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Tea Talks with Tomeka Podcast
43 minutes | 2 days ago
Margari Aziza Hill shares the story of how the created the series "East of La Brea." They created a non-traditional writers room for non industry writers to a tell this story authentically. "East of La Brea" tracks the untold stories of LA through the lives of two very different Muslim women from working class backgrounds. Aisha, a Black Muslim, and her Bangladeshi-American roommate, Farha. "East of La Brea" can be seen on Powerkeg's Instagram. Additionally, Margari is the Executive Director and Co-Founder of "Muslim ARC" (The Muslim Anti-Racism Collaborative. Margari is also an adjunct professor, blogger, editor, and freelance writer with articles published in How We Fight White Supremacy (2019) Time, Huffington Post, Al Jazeera English, Islamic Monthly, and MuslimMatters. She has five years full-time experience working full-time in community organizations, and five years experience in administration and technical writing in Silicon Valley small businesses and startups. She has over 15 years teaching experience at various capacities including substitute teacher, instructor, curriculum design, school policy, teacher training, as well as teaching assistant and teaching fellow. She taught Writing and Literature at Al-Aqsa Islamic Academy for two years, developed instructed an Art and Literacy class for Clara Muhammad Summer Camp and worked as a Lead Teacher and Curriculum Developer at United Muslim Masjid Summer Madrasa. Her fellowships in organizing, non-profit management, and policy include Bend the Arc’s Community Organizing Residency, Women’s Policy Institute County Fellowship, PICO National Leadership training and, Next Generation Leaders of Color-Inland Region. Most importantly, Margi is an Anti-Racism trainer. https://www.muslimarc.org/
37 minutes | 9 months ago
Rayana Chumthong - Cinematographer / DP
Rayana Chumthong is a first-generation Thai American cinematographer. She has shot a diverse range of content including narrative short films, music videos and most recently lensed video content for Harper's Bazaar, L'OREAL and the legendary music group, Earth, Wind & Fire. In 2018, Rayana was chosen as a participant for American Film Institute's inaugural Cinematography Intensive for Women (CIW) program and will be pursuing her MFA as a Cinematography Fellow at the American Film Institute Conservatory in the Fall 2020. Prior to transitioning into the role of cinematographer, Rayana has worked as an AC and Camera Operator on narrative feature films, music videos and branded content. Other notable camera operating work include digital content for Disney+ and feature film LA LEYENDA NEGRA which premiered at Sundance 2020. Website: rayana.co https://www.facebook.com/rayanac https://www.instagram.com/rayana/
36 minutes | 9 months ago
Lillian Jones - Marrying Filmmaking and Politics
Originally from Va, Lillian Jones moved to NY to pursue her dreams of making movies. She's worked with numerous corporate, celebrity clients and political clients. She prides herself in the details of a story. She has written multiple shorts and features, one of which was for a filmmaker to produced some time in the near future. Lillian is also a freelance filmmaker that writes, produces, does cinematography and edits. Lillian and Tomeka talk about their journey from working on the Obama Campaign in 2008 to becoming filmmakers. Lillian then shares how she merges her love for filmmaking to help politicians spread important messages. Additionally, Lillian talks about how she is coping during in this pandemic. She offers positive advice to others that may be struggling during these challenging times.
