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Members, do you have an upcoming screening, event, campaign or other news to share? Tell us! Contact communications@nywift.org.

NYWIFT member Alex Beechko is starring in Gynx, a darkly comedic stage play by award-winning writer Alicen Grey. A homeless teen lesbian, a prostituted girl, an underground abortionist, and a former child porn victim are recruited into a rapist castration plot by a mysterious woman named Gynx. Men go into hiding, women take over the streets, and their operation makes global headlines. But when Gynx’s true motives are revealed, the group is forced to question whether they are truly on the side of justice. Gynx will run at the Hudson Guild Theater (441 W. 26th St) as part of NYSummerFest Aug. 25 at 9 PM and Aug. 27 at 3:30 PM. Tickets are $23. Buy tickets and learn more.

NYWIFT Member Lara Slife's documentary Born to Lead: The Sal Aunese Story is having its Oscar qualifying run in NYC Aug. 18-24 at AMC 34th St and in Los Angeles at AMC DINE-IN Sunset 5. Check AMCtheatres.com for all showtimes and ticketing. Born to Lead is the story of Sal Aunese, the University of Colorado’s star Samoan Quarterback who died of stomach cancer in 1989 and how his team promptly dedicated their season to him. Through reflections from his friends, family, and teammates, as well as rare archival footage, Born to Lead chronicles Sal’s rise to the top as one of his team’s most valuable players and his valiant battle with the disease that took his life in 1989. Reminiscent of such poignant sports films of the past such as Brian’s Song and Rudy, Born To Lead is a rousing story of courage, friendship, and living life against the most brutal of obstacles. Born to Lead: The Sal Aunese Story premiered on CBS Sports Network at 7 PM and 1 AM EST on Aug. 18. Read more about the film.


Wonder Drug
by NYWIFT member Caitlin McCarthy (www.caitlinmccarthy.com) has advanced into the Semifinal Round of the 2017 Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting. Wonder Drug is one of only 151 entries to advance from the Quarterfinal Round. During the Semifinals, four Academy members, drawn from a variety of branches, will read Wonder Drug. From 10-to-15 Semifinalists will be selected as Finalists (to be announced in September).

NYWIFT members Gayle Kirschenbaum and Lee Eypper are also members of Writers on Hudson, and they will be performing in Writes of Fall, an evening of Spoken Word. Also featured are Bethany Birkett, Miki Noam, Jessica Phillips and Laszlo Santha. They are Emmy-Award winners, short story writers, filmmakers, playwrights, actors, photographers, web series directors and world travelers who love NYC and would like to share their stories with you. Takes place Sept. 6 from 6-7:30 PM at Cornelia Street Café (29 Cornelia Street). Reservations are recommended and can be made at (212) 989-9319. Ticket price is $10, which includes a drink. Dinner is also served. Learn more.

NYWIFT member Lila Yomtoob’s series, America 1979, will be showcased at the Independent Feature Project (IFP) 2017 Independent Film Week. Part of an anthology series, the first season follows an Iranian American family during the Iran Hostage crisis, and is based on writer-director Lila Yomtoob’s short film of the same name. The short has screened at more than 20 festivals and markets, received several grants, and is available on Amazon and distributed by Gravitas Ventures. Yomtoob commented on the significance of the series, “This anthology series could spark viewers' curiosity about the people around them. It could help inform attitudes and increase empathy. And in the post 2016 election world, where the underrepresented are targets, we need more programming that makes it clear that we are all part of the American experience.” Visit IFP for information on Independent Film Week!

NYWIFT member Julia Campanelli, actress, director, writer, and producer of Shelter Film’s ‘116’ and the critically acclaimed Shelter Theatre Group, is starring in NBCUniversal’s remake of Francis Ford Coppola’s thriller, Dementia 13, directed by Richard Lemay and written and produced by Dan DeFilippo and Justin Smith. The film, which includes cast Ana Isabelle, Marianne Noscheze, Channing Pickett, Steve Polites, Christian Ryan, and Ben van Berkum is scheduled for nationwide release October 6th and VOD release October 10th 2017. Read the coverage in Entertainment Weekly.

