‘The Wedding Invitation’ director takes ownership of script, hires all-female crew
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‘The Wedding Invitation’ director takes ownership of script, hires all-female crew

Since Bridesmaids proved to be one of Hollywood’s megahits, audiences have heard of the growing need for “female-led comedies.” But despite all the talk in the press, getting a female lead comedy greenlit remains an uphill battle. Almost a decade ago, before Bridesmaids had become a launch-pad, Rainy Kerwin found herself frustrated by the roles…

Spoiler Alert: Director Cate Shortland talks twisty thriller ‘Berlin Syndrome’
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Spoiler Alert: Director Cate Shortland talks twisty thriller ‘Berlin Syndrome’

Sometimes it’s next to impossible to talk to a director about their movie without giving a few things away. And sometimes I just don’t care. Australian director Cate Shortland’s new film Berlin Syndrome falls into that category because 1) it’s a well-made thriller that I wanted to learn how it came together and 2) the…

From indies to studio: Stella Meghie on 'Everything, Everything'
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From indies to studio: Stella Meghie on 'Everything, Everything'

The summer movie’s already begun and it’s seems to be a great season for women behind the camera. Even before premiering Wonder Woman last week, Warner Brothers launched their summer schedule in May with another film helmed by female director, the adaption of the YA best seller Everything, Everything, based on the novel by Nicola…

Aisling Walsh’s ‘Maudie’ a fitting tribute to the art of Maud Lewis
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Aisling Walsh’s ‘Maudie’ a fitting tribute to the art of Maud Lewis

In the traditional artist-muse love stories, we’ve seen remarkably few focused on female artists and their male muse. And rarer still would be the on-screen relationship in the new Irish-Canadian film Maudie, starring Sally Hawkins and Ethan Hawke. Based on the cheerful, vibrant art of folk artist Maud Lewis (Sally Hawkins) plays a Nova Scotia…

Drifter film ‘D-Love’ a balancing act for director Elena Beuca
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Drifter film ‘D-Love’ a balancing act for director Elena Beuca

D-Love, has received a lot of love lately with two Audience Awards from U.S. Film Festivals.  This news is no surprise as Elena Beuca’s directorial debut left me speechless after seeing it at Dances With Films. D-Love is a wonderfully heartfelt story, reminding us that people come into our lives for a reason.   Beuca, while…

Zoe Lister-Jones pulls triple duty for 'Band Aid,' enlists all-female crew
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Zoe Lister-Jones pulls triple duty for 'Band Aid,' enlists all-female crew

Zoe Lister-Jones not only stars alongside Adam Pally (Ben) and Fred Armisen (neighbor Dave) in Band Aid, she also dons her writer and directors’ hats with this film.  Lister-Jones tackles marriage through music as a young couple hits a dead end in their relationship.  In a last-ditch effort to reconnect, they turn their fights into…

UPDATE: Sly 'Foxes' wins well-deserved Tony Award for Cynthia Nixon
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UPDATE: Sly 'Foxes' wins well-deserved Tony Award for Cynthia Nixon

MONDAY UPDATE: Jan Lisa Huttner here, the morning after the 2017 Tony Awards. Congratulations to Cynthia Nixon, winner of the 2017 Tony Award for "Best Actress for a Featured Role in a Play" in the role of "Birdie" in Lillian Hellman's The Little Foxes. Kudos as well to Jane Greenwood who also won a Tony for…

2017 Human Rights Watch Film Festival to screen 'remarkable' films by women
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2017 Human Rights Watch Film Festival to screen 'remarkable' films by women

Sexual exploitation, domestic violence, civic duty, and the rights of indigenous people are just some of the resonant topics that will be tackled in the films to be shown at NYC's 2017 Human Rights Watch Film Festival (June 9-18). The festival will screen 21 topical and provocative feature documentaries, along with panel discussions that showcase courageous resilience…

Paint It Black and L’Attesa use male characters to drive female relationships

Paint It Black and L’Attesa use male characters to drive female relationships

A typical tactic to further a male character’s development, especially in the tidal wave of male superhero movies we’ve been getting for the past five years or so, is to take the guy’s girlfriend or daughter, and have her die. His resulting “manpain” is then milked at the dead female character’s expense to give an…

The Powder and The Glory: From PBS Doc to Tony-Nominated Broadway Musical!
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The Powder and The Glory: From PBS Doc to Tony-Nominated Broadway Musical!

The Powder & The Glory -- a PBS documentary now available on DVD -- depicts the feud between esteemed makeup icons Elizabeth Arden and Helena Rubenstein. Why is this relevant now? Because War Paint -- the new Broadway musical that has been nominated for FOUR Tony Awards -- is based on this doc 🙂 The tale of these…

DocAviv '17:  Sneak Peeks from Israel's world-renown documentary film festival
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DocAviv '17: Sneak Peeks from Israel's world-renown documentary film festival

FF2 Media is proud to introduce Eti Or -- our new Israeli contributor -- with her report on Israeli women filmmaker screenings at this year's DocAviv (Israel's world-renown documentary film festival). Here are sneak peaks of Eti's Top Picks from DocAviv '17. Hopefully some of these films will make their way to festivals and theaters worldwide…

Does the future of films by women lie in shorts?
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Does the future of films by women lie in shorts?

