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  • 31 Jan 2023 3:17 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    WIFVNE is pleased to announce four new Board members.

    Yael Beals began her career producing for television at Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics where she worked on a series called ESSENTIAL SCIENCE FOR TEACHERS, a science program for teachers; a documentary called INFLUENCING COLLEGE SCIENCE SUCCESS; and Digital Video Science Library. The work was exhibited at the Harvard Museum of Natural History. As an independent filmmaker, she created several films for the CityLab program at the Boston University School of Medicine, including THE SCIENCE OF OPPORTUNITY and SUMMERLAB. (CityLab provided underprivileged students the opportunity to start a career in biotechnology.) In addition, Yael has worked with Errol Morris, the documentary film and commercial director, in developing concepts for books and films. Beals is also developing the limited TV series, BILLION DOLLAR MOLECULE based on the book with the same name by the award-winning author Barry Werth. This is also a collaboration with award-winning Executive Producer Norman Stephens, award-winning screenwriter John Pielmeier, and Executive producer Julie Snyder. She is also developing a limited TV series, HOOK’s TALE based on the book with the same name by John Pielmeier and Executive Producers Norman Stephens and Ken Atchity. Beals is Co-Producing a feature documentary film about Jewish Resistance to the Nazi Regime during Holocaust with Emmy award-winning Executive Producer Paula Apsell. Beals earned her Master’s degree in film and television from Emerson College and a B.A. in photojournalism from Ohio University. She studied science at Harvard University and is trained as an EMT.

    Kristen Falso-Capaldi began her career at TV stations in Providence, RI and Boston, where she was a writer/producer for promotion, advertising and short-form programs, one of which earned her a Boston/New England Emmy nomination. After pursuing her masters degree and spending several years as a public school teacher, she wrote, directed and edited a short film, You Weren’t Afraid at All, which ignited her passion for filmmaking. Falso-Capaldi works as a production designer for shorts, features and television and is currently working on a short film and co-writing a TV pilot script. She was a 2021 finalist for the New England Film Star Award and was chosen for the 2022 WIFVNE Director Shadowing Program. She is among the speakers at the 2023 TEDx conference at Bryant University in Smithfield, RI. Falso-Capaldi is also a novelist, a visual artist and an adjunct university instructor in literature, writing and film studies. 


    Heather Keith recently joined the film and television industry as a Covid Compliance Officer for feature and commercial work. Since then, she has worked as Production Supervisor on a feature and 1st AD on a short film in addition to volunteer work in Props and other roles as needed. Heather is currently finding any and every opportunity to work on set while also working on a screenplay of a historical fiction series based on a novel she’s writing. In her previous career, she had 25 years of marketing and sales management experience, building sales teams and launching products for multiple medical device companies. In 2011, she founded a start-up and raised $1.25M from investors. She previously served on the Board of MassMEDIC (Massachusetts Medical Device Industry Council). Heather has volunteered for many years as an advisor, mentor, and speaker for Springboard Enterprises (sb.co), an organization that accelerates the growth of entrepreneurial companies led by women through access to resources and a global community of experts. Heather has double bachelor’s degrees in Biology and Business and received her MBA from Boston University. She plays piano, knits, and enjoys skiing, mountain biking, and rowing.

    Marilyn Swick’s passion and creativity for the film industry have been the fundamental drive in every avenue of her life. Starting as a teenage model and actress in Columbus, Ohio, she appeared in commercial print ads, moved into theatrical performances and the rest is history. Today, she is an accomplished award-winning producer, director, screenwriter, songwriter, acting coach, and SAG-AFTRA actress. Marilyn is also a proud member of ASCAP as a songwriter and a publisher under Sleep On It Productions. She is a long-standing member of Women In Film and Television in LA, Houston, and New England. Marilyn earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal Arts from Georgetown University in Washington, DC and attended the New York Film Academy.

  • 31 Jan 2023 1:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Thank you to everyone who came out on January 29, 2023 in Norwalk at EcoEvolution for our WIFVNE meet-up on the shoreline of Connecticut. 


    For more WIFVNE events, please check our calendar


    Pictured:  WIFVNE Board member Dusty Noval, Karen Silas, Amanda Parvis Lanzo, Meg McAuley Kaicher, Maddie Robbins, and Katie Colwell. (not pictured: Sharbari Ahmed)

  • 27 Jan 2023 2:00 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Sporting Events are the last great unifiers in our country. Government, movies, and music are now proven to be divisive. Only sports can channel our highs and lows in a way that allows us to feel passionate in ways solely dedicated to our entertainment. Though we may cheer for different teams, we all love the honor and camaraderie around the game. Those feelings bring out the best in us when life is scary, sad, joyous, and even confusing. Buffalo Bill Damar Hamlin's tragic hospitalization and miraculous recovery fostered a wave of goodwill and brought the country together. People cheered the dawn of the Patriots dynasty after 9/11. Sports speak to some of the deepest needs we have as humans: to belong to a group, to feel excited, to handle risks, and to overcome the odds.

    Blue collar blood runs through the veins of New England. Whether ending British rule or the Curse of the Bambino, Bostonians have a proud heritage of reaching down one last time to summon the will to win. As a result, New England is ripe with stories of those who overcome the greatest odds for their day in the sun. We wish to explore stories about individuals who have broken through glass ceilings. 

    We seek people who have inspiring and aspiring stories with universal messages of hope and perseverance. Stories that give us hope through the medium of a ball, puck, or athletic ability.

    A team of Hollywood producers, with ties to New England, are looking for scripts or fully vetted treatments based on true sports stories right out of New England to be developed and produced into a major feature film. We are looking for the female gaze for this project. 

    This contest is open to Women in Film & Video - New England (WIFVNE) members in good standing, who are female or identify as female. You may join WIFVNE if you are not a WIFVNE Member and would like to submit.

    To submit:  Submit a 1-page treatment via a Google Form, provided by WIFVNE, between February 10 and March 5, 2023. Details will be sent to WIFVNE Members via WIFVNE Members Only email.

  • 19 Jan 2023 3:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    WIFVNE is delighted to announce a new service: WIFVNEJobs. Looking for freelance work? Have a casting or crew call to share, a job or internship at your company to promote? Or want job alerts directly in your email inbox?

    Visit WIFVNEJobs.org and get your free account.*

    What is WIFVNEJobs?

    The jobs board may sound familiar. In 2022, as NewEnglandFilms.com founder Michele Meek decided to retire the site to work on other creative and scholarly projects, WIFVNE stepped up to maintain the jobs and opportunities database.

    Why get an account with WIFVNEJobs?

    Crew and casting calls posted to Facebook--even the WIFVNE Facebook Group--may not show up in feeds as they once did due to the way Facebook now works.

    Head over to WIFVNEJobs.org to see postings and sign up for a free account.

    *Recent users of the New England Film jobs board already may have an account.  


  • 06 Jan 2023 4:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    AMERICAN EXPERIENCE presents Zora Neale Hurston: Claiming a Space, a new in-depth biography of the influential author whose groundbreaking anthropological work would challenge assumptions about race, gender and cultural superiority that had long defined the field in the 19th century.

    Directed and written by WIFVNE member Tracy Heather Strain, produced by Randall MacLowry and executive produced by Cameo George, the film premieres on AMERICAN EXPERIENCE on Tuesday, January 17, 9:00-11:00 p.m. ET (check local listings) on PBS, PBS.org and the PBS Video app. 

    Raised in the small all-Black Florida town of Eatonville, Zora Neale Hurston studied at Howard University before arriving in New York in 1925. She would soon become a key figure of the Harlem Renaissance, best remembered for her novel Their Eyes Were Watching God. But even as she gained renown in the Harlem literary circles, Hurston was also discovering anthropology at Barnard College with the renowned Franz Boas. She would make several trips to the American South and the Caribbean, documenting the lives of rural Black people and collecting their stories. She studied her own people, an unusual practice at the time, and during her lifetime became known as the foremost authority on Black folklore.

    “Zora Neale Hurston has long been considered a literary giant of the Harlem Renaissance, but her anthropological and ethnographic endeavors were equally important and impactful,” says AMERICAN EXPERIENCE executive producer Cameo George. “Her research and writings helped establish the dialects and folklore of African American, Caribbean and African people throughout the American diaspora as components of a rich, distinct culture, anchoring the Black experience in the Americas.”


    Tracy Strain

    Tracy Heather Strain (Director/Writer/Producer), president and co-founder of the Film Posse, is an award-winning filmmaker. Strain directed, wrote and produced Sighted Eyes/Feeling Heart, her feature documentary about Lorraine Hansberry, which made its television debut on AMERICAN MASTERS and won a Peabody Award, an NAACP Image Award for Motion Picture Directing (Television) and the American Historical Association’s John E. O’Connor Award. A two-time Emmy-nominated filmmaker, her other directing and producing credits include “When the Bough Breaks” for the duPont Columbia Award-winning series Unnatural Causes: Is Inequality Making Us Sick? and “The Story We Tell” for Race: The Power of an Illusion. She directed, wrote and produced “Bright Like a Sun” and “The Dream Keepers” for Blackside’s six-part series I’ll Make Me a World: A Century of African American Art, which won a Peabody Award and Organization of American Historians’ Erik Barnouw Award. Her other AMERICAN EXPERIENCE credits include producer/director of Building the Alaska Highway; writer/director/producer of American Oz; producer of Silicon Valley; and coordinating producer of The Feud, The Swamp, The Battle of Chosin, The Mine Wars and The Rise and Fall of Penn Station. Strain is the Corwin-Fuller Professor of Film Studies at Wesleyan University.

  • 30 Dec 2022 10:16 PM | Sule Kiziltas (Administrator)

    When I started making films in the late 1960s, it was the beginning of the Women’s Movement. At the time, there were few women making independent films and even fewer who were dealing specifically with women’s political issues. I was one of the three independent women filmmakers in Massachusetts. Film equipment was scarce and expensive. Fortunately, I had a friend who was an MIT student taking a film course. He introduced me to the legendary Ricky Leacock who graciously loaned me his converted Auricon camera and sound equipment to shoot my film” says the producer Liane Brandon.

    WIFVNE Member Liane Brandon (below) is an award-winning independent filmmaker, photographer, and University of Massachusetts/Amherst Professor Emerita. Her film Betty Tells Her Story was one of 25 films inducted into the National Film Registry in 2022 by the Library of Congress.  

    Liane was one of the first independent women filmmakers to emerge from the Women’s Movement. During that time, she was a member of Newsreel Film Collective and Bread and Roses, one of the earliest women’s liberation groups in Boston. She is a co-founder of New Day Films, the nationally known cooperative that pioneered in the distribution of feminist/social issue films and videos. She was also a founding member of FilmWomen of Boston and the Boston Film/Video Foundation.

    Liane Brandon Receives Grant to Restore, Preserve Early Feminist Film : UMass Amherst

    When I made Betty Tells Her Story in 1972, it was very different from traditional non-fiction films about wars, historical events, male heroes, travel, inventions, and so-called ‘primitive’ tribes. Most were made by men. Very few, if any, were concerned with the lives of ordinary women, or with the issues of culture, standards of beauty, clothing, and identity. I thought it was important to make films that allowed women to tell their own stories; stories that reflected their own experiences.”

    Betty Tells Her Story - LianeBrandon

    Brandon’s groundbreaking films Sometimes I wonder Who I Am (1970), Anything You Want to Be (1971) and Betty Tells Her Story (1972) were among the earliest and most frequently used consciousness-raising tools of the Women’s Movement. Her films, which also include Once Upon A Choice and How To Prevent A Nuclear War have won numerous national and international awards, and have been featured on HBO, Cinemax, and the Criterion Channel.  Both Anything You Want To Be and Betty Tells Her Story have been restored with grants from the Women’s Film Preservation Fund.