37 minutes | 10 months ago
Kestrin Pantera Writer/Director of "Mother's Little Helper"
Kestrin Pantera is writer/director The New York Times called “a force.” Her new feature film, “Mother’s Little Helpers” World Premiered at SXSW 2019. Early reviews laud the film as a “wonderful, Big Chill-esque dramedy,” with “big screen chemistry from the ground up.” Her first feature, Let's Ruin It With Babies, was hailed by the Los Angeles Times as, “honest, convincing, and just plain adorable.” She created several TV series for AwesomenessTV and digital series for Facebook. Her commercial directing clients include WIRED, Technicolor, Johnson & Johnson, BeTheMatch, and she's created additional content for Google, Coca Cola, GE, Starwood, Intel, Best Buy, HBO, Starbucks and Stoli. Before directing, Kestrin was a classically trained musician-turned-rocker, playing cello in rock bands in Los Angeles and on tour across the world. Prior to LA, she lived in Taipei, Taiwan, where she became fluent in Mandarin and performed voice-overs for 100+ companies in the US and Southeast Asia. Kestrin lives in Los Angeles with her family and a small menagerie of found animals. "Mother's Little Helpers" is now available on Amazon Prime and other streaming sites. http://kestrin.com https://www.facebook.com/MothersLittleHelpersFilm/ http://twitter.com/kestrin http://instagram.com/kestrinpantera
26 minutes | 10 months ago
Maureen Hufnagel - Argentina's Most Renowned Commercial Director
Formerly the Creative Director / Head of Art of agency powerhouses such as Grey, Saatchi & Saatchi, and Young & Rubicam along with boasting accolades across the Cannes Lions, Clio, and Diente Awards, Maureen Hufnagel is one of Argentina’s most renowned women directors. In addition to her illustrious agency background, she has also worked as a photographer on campaigns for leading brands - including Nike’s “Hoody On Moments” - and was named the “International Champion of the Absolut Lomo Competition” (from a pool of 27,000 photographers worldwide). These experiences curating talented teams and elevating narratives with stylized aesthetics and humor led her to the advertising landscape, where she’s currently represented by production company LANDIA for commercial directing. In her free time, she enjoys attending as many film festivals as possible. Although Maureen's based in Buenos Aires, she travels all year and shoot worldwide mostly in the US and Europe. https://www.landia.com/director/maureen-hufnagel/los-angeles/ https://www.instagram.com/maureenhuf
26 minutes | a year ago
Eva Doležalová - Award-winning Czech director, screenwriter producer
An Award-winning Czech director, screenwriter, and producer Eva Doležalová (born May 5, 1991) speaks English, French, Czech, Italian and Polish. Eva is also an ambassador of the White Ribbon Foundation and speaks to encourage women to follow their dreams. At the age of 10, Eva Doležalová began acting in Czech films and theatrical productions as an actor and co-writer of plays. At 18, she moved to London to study acting at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Eva worked as well on films with well-known directors such as Shane Black or Mike Figgis with whom she co-wrote and camera-operated a film Kudelksi. After completing her studies, she moved to Paris where she began to find her own artistic voice and realized her longtime dream for filmmaking, and started pursuing her writing and directing skills. Eva moved to Los Angeles in January 2016, where she quickly completed her first film, SOUND OF SUN, starring Suki Waterhouse, Sean Penn, and herself, released by NOWNESS. The film was met with critical acclaim within the industry. Eva has since directed other shorts such as CARTE BLANCHE (18min), starring Dylan Sprouse, Suki Waterhouse, Jack Kilmer for which she’s received an Audience Award in Mammoth Film Festival in February 2019 and a Breakout Director Award in Capri Hollywood Film Festival 2020. Eva also wrote and directed a horror-driven short BUTCHER BOY (9min), starring Jack Kilmer & Camille Rowe which was released by DAZED. In March 2020 Eva will be releasing her new 20min short MAESTRO starring Karel Dobry, Clara McGregor, Lucky Blue-Smith, and another short ANIMA US (7min) inspired by Carl Jung’s theory of Anima Animus. Centre Pompidou Foundation in Paris screened Eva’s trilogy of transformational shorts SOUND OF SUN, SOMNIO & SAMICE for which she also received an award from 7000 magazine. Eva is currently in the development of her first feature film, MANTIS. https://www.imdb.com/name/nm1748384/
41 minutes | a year ago
Barbara Ann O'Leary - Directed by Women
