Members in the News

Below are just a few of the most recent accomplishments of our talented members! If you want to join this dynamic community, we hope you will consider applying for NYWIFT membership.

NYWIFT members, do you have an upcoming screening, event, campaign or other news to share? Tell us! Contact communications@nywift.org.

 

Move When the Spirit Says Move: The Legacy of Dorothy Foreman Cotton, a film from NYWIFT Member Deborah C. Hoard, will have its world premiere at the Pan African Film Festival in LA. Dorothy Foreman Cotton was a bold and highly effective civil rights leader, who educated thousands in their citizenship rights and inspired generations of activists with her powerful freedom songs. The only woman on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s executive staff, Dorothy was a charismatic, courageous and consistently overlooked key player in the Civil Rights Movement, whose freedom schools, freedom songs and inspiring messages of the power within us all are profoundly needed today. Learn more.


 

Honoring Eric Bentley: A Centennial Tribute Concert, produced by NYWIFT Member Karyn Levitt, will screen at New Plaza Cinema at Macaulay Honors College. Eric Bentley is one of the most respected theater critics, playwrights, editors and translators of our time. For his 100th birthday, a galaxy of stars honored him at Broadway’s legendary Town Hall. This unique film captures their tributes highlighting Bentley’s influential contributions which changed how theater is understood and performed. The historic evening featured the participation of Tony Kushner, Austin Pendleton, Harold Bloom, James Shapiro, Edward Mendelson, Phillip Lopate, Louise Kerz Hirschfeld, Michael Paller, and Roger Copeland, and was emceed by Michael Riedel. The film will screen Jan 28 at 12:30pm ET. Actor, director, and playwright Austin Pendleton and filmmaker Karyn Levitt will lead an audience discussion about Eric Bentley’s last influence, following the screening. Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

Remember This will be screening at The Quad in NYC and Laemmle Theaters in Santa Monica. In a virtuoso solo performance, Academy Award-nominee David Strathairn portrays Jan Karski in Remember This, a genre-defying true story of a reluctant World War II hero and Holocaust witness. After surviving the devastation of the Blitzkrieg, Karski swears allegiance to the Polish Underground and risks his life to carry eyewitness reports of war-torn Poland to the Western world, and ultimately, the Oval Office. Escaping a Gestapo prison, bearing witness to the despair of the Warsaw ghetto and confronted by the inhumanity, Karski endures unspeakable mental anguish and physical torture to stand tall in the halls of power and speak the truth. NYWIFT Advisory Board member Harlene Freezer, is the Co-Executive Producer and NYWIFT member Beth Levison is the Consulting Producer.

The film will screen at The Quad in NYC beginning Jan 27. Learn more and purchase tickets.
The film will screen at Laemmle Theaters in Santa Monica beginning Feb 3. Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

NYWIFT Member Lisa Romagnoli‘s short film How To Open A Clam, is now streaming online. The film, after completing its 2021-22 festival run, during which it played at the Woods Hole Film Festival, the Coney Island Film Festival, the New Faces New Voices Festival, and was a semi-finalist in the Rhode Island International Film Festival is on Vimeo. This comedic drama is about a young man (Adam) and his two friends, who are on a weekend beach trip at Adam’s family house. But after a clamming expedition, Adam becomes frustrated by his inability to open a clam, and his growing obsession threatens to destroy friendships. Watch now.


 

Jim Arnoff (NYWIFT Member, career coach, talent agent, consultant) will lead the upcoming course Pitch Your Scripted Television Series to the Industry Experts at School of Visual Arts. Participants will receive amazing access to industry pros (networks, production companies, showrunners), and will learn the ins and and outs of packaging, networking, pitching and negotiating your television series. Be part of a television community for networking, support and resourcing. The weekly 10 part course will be held on-line, on Wednesday nights from 7:30-9:30pm ET. The course begins Feb 1Learn more


 

Dancing Without Steps: The Art of Improvisation with Margaret Beals, a new short documentary from NYWIFT Member Adriana Davis (director, editor, producer) has been selected into 13 separate festivals and received a Special Recognition Award at the Best Shorts Festival of La Jolla California. Learn more.

Join acclaimed dance innovator, Margaret Beals, in her exploration of the art of improvisation. In this short documentary, Ms. Beals demonstrates the power and authenticity of improvisation as performance and also as a tool of discovery for any creative endeavor. Throughout Dancing Without Steps, audiences are offered glimpses of Ms. Beals’ extensive career in improvisational dance. One of the first solo dancers to perform whole concerts without steps, she started her early career in the free-wheeling atmosphere of the 1960’s club and cabaret scene and continued her pioneering journey through five more decades. Learn more about the film.


