Director Biography – Mike Gallant (TERRA BEACH)

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Director Mike Gallant grew up in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada, and moved to Toronto, Ontario, at the age of 17 to attend film school. In 2015, he took a crew of his friends and colleagues to Cancun, Mexico, where he shot his first feature “The Duchess of Cancun.” After making his mark as a professional editor and videographer and writing/directing many award-winning shorts, this film is his directorial debut. Mike has now become a full-time feature film editor in Canada, working on projects like “Clash”, “I’ll Take Your Dead” which stars Aidan Devin (Suicide Squad), “Don’t Click”, “Still The Water”, “The Oak Room” which stars RJ Mitte (Breaking Bad), “Purple Don’t Cry”, and the HBO Max film, “Vicious Fun” which stars David Koechner (Anchorman). His main goal is to direct/write a feature film for a major production company.

Director Statement

I chose to make this film, “Terra Beach”, because my wife of Mexican decent endured incredible hardships at a young age to find a better life in both the U.S. and Canada. One of the main characters, “Dominica”, has similar experiences when she and her sister are attacked in a hate crime on a space station in 2069. Mitch, the main character and a stranger to Dominica, witnesses the hate crime and offers to help track down Dominica’s attackers. Fortunately, my wife has not been the subject of such abuse, but knows things like this do happen to people around her. My relationship with my wife heavily informs the bond created between Mitch and Dominica. I also worked hard to keep “Terra Beach” both a-political and morally murky – hoping the results are stronger for it. Noel G (Training Day, The Fast and The Furious) brought an incredible nuance to his performance and beautifully portrayed a good father who wants to do a bad thing. This was a labour of love and the most rewarding project I have ever been a part of.

Director Biography – Stimson Snead (SPIRIT: A MARTIAN STORY)

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Award-winning director, illustrator, and ten-year veteran of the indie scene. With multiple stage musicals, short stories and comic strips also to his name.

Some describe him as an open-minded team leader who lends his signature style to projects with grace and good humor while still respecting the ethos that informs the source material. Although others have described him as a ticking time bomb of insanity and social anxiety, ready to go screaming off the deep end at any-

Director Statement

The story of SPIRIT and OPPORTUNITY is an extraordinarily inspirational one. It resonates on a gut level to all of us working in and following the science and space community. That this effect is so often lost on the laymen is a fact we’ve resigned ourselves to.

But the online comic XKCD: SPIRIT by Randall Monroe, succeeded in driving home just how meaningful this story was. Becoming an instant internet meme shared by young and old alike.

It has been a pleasure of the filmmakers to translate that comic to film in order to share the inspiration of SPIRIT: A Martian Story, with the world!

-Stimson Snead

Director Biography – Lenore Thomas Douglas (WEEP NOT)

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A Boston University Alumn, Lenore Thomas Douglas worked at the Today Show for Matt Lauer & Al Roker. ‘Weep Not’ marks her directorial film debut loosely based on the 2018 Two Time NAACP nominated one woman theater show, ‘Journey this’,’ which she also directed.

Other writing credits; Xbox produced short film, ‘Miracle of Phil’ which premiered at Comic Con. She recently acted opposite Wes Bentley in the Terrance Malik produced film, ‘After The Fall’.

twitter: @weepnotfilm

 

Director Statement

 

This film is a love letter to family and owning your truth.

Director Biography – Piotr Sulkowski (PLAY)

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Graduate of the Film School in Lodz, Poland – MA Filmmaking degree (2016). The Film School in Łódź is one of the top rated film schools in Europe, and a leading Polish academy for training actors, directors, photographers, camera operators, and television production professionals. Also, a graduate of the Institute of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Warsaw.

Scholarship recipient of the “Young Poland” Program (2015) – the grant awarded by the Polish National Center for Culture and offered to young artists having already accomplished outstanding achievements in Arts. Winner of honorable awards, including Wiesław Nowacki Prize for the most promising young filmmaker (2015), and the award of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage (MKiDN), granted to art students with outstanding achievements.