Barbara Ann O'Leary invites the world to fall madly in love with films #DirectedbyWomen. Barbara galvanizes awareness and celebration of women film directors by actively weaving global community through social media interaction, a communal blogging initiative, interviews, filmmaker directory, and an annual worldwide film viewing party. Crucial 21st Century Cinema #DirectedbyWomen communal blogging initiative that is running all year. Film lovers are invited to contribute a short blog post (365 words or less) about one 21st century film, TV episode, etc. directed by a woman or women that they find crucial. Everyone's invited to share their perspectives. #DirectedbyWomen Global Directory: 12,678 women directors... and counting! There are MANY more women directors than most people are aware of. I invite people to turn their attention to exploring, sharing, and celebrating work by women directors. www.directedbywomen.com https://twitter.com/DirectedbyWomen https://www.facebook.com/directedbywomen https://www.instagram.com/directedbywomen
28 minutes | a year ago
Tamara Shogaolu is the founder and creative director of Ado Ato Pictures and is a member of the XRBASE virtual and augmented reality incubator. She is an international director with a track record in featuring her work at film festivals, galleries, and museums worldwide, such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the National Gallery of Indonesia. She is a 2018 Sundance Institute New Frontier Lab Programs Fellow. Shogaolu is an artist interested in pushing herself and others around her outside the boundaries of traditional storytelling. She strives to share stories across mediums, platforms, and virtual and physical spaces in order to promote cross-cultural understanding and challenge preconceptions. She was a Burton Lewis Endowed Scholar for Directing at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, where she graduated with an MFA. Shogaolu was also a Fulbright Scholar in Egypt, a Luce Scholar in Indonesia, and an Academy Nicholls Fellowship Semifinalist. In 2017, Shogaolu’s multi-award winning short Half a Life was nominated for the Iris Prize. The film has screened at more than 40 festivals across the globe, including the Annecy International Animated Film Festival, Sheffield Doc/Fest, Frameline 41, and the Mumbai Film Festival. www.adoatopictures.com https://www.facebook.com/AdoAtoPictures/ https://twitter.com/tutafilm https://www.instagram.com/tutataytay/
31 minutes | 2 years ago
Sue Obeidi: Director of Hollywood Bureau Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC)
Fortunately, we are experiencing a new kind of Golden Age in Hollywood. The movement for inclusion of all marginalized communities is changing the landscape of the industry before our eyes, and an influx of talent and fresh perspectives are energizing this powerful media. Since the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC)’s Hollywood Bureau was launched in 2011, Sue Obeidi has blended the love of her faith with her love of film, television, and digital series to change and expand the narrative of Islam and Muslims in the entertainment industry. Obeidi and her team ensure that MPAC’s Hollywood Bureau is a partner with the entertainment industry. Behind the scenes, Obeidi engages decision makers and creatives to improve the quality and number of authentic, nuanced, and inclusive presentations of Islam and Muslims so that audiences can see Muslims as vital contributors to creating social and cultural change in America and around the world. She also enriches the pool of Muslim talent in Hollywood by nurturing and connecting them to those who can assist with their careers, both on the creative and business sides of the industry. In 2017, Obeidi was chosen for Variety's Inclusion Impact Report as one of 60 changemakers making the entertainment industry more inclusive. On the frontlines of media, Obeidi is a vibrant and fresh voice. Her poignant and passionate perspective appears in Op-Ed pieces for top industry publications such as Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, and The Wrap. Obeidi has been a guest lecturer at American University, University of Southern California, and Georgetown University, and she has spoken on panels at the Sundance Film Festival, Variety Inclusion Summit, Variety Family TV Summit, Teen Vogue Summit, Women in Entertainment, Color of Change, and the Center for Asian American Media. Obeidi is the “go-to” interviewee for perspectives on Islam and Muslims in the entertainment industry, having been quoted in many articles by national publications including, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, Vanity Fair, Variety, TMZ, and The Hollywood Reporter. MPAC’s Hollywood Bureau has consulted on projects with The Walt Disney Studios, Disney/ABC Television, Paramount Studios, Amazon, Hulu, Legendary TV, Nickelodeon, CBS, NBC, Fox, FX, NatGeo, Starz, BBC1, and Participant Media, among others. She is a self-professed couch potato at heart and a huge consumer of content. What attracts Obeidi to the entertainment industry are the stories being told. Obeidi always says, “Good stories can change hearts; changed hearts can change minds; and changed minds impact our values and can galvanize us into action.” She has an MBA and B.A. in Marketing and has been with the Muslim Public Affairs Council since November of 2000. Follow her on Facebook (Sue.Obeidi) and Twitter (@SueObeidi).