Director Kareemah Muhammad is crowdfunding for their film The Text. The Text follows Tanya, an aspiring DJ who returns home in celebration of her best friend’s engagement party, only to find herself asking will she stay in her tumultuous relationship or chase her own path. The film finishing fund campaign was created to complete the entire film and educate audiences, particularly young women ages 16 – 22 about the red flags that occur in abusive relationships. Film funds will go towards:

  • Hosting workshops at high schools, colleges and universities to address the red flags, the cycle of abuse and power and control within intimate partner relationships
  • Composing music for the film with independent artists 
  • Completing the edit of the film 
  • Hosting film screenings in local communities and for local organizations

The deadline to donate is Jan 18. Learn more and donate.


 

Honey & Hemlock Productions, co-founded by NYWIFT Member Shanna Riker, presents the Honey Writes Short Screenplay Competition. Honey Writes provides unique opportunities for screenwriters. By submitting a script to the competition categories, screenwriters have the opportunity to win the grand prize – having the winning script produced by Honey & Hemlock Productions! That’s right. Honey & Hemlock Productions will produce the winning script from this competition and it will be directed by one of their Co-Founders. The deadline to submit is March 15. Learn more and submit.


 

NYWIFT Member Marilyn Horowitz, together with PANO (formerly NYC Women Filmmakers), a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting filmmakers, announces The Marilyn Horowitz / PANO Screenwriting Award. This award is intended to support a promising Woman, or Non-binary screenwriter with a strong original voice to reach the next level. The recipient will receive a $5000 unrestricted cash prize that will propel the writer forward in their craft and career. The deadline to submit is Jan 31. Learn more and submit.


 

A new episode of the podcast First Online with Fran, hosted by NYWIFT member Fran McGarry, is now streaming. In the new episode, “Janet Stilson: Shiny Objects Exposed”, Fran sits down with fellow NYWIFT Member, journalist and writer Janet Stilson, to discuss Janet’s novel The Juice. Listen now.


Director Paulina Davis has recently been selected as a 2022-2024 Firelight Media Documentary Lab fellow for her inaugural project, The Co-op: The Kids of Dorie Miller. The documentary tells the story of a New Yorker exploring her family’s roots in New York City’s first unsegregated housing co-op, finding and examining an old solution to the current affordable housing crisis. NYWIFT Members Joanna Rudolph and Jesse Ash are producers on the film. Learn moreThe Co-op: The Kids of Dorie Miller is a NYWIFT fiscally sponsored project!


 

NYWIFT Member Nancy Cohen (Koan) has officially launched Climate ChangeTheatR on TikTok. The social media account is a musical puppet show, a bit irreverent with an eye on bringing attention to environmental issues in an entertainingly informative way. Follow them on TikTok and Instagram.


 

Goddesses Visit the Material World by NYFA NFT awardee Courtney Harmel

NYWIFT Member Courtney Harmel is featured in NYFA’s Demystifing NFT’s Exhibit. The 30 exhibiting artists are recipients of the NYFA NFT Award, which is part of Demystifying NFTs, a workshop series and award program where artists, performers, writers, and cultural workers are given the tools and knowledge to both understand and create NFTs. The program, which was designed for beginners in the crypto space and anyone curious about minting NFTs, aims to expand the conversation around NFTs in a meaningful way while opening up new revenue possibilities for artists of all disciplines. The exhibit will run at Voxel’s Metaverse at the BRIDGE ++ space from Dec 15-31, and at the ChaShaMah’s 266 West 37th Street presentation space. Learn more.

NYWIFT Member Kristin Reiber Harris is the recipient of a grant from the New York State Council on the Arts. The grant will fund Reiber Harris’s Life’s in the Balance – a series of drawings documenting various ecosystems in a New York City Park. These new drawings will be a continuation of the body of work she has created for over 50 years to celebrate and explore the interdependence of all life, all in the context of sacred geometry. Reiber Harris has her work available for purchase on Amazon and Artsy. Learn more.


 

Two Sisters Media (Co-President NYWIFT Member Oriana Cyprus) is bringing a preview performance of Shareen Mitchell’s play, Who Are You, to The AMT Theatre in NYC. Shareen Mitchell delivers a witty and insightful autobiographical tale of redemption: part slam poetry, mini musical, and Ted Talk. Running time 90 minutes, with a small reception to follow the performance. The performance will take place on Jan 9 at 6pm ET. Learn more and RSVP.


Laps of Honor, a film from NYWIFT member Katja Haecker, has won the award for best documentary short at the Grand Motoring Festival in South Carolina/Hilton Head Island. The film is an intimate and emotional portrait of Herbert Engel, his spirit and life-story, which is driven by his passion for cars and racing.


NYWIFT Member Priscilla J. “Sally” Mattison, Of Counsel to Bernard M. Resnick, Esq., P.C., spoke on the “State of the Industry” panel at Lebanon Valley College’s 18th VALE Media Industry Conference.  She previously participated in the Entertainment and Sports Law Panel held as part of the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School’s Pre-College Academy.


