|Woman of Her Word will provide grants for all future NYWIFT Loreen Arbus Disability Awareness Grant recipients
NEW YORK, NY – APRIL 11, 2016– New York Women in Film & Television (NYWIFT) is pleased to announce that Michele Spitz of Woman of Her Word has generously donated accessible media components and audio description services to the documentary feature Swim Team, recipient of the 2015 NYWIFT Loreen Arbus Disability Awareness Grant, now in its ninth year. Her sponsorship and voicing of the audio description will allow for the film to be accessible to the blind or visually impaired; her grant for captioning will enable accessibility for the Deaf and hard of hearing. Woman of Her Word will also continue to provide production support and voicing of the audio description for all future NYWIFT Loreen Arbus Disability Awareness Grant recipients.
“Assisting a project that gives those with disabilities access to film aligns with NYWIFT’s goals of diversity, equal representation and accessibility,” said NYWIFT Executive Director Terry Lawler. “We are thrilled to have Michele’s support.”
Michele Spitz is a voice over artist and lifelong patron of the arts. She is dedicated to making the world accessible to people with disabilities by providing her vocal talents to filmmakers, publishers, speaking venues and charitable organizations. In her audio description work for the visually impaired, she has voiced 33 films including the documentary features Do You Dream in Color? and Becoming Bulletproof. Commercially released films include Miss You Already and Where Hope Grows. She also recently audio described The Great Muppet Caperfor ABC Family. Spitz audio described and sponsored film selections at the 2014 and 2015 Superfest: SF International Disability Film Festival, and continues her work by sponsoring and audio describing films for ReelAbilities: NY Film Festival 2015 and 2016. (See IMDB: Michele Spitz.)
“My life’s work is my heart’s work,” said Spitz. “I am delighted with my new relationship to NYWIFT and especially the Loreen Arbus grants project. I look forward to providing my voice here, as I do in so many other places, as a vehicle to provide access to diverse cultural experiences by removing barriers that would preclude some people from participating.”
ABOUT SWIM TEAM
From the opening day of the swim season to the opening ceremony of the national Special Olympics, Swim Team explores the overwhelming struggles and extraordinary triumphs of three young athletes with autism and shows how a swim team can bring hope to a community. It is directed and produced by Lara Stolman and co-produced by Ann Collins.
ABOUT THE NYWIFT LOREEN ARBUS DISABILITY AWARENESS GRANT
Established through the generosity of Loreen Arbus, the NYWIFT Loreen Arbus Disability Awareness Grant is a grant awarded annually to a woman filmmaker for a film on physical or developmental disability issues. Directors and producers are eligible to apply. The grant is awarded to help complete a work-in-progress.
ABOUT NEW YORK WOMEN IN FILM & TELEVISION
New York Women in Film & Television supports women calling the shots in film, television and digital media. NYWIFT energizes the careers of women in entertainment by illuminating their achievements, providing training and professional development, and advocating for equality.
The preeminent entertainment industry association for women in New York, NYWIFT brings together nearly 2,000 women and men working both above and below the line. NYWIFT is part of a network of 40 women in film chapters worldwide, representing more than 10,000 members. NYWIFT produces over 50 innovative programs and special events annually, including the Muse Awards for Vision and Achievement, which honors women in front of and behind the camera, and Designing Women, which recognizes costume designers, makeup artists and hair stylists in the industry.
NYWIFT is a nonprofit, 501c3 public charity, and contributions are tax-deductible to the extent provided by law. It is governed by an 18-member board of directors. The board is elected by the membership.
More information can be found online at: www.nywift.org
New York Women in Film & Television