40 minutes | 2 years ago
Tomeka M. Winborne, Brigette Rock, Tedra Goethe and JaMara Smith
May is National Foster Care Awareness Month. This episode we talk about short film, "Aged Out." Writer / Director Tomeka M. Winborne talks with Filmmaker Brigette "B-Rock" Rock, Singer/Songwriter Tedra Goethe and Actress JaMara Smith about their journeys and roles in "Aged Out." "Aged Out" is about a widow that grieves the loss of her husband until a desperate looking teenager knocks on her door to offer handyman services. After hiring him for odd jobs around her house, she connects with him and becomes compelled to help this young man after learning that he has AGED OUT, which in turn reignites her purpose to live. "Aged Out" has been screened at the Bronze Lens Film Festival and the CineOdysee Film Festival. The Department of Human Services in Newport News, Virginia also hosted a public screening to bring awareness ! The ladies all share how they learned about youth aging out of foster care. B Rock shares her personal account of aging out of the foster care system. We talk about the state of youth aging out of foster care. We hope to use the short film, "Aged Out" to start a conversation to bring awareness to youth aging out of foster care. "Aged Out" can be viewed on Watch Jaro, Vimeo and www.tomekawinborne.com/film/aged-out. You can view the bios of Brigette Rock, Tedra Goethe and JaMara Smith on http://www.tomekawinborne.com/tea-talks-with-tomeka-podcast/
36 minutes | 2 years ago
Melissa Blue is an actor/writer/director/DP/editor/colorist. As a co-founder of Bravemaker Productions, she co-created and showruns the comedy web series “Life Group” about an enthusiastically inept Life Coach, which has recently gotten into 5 film festivals, winning two so far. She was the director and DP for the award winning web series “Don’t Judge Me” and “The Making of Jane D. Smith.” Graduating from Ball State University with a degree in musical theatre, as an actor she has appeared in John Adams, A Haunting, Danny the Manny, Wicked Attraction, Happily Never After, and countless plays and musicals. With over 20 years of professional experience, she runs two successful businesses: Rock Your Reel (www.rockyourreel.com), which does custom demo reels and headshots for actors, and Bravemaker Productions (www.bravemakerproductions.com), a production company that focuses on narrative content. But most important, she is wife to writer Jonathan and dog mom to Lucy, and lives in Tarzana, CA.
42 minutes | 2 years ago
Alexxiss Jackson - Director of Photography
Alexxiss S. Jackson is a Director of Photography originally from Detroit, MI. From a very early age, she aspired to be a visual storyteller; she made her first film at 8 years old using the family camcorder (starring her collection of Transformers and Barbie dolls). Ten years later, she enrolled in film school at the University of Michigan, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Film/Video Studies and English. For further formal training, she also completed the intensive Summer Film Program at the University of Southern California. Since then, Alexxiss has served as Director of Photography on numerous pieces, ranging from narrative films, commercials, promo spots, TV show segments, and music videos. Her work has been recognized at least 20 times by a number of international bodies, including film festivals across the United States, Canada, Australia, Kenya, Uganda, the Netherlands, and the UK. She was spotlighted on Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls in March 2018. Also in 2018, she was invited to speak publicly at TERMINUS Conference + Festival, where she presented a seminar entitled “Cinematography: Crafting a Look with Lenses and Filters” that was very well received. She has spoken on several other panels, podcasts, radio interviews, etc; not only about cinematography, but also what it’s like to be a woman of color in the film industry.
34 minutes | 2 years ago
Emelyn Stuart: "Stuart Cinema and Cafe" & "Ocktober Film Festival"
Emelyn Stuart is the first Black Latino to own a movie theater in Brooklyn, "Stuart Cinema and Cafe." Emelyn’s a business woman that loves the arts. She has a background in real estate and business. A friend presented her with a script and she signed on as a producer. She caught the bug and gained a passion to help filmmakers to life. After going to many festivals, she started a film festival, “Ocktober Film Festival.” She want this festival to be about the filmmakers. That later inspired her to open a movie theater, “Stuart Cinema and Cafe.” The model and concept of the theater is to allow independent filmmakers to make money when they screen their movies. Despite her ambition, she faced several challenges in getting investors to buy into her concept for this movie theater. She refused to take no for an answer so she liquidated her assets and birthed her vision and built “Stuart Cinema & Cafe.” It worked out better than Emelyn envisioned because she has total creative control. In addition to screening movies, she host book signings, gaming nights, community events and much more. Emelyn said that she still mostly enjoys producing! To learn more about what Emlyn Stuart is working on visit: https://www.stuartcinema.com https://www.ocktoberfilmfest.com/ https://www.stuartfilmgroup.com Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/stuartcinema/ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/stuartcinemacafe
36 minutes | 2 years ago
Jennifer Warren: Founder & Chair of the Alliance of Women Directors
Jennifer Warren is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and Women in Film, she is a founding member and present chair of The Alliance of Woman Directors, an organization which actively supports equality in the workplace. Jennifer shared her journey from being an actress to becoming a director. She attended AFI's Directing Workshop for Women yet still struggling to get directing work. Jennifer later founded and now chairs the Alliance of Women Directors. We had a nice conversation about the state of the industry, past and present. Jennifer shares her passion for women directors. She talks all things AWD - Alliance of Women Directors. She shares information regarding AWD's amazing programs, workshops and partnerships. In celebration of both our 22 years of advocacy and Women's History Month, AWD is running a one-day only social media fundraising campaign #AWD22for22. On Friday, March 22, we will ask our followers to donate at least $22.00 to Alliance of Women Directors to celebrate our 22 year history. Bio: As an actress, Jennifer Warren is best known for her leading roles in such features as "Night Moves," opposite Gene Hackman (Screen World Award - Best Actress) directed by Arthur Penn; "Slapshot," opposite Paul Newman, directed by George Roy Hill; "Fatal Beauty," opposite Whoopi Goldberg, as well as "Another Man, Another Chance" opposite Jimmy Cahn, directed by Claude LeLouche. She has also starred in over twenty network movies. Jennifer developed and directed the feature film, "The Beans of Egypt Maine," for American Playhouse and Live Entertainment. Her second directorial feature, "Partners in Crime," starring Rutger Hauer and Paulina Porizkova. "Partners" was distributed in America by Artisan Films and appeared on Direct T.V. Jennifer is the recipient of the 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award, presented by the organization Pathways to Peace after having participated in the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women. The recent chair of the directing track at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts, she is still teaching directing on both the graduate and undergraduate level. Website: www.allianceofwomendirectors.org/ LA - Facebook: www.facebook.com/allianceofwomendirectors ATL - Facebook: www.facebook.com/awd.atlanta/ Instagram: www.instagram.com/awd_directors/ Twitter: twitter.com/AWD_Directors LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/alliance-of-women-directors/
57 minutes | 2 years ago
Cheryl L. Bedford: Women of Color Unite / JTC List
Cheryl L. Bedford and I talk about her journey into the film industry. She shares shares has NYU made her a filmmaker and AFI taught her how to be a filmmaker in Los Angeles. Cheryl also shares how she met Bill Duke and became a line producer on the documentary, "Dark Girls." That led to us talking about colorism. Joan Theresa Curtis, Cheryl's mother is her biggest role model. Joan influenced Cheryl to use her gifts to make the world a better place for the next generation. In her honor, Cheryl started Women of Color Unite / The JTC List which creates a list of women of color to help get them hired, their work distributed and to create a community for Women of Color. WOC UNITE is having it's first annual Gala on March 28, 2019. Bio: Cheryl L. Bedford, a NAACP Image Award Nominee for “Dark Girls” and Baltimore native, holds a BFA from NYU’s TSOA and MFA in Producing from AFI. She is currently based in Los Angeles, CA. As a Production Manager, Line Producer, and Producer, Cheryl has worked on countless film/tv/digital projects, including 16 Independent Features. Ms. Bedford served as CFO and Supervising Producer for a boutique studio. She was formerly Chair of Diversity Development and a Producing Instructor at a Film School in Los Angeles, California. As Chair, Ms. Bedford developed the Diversity Series, the Industry Lab (creating a bridge from school to work), among other initiatives. She has also taught The Art of Line Producing at UCLA Extension in Westwood, CA. Ms. Bedford formed her own company, Cheryl L. Bedford Productions, in January of 2001. In her spare time, she judges film festivals. More recently, Ms. Bedford founded Women of Color Unite, her 501(c)(3), which purpose is to help WOC get Hired, their projects Funded and their content Distributed. From the members of WOC Unite, Cheryl created The JTC List. The JTC List is a Google Doc of 400+ Women of Color in Entertainment, which is being shared throughout the Industry. Never again will someone be able to say, they can’t find any WOC for any job above or below the line. The list is named after her mother, Joan Theresa Curtis, an activist, warrior and Ms. Bedford’s biggest fan, who passed away in 2016. To join the list or to hire women from the list, please email TheJTCList@gmail.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/thejtclist Instagram: www.instagram.com/thejtclist Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheJTCList
38 minutes | 2 years ago
Teresa Hollingsworth - Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers at South Arts
Teresa Hollingsworth is the Program Director for Film and Traditional Arts at South Arts. She Coordinates and is the Director of the Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers. She has a masters degree in ‘Folk Study’ from Western Kentucky University. She previously worked in Arts Administration as Folklorist and Traditional Arts South Arts was founded in 1975 to build on the South’s unique heritage and enhance the public value of the arts. South Arts’ work responds to the arts environment and cultural trends with a regional perspective. We offer a portfolio of activities designed to address the issues important to their region and to link the South with the nation and the world through the arts. They work in partnership with the state arts agencies of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. South Arts is supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, member states, foundations, businesses and individuals. Their mission is advancing Southern vitality through the arts. South Arts also have a variety of touring programs. Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers brings the best of new independent film to communities across the South. Audiences have seen over 300 films in more than 100 Southern communities. South Arts works collaboratively with Screening Partners to expand their programming, provide audiences with the opportunity to meet filmmakers and learn about the art of filmmaking, and encourage community engagement using film as a conduit for discussions about social and community issues. Invited filmmakers are paid to screen their work and engage with new audiences, travel expenses covered! Teresa said their goal is to build audiences for independent films. Films must be feature and can be either Narrative, Documentary, Experimental or Animation. This season the Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers will include short films by filmmakers living in the Southern States. South Arts and the Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers are excited for two of their filmmaking teams that were nominated for Academy Awards; “Hale County This Morning, This Evening” by Ramell Ross and “Minding the Gap” by Bing Liu and Diane Quon. Teresa also talks about some of the other great films and filmmakers that they toured this season. Lastly, Teresa shares great advice for filmmakers. For additional information visit: https://www.southarts.org You can also follow them on: Twitter: https://twitter.com/SouthernCirc Instagram: www.instagram.com/southerncircuit/ Facebook: www.facebook.com/southarts/ Instagram: www.instagram.com/southartsorg
37 minutes | 2 years ago
End of Season 1 Solo Episode: Tomeka M. Winborne
I want to give a special thanks to Earnest Winborne, Amalie Jahn, Daresha Kyi, Desiree Sterling, Adrienne Ashby, Melody Centeno, Anthony Barrows, Shivawn Adrienne Mitchell, Tamika Lamison, Ronnikka "RJ" Williams, Melissa A. Dixon, Tivia Lynnell, Jan Reeseman, Amy Adrion, Rachel Goldberg, Marlene Rhein, Shanice Williamson, Hanelle M. Culpepper, Lou Simon, Tina Mabry, Toy Lei, Gladys Edeh and Diana Lesmez for sharing their stories on TEA TALKS WITH TOMEKA Podcast during Season One. I especially thank each and everyone who subscribed and listened to Season 1. Tomeka M. Winborne is a writer/director that passionately loves to create stories that will invoke conversations. “My mission as an African American female filmmaker is to bring stories to the screen that embody the experiences and voices of people of color that are devoid in television and film,” says Tomeka. In 2005, Tomeka published her first novel, "Where My Strength Comes From." She later desired to see that novel on the screen. Initially, she planned to go to film school but it was too expensive. So she started volunteering on other people's film projects. In 2009, she wrote, directed her first short film, "PASS ME BY." A few years, later she wrote, directed and produced her second short, "TOO LATE." From there she continued to write, produce and direct other short films. As a filmmaker, Tomeka centers many of her stories around social issues. Her most recent short film that is in post production is entitled, “WE’RE LEFT BEHIND.” With this film she hopes to inspire people to think about the children who are left behind when their parents are deported. The movie doesn’t give solutions but she hopes it will bring about empathy to this tragic situation. She’s also created a short film, “AGED OUT” that has been officially selected into the “CineOdyssey Film Festival” and the “BronzeLens Film Festival.” She is currently adapting into her first feature film. AGED OUT brings awareness to youth aging out of the foster care system. Recently, the Newport News Department of Human Services screened "AGED OUT" to a group of over 100 people along with a panel discussion as a educational event. Tomeka has also created movies about HIV and sex trafficking. Tomeka has plans of writing and directing movies with light-hearted subjects as well. Recently, Tomeka started a podcast, “TEA TALKS WITH TOMEKA.” "A podcast about women filmmakers, their journeys and their projects,” says Tomeka. Additionally, Tomeka is also the host and interviewer for Jaro Podcast. She enjoys using various mediums to tell stories. In addition to making movies and podcasts, she’s also produced television segments, commercials, wrote a couple of novels, worked as a field reporter and has been commissioned to produce documentaries. Tomeka is a founding member and on the leadership committee of the ALLIANCE OF WOMEN DIRECTORS - Atlanta Branch . Previously, Tomeka served as board member on the Hampton Roads Chapter of the Virginia Production Alliance board in 2015. She has volunteered as a film reviewer for SOUTHERN ARTS and THE MID-ATLANTIC FILM FESTIVAL. In 2014, Winborne developed LAVENDER REEL MEDIA GROUP, a production and media services company producing commercials, documentaries and other film projects. Tomeka was commissioned to co-produce a documentary entitled, “IN PLAIN SIGHT: HUMAN www.tomekawinborne.com TRAFFICKING,” for Cox Creative which aired on Cox Channel 11 and its affiliate stations. She has also served as a field reporter for Cox Communications. In 2016, Tomeka received the African American Cinematic Series Norfolk Public Library Award. Tomeka is thankful for the ability to combine her creative passion with her entrepreneurial spirit and believes wholeheartedly that her gifts make room for her. Tomeka has been featured in Shadow and Act Black Women Filmmakers Speak Series by Tambay A. Obenson and the Virginia Pilot Newspaper by Pamela Nichols. She's also been interviewed on "The Creative Outsiders Podcast, Directing Magic Podcast, The Dreammakers Show and Cox 11 - Cox Connections television show.
