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  • 01 Nov 2022 7:47 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Contributed by WIFVNE member Alyson Muzila

    Filmmakers, writers, actors, and producers were just some members of the film industry in New England that gathered Oct. 20-23 at the fifth Mystic Film Festival in Mystic, CT and Westerly, RI. A wide variety of films were screened at various locations, and workshops and panels added to the high value of the accessible and down-to earth festival.

    WIFVNE sponsored a Women in Comedy Short Films block followed by a Q&A panel on Saturday. The event was kicked off by local comedian Emily Siero, followed by a tribute to well-known comedian and Connecticut native Ruth Buzzi (of Laugh-In fame), who received the Lifetime Achievement Award.  Four short films then screened, and WIFVNE president Sharon Contillo hosted the Q&A with the filmmakers in front of a full audience at the La Grua Center. Finally, audience members and festival goers, a number who are WIFVNE members from New England states, had ample time to network and connect.

    It was a highly successful event, and WIFVNE looks forward to additional opportunities to showcase its local filmmakers and offer networking with film festival partners.

  • 26 Oct 2022 11:49 AM | Anonymous

    “Emotional” and “intimate” is an understatement when describing the documentary, Bad Axe by David Siev, which recently appeared at Emerson College’s Bright Family Screening Room as part of the Boston Asian American Film Festival. As a fellow Cambodian filmmaker myself, the film depicts experiences I relate to in a way that I have never seen captured on screen before. The documentary follows the Siev family throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 Black Lives Matter rallies, and the ups and downs of owning a family restaurant in Bad Axe, Michigan. Siev’s work is touching, inspirational, and his family’s story speaks to the aspiration of attaining the American Dream.


  • 26 Oct 2022 11:46 AM | Anonymous

    This past Friday, I attended the Boston Palestine Film Festival on behalf of WIFVNE. Located at Emerson College’s Bright Family Screening Room, the night presented the first world premier screening of Hush (Samar Qupty) and a screening of Salma’s Home (Hanadi Elyan) followed by a Q&A with each respective director and producer, Nathan Bennett. Both films offer a rich, emotional experience through the eyes of Palestinian women and represent the strength of women and female-identifying, People of Color. There is power in embracing every aspect of one’s  culture and presenting that to the world; that power and care is delivered in these films. Hush depicts a charming story that delves deeply into the struggles of being a woman, while additionally displaying the strength in female relationships and support from other women. Salma’s Home shares the emotional ups and downs of family relationships and learning to love through hardship through the interconnected lives of three women. It was an honor to be in attendance at this event and I cannot recommend these works enough!


  • 12 Oct 2022 9:10 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    WIFVNE's New Hampshire co-Chair Jaci Kjernander recaps the New Hampshire Film Festival 2022. 

    It was a whirlwind 4 days at the New Hampshire Film Festival. Many members of WIFVNE had their films screen, including Rachel Thomas, Laina Barakat, Jaci Kjernander, Miriam Olken, Alyson Muzila, and the list goes on!

    WIFVNE was fortunate enough to host a panel on Friday called “Changing Lanscapes”. Former WIFVNE New Hampshire Chair, Christine Altan, asked poignant questions of former WIFVNE Board member, Anna Feder (Head of Film Exhibition and Festival Programs in the Visual Media Arts Department at Emerson College and director/producer) and Nicole Galavski (creator/showrunner of “Growing Up” on Disney+, “The Hair Tales” on Hulu, “What Would Sophia Loren Do” on Netflix).

    The 150 screened films inspired film makers of all genres. There were also incredible events that provided the best of networking. WIFVNE is happy to welcome our newest members from the weekend and looking forward to working with NHFF next year!

    Top:  WIFVNE Board Member Rachel Thomas-Medwid (second from left) with her crew/cast from PENNY (including WIFVNE Member Alyson Muzila, far right)
    Middle:  WIFVNE Members Michelle Lee and Miriam Olken at BHFF
    Bottom:  "Changing Landscapes" panelists. Former WIFVNE New Hampshire Chair Christine Altan, panel moderator, second from right. 

  • 10 Oct 2022 3:17 PM | Rachel Thomas-Medwid (Administrator)

    The 5th annual Lonely Seal International Film, Screenplay & Music Festival took place at the Regent Theater October 5-10th with 70 plus films, two concerts, and a John Lennon Birthday showcase. WIFVNE Board Member Rachel Thomas-Medwid attended as a 2022 screenplay finalist and previous winner of the 2020 Female Filmmaker of the Year. 

    The festival has a focus on female filmmakers as well as LGBTQIA, minority, indigenous, and disabled filmmakers but loves all filmmakers who have “stories aching to be told.”

