SPOTLIGHT January 2023: Catherine Martin, Australia’s iconic Costume, Production and Set designer

As collaborative as she is multi-talented, Catherine Martin has made an indelible mark on cinema. Her flair for design, her dedication to research and her passion for authenticity have allowed the movies she’s worked on to transport us to Parisian cabaret in the 1890s, to a New York mansion during the Roaring 1920s and to a Las Vegas stage with The King himself.

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SPOTLIGHT December 2022: Sarah Polley, Actor, Author, Writer/Director of WOMEN TALKING

Sarah Polley is an iconic independent filmmaker who has throughout her career made choices that explore the lives of women and reflect her own experiences and feminist point of view. Keen insight and compassion distinguish her movies. Her work is authoritative and honest, and always gives audiences a safe space in which to contemplate the issues that impact their lives. We are glad to see her return to directing after a hiatus of 10 years and applaud Women Talking as an artistic achievement well worth all of the awards buzz it is generating

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SPOTLIGHT November 2022: Barbara Broccoli, Beloved BOND and Beyond

Barbara Broccoli epitomizes what a great producer should be: smart, creative, passionate, tenacious, and successful. Along with her half-brother Michael G. Wilson, she oversees one of the longest-running, most acclaimed, and most financially successful film franchises in the world. But she is not content with that achievement alone and consistently seeks to produce other films and theatrical stage productions as well as engage in philanthropy and activism. As a teenager she knew she wanted a career in the film industry and she set out with fierce determination to achieve that end and has risen to the top in her field with the awards, critical acclaim, financial success and respect of her peers to prove it.

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SPOTLIGHT October 2022: Tatiana S. Riegel, Film Editor

Editing has been called the “invisible art” because it is meant to go unnoticed. Perhaps that’s why it is a field where women were allowed to flourish from the earliest days of Hollywood. Women have consistently made up almost a third of Hollywood’s editing pool and they have excelled at the craft. Tatiana S. Riegel is a success story. She set her sights on a career in the film industry started at the very bottom and navigated her way to the top through hard work and by choosing challenging and diverse projects.

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SPOTLIGHT September 2022: Ayoka Chenzira, filmmaker, educator, transmedia storyteller

Ayoka Chenzira is a pioneering Black filmmaker who has pushed the boundaries of where cinema can go. As an educator, she has encouraged new generations of women to find and raise their voices as they pursue careers in the liberal arts. Her dedication to ensuring that authentic African American experiences find their way into the mainstream of American society enriches us all.

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SPOTLIGHT August 2022: Haifaa Al Mansour, Saudi Filmmaker and Cultural Activist

Haifaa Al Mansour has a vision and an aesthetic as a filmmaker, to be sure, and she’s bringing it to screens big and small. That’s important, but even more important is the impact she’s having on women around the world. She wants to be inspiring, and she has already proven herself to be as such. Haifaa Al Mansour is an advocate who stands up for women. She has a unique and passionate voice, and we are all lucky she chose to share it with us.

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SPOTLIGHT July 2022: Geena Davis, Actor and Activist for Diversity in Cinema

Geena Davis seeks challenges in the roles she plays—and challenges others to view women’s roles differently. She’s used her fame to draw attention to disparities in representation, especially in family entertainment, and she’s passionate about recognizing unconscious biases and breaking boundaries around gender, race, body image, and abilities. By measuring evidence of what we see on screen, her institute provides evidence of how well media represents us and the inspiration to do better.

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SPOTLIGHT JUNE, 2022: Larysa Artiugina, Documentarian, Activist, and Cultural Champion

To most of the world, Russia’s massive, armed aggression against Ukraine in February 2022 came as a shock. For Ukrainian filmmaker and activist Larysa Artiugina, it may have seemed all but inevitable. Artiugina has been on the ground in eastern Ukraine, where Russia has been shelling Ukrainian citizens continuously since 2014, telling stories that depict the country’s plight and resistance—work she continues in a variety of roles. For her trouble, she has been placed on a Russian hit list.

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SPOTLIGHT May, 2022: Domee Shi, Animator, Director, Pixar VP of Creative

It has been an incredible decade for animator and director Domee Shi. Beginning as a story intern at Pixar in 2011, she was promoted in April of this year to Vice President of Creative for the company where she has spent her entire professional career. She also won an Academy Award and directed a feature film along the way.

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SPOTLIGHT April 2022: Maya Cade, Journalist and Curator

Maya Cade is an accomplished, articulate communicator whose invaluable resource and audience development work broaden our understanding of the Black experience and film culture. Her Black Film Archive not only reveals white representations of Blackness, but also how the Black community has seen itself in feature films, shorts, documentaries, and other media. We believe this greater understanding will result in more nuanced, informed films that can help hasten the cause of equality for all people.

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