How My Grandmother Won WWII, a 6-part podcast series from NYWIFT Member Enid Zentelis, is now streaming everywhere you find podcasts. A granddaughter’s journey to discover the truth about her Hungarian Jewish grandmother’s covert work for the British Special Operations during WWII. What does it look like when fascism turns your country upside down?  How do you fight bigotry and hatred when hopelessness and apathy have set in? Learn more and listen now.


 

Darwin Fick will screen at the Museum of the Moving Image as part of the Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival. When a famous author develops writer’s block, an unusual option arises. The short film was co-produced by and stars NYWIFT Members Eve Austin and Kristin Samuelson. The screening will take place Dec 16 at 8pm ET. Learn more and purchase tickets. Enter code PKD2022 for discount.


 

A special screening of Hidden Letters will take place at The Quad Cinema. Spanning between past and present, Hidden Letters follows two millennial Chinese women connected by their fascination with the secret language of Nushu. This centuries-old hidden language bonded generations of Chinese women in a clandestine support system of sisterhood, hope and survival. Influenced by Nushu’s legacy of female solidarity, the two women struggle to find balance as they forge their own paths in a patriarchal culture. The film will screen at the Quad Cinema on Tuesday, Dec 13 at 7:15pm ET. A special Q&A featuring director Violet Du Feng, and moderated by NYWIFT Senior Director of Community & Public Relations, Katie Chambers, will follow the screening. Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

When Love Hurts, directed and co-produced by NYWIFT Member Patience Okhuofu, will screen at CityPlex Cinema in Newark, NJ. When Love Hurts is a story that was inspired by the issues of immigration, child abuse, domestic violence, mental health, and trauma that plague our community. The screening will take place Dec 10. The event will begin with a red carpet at 7pm, followed by the screening of the film at 8pm prompt. After, there will be a Q&A session, ending with a brief video interview.  Learn more and purchase tickets.


The well-known, hilarious musical-comedy sister duo, Vickie & Nickie, are back live and in person this holiday season! Vickie & Nickie’s Holiday Sleigh Ride starring NYWIFT member Lisa Brigantino and her sister Lori, pulls into The Cutting Room, NYC. During this celebration of the holiday season “Minnesota-style,” the multi-instrumental, singing housewife sisters will entertain you with favorite holiday tunes and original songs, improv, social commentary, audience participation, plus lots of holiday hoopla! The fast talking Midwestern moms will get you in the holiday spirit all while accompanying themselves on many different instruments including acoustic and electric guitars, keyboard, accordion, saxophone, ukuleles, percussion and more. The event will be held Dec 10 at 6pm ET. Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

Dancing Without Steps: The Art of Improvisation with Margaret Beals, a new short documentary from NYWIFT Member Adriana Davis (director, editor, producer) has been accepted to the San Diego Art Film Festival and Vegas Shorts Film Festival. Join acclaimed dance innovator, Margaret Beals, in her exploration of the art of improvisation. In this short documentary, Ms. Beals demonstrates the power and authenticity of improvisation as performance and also as a tool of discovery for any creative endeavor. Throughout Dancing Without Steps, audiences are offered glimpses of Ms. Beals’ extensive career in improvisational dance. One of the first solo dancers to perform whole concerts without steps, she started her early career in the free-wheeling atmosphere of the 1960’s club and cabaret scene and continued her pioneering journey through five more decades. Learn more about the film.


A brand-new, special episode of podcast I Was Never There is available to stream! In this series, take a trip into the countercultural movements swirling through West Virginia in the 1970s and 80s. NYWIFT Advisory Board President Jamie Zelermyer and her mother Karen investigate the shocking disappearance of their friend Marsha “Mudd” Ferber and explore her evolution from suburban housewife to back-to-the-land hippie to drug-dealing bar owner. As mother and daughter venture deeper into the mystery of Marsha’s disappearance, the two process their own history: Jamie reflects on her nontraditional upbringing and Karen reckons with the joyful and complicated consequences of her decisions. Listen now.


 

Nkosi Eclipseda short documentary from NYWIFT Members Candice Delevante and Tamara Daley, is now available to stream via PZAZ.TV. The documentary follows the saga of Nkosi Gray-El, and his journey before, throughout, and after incarceration. By rediscovering an early childhood practice, Nkosi uses yoga to help his fellow inmates endure intense physical, mental, and emotional suffering behind bars. Learn more.


 

NYWIFT member Monique Hazeur and award-winning writer Tyler Young are co-producing the comedic short film Dying Laughing, and are currently crowdfunding! Death has a funny way of bringing people together… Dying Laughing is about a struggling standup comedian, in trouble with the feds, who moves back to her small town and takes a job at her father’s mortuary to save enough money to flee the country. Grammy winner Burt Blackarach and Grammy-nominated Demonte Posey are also on board as music supervisor and composer. Learn more and donate.


 

The White Blacks, featuring NYWIFT Member Marsha Ann Hay, will run at Theater for the New City. In 1970s New Orleans, a Black “Creole” family is torn apart by members who ‘pass for white’ while others build Black Power and the matriarch clings to racial ideals that are fading fast. Inspired by the playwright’s own family, the story offers an insider’s look at the common but largely untold story of Southern Creoles’— a culture proud of its Black heritage but plagued with grief over those “passing” to flee racism and achieve status and opportunity. Love lives long here in the gumbo of acerbic wit, romance and pain, abandonment and longing, hiding, personal authenticity and the complexities of coming home. The play will run Nov 10-27. Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

NYWIFT Member Kristin Reiber Harris has launched a series of coloring books called Discover Nature in the City. Kristin has had a long career of creating art and animation celebrating the natural world. She invites us to become careful observers of the genius of mother nature and to honor our connections. A recent transplant to NYC, she has created a series of four coloring books about nature in the city available on Amazon. Learn more and purchase.


 

Around the Sun Podcast, co-produced by NYWIFT member Suzanne Ordas Curry, is available to stream. Looking for something new to listen to? How about a series of fun, engaging and thought-provoking short stories? Around the Sun Podcast, the popular podcast series is back for a second season starting October 2022 with new episodes throughout the fall. It stars iconic and well-known actors from stage and screen. Created by Brad Forenza and presented via the Broadway Podcast Network, you’ll hear fictional stories (under 10 minutes) about love, relationships, coming of age, identity, retirement, life choices, sustainability, and even a few aliens. Learn more and listen.


 

Woodstock: A Snapshot in Time, directed by NYWIFT Member Nancy Cohen (Koan) will premiere as part of the Psychedelic Film and Music FestivalWoodstock: A Snapshot in Time is a new cinema verite film about Woodstock, love, and the power of the flower! The original Woodstock in 1969 was always more than just a music festival but an event that helped to give a generation its identity. Consequently, both the film it spawned and its soundtrack have become instant classics. So it was really only a matter of time until the entertainment industry would pick up on that success. Of course, the world has turned quite a bit since 1969, and the chances of the new, corporate-run Woodstock music festival to be as iconic for its generation as the earlier one was were slim from the get-go. Filmmakers Nancy Cohen and Andy Lee have set out to capture the mindset of this new flock of concert-goers, also in relation to audiences of the original Woodstock, and get and transmit a feel of the new Woodstock-spirit. The film will screen Nov 19 at 3pm ET. Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

Desperate Souls, from NYWIFT Member Nancy Buirski, is screening as part of Hamptons Doc Fest, co-presented by NYWIFT. This is not a documentary about the making of Midnight Cowboy. It is about New York in a troubled era of cultural upheaval. The 1969 movie tells the story of two homeless loners brilliantly played by Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman, who join forces out of desperation and struggle to survive. Midnight Cowboy is set in a New York besieged by economic collapse in the midst of black, gay and women’s liberation movements. This documentary looks at why this unique movie resonates so powerfully more than fifty years later. The film will screen Dec 3 at 4pm ET at Sag Harbor Cinema. Nancy along with Producer, and NYWIFT Member Susan Margolin, will be in attendance for the Q&A. Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

Memorias de Mi Familia, a documentary by NYWIFT Member Melissa Montero, will be screen as part of the International Puerto Rican Heritage Festival. The film is a personal documentary where Montero explores the meaning of “home”, through her family’s story of multiple migrations between Puerto Rico and the United States. The screening will take place Nov 10 at 8pm ET at Julia de Burgos Latino Cultural Center. Learn more.


 

Japan Society presents Panel Discussion: Women in Film. This unique discussion focuses on the advancement and increased visibility of female filmmakers in a global context as well as in both the U.S. and Japanese film industries. The panel will feature former NYWIFT Board Member S. Casper Wong. The panel will take place Nov 19 at 4pm ET. Learn more and register.


 

The filmmakers behind Luke and Emma and a Gas Station on Franklin Ave are crowdfunding via Seed&Spark. The film focuses on a young boy being raised in 1980s small Midwest town America by his Thai immigrant mother. He faces the prejudices of the community as he meets with a girl he has a crush on while his mother shops in the mini-mart. Luke and Emma and a Gas Station on Franklin Ave is produced by NYWIFT Member Lisa Hammer, and is a NYWIFT fiscally sponsored project! The deadline to donate is Nov 13. Learn more and donate.


 

Monk Arsenije, directed by NYWIFT Svetlana Cemin, is streaming on Prime Video UK. Monk Arsenije, once a Belgradian cult figure from the ’80s who has been living as a monk for the past 30 years, is engaged in restoring and creating a spiritual and cultural center in the Monastery of Ribnica, central Serbia. Watch the film now. Svetlana was recently interviewed about the film at the Swedish International Film Festival. Listen nowAdam Fuss: A Landscape of Imagination, another film directed by Svetlana, is currently available to stream on Prime Video in both the UK and US!