    A special WIFVNE member film block is in the works for the 6th Annual Lonely Seal FF…stay tuned for details on how to submit your work to be part of the festival!

  • 06 Oct 2022 4:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    WIFVNE Board Vice President Nerissa Williams Scott recaps The Camden International Film Festival 2022. 

    The Camden International Film Festival 2022 was a blast. Fellow board member Emily Abi-Kheirs and myself (pictured below, Nerissa on left) attended in stride as we traipsed up and down the coast line in upstate Maine. What a joy to be surrounded by the locals who wanted nothing more than to enlighten us on the wrongs being spouted about them in the media and their lobstah fishing ways. We enveloped their sense of pride and wanted to do more. We both supported the community the best way we know how....why, by buying and eating lobstah of course.


    “A program of the Points North Institute, CIFF remains widely recognized as a major platform championing the next generation of nonfiction storytellers and one of the hottest documentary and industry festivals on the festival and awards calendars,” said Points North, in a news release. “This year's edition was the most international and formally adventurous to date. It included 34 features and 37 short films from over 41 countries. Over 60% of the entire program was directed or co-directed by BIPOC filmmakers and this was the 6th consecutive program the festival has reached gender parity within the program and across all competitions.”

    Bravo CIFF!!! We at WIFVNE are looking forward to a solid partnership next year and years to come!

    Photo credit:  Nerissa Williams Scott 

  • 03 Oct 2022 4:00 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    The 2022 Scout Film Festival will take place October 28-30 at the New England Aquarium's Simons TheatreThe Institute of Contemporary Art / Boston Seaport Studio, and District Hall Boston

    The sixth annual festival features keynote speakers including Ryan and Ethan Hawke, Actress DeWanda Wise and filmmaker Colin Trevorrow of Jurassic World Dominion, and National Geographic’s Whitney C. Johnson.

    The educational program includes a workshop sponsored by WIFVNE! "Fanny Packs are In: Your Kick-Ass, Get a Job Production Assistant Workshop" will be facilitated by WIFVNE President Emeritus, Alecia Orsini, and WIFVNE Board Vice President, Nerissa Williams Scott on Saturday, October 29 10:30am-1:00pm.

    Founded by WIFVNE Vermont State Chair, Anna Colavito, Scout is a 501c3, international film festival which supports, empowers, and connects emerging filmmakers and visual storytellers worldwide aged 24 and under working in short film, photography, and innovation. 

    Last year Scout received over 3000 submissions from 109 countries!

    The 3-day event offers screenings, keynote speakers, and educational programming with leading industry professionals, creators, and entrepreneurs. Scout is more than a film festival for youth, it is a destination for audiences at large to learn about the incredible work that is being produced by youth in film, entrepreneurship, visual storytelling, and beyond.

    Scout has many volunteer opportunities to help make this first year in Boston magical! Please reach out to to inquire.

    Follow Scout on social media (links below) and join the mailing list for upcoming announcements about the festival screening schedule, exciting programming updates, and tickets.

    Instagram Twitter * Facebook * News Blog

  • 03 Oct 2022 3:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    New Hampshire Film Festival (NHFF) returns in-person for its 20th Annual edition October 6 – 9, 2022. NHFF is an annual fall event that unites professional filmmakers, screenwriters and film industry experts with film lovers. The festival was recently named an Academy Award® qualifying festival for the Short Film Awards by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences this past year.

    NHFF, attended by thousands of people from all over the country, is a year-round production that includes programming world-class films, industry panels, a screenplay competition, and workshops for young local filmmakers.

    During the festival, attendees can choose from a carefully curated selection of films and take advantage of exceptional dining and shopping options within walking distance of the festival’s venues.

    “We are beyond thrilled to finally celebrate our 20th anniversary edition in person and bring together the best filmmakers from around the state and globe alongside our incredible community of attendees and sponsors,” shares Executive Director for the New Hampshire Film Festival Nicole Gregg. “It’s going to be a celebration like no other, and we are so grateful to showcase these amazing films and special events in our spectacular city of Portsmouth. We are also ecstatic to share so many new and exciting venues this city now has to offer-- we can’t wait to welcome you all back this October!”

    WIFVNE Presents:  Changing Landscapes panel on October 7 at 11am

    Join Women in Film & Video New England (WIFVNE) New Hampshire co-Chair Christine Altan, with special guests Nicole Galovski (Creator/Showrunner of Growing Up on Disney+, The Hair Tales on Hulu & OWN, What Would Sophia Loren Do on Netflix) and Anna Feder (Head of Film Exhibition & Festival Programs in the Visual Media Arts Department at Emerson College, Director and Producer of Never Again Para Nadie, a documentary on the Jewish organization protesting ICE) to find out how these dynamic filmmakers are changing the landscape of inclusion, gender equality, and thriving post-pandemic. Discussion will follow with audience questions and the opportunity to network.

    *Stay for a special WIFVNE announcement at the conclusion of the panel.

    Highlights of the New Hampshire Film Festival include:

    • Groundbreaking Films: Enjoy award-winning, independent documentaries, narratives, shorts, family films, and more! There is something for everyone. 
    • Celebrity Guests & Attendees: Interact with celebrity guests during panel discussions, parties and screenings. Past celebrity guests have included David Spade, Mike O’Malley, David Spade, Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea, Rae Dawn Chong, Adrian Grenier, and Tom Bergeron. 
    • Buzzworthy Parties & Events: From red carpet galas and cocktail parties to exclusive after parties and the festival’s signature Comedy Panel, you’ll have many opportunities to mingle with other film-loving attendees, celebrity guests, and film industry influencers. 
    • Industry Insiders: Feed your love of film with industry expert panel discussions, premiere screenings, networking events, and workshops. 

    NHFF is an Academy Award® qualifying festival

    Short films that receive the festival’s Live Action Shorts Jury Award and Animation Shorts Jury Award may now qualify to enter the Short Films competition for the concurrent Oscar® season. Recipients of these qualifying festival awards will be eligible for consideration in the Live Action Short Film and Animation Short Film categories of the Academy Awards® without the standard theatrical run, provided the films otherwise comply with the Academy rules.

    The New Hampshire Film Festival adds the creative voice and spirit of the northern New England region to an exclusive international list of Academy qualifying festivals for the Short Film Awards. The carefully curated list includes notable festivals such as Cannes Film Festival, South by Southwest Film Festival, Sundance Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival and Venice Film Festival.

    The full list of Academy Award® qualifying festivals for the Short Film Awards can be found at

    NHFF Sponsors

    BankProv and Key Auto Group are the headline sponsors for this event. Additional sponsors include InHouse, Vital, Coppola Wines, BANKW Staffing, Access Sports Medicine, Avery Insurance, Construction Services of New Hampshire, Stella Artois, Night Shift Brewing, Natural Rocks, Nancy Phillips Associates, Daychaser, Rockingham Electric, Green & Co., Whole Foods, and AARP.

    NHFF’s mission is to inspire audiences with thought-provoking cinematic stories from visionary talents in independent filmmaking, and to provide a platform for emerging artists to advance their craft, engage with the community and promote to industry leaders. From young filmmakers to up-and-coming directors and seasoned screenwriters to veteran actors, the New Hampshire Film Festival showcases the brightest talent within the domestic and international film scene. The festival also emphasizes creative collaboration, education and networking through panel discussions, workshops, and social events. 

  • 30 Sep 2022 9:37 AM | Rachel Thomas-Medwid (Administrator)

    The Shawna Shea Film Festival celebrated the spirit of independent films and the people who make them with a plethora of films screening over five days in September. Miriam Olken, Jordan Pacheco, Alyson Muzila, Rachel Thomas-Medwid, Gabrielle Rosson, Jaina Cipriano, and Carly Byers were some of the many WIFVNE members who were there to represent their films and support other filmmakers.

    Big congratulations to Jordan, Gabrielle, Jaina, and Carly for bringing home awards for their work!

    Top: Rachel Thomas-Medwid, Miriam Olken, Jordan Pacheco, and Alison Muzila

    Bottom: Award winners Gabrielle Rosson, Jaina Cipriano, and Carly Byers.

  • 13 Jul 2022 3:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    As the longest-running film festival on the Cape and Islands and one of the oldest in New England, the Woods Hole Film Festival was an early leader in promoting the films and careers of emerging, independent filmmakers, especially those with ties to New England, and specifically Cape Cod and the Islands—a mission that continues to this day.

    The 31st Annual Woods Hole Film Festival will be fully back in-person this year, with all films, filmmaker Q&As, panel discussions, the master class with Filmmaker-In-Residence Tasha Van Zandt, workshops, music events, the awards ceremony, and parties taking place at six different venues in Woods Hole, Falmouth, and Cotuit. A majority of films will also be available to watch on the Festival’s virtual platform. The festival dates are Saturday, July 30 through Saturday, August 6.

    The Festival’s intimate environment and inspiring setting by the sea provide filmmakers from around the world and audience members the opportunity to watch films together and to engage face to face in thought-provoking and meaningful conversations.

    The 44 feature-length and 72 short films (the latter organized into 10 separate, themed programs) offer something for everyone: films about coming-of-any-age, adventure, music, love, family, social and climate change, science, art and sports. Read on about some of the festival’s highlights.

