NYWIFT member Karen Rodriguez is naturally drawn to projects that align with her values, which made her latest cinematography outing, Deciding Vote, a perfect fit! The film just premiered at the 2023 Tribeca Festival in the Documentary Shorts category, and follows a landmark moment in New York state politics 50 years ago, when assemblyman George Michaels cast a single vote on New York’s abortion bill that changed the course of American history but destroyed his political career in the process. Rodriguez spoke to us about her work on Deciding Vote and what types of projects inspire her creativity.READ MORE
Let’s give a warm NYWIFT welcome to Kayla Sun! Kayla is a LA-based trilingual Asian filmmaker. She earned her B.A. degree for Studio Art and Economics at Vanderbilt University and subsequently worked in the art world before diving into the film world. She earned her M.F.A. for Film and Television Production at University of Southern California, as a Jeffrey Jones Scholar in writing, and is a recipient of the 2020 Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Production Grant for her film The Code of Family (2022). The film also received a NYWIFT Award for Excellence in Short Narrative Directing at last year’s UrbanWorld Film Festival. Kayla spoke to us about her inspirations, love of learning, and why people of all ages should be encouraged to embrace technology.READ MORE
In the 2023 Sundance Film Festival short film Take Me Home, a cognitively disabled woman and her estranged sister must learn to communicate in order to move forward after their mother’s death. It captures of a moment of terror experienced by so many siblings of those with disabilities, when they are suddenly responsible for making a plan for a loved one who cannot live on their own, potentially upending both their lives as they also work through their grief. For writer and director NYWIFT member Liz Sargent, the story hits close to home. And she cast her own mother and younger sister to play versions of themselves. Sargent spoke to us about finding support in her identity as a sibling guardian, beautiful moments working on set with her family, and her joyous Sundance experience.READ MORE
Developed in partnership with Sundance Institute and Founded by Hartbeat CEO Thai Randolph and Head of Film Candice Wilson Cherry, WOMEN WRITE NOW is a comedic writing fellowship designed to champion the next generation of Black women in comedy through mentorship, advocacy, production, and exhibition. Now in its second year, this year’s fellowship brought in three emerging writers, Mayanna Berrin, Kianna Butler Jabangwe, and Danielle Solomon to develop and produce their comedic short scripts under the guidance of some of the most influential Black women in comedy. The resulting projects were then brought into production by Hartbeat studios. Cherry and the writers spoke to us about their experience.READ MORE
Longtime NYWIFT Member Véronique N. Doumbé comes to the 2022 Tribeca Festival as the editor of Carrie Hawks' short film Inner Wound Real, which was supported by Black Public Media. The 15-minute experimental animated short relays the story of three BIPOC folks who self-injure, then find new ways to cope. Doumbé discusses the editing process and what she hopes audiences will take away from this powerful film.READ MORE
NYWIFT member Jen Heck returns to Sundance this year as part of a special retrospective celebrating the 40th anniversary of the festival’s short film program that welcomes back past Sundance projects. Heck wrote and associate produced the comedic short Hold Up, in which a robber is after more than just money during an NYC convenience store hold up. It originally premiered at Sundance in 2006 and has strong ties to the NYWIFT community, as it was directed by member Madeleine Olnek and features Muse Awards host Nancy Giles in one of the three starring roles.
Jen discusses her Sundance experiences both traditional (i.e. sleeping on the floor in Park City) and virtual, as well as her current projects.
Two NYWIFT members have joined forces with a team of immigrant women filmmakers to tell the story of WORK, a short film written and directed by Aoife Williamson. WORK, a comedy-drama, follows Lilith, a musician scrambling to create a song in one day to submit for a job that could sky-rocket her music career. It just so happens that this day is a very busy day at her money job... and it just so happens that her “money job” is as a sex worker, named Eve.READ MORE
In response to Covid-19, NYWIFT member and film festival creator/founder Lukia Costello decided to take advantage of social-distancing by taking her film festival online. MicroMania Film Festival was created to be more than a one-off event and actively participates in amplifying quality independent short filmsREAD MORE
Diversity Wins: The Oscars this weekend proved historic on several fronts: Black Panther costume designer Ruth E. Carter (one of our first Designing Women honorees) and production designer Hannah Beachler became the first African-American women to win in their respective fields; Spike Lee and Alfonso Cuaron took home prizes for writing and directing respectively; women...READ MORE
In the inaugural conversation of NYWIFT’s new series Master Collaborations: The Power of Creative Partnerships on May 23, 2018, director Kahane Cooperman and producer Raphaela Neihausen opened up about how they worked together to create Joe’s Violin – and its road to being nominated for the Academy Awards.READ MORE
NYWIFT member Katrina Medoff spoke with fellow member Gaia Visnar, an actor and producer for the short film The Basis of Intimacy, which was made by a female-driven and largely international crew. They spoke about the power of a silent film and what conversations Visnar hopes to spark with the film.READ MORE
Shorts Festival: NYWIFT’s first-ever online film festival is underway! Watch 74 short projects by NYWIFT members now through November 17 on our Fall Shorts Festival on Indevue – you can even log in and live chat with the filmmakers and fans during select “live screenings.” See the schedule for details. Alias Grace: I’m looking forward...READ MORE
"I want to have representation across different sexualities and different races in my films because that is the world I see when I walk down the streets of New York," says NYWIFT member Heather Taylor. Katrina Medoff sat down with Taylor to talk diversity in filmmaking (both onscreen and off) as her crowdfunding campaign for her horror short Pay to Stay draws to a close.READ MORE
“Knowledge is Something Nobody Can Take Away from You:” Yvonne Ng Discusses her Student Academy Award Win
NYWIFT scholarship recipient Yvonne Ng, a Singaporean immigrant who came to the U.S. to study photography, discusses inspiring women, her powerful short film Cloud Kumo, and her Student Academy Award win.READ MORE