Winner of many awards at national and international festivals for films: Play, Miruna, The Conversation, and The Detail.
“…tales of love and death. These classical themes are treated with the graveness of an adult and yet with the curiosity of a child. His somewhat disturbing films bear witness of a quest for Truth – dark as it may be.
In his probing of the human soul and its profound reasons, the scenery or the setting reflects the characters’ state of mind, while the refined framing, depth of field, juxtaposition of images and camera movements suggest a parallel reality, close to the realm of dreams…” M. Berthelius – film critic

Director Statement

“Play” is an attempt to rebound the mechanism in the thought of the unconscious. The infinite changes that process a trauma or tragedy until what happened becomes acceptable. For this reason, I wanted to exaggerate suffering, to the point of absurdity. Afterall, isn’t this how we experience our fears in dreams? And to what extent, are our dreams borrowed from pop culture messages? In my film, paradise is nothing more than finding yourself in an advertisement for Pepsi… leaving it up to the viewer to decide if the proposed finale is a happy ending or, perhaps… a horror story.

Director Biography – Jay Mohan (I RESIGN)

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Jay Mohan is a filmmaker based out of Dallas, Texas. As a new comer to the Dallas movie making arena, he started making films only from 2018. Within a short span of time he has made three short films covering multiple aspects of human life that has received worldwide recognition. As a computer engineer and software business owner by profession, he started down the path of filmmaking due to sheer passion. His enthusiasm to create stories covering wide variety of human emotions while his characters are faced with common diabolical yet heart wrenching hurdles make him stand out. As a story writer, director and cinematographer, he dreams of painting frames that will touch human emotions.

Director Statement

“I Resign” is a story that was inspired by a conversation of an engineer friend of mine, who had to jump jobs due to discrimination. There was no solution for the mental agony he faced at that time, which I felt warranted that the world should know. The question that I wanted to explore – “What if this happened to a naive, introvert”? This is the exploration of a human mind that has seldom been explored.

Director Biography – Noah Berlow (WHAT IF…)

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Award-Winning Documentary Filmmaker Noah Berlow is a visual storyteller who straddles two worlds—the world of entertainment and the world of serious documentaries that educate, raise consciousness and help bring about change.

Winner of the Outstanding Young Alumni Award at Ithaca College in 2014, Berlow has over 400 titles to his credit directing, producing and editing including feature length documentaries
and dramas that have appeared on Netflix, BBC, VH1’s Palladia TV, and BET.

Noah Berlow Documentary Credits
https://vimeo.com/album/4598710
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The body of Berlow’s work was recognized by the Ithaca College Alumni Association when he was the first person from the Park School of Communications since David Muir of ABC News to be selected to receive the Outstanding Young Alumni Award.
Berlow is most proud of his films that educate, raise consciousness and help bring about social change.

In March, 2019, his short film “if…” helped the Illumination Foundation in Orange County, CA, to raise $1M to help the homeless. In another outstanding success, working with HIVOS, Amnesty International, and the Guardian Newspaper, Berlow produced and edited a documentary feature on female genital mutilation (FMG) in Kurdistan entitled Our World: Dropping the Knife – Kurdistan. The film was picked up by BBC Arabic TV and broadcast to an estimated audience of 30 million viewers. The film successfully helped to outlaw FGM in Kurdistan.

Despite being known in L.A. as a go-to filmmaker for music videos and behind the scenes VH1 and Palladia TV documentaries featuring musicians like Sully Erna, Alter Bridge and Slash and directing upcoming stars like LORDE and Drake for a Rolling Stone online interviews, emotionally difficult material is not new to Berlow.

Berlow worked full-time in the Research & Education Department of Steven Spielberg’s SHOAH Visual History Foundation editing testimonies of Holocaust survivors for documentaries and educational shorts. Berlow’s credits at the SHOAH Foundation include editing the Foundation’s Award Winning Documentary, Recollections: Eyewitnesses Remember the Holocaust, which won the BAFTA Award for the Best Learning in the Secondary Education Category in 2007.

