WEEK IN WOMEN: FANCY DANCE Filmmaker Erica Tremblay to receive inaugural Jaya Award – Brandy McDonnell reports

Erica Tremblay, an Indigenous writer, producer and director from the Seneca-Cayuga Nation, is set to be honored with the inaugural Jaya Award at the 14th annual Athena Film Festival for her critically acclaimed narrative feature directorial debut, Fancy Dance. The 2024 Athena Film Festival is set for Feb. 29 to March 3 at Barnard College in New York City. The festival was founded in 2011 to champion and promote diverse, nuanced, complex and underrepresented stories of women’s leadership on screen.

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FANCY DANCE (Sundance FF2023) – Review by Leslie Combemale

Indigeneous filmmaker Erica Tremblay’s Fancy Dance, still seeking distribution, is so good it has me checking the Sundance Film Festival acquisition news every few hours like a mom of someone hoping to get drafted into the NFL. It has everything an award-winning movie needs: a plot with high stakes, strong performances, good character development and interaction, deeper cultural significance, and solid entertainment value. Fancy Dance also features BIPOC female creatives both in front and behind the camera, including the use of music by Choctaw composer Samantha Crain, and cinematography by Latinx filmmaker Carolina Costa.

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