NYWIFT Talks with Provincetown Film Society’s Blythe Frank and Lisa Viola

Welcome to NYWIFT Talks, a weekly series to bring updated news and vital information about the impact of COVID-19 on the media and entertainment industry. Industry professionals will be in conversation discussing what you need to know about theatrical releases, digital advances, virtual tools, festival opportunities, production updates and more. 

NYWIFT Talks are free for all to attend.

On this week’s NYWIFT Talks, join us for a conversation with Executive Director of Provincetown Film Society Blythe Frank and Artistic Director Lisa Viola to discuss this year’s Provincetown Film Festival taking place from June 16-25. We will discuss the festival’s shift from in-person to virtual to multidimensional as they take on a hybrid approach this year and how the global pandemic affected the festival.

About the Festival 
Join us for ten days of unflinching cinema at the 23rd Annual Provincetown International Film Festival 2021. This year will be a multi-dimensional festival, with dozens of program offerings, virtual screenings, PFFtalks, outdoor screenings, and VIP experiences exclusive to pass holders. In May we will announce our annual festival honorees: Filmmaker on the Edge, Excellence in Acting, and Next Wave Awards. Choose from live outdoor screenings if you’re in town, or stay in the comfort of your home and enjoy films virtually. All films and events will be reserved in advance with e-tickets and limited seating for a safe and environmentally responsible festival.

This conversation will be moderated by NYWIFT Board Member, Gretchen McGowan.

Date: Thursday, May 27 2021 

Time: 2:00pm EST

Location: Zoom (Links can be found in confirmation email)

Cost to attend: Free




Blythe Frank is an award-winning independent producer based in New York. She holds a Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Producing from Columbia University’s graduate film program, a MA in Comparative Literature from La Sorbonne Nouvelle Paris III and a BA in Comparative Literature and Film Studies from The American University of Paris. Included in her tenure, she has worked in Development with Mike Hausman at Cinehaus, Andy Tennant at Film Buff Productions, as well as the Sundance Lab, and has run production at Flickerlab Studios and Time Inc. She has produced documentaries for PBS, branded content for Adobe, Balfour, Getty Images, and award-winning commercials and PSAs. Throughout the years, she has developed a wide network of financing partners and entities and is extremely well-versed in the art of independent financing structures and methodologies. Her first film, Kettle of Fish starring Matthew Modine and Gina Gershon drew rave reviews at the Tribeca Films Festival prior to its theatrical release. She produced Wild Oats starring Shirley MacLaine and Jessica Lange, and Executive Produced Spinning Gold starring Michele Monaghan and Richard Dreyfus, Swing starring Michael Shannon, Showing Roots starring Elizabeth McGovern, Maggie Grace and Adam Brody, Who Gets the Dog starring Alicia Silverstone, and Rob Reiner’s Being Charlie starring Nick Robinson, Cary Elwes, and Common. She is currently in development on a slate of films, podcast series, a Broadway show, and several interdisciplinary projects in the digital space. She is an Adjunct Professor in the MFA Film Program at Columbia University, a member of NYWIFT, and is a member of the Producer’s Guild of America. 


Lisa Viola is the Artistic Director for the Provincetown International Film Festival and has been affiliated with the festival since its inception in 1999. Lisa also serves as the Director of Programming for the GlobeDocs Film Festival produced by The Boston Globe. Through January 2020, she was a Programming Associate for the Sundance Film Festival and has been programming there since 1992. Lisa graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Communication Arts and has consulted for other film festivals including the Nantucket Film Festival, True/False and served as a documentary juror at SXSW. She lives in Boston with her husband and two children.


Gretchen McGowan (moderator) is an award-winning producer and the Head of Production for Goldcrest Features in New York City where she oversees titles such as CarolMojaveSlumberRestrepoCarrie Pilby and Danger, Close. Gretchen has collaborated with Sebastian Junger on five films and she is now working with Junger and Fisher Stevens on a new film about the Mexican cartels and the caravan. Gretchen independently produced Jim Jarmusch’s The Limits of Control, a Focus Features release and Magnolia Pictures’ American Swing. While Head of Production with Mark Cuban’s HDNet Films, Blow Up Pictures and Open City Films she supervised over 25 features including RedactedEnronBroken EnglishBubbleLovely and Amazing and Coffee and Cigarettes. She line produced The DancemakerBuffalo ’66Two Girls and a GuyAmerican Psycho and Heavy.


May 27 @ 2:00pm
2:00 pm — 3:00 pm (1h)

This program will take place virtually as a webinar via Zoom. Please register in advance, and all registrants will receive a link to attend the webinar the day of the event.

We encourage you to download Zoom in advance.

Free event.



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NYWIFT programs, screenings and events are supported, in part, by grants from New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature.