Niva Dorell

Niva Dorell

Writer - Director
I am a NY-based biracial writer/director/producer who specializes in character-driven storytelling and adapting true stories.

Full Bio
Niva Dorell is a biracial writer-director who specializes in character-driven storytelling and adapting true stories. She won Showtime’s Black Filmmaker's Grant with her film KINGS and went on to write and direct MILK AND HONEY for Showtime starring Russell Hornsby. She directed Academy-award winner Louis Gossett Jr. and comedian Kym Whytley in the film WHAT ABOUT YOUR FRIENDS for UPN. Other actors Niva has directed include Keith David, Loretta Devine, Ernie Hudson, Ella Joyce, Harry Lennix, and Mykelti Williamson.

A prolific screenwriter with dozens of film and television screenplays under her belt, Niva’s feature screenplay ENDANGERED, based on a true story, recently caught the interest of producer Scott Frank (THE QUEEN’S GAMBIT) as a potential limited series. Niva’s feature screenplay LIVING LIVING is also currently with The 51 (Malcolm and Nichele Tramble Spellman’s company) and being packaged by CAA with Niva attached as director. Niva has at least half a dozen other film and television projects in v

Professional Credits
Knockout – Podcast and documentary series (Keep It Light Media and Versus, respectively), New York + London. The incredible true story of Harold J. Smith, a boxing promoter who embezzled 21.3 million dollars from Wells Fargo Bank in the early 1980s, inspiring Don King to dub him the “Black Jesse James.”

Shi Guorui: Ab/Sense-Pre-Sense – Short documentary about internationally renowned camera obscura photographer Guorui Shi preparing for his first photography exhibition at the Thomas Cole National Historic Site.

Milk and Honey – Short film for Showtime Networks, Los Angeles, CA (shot on 35mm)
Period film set in Texas, 1953. Cast: Russell Hornsby, Maya Rubin

Skid Row – Feature documentary, Los Angeles, CA
Millionaire musician Pras Michele (The Fugees) goes undercover as a homeless person to learn more about Los Angeles’ rampant homeless situation.

What About Your Friends – Movie-for-television for UPN (now CW), Los Angeles, CA
Three high school girlfriends go on a college retreat weekend.
Industry Awards
• Cill Rialaig Arts Centre – Writer’s residency
• Millay Arts – Writer’s residency (4 weeks) 2022
• CREATE: Flash Film Festival – Judge
• “A Conversation with Patricia Field” – Interviewer (live event)
• Bindercon, Los Angeles – Panelist, “Writing About Loss”
• HuffPost Live with Nancy Redd – Guest speaker
• Vermont Studio Center – Writer’s residency
• Sundance Institute – Finalist, ENDANGERED (feature film screenplay)
• Pasadena Playhouse Director’s Lab (inspired by Lincoln Center’s lab) – Participant
• Showtime Networks Black Filmmaker’s Grant – Winner, Kings
• Hollywood Black Film Festival - Best short film, Kings