 

A Tree of Life: The Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting, a documentary produced by NYWIFT Member Susan Margolin, is now streaming on HBO Max. The film, an HBO original documentary from Emmy-winning director Trish Adlesic and executive producers Michael Keaton, Billy Porter, and Mark Cuban, and featuring an original song by Idina Menzel, premiered Oct 26 on HBOMax. On October 27th, 2018, a gunman opened fire inside a Pittsburgh synagogue, killing eleven people as they prayed, in what would become the deadliest antisemitic attack in American history. A Tree of Life: The Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting is a deeply personal portrait of the survivors, victims and family members, who share their harrowing first-hand accounts of the impact of the shooting on the community. The film is rooted in a community in the aftermath of a violent attack, as they work to rebuild and heal. Learn more.


 

The Greenwich Village Film Festival is back at the Quad Cinema for its 8th Edition. The festival showcases short films from all over the world. Founded by NYWIFT member Alessia Gatti, GVFF is offering  a discount code to all NYWIFT members. Each screening is followed by a Q&A with the filmmakers and an after party at the Quad Cinema Bar. The festival will run Nov 7-10. Learn more and purchase tickets. Enter code NYWIFT15 for discount.


When Love Hurts, directed and co-produced by NYWIFT Member Patience Okhuofu, will screen at CityPlex Cinema in Newark, NJ. When Love Hurts is a story that was inspired by the issues of immigration, child abuse, domestic violence, mental health, and trauma that plague our community. The screening will take place Nov 3. The event will begin with a red carpet at 6pm, followed by the screening of the film at 7pm prompt. After, there will be a Q&A session, ending with a brief video interview. Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

NYWIFT Member Stefanie Dworkin will instruct The Art and Practice of Video for Beginners at the International Center for Photography. It’s an excellent opportunity to make something of that footage you shot during lockdown or start afresh with a new project! Learn the fundamentals of storytelling within the creative sphere of digital video and finish up with a personal short project of your own. The course will cover the basics of shooting video with DSLR or mirrorless cameras, storytelling, lighting, capturing sound, and editing with Adobe Premiere Pro. The course will run Nov 12-13 & Nov 19-20. Learn more.


 

In Fidelity, a feature film executive produced by and starring NYWIFT Member Eve Austin, has cast Chris Parnell, Cara Buono, Dennis Haysbert in lead roles. Rob Margolies’ New York-set film follows a happily married husband who permits his terminally ill wife to sleep with their rock star neighbor. Read the Hollywood Reporter article


Black Public Media presents their new short film series Be Heard: I Am Who I Say I Am. Commemorate LGBTQ History Month by watching the 3 part mini-series which explores stories around gender identity and affirmation. Whether you’re new to understanding the nuances of gender identity or have been advocating gender affirmation for years, check out BPM’s new short film series celebrating three feel-good stories of gender affirmation. The series is one of many BPM programs leading up to Transgender Awareness Week. Watch now on YouTube. NYWIFT Board President Leslie Fields-Cruz is BPM’s Executive Director. 


 

Tickets are on sale for the Ecuadorian Film Festival in New York! EFFNY is the renowned international film festival outside of Ecuador, and the only one in the United States, bringing together Ecuadorian filmmakers in various genres, including feature-length narratives, documentaries and shorts. Its mission is to open a window into this diverse country and inspire people to have meaningful conversations while celebrating Ecuador and cinema. With every edition, the festival’s audience of Ecuadorian and non-Ecuadorian cinephiles and Ecuador lovers from the NYC-Tristate area continues to expand. EFFNY is produced by NYWIFT Member Giovanna Aguilar and is a NYWIFT fiscally sponsored project! The festival is will run Oct 29-Nov 6. Learn more and purchase tickets.


Kin Ya See That Sun, a new album and book by Terre Roche and co-produced by NYWIFT member Lisa Brigantino, will be released on Oct 21. The album contains mostly live recordings of Terre and her sister Maggie Roche (who passed in 2017) performing many songs that first appeared on their debut duo album, Seductive Reasoning, as well as some songs that have never before been released. Lisa, and others will be performing with Terre at their sold out City Winery show in NYC on Oct 18 to celebrate the release. Learn more and purchase tickets for the livestream.


 

NYWIFT Member Jean Criss was recently interviewed for The Burn Podcast. Each week, April Stearns and the writers of Wildfire Magazine share their experiences of being diagnosed with breast cancer under 50. The Burn is about telling cancer stories like you’ve never read, or heard, before. Jean Criss is an author, digital media entrepreneur, festival and multimedia producer, tech innovator, post-surgical fashion designer, and a certified bra fitter. She was diagnosed with both Stage 0 and Stage 1 ductal breast cancer in her mid-40s. Since treatment, 15 years ago, Jean has had no evidence of disease. Today she reads her piece “My Million Dollar Boobs Led to a Million Words” from Wildfire Magazine’s 2022 “Money and Cancer” issue. April and Jean discuss transforming from patient to owning your own voice by sharing your story, advice for people who don’t consider themselves writers, and Jean’s entrepreneurial work turning pain into purpose by creating a line of post breast surgery bras. Learn more and listen now. 


Join the Bronx Documentary Center for the opening event of the 8th Annual Women’s Film Series and a screening of Endangered by Rachel Grady and NYWIFT Member Heidi Ewing. Endangered chronicles a year in the life of four journalists living and working in democratic countries where freedom of the press has historically been considered a “given.” Yet, as online misinformation proliferates and world leaders brazenly denigrate the press, distrust of traditional media is on the rise, and journalists are increasingly facing situations more typically encountered in war zones or autocratic states. Post-screening conversation with producer, Andalusia K. Soloff, and the Mexican Journalist and coordinator of the journalist organization Frontline Freelance Mexico, Analy Nuño. The film will screen Oct 7. Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

Battleground will open in select theaters Oct 7Battleground is an urgently timely window into the intersection of abortion and politics in America, following three women who lead formidable anti-abortion organizations to witness the enormous influence they wield. As the nation faces the end of Roe, the film also depicts those on the front lines of the fierce fight to maintain access. NYWIFT members involved include Executive Producer Ruth Ann Harnisch, Co-Producer Steffie van Rhee and Consulting Producer Eliza Licht. Steffie Van Rhee will be featured in a Q&A following a screening at Village East by Angelika on Oct 12. Learn more and purchase tickets. Learn more about other dates and theaters.


 

New York Film Festival will host Free Talk: Inclusive Visions. As the pandemic has reshaped (and continues to reshape) the collective film-viewing experience, it has also brought to the fore questions and conversations about cinema’s accessibility, particularly to diversely-abled audiences. How can we ensure that the audiovisual pleasures of movie-going can be enjoyed and appreciated by cinephiles from visually and hearing-impaired communities? Taking audio description practices and the experiences of blind and low-vision consumers as a case study, this panel will bring together advocates, cinephiles, filmmakers, and post-production technicians to examine the tools and structures that can allow for a more democratic and inclusive film culture. The event is co-organized and will be hosted by NYWIFT Member Michele Spitz. The free event will be held on Oct 13. Learn more.


 

Mercedes and Zaruhi, a play performed by NYWIFT Member Nora Armani, will run as part of the 2022 United Solo Theatre Festival. A monodrama about the repatriations to the Soviet Union in the late 1940s, Mercedes and Zaruhi is a play told by Zaruhi, the younger of two sisters brought up in Greece with the love of their homeland in their hearts and the possible return home constantly on their minds. Based on true events, the play represents an important page in Soviet History that is rarely discussed. The play will run Nov 6 at 7pm ET. Learn more and purchase tickets.

 


 

Bethune: Our Black Velvet Rose, written by and starring NYWIFT Member Richarda Abrams, will run at Theaterlab in New York City. The life of civil rights activists Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune will be brought to life in Richarda Abrams’ new play. Born in 1875 to former slaves, Bethune was denied the right to read as a young girl in the segregated Jim Crow South but she persevered and became a world-renowned educator, and a champion of civil rights and racial and gender equality. The production will run Oct 7-23. Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

The Redeemer will screen as part of the 2022 SoHo International Film Festival. After her husband is brutally murdered, a young and newly pregnant homesteader and her Native American mother in law must fight for survival after being kidnapped by a gang of violent outlaws. Meanwhile, a washed up war hero and his estranged son embark on a rescue mission into the frontier to save them. But the horrors and dangers of the Wild West, and the Father’s troubled past keeps catching up to them. Leaving the two women to fend for themselves in an epic story of survival, revenge, and redemption in the Wild, Wild West. This movie is dedicated to and made in honor for all the Indigenous women of this country, who are more likely to go missing or be murdered than any other ethnicity in this country. Missing but not forgotten. NYWIFT Member Diane Bradshaw of Bradshaw Law Group P.C. served as Production Legal on the film. The film will screen Oct 6 at 6pm ET. Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

NYWIFT Member Alexandra Engelson (producer) is crowdfunding for her upcoming film, Color of Autumn. The film is an adaptation of a short story inspired by true events of writer Constance Nicole Jackson’s first encounter to racism in 1966 Chicago. The film will begin principal photography in November. The deadline to donate is Dec 31Learn more and donate.


 

The Fall, a play written by NYWIFT Member Desirée Rucker, will run at the 2022 Brownstone Steps Entertainment Play Festival. The play tells the story of two sisters who have taken two different paths in life, and are forced to reconcile after their mother’s death.  Does forgiveness come with a price? The play will run Oct 1-2. Learn more and purchase tickets


Hell of a Cruise, produced by NYWIFT Board Member Gretchen McGowan, is streaming on Peacock. The documentary feature tells the harrowing tale of a cursed cruise ship in the early days of COVID-19, from frightened passengers and an oppressed crew to venal corporate powerbrokers and hapless government officials. Watch now.


 

Four Winters, produced by NYWIFT member Andrea Miller, is screening at Film Forum in New York. “All I owned was a rifle, a leopard coat and my camera,” says Faye Schulman, whose clandestine photographs of Jewish partisans living in the forests of Eastern Europe documented their efforts to disrupt the Nazi killing machine by blowing up bridges, derailing trains, and smuggling Jews. Some of the last surviving partisans tell stories of cold, hunger, and fear, but also of their capacity for courage, altruism, resourcefulness, and barbarism. Maybe you think you’ve heard it all before. You haven’t. The film will screen through Sept 29. Learn more and purchase tickets.


NYWIFT Member Katja Haecker’s film Laps of Honor has been nominated for best documentary short at the International Motor Film Awards in London. The film is an intimate and emotional portrait of Herbert Engel, whose life is entirely driven by his passion for cars and racing. Katja plans to adapt the short to mini-series or series – interviewing and documenting men and women over the age of 70 whose life is full of passion for cars. The awards will take place Sept 21 in London. Learn more.


 

I Am Not OK, a short film from NYWIFT member Gabrielle Lansner, will premiere at the Lady Filmmakers Film Festival. In this experimental dance documentary, a mother and son respond to the unending killings of Black Americans amidst the backdrop of the protests that followed the death of George Floyd. The film will screen Sept 23 at 12:15pm at the Fine Arts Theatre in Beverly Hills. The filmmaker will be in attendance. Learn more and register.


 

NYWIFT Member Nancy Cohen recently won Best Documentary Director the Newark Film Fest for her film Woodstock: A Snapshot in Time. The film is a new cinema verite piece about Woodstock, love, and the power of the flower! The film features a fine compilation of unfiltered interviews from back in the day that are fortunately left untouched by hindsight from almost 30 years later and that thus serve as a nice document of a different time. 


NYWIFT Member Gillian Fritzsche (producer, director) is raising post-production funds for the short documentary Reopening. In June 2020, during the NY Pause order, the filmmakers spoke with small business owners in Bay Ridge who were in the process of reopening. They heard stories of hope, creativity, and radical generosity. There has been so much loss due to the pandemic. These positive stories should be shared! The project is currently 79% funded and needs only 1% more to greenlight. The deadline to donate is Sep 10 at 3pm ET. Learn more and donate.

 


 

NYWIFT Member Debra Markowitz will be holding a screening and fundraiser for her new series Couple of Guys. In this later-in-life romantic story, a quiet workaholic, attorney Richard Durant  comes out in his fifties and falls in love with heartthrob and former rocker, Jon Graham  They navigate the reality that Richard is ready to start living fully after having raised his children, and Jon is finally ready to settle down and have a family. The story revolves around each man as he steps outside of his comfort zone and interconnects with Richard’s ex-wife, his children, Jon’s groupies and situations that swell within each of their respective professions. Couple of Guys is a half-hour comedy/drama about living authentically, second chances, and falling in love. The fundraiser and screening will be held on Sept 19 at 7:30pm ET in Bellmore, NY – Bellmore Movies & The Showplace, 222 Pettit Avenue, Bellmore, NY. Learn more


The Only Woman In The World, by NYWIFT Member Debra Markowitz, is now available on Amazon Prime Video. The film follows an up-and-coming film director who is torn between forgiving the lover who broke her heart and risking it all for her leading man. Watch now


 

Woodstock: A Snapshot in Time, a film from NYWIFT Member Nancy Cohen, will screen online and in-person as part of Newark Film Fest. The film is a new cinema verite piece about Woodstock, love, and the power of the flower! The film features a fine compilation of unfiltered interviews from back in the day that are fortunately left untouched by hindsight from almost 30 years later and that thus serve as a nice document of a different time. Attend the in-person screening on Sept 10 during the 2pm block (learn more) or download app and watch from home (watch virtually.)


 

UnReined, a new documentary from NYWIFT Member Marcia Rock, aired on WLIW on Aug 24. Nancy Zeitlin, born an American Jew, moves to Israel as a child. As she rises to become an Olympic-level equestrian, the upheaval in her family – and in her adopted country – sees her do the unthinkable: become a trainer to Palestinians in the West Bank. Then, as Israel is rocked by internal strife and the Second Intifada, Nancy puts her own life at risk to keep hope alive for her Palestinian team.  Her many layered story rides parallel with the growth of the State of Israel, its wars, changing borders and internal conflicts. 


