytelling, the overlap of narrative and documentary filmmaking, and her latest projects.READ MORE
Congratulations to NYWIFT Board Member Joyce Pierpoline, Executive Producer of Mediha, which just took home the U.S. Competition Grand Jury Prize at DOC NYC! In this immensely collaborative film, a Yazidi teen once held captive by ISIS takes us into her world of grief, pain, and hope. We spoke to Pierpoline (prior to the exciting win) about her involvement in this important film.READ MORE