Eleanor Ringel Gillespie Honored for Creative Excellence

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Women in Film and Television Atlanta honors acclaimed critic Eleanor Ringel Gillespie at its 33rd Anniversary Gala Dinner and Awards Ceremony on Friday, October 19.

“This year’s gala,” reads the press release, “will honor those who have achieved local, national and international success while making substantial contributions to the film and television industry.”

WIFTA’s 2007 Lifetime Achievement Award is being presented to director James Ivory of Merchant Ivory Productions. And AWFJ member Eleanor Ringel Gillespie is being honored for Creative Excellence during her long and productive career as one of America’s most noted and respected film critics.

Ringel Gillespie’s departure earlier this year from the Atlanta Journal Constitution ended her 29-year stint as that newspaper’s highly respected–indeed, beloved–resident film critic, and prompted a nationwide discussion about the important role that community-based critics play in covering cinema for their constituents. Fortunately, Ringel Gillespie quickly stepped up to a new platform at Atlanta Magazine, and so continues to serve her dedicated readers. She also contributes to AWFJ’s Women On Film.

AWFJ congratulates Eleanor Ringel Gillespie on this well-deserved recognition of her significant contributions to film journalism and the film industry and the creative excellence which is a hallmark of her work

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Jennifer Merin

Jennifer Merin is the Film Critic for Womens eNews and contributes the CINEMA CITIZEN blog for and is managing editor for Women on Film, the online magazine of the Alliance of Women Film Journalists, of which she is President. She has served as a regular critic and film-related interviewer for The New York Press and About.com. She has written about entertainment for USA Today, The L.A. Times, US Magazine, Ms. Magazine, Endless Vacation Magazine, Daily News, New York Post, SoHo News and other publications. After receiving her MFA from Tisch School of the Arts (Grad Acting), Jennifer performed at the O'Neill Theater Center's Playwrights Conference, Long Wharf Theater, American Place Theatre and LaMamma, where she worked with renown Japanese director, Shuji Terayama. She subsequently joined Terayama's theater company in Tokyo, where she also acted in films. Her journalism career began when she was asked to write about Terayama for The Drama Review. She became a regular contributor to the Christian Science Monitor after writing an article about Marketta Kimbrell's Theater For The Forgotten, with which she was performing at the time. She was an O'Neill Theater Center National Critics' Institute Fellow, and then became the institute's Coordinator. While teaching at the Universities of Wisconsin and Rhode Island, she wrote "A Directory of Festivals of Theater, Dance and Folklore Around the World," published by the International Theater Institute. Denmark's Odin Teatret's director, Eugenio Barba, wrote his manifesto in the form of a letter to "Dear Jennifer Merin," which has been published around the world, in languages as diverse as Farsi and Romanian. Jennifer's culturally-oriented travel column began in the LA Times in 1984, then moved to The Associated Press, LA Times Syndicate, Tribune Media, Creators Syndicate and (currently) Arcamax Publishing. She's been news writer/editor for ABC Radio Networks, on-air reporter for NBC, CBS Radio and, currently, for Westwood One's America In the Morning. She is a member of the Critics Choice Association in the Film, Documentary and TV branches and a voting member of the Black Reel Awards. For her AWFJ archive, type "Jennifer Merin" in the Search Box (upper right corner of screen).