This year’s Tribeca Film Festival marvelously demonstrated new platforms for women filmmakers outside of conventional feature films, particularly those eligible for the Nora Ephron Prize. The continuously blurring the lines of shorts, web series, apps, sponsors and “television” could mean more opportunities for women directors. Since the inaugural collection in 2014, the women-directed N.O.W. (New…

Swiss filmmaker Petra Volpe wins prestigious Nora Ephron Prize at 2017 Tribeca Film Festival
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Swiss filmmaker Petra Volpe wins prestigious Nora Ephron Prize at 2017 Tribeca Film Festival

Petra Biondina Volpe from Switzerland is the winner of the 5th annual Nora Ephron Prize at this year's Tribeca Film Festival! Volpe is the writer/director of The Divine Order (Die Göttliche Ordnung), which also received the Audience Award in the “Narrative” category, as well as a nomination for the Jury Award for Best International Narrative Feature. In addition, Marie Leuenberger…

First-time screenwriter finds comedy, closure in ‘The Women’s Balcony’
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First-time screenwriter finds comedy, closure in ‘The Women’s Balcony’

​When first-time screenwriter Shlomit Nehama wrote The Women’s Balcony, she anticipated that making a universal film would be a losing battle. In order to capture the emotions of the characters and daily lives of a close knit Mizrahi community, she needed to use detail and specificity. The approach worked and Balcony become the number one…

TFF's Nora Ephron Prize Winners: Where are they now?
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TFF's Nora Ephron Prize Winners: Where are they now?

The Tribeca Film Festival just gave its 5th annual Nora Ephron Prize to Petra Biondina Volpe from Switzerland. Volpe is the writer/director of The Divine Order (Die Göttliche Ordnung), which also received two additional awards at TFF: Audience Award--Narrative and Best Actress (Marie Leuenberger) in an International Narrative Feature. The Divine Order was also nominated for…

'The Drowning' director talks dark, ambiguous psychological thriller
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'The Drowning' director talks dark, ambiguous psychological thriller

After a private screening of The Drowning, Peter Travers, from Rolling Stone, gives a brief Q&A with director Bette Gordon. ***********Warning! Spoilers!*********** Bette Gordon, best known for her film Variety (1983), is a film director and professor at Columbia. In her new film, The Drowning, she goes deep into the psyche of a middle-aged psychiatrist as…

Salima Koroma's hip-hop documentary 'Bad Rap' promotes cultural inclusivity
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Salima Koroma's hip-hop documentary 'Bad Rap' promotes cultural inclusivity

Despite hip-hop’s history of increasing the visibility of black and Latino urban youth culture in America, it’s also struggled to include all minorities in the movement. Asian-American artists have struggled to find acceptance, even as hip-hop music found mainstream, commercial success on the global stage. Director Salima Koroma’s interest in this excluded minority group motivated…

'The Wedding Plan' takes lighter approach to Orthodox Judaism
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'The Wedding Plan' takes lighter approach to Orthodox Judaism

During our interview at the Tribeca International Film Festival last month, Rama Burshtein made the comment that she doesn’t make films for her community, she makes movies about her community. A member of the Orthodox Jewish religion since the age of 25, she’s well aware that showing the universal side of their own unique lifestyle…

Rachel Israel earns praise, top honors for ‘Keep the Change’
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Rachel Israel earns praise, top honors for ‘Keep the Change’

At this year’s Tribeca International Film Festival, Rachel Israel took the top prize in the US Narrative Competition for her film Keep the Change. The film about adults on the autism spectrum looking for love in New York City debuted to high praise for its honest, funny and compassionate approach. Israel, a graduate of Columbia…

‘A Walk to Remember’ screenwriter reflects on adaptation, Hollywood's gender bias

‘A Walk to Remember’ screenwriter reflects on adaptation, Hollywood's gender bias

“But you are not funny,” they said. “You cannot even tell a joke.” Getting accepted into the Warner Bros. Writers Television Comedy Workshop floored Karen Janszen’s parents. Science studies from UC Santa Cruz, Harvard and MIT may not have spelled out “comedy,” but this was an exceptional case. “I am not a joke teller,” said Janszen,…

Siskel Center showcases female directors, contemporary Palestinian life
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Siskel Center showcases female directors, contemporary Palestinian life

The 16th annual Chicago Palestine Film Festival, in collaboration with the Gene Siskel Film Center, screened a variety of films focusing on contemporary Palestinian life. The festival, which runs through May 4th, was made possible by the Crossroads Fund and volunteers. Three of FF2 Media's Chicago team members (Stephanie A. Taylor, Brigid K. Presecky and…

Three women filmmakers featured at 2017 New York African Film Festival
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Three women filmmakers featured at 2017 New York African Film Festival

New York City is a hotbed for movie premieres and film festivals and, this week, there’s another film festival that deserves some attention. The 24th annual New York African Film Festival -- with the theme of “The People's’ Revolution” -- begins May 3rd and runs through May 9th at the Film Society of Lincoln Center. The festival…

Laurie Simmons follows in daughter Lena Dunham’s footsteps
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Laurie Simmons follows in daughter Lena Dunham’s footsteps

We’ve seen plenty of film festivals introduce the next generation from an artistic family. But Laurie Simmons is that rare artist making her feature film debut as a writer-director (and star) after her daughter, Lena Dunham, set the path. Not that she’s been waiting. Simmons is one of America’s more successful contemporary artists with works…