From first-time filmmaker and New Orleans native Edward Buckles, Jr., Katrina Babies offers an intimate look at the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and its impact on the youth of New Orleans. NYWIFT Board Member Audrey Rosenberg produced the Tribeca Festival award-winning film, which is now available to watch on HBO Max

Sixteen years after Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, an entire generation still grapples with the lifelong impact of having their childhood redefined by tragedy. New Orleans filmmaker Edward Buckles Jr., who was 13 years old during Katrina and its initial aftermath, spent seven years documenting the stories of his peers who survived the storm as children, using his community’s tradition of oral storytelling to open a door for healing and to capture the strength and spirit of his city. Katrina Babies details the close-knit families and vibrant communities of New Orleans whose lives were uprooted by the 2005 disaster. These American children who were airlifted out of the rising waters, evacuated from their homes to refugee-like centers, or placed in makeshift, temporary living situations, have been neglected. As families were tasked with reintegrating into new communities, having experienced loss, displacement, and lack of support from government officials, the children were left to process their trauma in a wounded, fractured city.


 

Dreamer’s Journey, by NYWIFT Member Arlette Thomas-Fletcher, is now published on Amazon. A child’s dream is a wonderful imaginative and exciting thing! Sometimes dreams take them places that we cannot imagine ourselves. We teach them that they can be anything they dream of in life. Why can’t they? Start them on the path to their future in a fun and exciting way! Let them dream and be motivated about their future by reading and using the Dreamers Journey – a fun exciting way to learn and plan for a child’s future. Arlette said that her writing process was able to benefit from the community feedback and assistance she received in the NYWIFT New Works Lab! Learn more and purchase.


 

NYWIFT members Cristina Doikos (producer), Tiffany Hodges (writer), and Amy Leland (director) of FairSay Films are in pre-production and are raising funds for their the short film, Displaced. Inspired by true events, the narrative explores the dehumanization of America’s immigration system. It follows volunteers that accompany undocumented immigrants to their court and ICE appearances. Learn more and donate. All donations are tax-deductible. Displaced is also a NYWIFT fiscally sponsored film!

 


Two new episodes of the podcast First Online with Fran, hosted by NYWIFT member Fran McGarry, are now streaming:

“Joan Kane: Speaking Truth” – listen now.
“Emma Palzere-Rae: Raising Representation Awareness” – listen now.

Both episodes focus on theatre, how it heals, and covers issues of creativity and find one’s voice through the medium. If you would like to be interviewed for the podcast, contact Fran.

 


 

The Hunchback of Notre Dame, the musical composed by John Taylor Thomas, will have an Off-Broadway run at the 30th Street Theatre. Bradshaw Law Group P.C., and NYWIFT Member Diane Bradshaw, serves as Legal Counsel for the show. Bradshaw Law Group clients featured in the show include Frank Basile as “Quasimodo,” John Thomas as “Dom Claude Frollo,” Leanne Acero as “Geraldine,” Judith DeMott as “Madame Gudule,” Edward Prostak as “Coppenole, Tristan, and Jacques,” and Thomas Bradshaw as “Charmouloue.” The musical will run Sep 8-Oct 2.  Learn more and purchase tickets.


 

Now Let’s Talk Podcast, hosted by NYWIFT Members Vanessa Cordova-Corwin and Kathleen Kaan, has a new episode available to stream. Don’t miss this special episode, “Everything You Need to Know About Monkeypox.” Jason Cianciotto, VP of Communications and Public Policy for Gay Men’s Health Crisis, provides a comprehensive overview of this disease and explains all aspects of this public health emergency, including how to protect yourself and what to do if you think you have been exposed. Jason has also appeared on CNN and other news outlets. Listen and subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify,  anchor.fm, iHeartRadio, or wherever you get your podcasts. Listen now.


 

NYWIFT Board Member Yvonne Russo

Congratulations NYWIFT Board Member Yvonne Russo! Her true crime docu-series Ring of Fire: The Life of Annie Mae Aquash, which she directed and executive produced, has been picked up by Onyx to air on Hulu! A Mi’kmaq woman from Nova Scotia, Canada, Annie Mae is a mother, a teacher and a revolutionary who fought for Indigenous rights and whose death went unsolved for almost 30 years, becoming one of Indian Country’s most infamous cases. Set between the sweeping landscape of American politics in the volatile 1970s and the present‐day quest for answers lead by Annie Mae’s daughter, this is a story of murder, intrigue, love and betrayal that contextualizes Annie Mae’s case within the current day epidemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.


 

Everything’s Fine, a one-woman show written and starring NYWIFT Member Amanda Andrews, will run at Joe’s Pub. What does one do when the systems relied upon to conquer mental health challenges crumble? When anxiety creeps into meditation, and working out becomes lifting the weight of depression? Join actress, singer, and writer Amanda Andrews on a journey of hitting walls, hearing, “no”, and figuring out how to keep going. The show will run Aug 7 at 7pm ET. Learn more.


 

Finding Courage, an award-winning feature-length documentary by NYWIFT Member Kay Rubacek, The film’s story follows former Chinese journalist, Yifei Wang, living in exile in the United States, who is desperate to reunite her broken family and get justice for the murder of her sister. However, her choices mean the difference between life and death for her family who are still in China. The screening will take place Aug 6 at the Festival of Cinema, Regal Midway Theater in Queens, NYC. Learn more.

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