    When Betty Tells Her Story was released, it was considered innovative- even radical- for some reasons. One was its subject. It was one of the early non-fiction films to give voice to an individual (not famous or glamorous) woman. Betty simply tells her story in her own words. There was no commentary interpreting her. The form was also controversial. Betty is not an actress. She tells her story twice. There are no cuts in either of the stories. Each time Betty tells her story, she does so in a single take. This went against all conventions of filmmaking.

    Even though there was strong demand for this film (and for Anything You Want To Be which I made the year before) commercial distributors were still reluctant to handle women’s social issue films. So in 1971, Julia Reichert, Amalie Rothschild, Kim Klein and I created New Day Films, the nation’s first filmmaker-run cooperative dedicated to the distribution of feminist and social issues films-still going strong after 51 years. In the following years, the film received a great deal of acclaim. It was selected to appear in more than 20 festivals and it has been screened at prestigious venues including the First International Festival of Women’s Films in Paris and Mumbai, La Femme& Le Film International Film Festival, Toronto, the Museum of Modern Art, the Robert Flaherty International Film Seminar and the Mary Pickford Theater at the Library of Congress. Following its registration in 2010 with a grant from the Women’s Film Preservation Fund, the film continues to receive recognition and use. It is regularly screened in documentary courses, film study programs, women’s studies, journalism, psychology, sociology, and anthropology courses.”

    Liane is the recipient of the Boston Society of Film Critics Award and the Distinguished Alumni Award from Boston University. She has served as a juror for the Emmy Awards, the Evvy Awards, the Student Academy Awards, and as an education consultant for WGBH-TV. She was named Pioneer Woman Filmmaker by CineWomen of New York. Liane's work has been profiled in The Boston Globe, International Documentary Magazine, Variety, The Chicago Tribune, Film Library Quarterly, Documentary Storytelling for Film, Videomakers, and many other publications.

    In addition to her role as a Professor at the University of Massachusetts and Chair of the Educational Technology Program in the College of Education, she was the Director of UMass Educational Television. The College of Education became the first educational college in the country to produce original educational programming for cable/home audiences.

    Liane’s historic films and papers are now part of the New Day Films Collection in the Archive at Duke University. Her films are in active distribution through New Day Films.

    More notes:

    - Before becoming a filmmaker, Liane experimented with several short careers, working as a ski instructor, file clerk, high school teacher, and professional stunt woman.

    -Liane was the producer, director, camerawoman and editor of Betty Tells Her Story. Betty was a school teacher and curriculum specialist (not an actress).

    - For more on the other films inducted into the National Film Registry, please see this press release from the Library of Congress

  • 13 Dec 2022 7:55 PM | Sule Kiziltas (Administrator)

    Sule KIZILTAS, newly graduated from Department at Suffolk University and welcomes the opportunities to connect about careers in media and journalism, also seeks for OPT opportunities. 


    WIFVNE Member Marilyn Swick,  award winning SAG-AFTRA actor, screen-writer, director, and producer, recently wrapped her latest film "Ocean Child". The film was shot in Plymouth Beach, MA and Kahala Beach, HI. Marilyn and her co-writer Laura Koons of Katy, Texas created a mystical world of mermaids, dreams, hopes, and destiny. 

    "Marilyn and Laura have written and created a story that is every childhood dream come true", stated Heather Whitty, the casting director and acting coach." They created a magical world that feels heartfelt, inclusive, and most importantly full of endless wonder. An incredibly well-crafted and imaginative screenplay with characters that embody worlds of their own that you can't wait to learn more about." 

