Currently Browsing: Features

It’s Not Subtle! Below Her Mouth and the Heterosexual Gaze (Part 1 of 2)

I had never seen two women participate in a straight relationship before I saw Below Her Mouth. Directed by April Mullen, the film has been a hot topic on the queer film circuit due to its all female crew and notably, ahem, involved sex scenes; it has also been criticized for its flat characters and […]

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U.K non-profit gets animated over gender imbalance

‘If she can see it, she can be it’ – Geena Davis While the role of women in film has become an increasingly prominent issue addressed in the media, and by the industry itself, little is reported on women in animation and visual effects. As more and more films and television shows utilize the power of […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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‘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, […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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Sophie Brooks embraces romantic comedies with ‘The Boy Downstairs’

It could be argued that the romantic comedy is one of the most difficult genres to execute with finesse. Too heavy or moody, the film will sink into melodrama. Too wacky or frivolous, the film loses its emotional pull. Like a pastry, a romantic comedy requires perfect technique to avoid the dismissive labels it’s been […]

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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 […]

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Female directors win top categories at Tribeca Film Festival

The 16th Annual Tribeca Film Festival announced the top winners in all five feature categories were presented to women-directed films, including Keep the Change (Best U.S. Narrative) Son of Sofia (Best International Narrative) and Bobbi Jene (Best Documentary). The festival, which runs through April 30, also awarded the 5th Annual Nora Ephron Prize to Petra […]

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Fifteen years in the making, Garcia releases ‘One Percent More Humid’

After 15 years with a script she wrote at the tender age of 25, Liz W. Garcia finally saw her film One Percent More Humid hit the screens as part of the US Narrative Competition at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival. The sun-soaked drama tells the story of two college-aged girls (played by Juno Temple and […]

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Female filmmakers play key role in UK movie boom

The backdrop of countless Bond films, Hugh Grant rushing to yet another wedding and endless period dramas, London is well and truly a cinematic staple. Indeed, the city is brimming with talented filmmakers and, thanks to a substantial film tax credit and the plunging pound (Thank you, Brexit!), it has become a hotbed of international […]

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‘Bend It Like Beckham’ director fights for change

Like New York, there is always something to do in London. Fancy afternoon tea on a double decker bus, playing miniature golf while sipping a cocktail, or diving into an adults-only glow in the dark ball pit? London’s got you covered. Unsurprisingly then, when it came to celebrating International Women’s Day, the city did not […]

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Petra Volpe, director of ‘The Divine Order,’ takes lighthearted approach to suffrage

***Update*** The 16th Annual Tribeca Film Festival Nora Ephron Prize winner. The Nora Ephron Prize: Petra Volpe, writer/director of The Divine Order (Switzerland). Jurors Dianna Agron, Joy Bryant, Diane Lane, Zoe Lister-Jones and Christina Ricci awarded the film for its “intrepid and compassionate storytelling, beautiful cinematography (by a woman), complex characterization of the female experience, seamless […]

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Shamim Sarif breaks the mold with anti-le Carré spy thriller

Shamim Sarif is breaking the mold as a filmmaker, not only writing and directing her own projects, but adapting her own novels and producing with wife Hanan Kattan. Since 2007, she’s made three dramatically different romantic dramas. Her first two films (both starring Sheetal Sheth and Lisa Ray) were the period drama The World Unseen […]

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Director Lone Scherfig on ‘Their Finest,’ visionary filmmaking

When Lone Scherfig made the sleeper hit An Education, the coming-of-age romance that launched Carey Mulligan to stardom, she was already well into her impressive career. A graduate of the National Film School of Denmark, and won festival praise for her films The Birthday Party and On Our Own. But it was Italian for Beginners, […]

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Miranda Bailey discusses director’s vision, unique style of ‘Norman’

Joseph Cedar, an Oscar-nominated filmmaker from Israel, brings us an exceptional tale about an ordinary man in Norman, starring Richard Gere and Lior Ashkenazi. Norman is a small-time businessman in New York City, always hustling for the next big deal. His connections are suspect and his exaggerations quite humorous, but his motivations come into question […]

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Behind the mask and mirror: an interview with Deborah Kampmeier, director of SPLit

Lindsy Bissonnette (FF2 Media): Deborah, where did the idea for your new film SPLit come from? Kampmeier: It was about 25 years ago, I took a workshop called “Voices of the Earth,” which was based on the ancient Sumarian myth “The Descent of Inanna.” In the workshop we were creating a space that was a… supportive […]

