Born in 1988 in Tehran, Iran, Malileh is and Iranian/ Canadian film maker based in beautiful Vancouver. After getting her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and International Relations from University of British Columbia, she got a diploma in Film Production form Vancouver Film School. She is most interested in exploring deep human emotions and experiences through visual storytelling. "Our Garden Was Green" is her first short film revolving around an old Iranian immigrant.
Todd Kortte’s career background encompasses acting, filmmaking and creative design and storytelling in theme park ride and roller coaster design with Walt Disney Imagineering and Universal Creative. His notable award winning projects include Revenge of the Mummy, Transformers, Space Odyssey, and the Louisiana State Capital. As a TV Host and Commercial actor in Los Angeles with over 100 commercial bookings in the last 6 years, Todd has achieved proven marketability on a global scale in Americas, Europe and Asia.
These professional skills in conjunction with his advanced scuba diving experience inspired him to discover a true passion for underwater filmmaking illustrating some of the unique diving spots around the world. Todd graduated from Purdue University in 1993.
Akash Chakravartty is a director, editor, DJ, dancer, and co-founder of Lighthouse Productions. He is currently studying as a sophomore at Augusta University in hopes of attending medical school and becoming a surgeon. He's been an independent filmmaker for the past 4 years and hopes to continue pursuing this hobby in the future.
Dave Rajkumar, is a director, producer and writer, currently based in Atlanta, GA. He loves to create films with his friends under his production company, Farmin' Dreams Studios, which was found in 2014. His short film, "Rebirth", is currently making the festival circuit and will be turned into a TV-Pilot in 2017.
Alexis Chaviaras, born in Antwerp in 1978, has been teaching animation at Universities in Cyprus since 2009.
Alexis has been generating media animation material since 2002 and is currently researching the field of scenic design for 3D computer animated films.
In 2011 he produced and directed the animated short “Struthio” and most recently directed his current award-winning short animation, Agrinoui
Narichika Oto is a director and producer, who works for one of Japan’s most famous television production company, “Nippon Television AX-ON”. He has shown his talents on numerous commercials, TV shows, music programs and plays, for which he was awarded with many prizes. He has co-directed his first short film “Rococo Neuron” with Wataru Yanagida.
Phillip Thomas cannot remember a moment when he wasn't consumed by a love of storytelling and adventure. At age nine, Phillip went on a real world adventure when his family spent a year living overseas in Kuwait. That experience changed Phil for the better, transforming him from a child glued to a TV set into an active mind who questioned the world.
A lover or all things "nerdy" Phil is unafraid to be counted as a maverick. His dream job is one day to work on a Star Wars film. In addition, he loves historical dramas and hopes to one day work on stories based on historical events. Phillip often writes films about people who find their self confidence in trying to change their world for the better. It's fitting that his first childhood hero was Robin Hood. His film influences include Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, Alan Ball, Ridley Scott, Akira Kurosawa, and Aaron Sorkin.
Before pursuing his Master's Degree in Film Production, Phillip worked as a defense contractor cutting videos for the Department of Defense. His favorite film genres include science fiction, action adventures, and comedies. Phillip hopes to have a life long career as a Film Editor and Director.
William Leon was born in Chicago, Illinois on July 20, 1999. From a very young age, he wanted to be in the entertainment industry. At the age of 11, William moved to Los Angeles and has been steadily acting since then. Some of his most notable work includes ABC’s Modern Family, ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy, HBO”s True Blood, and Disney’s Kirby Buckets. Additionally, William has worked alongside James Franco and Luis Guzman in the feature film Don Quixote: The Ingenious Gentleman of La Mancha and with Lee Meriwether, Richard Riehle, and Chris Kattan in Breaking Legs, a film William has a leading role. After working on several sets that included films, commercials, and PSA's, William decided he wanted to experience the other side of the camera. As a result, and at the age of 16, William made his directorial debut with “Attached at the Soul”, a short film from a screen play he wrote and labored on for over a year.
Dianna Cohen is a LA based multi-media visual artist and CEO of Plastic Pollution Coalition, a global alliance of over 500 Organizations and Businesses working together to STOP plastic pollution and to raise awareness about the toxic impact of disposable plastic on the Ocean, the environment, animals and human health.
Kumar studied catering and food production and worked in hotels as a chef in Banglore from 2008 to 2011 After moving to the USA, he worked as restaurant manager from 2011 to 2016. Kumar speaks Tamil, Hindi, Kannada, English, Spanish and is learning few other languages.
His passion is movie making and script writing. He continues to study the art of direction and script writing and editing and he watches world cinemas to learn more about making movies. Kumar tries to learn as much as possible from everyone, and his biggest inspiration in Hollywood is director James Cameron and actor Tom Hanks. His biggest inspiration in Bollywood is director Manirathnam, and actor Kamalahassan. He is eagerly waiting with stories to make many movies in India.