    The cast of the film traveled from Hawaii, New England, Texas and Virginia for the shoot. One of the writers, Ms. Swick, said that the reason why they chose Plymouth Beach is because the rocky beaches would best serve to showcase their mystical cove. "We loved the rocks" she added. The storyline of the film follows a young girl's journey towards her destiny as a mermaid attending the underwater School of Mermaidology and Neptunism in spite of her mother's fears. The young girl's name is Hope and she is merhuman like her father and grandmother.

    The film features eight mermaids from six years of and up including Queen Amara of the Seven Seas and Aria, the music teacher who plays a magical saxophone and signs from their School of Mermaidology and Neptunism. Avery Rodgers, from Virginia, plays the lead role of Hope and is also a singer and songwriter. Marilyn Swick plays the role of Serena, Hope's grandmother, who was the original Queen of the Seven Seas and she is also a merhuman who gave uo her mermaid life when she fell in love with a sailor on the Navy ship, the Blue Ghost. Other cast includes the roles of Queen Amara (LaTeace Towns-Cuellar); Aria-the music teacher of the school (Evelyn Rubio); Joy from the original concept "Wish Upon A Starfish". The supporting cast comes from New England including Mary Herbert, Alex Bensley, Rhys Cote, Gavin Walker, Chloe Trejo, Jayla Onwuakor and Lexi (Grand Champion Doberman-Hope's trusted companion).

    Marilyn Swick says that the original concept "Wish Upon A Starfish" was captured as a proof of concept five years ago with a diverse cast in TX; this storyline expanded into series that brought more diversity to the cast and became "Ocean Child".

    "Ocean Child" will begin its journey in the Academy Award Qualifying Film Festival Circuit in 2023 with the culmination of mystical series being optioned by one of the networks.

    For more information and those who would like to follow their journey, follow them on Facebook and IMDB.

  • 03 Dec 2022 5:30 PM | Sule Kiziltas (Administrator)


    Sule KIZILTAS, Graduate student in Department at Suffolk University and welcomes the opportunities to connect about careers in media and journalism. 

    On Thursday November 17, Women in Film and Television International (WIFTI) announced the new president Dr. Susan Liddy, who had been serving as the Chair of WFT Ireland. She will step into the role that has been occupied by Swedish producer Helen Granqvist since 2018. These two women will work together as Co-Presidents until Dr. Liddy assumes the helm in August 2023. 

    "I'm looking forward to sharing the leadership of WIFTI with Dr. Liddy during the transition period." said Ms. Granqvisit while welcoming Dr. Liddy to her new role. "Susan is a researcher and I am a practitioner but we are both activists who work strategically for change. I couldn't wish for someone better to take over the leadership for WIFTI."

    Susan Liddy

    While talking about her appointment, Dr. Liddy said she is honored to be chosen to lead WIFTI in the years ahead and looks forward to working with the international colleagues to elevate and amplify the role of women in film and television. "I salute Helen Granqvisit who has worked tirelessly to build a global organisation that is united in a vision of female empowerment and advancement. Our goal remains firm: to promote equality, diversity and inclusion in the screen industries everywhere" she said. 

    Who is Dr. Susan Liddy?

    Dr. Susan Liddy has led WFT Ireland as chair since 2018. She serves on the board of Irish Film Institute, the Writers Guild of Ireland and Raising Films Ireland. She lectures the Department of Media and Communication Studies in University of Limerick. Dr. Liddy is also the founder and director of Catalyst International Film Festival that priorities films from underrepresented groups. 

    WHAT IS WIFTI?

    WIFTI (Women in Film and Television International) is a coalition of Women in Film Chapters as well as other women's media organizations around the world. There are more than 50 WIFT and WIFT-partner chapters on six continents that all work for the same goal: gender balance in the film industry. It was established as the global network connecting all women in Film organizations to speak with one common voice. 

    WIFVNE is a member of WIFTI.