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The ‘Women of 1915’ find their voice

“Genocide is more than killing people,” states The Women of 1915 Bared Maronian’s latest documentary, “it’s robbing them of their very identity.” The idea that one culture can completely destroy evidence that another culture ever existed seems impossible, but the Ottoman Empire came close in 1915 when they slaughtered the Armenian people. Over 100 years later, The Armenian Genocide is […]

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First-time director Susan Johnson embraces ‘old-school’ Hollywood

Susan Johnson’s been working in the film industry for more than a decade, making a name for herself as the producer of 2004’s Mean Creek and going on to produce Nearing Grace, Eye of the Hurricane, God Help the Girl and Unleashed. Now she’s making her feature directing debut with the romantic-comedy, coming of age […]

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LA International Film Festival celebrates women artists on International SWAN Day

Celebrating its 13th year, the annual Los Angeles Women’s International Film Festival offers a platform where women artists can showcase their work and tell their stories. Presented by the Alliance of Women Filmmakers at LA Live Regal Cinemas, the festival was a weekend not to be missed. This year’s Women’s International Film Festival also happened […]

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Jenny Gage avoids teen stereotypes in ‘All This Panic’

Q&A with Jenny Gage, Director of All This Panic Q: How did the film come about? [My husband and I] have always been in narrative film, at a time when narrative was implied when paired with still photography. We knew we didn’t want to plan the film. Ginger and Dusty were so full of chatter, […]

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‘Cézanne’ director calls out ‘strong, new generation’ of female filmmakers

Hosted by the Gene Siskel Film Center, the month-long Chicago European Union Film Festival (CEUFF) featured 15 films directed by women (15 out of 62 = ~ 25% = a record high for this event). Danièle Thompson, French director of Cézanne and I (Cézanne et Moi), recently sat down with FF2 Media Senior Contributor Stephanie A. Taylor […]

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Niki Caro delves into the pain, beauty of ‘The Zookeeper’s Wife’

Unknown stories of war heroes, particularly WWII, seldom are unearthed, but the stories of heroines of that era seem to be even more rare.  The name Antonina Zabinski will soon be a recognizable name thanks to the film “The Zookeeper’s Wife,” based on the book by Diane Ackerman of the same name. The film, starring […]

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15 Years in the Pond: How we became a Bevy of Swans

Prepared by Jan Lisa Huttner for NYWIFT’s 10th Anniversary Celebration 2002: Sparks ignited on the morning of June 2, 2002 when I read an article in the Sunday New York Times about the “Celluloid Ceiling.” The article, quoting statistics by Communications Professor Martha Lauzen of San Diego State University, compelled me to take action. I […]

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‘American Fable’ director talks Richard Schiff, politics and directing chickens

American Fable, the new thriller from Anne Hamilton, is one of the most visually spectacular indie in years. Made with a big sense of scope, and small budget, she’s turned what could be an intimate family drama into a spectacular fantasy thriller about the end of girl’s childhood. Starring newcomer Peyton Kennedy, and familiar faces […]

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Sandilands captures ‘Uncertain,’ small-town America

One of the most evocative documentaries looks at a slowly dying rural community on the boarder of Texas, a town appropriately named Uncertain. When and if they can, young people leave to find jobs in neighboring urban area (although three hours from Louisiana, nothing is too close) and due to an increasing ecological crisis, the […]

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International SWAN Day celebrates 10th anniversary

International SWAN Day (Support Women Artists Now Day) will celebrate its 10th anniversary on Saturday, March 25, 2017. The holiday, also observed throughout the months of March and April, highlights the creative feats of female artists and their audiences. The holiday encourages women to celebrate, appreciate and honor fellow women in their creative endeavors. It […]

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2016 memorable for animated storytelling

Reflections by Social Media Manager Georgiana E. Presecky Despite the variety of animated features released in 2016, Disney still reigns supreme with Oscar-nominated films Zootopia and Moana. What is it about that familiar “When You Wish Upon a Star” opening that has captivated the minds and hearts of children and adults for 80 years, since […]

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‘The Last Laugh’ director encourages humor, empathy in new documentary

Are there topics too horrible or controversial to make jokes about? Abortion, slavery, race, 9/11. Should the Holocaust be considered off limits to comedians? According to Director Ferne Pearlstein and the comedians and subjects interviewed for her new documentary The Last Laugh, that’s the wrong approach. Humor can be empowering for survivors, and have a […]

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