    New England Connections

    Since the festival is in New England, it also attracts films that either include New England cast and crew members or were shot or set here—or sometimes both. On the narrative side there’s NORTHERN SHADE (Thursday, August 4), Branford, Connecticut native Chris Rucinski’s feature debut, set and filmed mostly in Connecticut, about a disenchanted Army vet who emerges from isolation when his younger brother is recruited by an extremist militia. Its cast and crew are also mainly from Massachusetts and Connecticut: actor Brian McDonald lives in Hanover, Massachusetts, and his father works at The Captain Kidd in Woods Hole, the Festival’s party host. MIDNIGHT BLACK, MIDNIGHT BLUE (Friday, August 5), a cinematic poem about a man grappling with his shifting memories of his ex-lover, stars and is co-directed by Samantha Soule, who was born and raised in Massachusetts; cinematographer Piero Basso divides his time between Cape Cod and Manhattan. ROUTE 1 NORTH (Tuesday, August 2), the debut narrative feature from Isabelle Rose Farrell, follows two sisters on a road trip along the eastern seaboard from Maryland to Maine, including a night on Cape Cod.

    On the documentary side, one film with New England ties has made headlines recently. David Grubin’s FREE RENTY: LANIER V. HARVARD (Sunday, July 31) follows Tamara Lanier’s fight to force Harvard University to cede possession of daguerreotypes made of her great-great-great grandfather—an enslaved man named Renty—and his daughter Delia, which were commissioned in 1850 by a Harvard professor (without their consent) to "prove" the superiority of the white race. On June 24, 2022, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that Lanier could sue Harvard for negligent infliction of emotional distress, but that Harvard can still retain physical and legal title of the four images. Cambridge director Garrett Zevgetis’s ON THESE GROUNDS (Tuesday, August 2) follows healer and activist Vivian Anderson, who uprooted her life in New York City after a video that went viral inspired her to support a Black teenager who was pulled from her school desk and thrown across the floor by a white police officer in South Carolina. Sara Archambault of Cambridge-based The DocYard, produced A DECENT HOME (Wednesday, August 3) by renowned photographer/cinematographer Sarah Terry, which addresses urgent issues of class and economic inequity through the lives of mobile home park residents who can’t afford other housing. Boston-based filmmaker and festival alum Lucia Small (One Cut, One Life) spent nearly seven years filming GIRL TALK, (Wednesday, August 3), her tour-de-force documentary about five girls on the diverse, top-ranked Newton South (Massachusetts) debate team, who find their voices despite being talked over, underrepresented, and judged differently than their male counterparts.

    Two short films also have strong New England ties. In WHERE LAND ENDS (Thursday, August 4) Grace McNally creates a sensitive portrait of Cuttyhunk, the tiny island with only 12 full-time residents and only one child, who is the only student at the last one room schoolhouse in Massachusetts. Harvard Professor Peter Galison’s animated documentary SHATTERING STARS (Sunday, July 31) tells the story of Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, an Indian physics prodigy who at age 19 was publicly humiliated when his major discovery about black holes collided with accepted physics. Decades later he won the Nobel Prize for his discovery, even though the experience shattered his ambitions.

    Panel Discussions, Master Classes, Workshops & Other Special Events

    Renowned explorer Will Steger, filmmakers Tasha Van Zandt (AFTER ANTARCTICA), Holly Morris (EXPOSURE), and Kathy Kasic (THE LAKE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE WORLD), together with Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) polar scientists Sarah Das and Catherine Walker, will discuss how to communicate information about climate change through documentary filmmaking during “From Pole to Pole: Documenting Climate Change in Extreme Locations,” a panel discussion that is also part of WHOI’s Dispatches from an Ocean Planet series sponsored by the Yawkey Foundation. Filmmaker-in-Residence Van Zandt will also teach a master class on Tuesday, August 2.

    After screening her documentary feature FAIR PLAY (Friday, August 5)—inspired by Eve Rodsky’s bestselling book about the unfair work dynamic in her own home and society at large—director Jennifer Siebel Newsom (California Governor Gavin Newsom’s First Partner) will lead a discussion about domestic inequity, making visible the invisible care work historically held by women.

    For those interested in the new Dolby Atmos sound system, consultant and Garrett Audio owner Jay Sheehan presents “Beyond Stereo: Exploring Immersive Mixing” (Thursday, August 4), a workshop on navigating the new system and an examination of what emerging filmmakers of today need to consider when adopting the workflow associated with this new delivery format.

    For tickets and more information, visit, or call (508) 495-3456 or email



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