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Women in Film and Netflix Join Forces to Support Mid-Career and Early Career Women Directors and Cinematographers

26/07/2022

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Women in Film and Netflix Join Forces to Support Mid-Career and Early Career Women Directors and Cinematographers

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26 July 2022

United States

ReFrame Rise, the talent development program from Women In Film Los Angeles (WIF) and Sundance Institute's ReFrame Project, is returning for its second cohort and expanding to include both directors and cinematographers in 2022 Women in Film is also announcing the new WIF Emerging Directors and Cinematographers Fellowship in 2023Both programs supported by Netflix's Fund for Creative Equity July 26, 2022 - For Immediate Release

Los Angeles, CA - Women in Film is expanding its offerings to help elevate women directors and cinematographers at multiple stages of their careers through a newly expanded ReFrame Rise accelerator, and a new WIF Directors and Cinematographers Fellowship. These programs are made possible by support from the Netflix Fund for Creative Equity, an initiative to build new opportunities for underrepresented communities within entertainment.

ReFrame Rise is a comprehensive and customized two-year program designed by ReFrame, a Women in Film and Sundance Institute collaboration, to accelerate high-level, sustainable advancement for mid-career talent. Building off the success of the inaugural ReFrame Rise class, the program is now expanding to support Cinematographers as well as Directors. Today, ReFrame is announcing the new ReFrame Rise class which includes 7 mid-career directors (Ally Pankiw, Angel Kristi Williams, Ekwa Msangi, Mounia Akl, Nijla Mu'min, Terrie Samundra, and Yoko Okumura) and 4 cinematographers (Ava Benjamin Shorr, Barbie Leung, Laura Merians Gonsalves, and Mariscela Mendez), who will each be matched with a mentorship team of industry professionals and a career coach.

Each year, ReFrame reviews the top 100 feature films and top 200 TV series as part of its ReFrame Stamp Program, releasing annual reports on gender equity in hiring. Through this research, it became clear that there was a significant gap in representation of women cinematographers.

The numbers of women cinematographers hired on our industry's largest projects remains stagnant - only 7 films in the Top 100 releases last year were lensed by women, said Andria Wilson Mirza, ReFrame's Director. Through applying our career acceleration model - which has proven to be successful for directors - to this talented group of DPs as well, we aim to demonstrate our commitment to developing both above and below-the-line talent, and the urgent need for a cross-industry investment in these roles in which women remain underrepresented.

"We are very excited to support this supremely talented cohort of Directors and Cinematographers as a partnership between Women in Film and the Sundance Institutes Women at Sundance Program. We have learned first hand the value of the sponsorship opportunity for women artists and look forward to supporting this next group as they level up and find sustainability in their careers," said Michelle Satter, Sundance Institute Founding Senior Director, Artist Program, ReFrame Leadership Council.

With support from Netflix, Women In Film will also launch a new WIF Directors and Cinematographers Fellowship in 2023. This initiative will provide participants with a year of mentorship from entertainment leaders, collaboration with the Rise class through advice and shadowing on their projects, and access to industry experts and special events. More information and dates for this program will be announced in the fall.

Said WIF Director of Programs, Maikiko James: This program will build critical relationships between people across different stages of their careers. As we intentionally deepen the community of women and gender non-conforming creatives we see opportunities grow, so we must nurture these connections.

As ReFrame's research shows, there continues to be great need to elevate more women as cinematographers and directors in film and television. We are thrilled to support Women in Film's innovative approach to elevating women in these positions through different stages of their careers, said Niija Kuykendall, Netflix VP, Film and WIF board member.

The inaugural class of ReFrame Rise,which ran from 2019 to early 2022, supported acclaimed directors Desiree Akhavan (Hacks, HBO), Haifaa al-Mansour (Tales of the Walking Dead, AMC), Patricia Cardoso (Shelter, Amazon), Hanelle Culpepper (Anansi Boys, Amazon), Sydney Freeland (Echo, Marvel Studios), Zetna Fuentes (This is Us, NBC),Tina Mabry (Pose, FX) and Meera Menon (Ms. Marvel, Marvel Studios).

INTRODUCING: The 2022-24 ReFrame Rise Class

From L to R: Ally Pankiw, Angel Kristi Williams, Ava Benjamin Shorr, Barbie Leung, Ekwa Msangi, Laura Merians Gon alves, Mariscela M ndez, Mounia Akl, Nijla Mu'min, Terrie Samundra, Yoko Okumura

DIRECTORS:

Ally Pankiw

Writer/director Ally Pankiw's accomplishments in TV include directing and executive producing the first season of the Netflix comedy series, FEEL GOOD (which stars Mae Martin and Lisa Kudrow), and blocks of episodes on Hulu's SHRILL and THE GREAT. Ally recently completed her first feature film, a dark dramedy which she wrote and directed, called I USED TO BE FUNNY. It stars Rachel Sennott (SHIVA BABY, BODIES BODIES BODIES) and Jason Jones (THE DAILY SHOW, THE DETOUR). Previously, Ally served as a writer on SCHITT'S CREEK, and she is now developing an original comedy series with its star and creator, Dan Levy, for Hulu and 20th Century Fox Animation. The duo are also co-writing a feature for Universal Pictures. She has directed commercials for brands like Amazon, adidas, Pepsi, Chanel and Nylon, and music videos for artists like Phoebe Bridgers, MUNA, Janelle Monae, and Lil Jon.

Angel Kristi Williams

Angel Kristi Williamsis an award winning fil
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