NYWIFT member Cece King is the writer of the feature film The Broken Ones screening at The Long Beach Film Festival on Aug. 3 at 8 PM. Directed by young first time female director Elyse Niblett. The film follows a troubled young artist in her mid twenties who is grappling with being placed by her overbearing mother Janet (Margaret Colin) in a sober living house in the suburbs of New Jersey, after a string of bad decisions, alcohol and drug abuse. One afternoon fate introduces her to an equally troubled young man Jim (Charlie Bewley) attempting suicide by train. She takes it upon herself to take him through a course of events throughout the night. It isn’t until they end up in New York City that the night takes a turn for the worst and she is faced with darker demons then she was ready for. Watch the trailer. Cast: Cece King, Charlie Bewley, Margaret Colin, James Russo, Constance Shulman, Alexandra Socha. Tickets are $12. Buy tickets.

NYWIFT Member Michele Spitz recently funded a theatrical production of School of Rock that was made accessible for visually impaired youth, and took place on July 26, 2017. In collaboration with "Explore-Ability," the summer career exploration program for teenagers and young adults run by Helen Keller Services for the Blind (HKSB) in Brooklyn and Long Island, Spitz helped make this career exploration event possible. The program started at Emmett O'Lunney's Pub in the theatre district, where the blind and low-vision teenagers attending had the opportunity to meet cast members Cassi Okenka and Nehal Joshi, who discussed the broad range of careers in the theatre. Russel Martello, Director of Youth Services for HKSB, commented that "Cassie an Nehal were incredible in their description of their work experiences and general motivation for following your dreams/overcoming adversity in life." Camp Broadway, a Drama Desk Award-winning educational organization dedicated to providing students ages 10-18 with immersive theatre experiences, coordinated the "Meet the Performers" element of the event. After lunch, the group headed to Broadway's Winter Garden Theatre for the musical production of School of Rock. The Shubert Organization's Broadway Inbound team coordinated accessibility for the group, and provided live audio description for the performance so as to enrich the experience of the attendees.

NYWIFT member Maria Pusateri has had an active year performing in several projects, including a lead-supporting role in member Nicole Franklin’s dramatic feature Title VII. The film follows a day-in-the-life of the politically incorrect CEO Hillary Kelsey (Chicava HoneyChild) at tech firm Sanger International. Maria portrays her right-hand executive, Sheryl, who’s frustrated at not getting her long overdue recognition. Title VII has won many praises from audiences, especially for all the performances. You can see it at one of these upcoming screenings: July 28 at 7:30 PM, Museum of the Moving Image’s Changing the Picture Series; Aug. 5 at 3 PM at Hip Hop Film Festival, NYC; Aug. 10 at 7 PM at Martha’s Vineyard African American Film Festival; and in October at Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival, NYC. Some of Maria’s scenes from Title VII and other works can be seen on her website’s reel page. Besides Director/Co-Writer Nicole Franklin, other NYWIFT members who worked on Title VII are Veronique Doumbe (Editor), Emelyn Stuart (Producer) and Lisa Durden (Co-Producer).

Movies4movies Film Festival is back Aug. 19! movies4movies held in Dobbs Ferry, NY, just a short ride up the Hudson via Metro North. The festival is run by NYWIFT member Natalie Sena Murray. This installment of movies4movies celebrates women: 48% of this festival's entries were from female filmmakers and there is a special category celebrating short films by women. Films by NYWIFT members Marta Renzi and Dawn Scibilia are official selections. Admission to all programs is FREE! Schedule and more information can be found at movies4movies.com. Featuring: Plow Plant Reap by Marta Renzi (winner of movies4movies best local film award): An all-female community comes together, joins in a baptism and a roundelay, all against a majestic landscape of rolling farmland. Arriving and leaving like sun and shadow, Plant Plow Reap celebrates the joy and order that culminate in harvest. And Home by Dawn Scibilia (winner of movies4movies best feature documentary award): Young Dubliner Alan Cooke reflects on recently immigrating to New York City. Exploring such universal themes as nostalgia, the journey and the concept of home, the film includes interviews with immigrants, native New Yorkers, and a host of prominent New Yorkers.