He is the Co-Founder and President of his film production company, Immortal Cinema International, Inc., and he is the Co- Founder and Chairman of a non-profit foundation VETERANS IN CINEMA FOUNDATION 501(c)3 ,whose mission is to help veterans find employment in the film and entertainment industry.

Director Biography – Maxim Varen (THE OUTCOMING)

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Maxim Varen is a director, writer, actor and ice skater. He was born and raised in Ukraine and has traveled all over the world in varies ice skating shows as a performer for 3 years. Though that experience he discovered a way to express himself through the art of visual storytelling and it set him on the path to making storytelling his future. He moved to the USA in 2017 to pursue his career as a filmmaker and promote diversity and tolerance through his films.

Director Statement

Throughout my childhood I had a fear of being rejected by my friends and family because of my sexuality. Growing up in a conservative country, where homophobia is widely spread, made it challenging for me to come out to my family. It took me 3 years of living abroad to finally accept myself for who I am and find enough courage to tell my mother about myself. I wrote The Outcoming to show the importance of feeling accepted and how terrifying a thought of rejection can be for a teenager. I chose comedy as the medium because I like the idea of addressing a heavy issue in a lighter way which permits the audience to look at the story from a fresh perspective, and receive the message.

Late Short Film, Audience FEEDBACK from Jan. 2020 LA Feedback Film Festival

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A young girl waits to get picked up from soccer practice when an unexpected stranger arrives.

  • Film Type:
    Short
  • Runtime:
    9 minutes 24 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    December 10, 2018
  • Production Budget:
    850 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Film Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    4:3
  • Film Color:
    Color

Director Biography – Michael Dolha (HAYLEY)

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Michael Dolha was born on August 20, 1996 in Transylvania, Romania. He is a film director based in Los Angeles, California who graduated the New York Film Academy with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Filmmaking and has worked on over 50 productions including feature films, short films, commercials and music videos. He is best known for the short film Hayley (2019).

Director Biography – Jan Johnson Goldberger, Jan Johnson Goldberger (SHOOTER)

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Jan Johnson Goldberger is an award-winning filmmaker and alumna of the American Film Institute in Los Angeles. While at AFI she became the recipient of the production award administered by the Institute: The Martin Ritt Production Award, named in honor of the socially conscious director of the film, Norma Rae; and a Women In Film Award. Ms. Goldberger’s thesis film, won the first Moon Basin Hatchfest award. This film went on to be licensed by Home Box Office and ran for two consecutive years on HBO.
Jan’s first independent short film, Stone Mansion was one of the Showtime Network’s Black Filmmakers Short film Showcase winners. Stone Mansion was licensed to the Showtime Network in 2011. Stone Mansion was also licensed to (PBS). The film aired in 45 PBS markets over the course of two years and the Black Entertainment Television network (BET) for several consecutive years. Stone Mansion has screened in over fifty national and international film festivals. Ms. Goldberger is a recipient of a grant from the Paul Robeson Fund for Independent Media, to develop a feature- length documentary on a landmark racial discrimination case.

Jan has worked with actor/comedian, Damon Wayans as part of his production staff. She was a participant in Robert De Niro’s Tribeca Film Festival’s All Access Connects program with her project, Game.

She has produced several short films for the Showtime Network, including the award-winning short, Pants in the Family. Most recently Jan was a participant in the Producers Guild of America’s Diversity Workshop. Currently, Jan is in pre- production on a slate of feature films including, Outlaw, a Western based on a true story, Hit the Switch, an urban hip-hop musical, and Dead of Winter, a teen thriller feature script written by Robert Dorian. Shooter is the 13th short film Jan has produced.

Director Statement

The Department of Justice recent statistics states that “one in four new gang recruits are girls!” My intent for making Shooter was to begin a dialogue about this growing phenomenon. Any gang violence is a direct reflection of the failure of the larger society to embrace and include the group committing the violence. We are all interconnected and not acknowledging that fact leads to the deleterious affects we currently see in Chicago.