    WIFTI BOARD MEMBERS: 

    Co-Chairs: Susan Liddy, WFT Ireland and Helene Granqvist, WIFT Sweden
    Board members: Sarah Inya Lawal, WIFT Africa; Ajoke Silva, Forum of Women and Film and TV Nigeria; Rubaiyat Hossain, WIFT Bangladesh; Tsiako Abezadze, WIFT Caucasus; Susan Brinton, WIFT Vancouver; Brigitte Monneau, FCTMN Montreal; Nicole Ackermann, WIFT Germany; Patricia Watson, WIFT New Zealand; Katrina Graham, WIFT Australia; Nerissa Scott, WIFV New England; Serena Mmifinyana, Women in Film Guild Botswana; Marjaana Mykkänen, WIFT Finland; Domizia De Rosa, WIFTM Italy; Katerina Kaskanioti, WIFT Greece; Osnat Bukofzer, WIFT Israel; Nadean Rawlins, WIFT Jamaica; Susana Campos, WIFT Brazil; Cynthia Lopez, New York WIFT and Kirsten Schaffer, WIF Los Angeles.

  • 17 Nov 2022 9:12 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Fall issue of IMAGINE Magazine -- "The Art and Business of Film & Television Production in New England" -- is available now and you need go no further than a click to read it!  Turn the virtual pages to read about WIFVNE members and their projects, in-depth interviews, productions shot in New England, film festival and industry news in the region, and features such as the "Legal Lens."

    Access IMAGINE’s latest eEdition:  click on the latest cover image to view the current issue. The eMag site also has several past issues to access.

    The Fall 2022 issue of IMAGINE

    Look inside the digital pages for the cover story on WOUND WOOD, a feature shot last summer just outside Concord, MA. WIFVNE President Emeritus Alecia Orsini served as Production Manager for the film, and many WIFVNE members served on the crew. 

    In the photo montage below, from right to left:  Production Office: Stacy Buchanan and Alecia Orsini; Costume Department: Feliz and Kayla McEniry; Camera Department: Capri Kuliopulos, Nikki Skelly, and Jenna Hobgood; Audio Department: Yvonne Corbett.


    Also inside is a feature on OCEAN CHILD, a short film produced, co-written by, and starring WIFVNE Member Marilyn Swick. Marilyn talks about her all-female crew, most of whom are WIFVNE members (photo below). The editorial includes a recap of the retirement event for WIFVNE Member Lisa Strout formerly the Director of the Mass Film Office.


  • 27 Sep 2022 11:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    WIFVNE is pleased to announce Laina Barakat will be WIFVNE's New Hampshire state co-chair with Jaci Kjernander. 



    Laina Barakat is an Independent Film Writer, Director and Producer. Her film career began with an internship for Either/Or Films during Post Production and Distributions of The Sensation of Sight (David Strathairn, Ian Sommerhalder, Jane Adams, Ann Cusak). The first film she produced, Only Daughter, premiered at Cinequest Film Festival and picked up various awards across the country including Audience Choice Award at New York No Limits, and NH Film of the Year at New Hampshire Film Festival. While working with Kingston Road Pictures in late 2015, Laina Associate and Line-Produced a documentary film in Grand Rapids Michigan called More Art Upstairs, which premiered at Hot Docs in 2017 and won the Audience Choice Award at Tribeca Film Festival.

    Barakat formed Wayward Ark Productions in 2016 to take creative control of her projects, and empower young filmmakers in the Monadnock Region. She has written, directed and produced seven short films which have garnered awards including Audience Choice Award for Best Drama at New England Film Festival, Best NH Performance at NH Film Festival, the Judge's Award for Best Comedy at Iron Mule Film Festival, Audience Choice Award at MONIFF, and Best Shorter Short Comedy at London Comedy Short Festival.

    Her first feature film as a director, Light Attaching to a Girl, premiered at RiverRun Film Festival, then went on to New Filmmakers New York. It is currently touring the festival circuit.

    Laina co-founded and was Executive Director for the Monadnock International Film Festival during its first three years. She currently lives in Marlborough, New Hampshire and while balancing her film pursuits, she is the General Manager of 58 year old organization, Monadnock Music.

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