NYWIFT member Cynthia Hanson’s play TV in My Bones will run Aug. 9-13 at Theater for the New City (Cino Theater), 155 First Avenue. For TV junkies, stalkers, futurists, and the cultured set: An evening of quirky short plays that reflect TV’s ability to unite us, divide us, pervade our culture, suck our time, and by all means entertain us! What are you binge watching tonight? From playwright C.S. Hanson - quirky shorts about colorful characters desperately pursuing love. Or their idea of love, taken from the well lit lives of their beloved TV characters. Are we what we watch? Are we willing to fall in love, in real time? Tickets are $18 (preview tickets are$12). Buy tickets. (Also, consider supporting the project via IndieGogo.)

Check out NYWIFT member Tricia Paoluccio’s new web series, Mommy Blogger! Some mommy bloggers achieve fame, some have fame thrust upon them, and some can’t figure out why they only have seventeen followers. All Addie ever wanted was a loving family she could devote her life to in exchange for a huge global audience and lucrative endorsement deals. The web series Mommy Blogger follows Addie, a privileged upper-west-side stay-at-home mom, as she persuades her earnest, pliable, not-too-bright husband Jared to quit his job in investment banking to help her turn their family into an online cash cow and viral internet phenomenon. Of course, nobody's as talented or as happy as they pretend to be online, and Addie's even less so. Over the course of the first season her desperate attempts to model marriage and parenting tips, network with more successful bloggers, and land deals with product lines reliably fall apart. NYWIFT member Kate Phelan directed the pilot, member Stephanie Kurtzuba directed two episodes, and member Jeanine Bartel appears in the episode “Date Night.” Learn more and watch on the Mommy Blogger website, Facebook, @mommybloggerseries on Instagram, and @MommyBloggerTV On Twitter.

NYWIFT member Lindsy M. Bissonnette is directing The Rhythm/Da Blues at 13th Street Repertory Theater. Lena grew up in a family of storytellers. When it was her turn to take the mic, she had plenty to say, but not enough courage to spit it. That's when her Auntie, Miss B. Darling, a transwoman and businessperson, steps in to teach Lena how to find the beat. Writer/performer E. E. Wade brings her own brand of southern charm and ferocious wit to this celebration of family, first loves, and #BlackGirlMagic. The show runs Aug. 24-26 at 8 PM and Aug. 27 at 3 PM. Tickets are $18; $10 for students and seniors. Buy tickets.

Fresh blood 
was written, directed and produced by NYWIFT member Richa Rudola. The film has won multiple awards, including Best Horror Short Film at it's premiere in the Paris Short Film Festival. It also won the award for Best Short Film at its US premiere at People's Film Festival in NYC. Fresh Blood has been screened at the IFFSA TorontoLighthouse International Film Festival and Berlin Short Film FestivalFresh Blood is a 2017 nominee for Women filmmaker and first director at the World Music & Independent Film Festival. In this short film, a young South Asian girl who gets sex-trafficked to the US encounters a vampire looking for fresh blood. Fresh Blood can be seen at two of its upcoming screenings. Fresh Blood will play at the World Music Independent Film Festival on a cruise shop to St Kitts, Turks & Caicos, Sint Maarten, from July 22 - 30. It will also play at the IndieWorks Film Festival in Long Island City, NYC on August 5th. For more information visit: www.freshbloodfilm.com . Follow and like the film on Facebook, Instagram and IMDB

Home Invasion for the Holidays
 will be screened at the 2017 Long Island International Film Expo on July 18, during the 3:45 PM shorts program. In this comedic short, a newly divorced mom and her college-aged daughter (NYWIFT member Katrina Medoff) are nervous without a man in the house—and their worst fears come true when a burglar breaks in that night. But the burglar is more sensitive and dimwitted than he first appears, and the mother-daughter team might just be able to outsmart him with prescription drugs and excellent listening skills. The screening will take place at 222 Pettit Ave., Bellmore, NY 11710. Home Invasion for the Holidays is on Day 7, Block 2 at 3:45 PM. Tickets are $10. Buy tickets
 

Special
 is an award-winning one act theatrical stage play on rape by former NYWIFT now WIF and Women in Film International LA member acclaimed writer, director and producer Ann P Meredith that has been chosen as a part of the New York Theater Festival at The Hudson Guild Theatre at 441 West 26th Street. All six actors are NYWIFT members: Kia Graves, Margaret Lewis, Nan Gill, Richa Rudola, Tonya Canada and Mitzi Pratt.  Special is a labor of love and passion and is also a motion picture feature film project that speaks to so many who have been raped are being raped and will be raped… The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has requested a copy of the Ann P Meredith’s screenplay for Special for their permanent core collection. Special performances will be on Aug. 3 at 9 PM, Aug 4. at 6:15 PM and Aug. 6 at 8:30 PM. Tickets are $23 and may be purchased online. The team is also looking to raise $2500 to pay cast, crew and production expenses. Please consider donating through their GoFundMe campaign by Aug. 6. Follow the project on Facebook. 

A true NYWIFT networking success story! NYWIFT members Jaime Ekkens and Olivia Killingsworth, who originally met at a NYWIFT mixer in 2015, will premiere their short film The Mall at the Woods Hole Film Festival in Falmouth, MA on July 30 at 2 PM as part of the "Shorts 2: Thicker than Water" program. The darkly comedic short depicts a day in the life of a mall sales lady, evoking the tremendous despair that often lurks just beneath the surface of our everyday lives. Originally conceived as a standalone monologue by writer Mary Crosbie, director Jaime Ekkens was inspired to adapt it into a film when she heard actress Olivia Killingsworth read it aloud at a literary event hosted by Liars’ League NYC. Tickets to the premiere are $14 each. Buy tickets. Learn more about the film on Facebook.  

Priscilla J. ("Sally") Mattison, Of Counsel to Bernard M. Resnick, Esq., P.C., moderated the International Association of Entertainment Lawyers Masterclass, entitled “The Musician as Contestant: Legal Issues in Contests and Reality TV”, at the 51st annual Midem convention in Cannes, France. She also spoke on a Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts panel entitled “Beats, Lyrics and Licensing:  Legal Education for Musicians + Producers” at the Free Library of Philadelphia. 

What if Thomas Jefferson, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Martin Luther King shared the stage for the first time, or Frederick Douglas attended a Town Hall meeting with Ronald Reagan and Julia Child? These are just a few of the heroes honored in the performance of NYWIFT member Victoria Medina's One Nation, One Mission, One Promise. A theatrical journey that inspires a divided country to come together for one night. The diverse cast stars: J. Scot Cahoon, Kelly Fairbrother, Jacqueline Keeley, David Roberts, E Talley II, and Billie Wyatt. One Nation, One Mission, One Promise will be performed in New York City on July 8 at 7 PM at The Steve and Marie Sgouros Theatre, which is housed in The Players Theatre (115 MacDougal St.), one block from West 4th Street Subway. A talkback will be offered immediately following the performance. NYWIFT members can get discount tickets here ($20 for NYWIFT, reg. $30). See more info about the show on its website.  

Off Track Betty, which played at over a dozen festivals and won awards at the Brooklyn and Tallgrass Film Festivals, launches its online release June 27 at http://offtrackbettythemovie.com/, and on the Vimeo Channel on Roku and Apple TV. NYWIFT member Liz Ortiz-Mackes is the co-producer and casting director. Off Track Betty is a twenty-minute short shot on 16mm film on New York City's Lower East Side: a story about love, memory, and what it means to move forward. In an ever-changing corner of New York City, a longtime resident realizes she no longer recognizes the neighborhood she calls home. Facing an uncertain future, she is confronted by a young man with a direct link to her past. She is forced to ask: when is it right to hold on to what’s past, and when is it time to let go?



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