In 2016, he made his first short film, HUMANITARIANISM.
Ilene B. Benator
A board-certified Emergency Physician, Ilene B. Benator practices in the southeast and has a medical thriller soon to be published entitled, Schizo: Hidden in Plain Sight, and wrote the screenplay adaptation for Schizo, which won a Certificate of Merit in the Los Angeles Cinema Festival of Hollywood Screenwriting Competition, and was finalist in two other screenwriting contests. Also, she is Associate Producer, "Flesh" (2016) Cruell World Productions; Morningstar Productions. The current short film was born as a prequel to the book/screenplay adaptation. After growing up in New York and leaving to attend Emory University for undergrad with a degree in psychology, she then went to medical school in Chicago, and returned to Atlanta to do her training; where she now resides. When not working or being soccer mom to her two wonderful kids, plus two cats and one dog, she enjoys architectural photography, camping, skiing, and takes hikes in the mountains with her husband and black fluffy dog Daisy.
Bettina studied classical voice with Kari Lovaas, and jazz at the conservatory in Munich, discovering her Indian roots with thumry master dhanashree pandit-rai in bombay.
She tours as a classical, jazz & avant-garde pop singer, writer & producer on radio-, television-, theater- & film productions lead through Europe, residencies to the USA and India.
Since 2010, D'mello & Dr. Khan have been producing short films of world-melting-pop-music collaborating with actors, musicians & dancers from diverse cultural backgrounds in Europe, Indochina, Cuba, Morocco & India.
Maurice Lynch aka “Moeski”, is CEO of Righteous Entertainment, LLC, a company specializing in producing a high standard of thought provoking programs and films. Pursuing his lifelong dream of becoming a screenwriter and director, Moe began writing screenplays at the age of 16. Since then, as a graduate of Specs Howard School of Media in Detroit, MI, he has written over 10 screenplays and has helped produced various Television programs for companies such as Ford and Comcast Cable. In the summer of 2006, he completed his first full-length feature film with his wife and producing partner, Nicki Lynch, entitled “Blaze: The Truth Through Hip-Hop.” Since then, he has garnered attention through his award winning screenplays, and films. Moe and Nicki reside in Atlanta, Ga where they continue to thrive in film and theater production.
Nick Perkins was born and raised in Germantown, Ohio and has been in the Rio Grande Valley since 2012. He is an awarding winning filmmaker and a recently graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Texas RGV with a Bachelors in TV/Film. He has an extensive array of experience working in different areas of film. From being Director of Photography for a feature film, to working camera on professional music videos. He has also written, directed, filmed, and acted in his own original web series called "Hacking It". He is an award winning filmmaker and most recently won Best Film at the DCFI 48 Hour Film Race for his outstanding short film "Look". He has been Director of Photography for Wildfox Films shorts "stay." and "Wander" both of which were awarded the honors of 2015 Spotlight Gold Award and 2016 Spotlight Silver Awards respectively.
Award winning director Mark Brocking has been working in the film industry since around 1990. He started his career in 2D animation working on features for Disney, Warner brothers and Spielberg among others.
Around 2003 he entered the field of CG animation at Framestore, London working his way up to supervising animator on films such as Narnia "The Dawn Treader" and "Where the Wild Things Are".
He was nominated for a Bafta for his work as animation director on tv series "Primeval 2" in 2003.
Mark started writing and directing his short films in 2008 which has so far resulted in two films, "The Double Cross" in 2013 (Best shorts winner) and "The Barber's Cut" in 2015 (winner of 12 awards so far in 2015). He is currently working on his third film which should come out in 2016.
He lives in London, UK with his wife and 2 children.
Angad has written, produced and directed ‘The Wait’ which is his first short film. He has also written a couple of full-length feature film scripts, which at present are at different stages of development. Prior to turning writer and director, he worked with a Film Production House, specializing in content strategy and marketing. Before getting into the film business, he was working with a multinational bank.
Bellopropello is a freelance photographer and part time procurement manager who gets more and more freaky in creating animation films.
The award-winning another day in paradise is his first film.
Tristan McIntosh is a young prolific award-winning Canadian director, producer, actor, editor and screenwriter. He wrote, produced, directed and edited award-winning short films such as PILLOW TALK, a light comedy about relationships and SUBLIMINAL, an award-winning thought-provoking experimental drama. He also produces and directs music videos for bands such as THE SEA by WHITE LIGHTERS.
MICHAEL J. McCARTHY
Originally starting his professional life as a concept storyboard artist for BBC Birmingham, Michael continued working on visual effects for several short motion pictures that have been screened internationally, varying from comedy to horror.
Michael has also taken on the role of assistant director in the world of on-line comedy for WildSeed and Paramount before going onto challenging himself with directing promo music videos.
This previous work gave technical knowledge and inspiration to bring his own projects to life, starting with the forthcoming Dark Laugh.
Yoshimi Itazu (director / character designer / supervising animator) Born in Gifu prefecture in 1980, Itazu joined Studio Gallop in 1998 at the young age of 18. Five years later he started a collaboration with studio Mad House. Here he was involved in the production of the TV series Paranoia Agent, which put him in touch with director Satoshi Kon. After his outstanding performance in the series Denno Coil, where Itazu was supervising animator, Kon invited him aboard the production of Dreaming Machine, as character designer and chief animator, but the project was sadly suspended when Kon passed away in 2010. Itazu’s credits as key animator include Hayao Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises. A natural talent and one of Japan’s most promising young animators, he made his debut as character designer and supervising animator in a feature film with Keiichi Hara’s Annecy-winning Miss Hokusai (2015). Pigtails marks his highly anticipated directorial debut.
Megan Myers is a recent Juniata College graduate with a degree in media production. She has worked on over 150 videos for the Juniata marketing department, directed a web series, and have produced several short films both domestically and abroad. She aspires to be a producer, but most of all I want to "make stuff that matters." No Experience Needed is the first film she wrote, directed, and produced. She truly believes this film matters not only to it's audience, but to it's cast and crew. While the main character was going on a journey, they were on one as well, and "it was the experience of a lifetime!"
Salome Tkebuchava, a high school junior, was born and bred in the suburbs of Boston, USA. Raised in an intellectual family descended from Europe, she was doomed at the age of three to learn among other things, fine art, history, architecture, and a bit of filmmaking. Through her movies she wants to show the beauty of life, humor, harmony, and love. She has been inspired by the sublimity of Zeffirelli, aestheticism of Visconti, spirit of Fellini, philosophy of Kurosawa, and many other worldwide filmmakers. Her two short movies, "Bad Day" and "The Theater", have been selected or won many international film festivals, and she received the NATAS Student Award for both movies. She recently finished working on her third movie, a documentary on Georgian folk dance and is proud of the recognition it has received. Other than spending her time in editing rooms and searching for actors, Salome practices foil fencing and is perfecting her most recent Kata as a black belt in Karate.
Jaswant Dev shrestha
Award-Winning Writer - producer
Jaswant is the first Nepali Actor/Filmmaker to be nominated for an EMMY from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences - Heartland Chapter. No other Nepali has ever received such an honor.
His first Best Actor Award win was at Blissfest333 in Denver, Colorado in 2014 for his role in The Treason. Since then he has won dozens of International awards with various projects.
In addition to his award-winning short, The Treason, he recently appeared in a Facebook commercial called: "The First Date". He is the first Nepali actor to become a member of the Screen Actors Guild. Born in Nepal Jaswant discovered acting at a very young age and was ambitious to be a professional actor when he grew up. He studied acting at the world famous "The Beverly Hills Play House" in Hollywood.
The production game was always a natural fit for David Pratico having always had a network of high calibre contacts in the Australian Film and Television Industry. His keen eye for the right project has quickly seen the establishment of his own production company 5MA Productions which began from humble beginnings in comedy sketches but is now quickly building a strong name for itself for the quality of its short films.
David is an excellent collaborator and draws upon his vast network to attract the best talent for every department of the production process. In the last 6 months David has produced a number of shorts including, “Tough Love”, “Drowning Pool”, “The Shed, and now his biggest film yet “Hunter”. The films are about to be released across the festival circuit so expect many awards to come his way this year.
Jennifer Johnson Lawrence
Jennifer Johnson Lawrence is an award winning filmmaker from McAllen, Texas and is the Executive Producer for Wildfox Films, LLC. She is a screenwriter for both film and television and recognized for her short film "stay." which was the recipient of the 2015 Spotlight Gold Award, Atlanta Shortsfest Best Short Short, and has been screened all around the world. Her second short film “Wander” which she produced is the recipient of the 2016 Spotlight Silver Award. Jennifer has a Master's Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of Texas in Edinburg, a BA in Sociology as well as double Associates Degrees in Chemistry and Biology. She has written numerous projects and has launched her first TV Episodic Pilot, "THE BAR" into production this month. She is actively involved in the production of local short films in and around South Texas, and promoting the Rio Grande Valley as a hub for future film production.
Pam Longobardi was born in Glen Ridge, N.J., the daughter of an ocean lifeguard and the Delaware State diving champion, and currently lives in Atlanta, where she is Distinguished Professor at Georgia State University. Her artwork has been shown extensively across the US and internationally, and in 2006, she founded the Drifters Project, an international collaborative artistic research project focusing on ocean plastic pollution. Longobardi’s artwork is framed within a conversation about globalism and conservation, and involves painting, photography, and installation to address the psychological relationship of humans to the natural world. In 2013, she won the prestigious Hudgens Prize, one of the largest art prizes in N. America, and has an ongoing collaboration supported by the Ionion Center for Art and Culture in Metaxata, Kefalonia, Greece. As lead artist on GYRE expedition, she was featured in the National Geographic film “GYRE: Creating Art From a Plastic Ocean” and in National Geographic magazine. She has appeared on The Weather Channel, PBS public television numerous times, and on the covers of SIERRA magazine and other national magazines. Longobardi is Oceanic Society’s Artist-In-Nature, participating and leading international expeditions as artist/naturalist and ‘Plastic Interpreter.' She is currently exhibiting a major exhibition of the long-term project in Kefalonia at the Goulandris Museum of Natural History in Athens, Greece. Longobardi co-directed the short film “Plastic Free Island” (2015) documenting the 6-year project in Kefalonia, Greece.
Golden Brown Enterprizes
Golden Brown Enterprizes is the brainchild of Kenton Brett and David Jarred. Kenton and David are fine artists with careers in the theatre and film world, respectively. Combining their professional skills and interests, they make artistic videos of singular vision using puppetry and stop-motion techniques. In 2008, a serendipitous meeting brought them together as a part of Arthole, a group of malcontent merry-makers. After much success, the two formed their own collaborative duet called Golden Brown Enterprizes. In 2010 they produced Golden Brown's first video installation, Dance Madness. In this video installation, neon-colorized creatures beckoned patrons to dance alongside them. The instant notoriety of this work led to commissioned video content for fringe festivals and other live-performance works. Riptide Rhapsody is a flagship project for Golden Brown Enterprizes; a stop-motion work of art that has been in the making since the beginning of David and Kenton's collaboration. After many years of work, Golden Brown has come into it own as a production company with an emphasis on capturing traditional practices of painting, drawing, and sculpture with state-of-the-art technology.
He is an outstanding young film director and producer who had been shortlisted 100 Chinese New Star Directors in 2011. Now, he as a graduate student is studying at Savannah College of Art and Design in the US majoring in film and television production. He studied at Beijing Film Academy during 2013-2014 and studied at Tianjin University of Science and Technology during 2003-2007 in China.
He promotes international communication of film culture and international cooperation of film production. He has been working in Joyversal Media Group (Beijing, China) for eight years during 2007-2015. For example, he served as the leader responsible for Beijing International Science and technology Film Festival three times during 2011-2013. He is committed to promoting large-format giant screen movie 3D IMAX, full dome movie international cultural exchange and communication. He invited some international renowned filmmakers such as Elizabeth Daley (Dean of USC Cinematic Arts), Richard Weinberg (Professor of USC Cinematic Arts), Michael Daut (Producer& Director of Evans Sutherland/ USA), Ed Capelle (Vice President of K2 Communications/ USA), Peter Popp (President & Director of Evans Sutherland/Germany), and Yves Fortin (Producer& Director/Canada) etc.
As When You Come is an experimental short film that created in 2015. The film explores the meaning of life. At the seaside, a philosopher is asking who I am? What is death? Where I come from? Everything looks like a dream.
Wataru Yanagida is a writer, producer and founder of the company “Boozex.inc” based in Tokyo, Japan. He has worked for numerous commercials, TV shows and industrial videos. He is the executive producer, writer and VFX designer of his first short film “Rococo Neuron”, which he has co-directed with Narichika Oto.
Anna Zhikhareva is a Strategic Marketing & Communications Professional with extensive management consulting experience; commodity futures & options trading experience for oil & gas hedging division; and over three years of Film Producing & Brand Management; holder of three Master’s Degrees including an MBA.
Since 7th grade, Mikael Trench had been using stop motion as his go-to filmmaking style. He started by using action figures and PlayDoh, but during high school, he began to develop more professional works using clay animation. Since then, Mikael has made a host of clay animated short films, webseries, and animations.These include works such as his 2015 short Of Cat & Creature. his first work to get into several film festivals, his 21 minute long short film, King Kong vs Prometheus, an adaptation of the lost Wiliis O' Brien project which has garnered thousands of views on YouTube, his award-winning 2016 short horror film The Tree That Refused To Fall, his popular webseries, Donald Trump VS, and his most recent project. the sci-fi comedy webseries, The Snow Hunter Chronicles. All these projects, and many more, can be found on his YouTube channel.
Meng-Ying Lin pursued her career as a graphic designer at a renowned advertising agency before dedicate herself into reviving traditional Chinese culture through animated programs at the New Tang Dynasty Asia Pacific Television. She is the producer and one of the creators of HeavenKid.
More Filmmaker Spotlights are coming soon. Stay tuned.
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