#SummerHours Series: The NYWIFT #SummerHours blog series by members Mellini Kantayya and Kathryn O’Kane is back again this year with recommendations for your summer reading and watchlist. So far Kathryn has shared her thoughts on past NYWIFT Muse honoree Whoopi Goldberg’s latest book, and Mellini has created a list of bingewatch-worthy comedy picks.
Debra Granik: I saw Debra Granik’s new film Leave No Trace this weekend and it was great. Another example of her amazing talent as a director. She also directed Winter’s Bone, which gave Jennifer Lawrence her start. The same thing is likely to happen to Thomasin McKenzie, who gives a really good performance in the film.
Darya Zhuk: Congratulations to Darya Zhuk, whose debut feature Crystal Swan was selected by Belarus as its submission for the Oscars’ foreign film category. We honored Darya with the NYWIFT Outstanding Female Content Creator Award for her pilot The Real American at the New York Television Festival (NYTVF) back in 2015. We’re proud to say “we knew her when!” Speaking of NYTVF, the festival returns for 2018 this week, July 14-19, having switched from a Fall to a Summer schedule to provide even more opportunities for content creators. Be sure to check it out.
Meet the New NYWIFT Member: Eunice Levis
Welcome to NYWIFT, Eunice Levis! Writer and director Eunice Levis is a first-generation Dominican American from the Bronx, New York. Eunice's work focuses on genre-bending stories that combine her love of horror, sci-fi, thriller, and fantasy, often through a diasporic lens. She seeks to disrupt and challenge dominant narratives around technology, race, gender, history, and diaspora identity by altering the stories we tell about them. Eunice spoke to us about her early inspirations, her latest work, and how genre stories offer a unique opportunity to challenge the status quo.READ MORE
Meet the New NYWIFT Member: Amanda DiMartino
Let’s give a warm welcome to new NYWIFT member Amanda DiMartino! Amanda is a director, producer, and editor committed to audience engagement. Some of her career highlights include collaborations with brands such as Harper’s Bazaar, Peloton, NBCUniversal, SYFY, Complex, KIDZ BOP, The Berlin Film Festival, Standard and Poor’s, and The Hollywood Reporter. Altogether, the 500-plus videos she has worked on have garnered more than one billion clicks and views while generating more than $1 million in revenue. She spoke to us about working with Bad Bunny and Usher, and why exploration is key to success!READ MORE
Meet the New NYWIFT Member: Vanessa Meyer
Welcome to NYWIFT, Vanessa Meyer! Meyer is a filmmaker, programmer, and educator based in Brooklyn, NY. In addition to having earned a Ph.D. in Communications with a specialization in personal storytelling, she has worked at the Brooklyn Horror Film Festival, Kiss Off Entertainment, Reel Love Film Festival and most recently, Women in Film and Television Vancouver (WIFTV). As an artist, she is interested in exploring the complexities of feelings, a theme that has repeatedly appeared in her work. Meyer spoke to us about championing unique voices as a programmer, moving to NYC, and finding light in the darkness.READ MORE
Meet the New NYWIFT Member: Mohana Rajakumar
Welcome to NYWIFT, Mohana Rajakumar! Mohana is a South Asian American scholar, novelist, screenwriter, and stand-up comic whose work regularly explores feminist themes. Some of her most notable literary accomplishments include winning the She Writes New Novelist Award in 2011 for her coming-of-age novel An Unlikely Goddess and the Best Indie Book Award for Romance in 2013 for Love Comes Later. She co-wrote and appeared in the short film Me Against the World, directed by Kali Bailey, which appeared in NYWIFT’s “Women in Film Night” at the 2022 Montauk Film Festival. Mohana has resided in Qatar since 2005. She spoke to us about working across various art forms, her writing process, and the special honor that comes with writing a banned book!READ MORE