84 minutes | 2 years ago
Diana Lesmez shared her journey through the entertainment industry. Along with being a filmmaker, she now uses her vast knowledge to help empower other filmmakers through consulting and coaching. A produced feature-film screenwriter and an award-winning filmmaker, Diana Lesmez is a Jane-of-all-trades with vast industry experience in production, development, acquisitions, distribution, physical production, film finance, business/legal affairs, as well as new media. She wrote the adapted screenplay for the recently produced feature-film, THE JOURNEY AHEAD, starring Michael Madsen, and she produced the feature film, CULTURE CLASS IN AMERICCA, directed by Emilio Estevez. Previously, she served as President of Production at a mini-studio, Arenas Entertainment in partnership with Universal Pictures, and was the Head of Development for Patriot Pictures, and the industry liaison for Banque Paribas, a film financing institution. Via her banner company, Bumptious Media Consulting, Diana offers one-on-one coaching and master classes with a specialty in pitching and mastering communication skills, producing, as well as screenwriting in the age of digital and social media.
63 minutes | 2 years ago
Born to a Nigerian father and Ivorian mother in Guymon, Oklahoma, Gladys Edeh has always been a lover of the arts right from the age of 13. Her love affair for film blossomed after watching the 1980’s movie classic, "The God's Must be Crazy" with her dad. Her dream was to attend film school and begin her life as a filmmaker, but her father had other plans and wanted her to pursue a degree that would provide better job prospects. She moved from Kano State, Nigeria to Atlanta, GA in 1995 and attained a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Information Systems with a minor in Film Studies at Kennesaw State University. Upon graduation, even though she worked in IT full time, she became an active member of the film community in the Atlanta area and participated in every film or video project she could find and performed in several roles such as a boom operator, background actor, production coordinator., production manager, etc. But in 2008, she formed KokoAtDawn Productions and produced her very first short film, ‘But Mamah’ which was screened at the Landmark Midtown Art Cinema in Atlanta, GA during the 48 Hour Film Project that year. In 2009, the film got selected to be part of the ION Film Festival which was hosted in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. In subsequent years, she went on to produce fictional short films such as A Day in A Life, Go Fish, Lost Memory and Solemates. In 2012, she began to focus more on the documentary style of filmmaking which led to her directing, producing, filming and editing short form content for the web. This led to opportunities to capture celebrities such as Afrobeats singer and songwriter Lagbaja, AfroJazz/Folk Soul artist, Tosinger, British-Nigerian actor Wale Ojo, and Deyemi Okanlawon, a Nollywood Actor, and a host of other artists. Her latest short film, Mr. Gele: The Man.The Story.The Craft gave her access to profile the talented African headgear mastermind, Mr. Hakeem Oluwasegun Olaleye, also referred to as Segun Gele. “Mr. Gele” which is currently in the film festival circuit has been an official selection in the Sidewalk Film Festival, Cleveland Film Festival, African World Film Festival, CineOdyssey Film Festival, African New York Film Festival and the BronzeLens Film Festival where it received a nomination for Best Short in the Short Documentary category. It is also now airing on the Africa's first Global Black Entertainment & Lifestyle network, EbonyLife TV to over 49 countries in Africa. As a filmmaker with an African heritage, one of her goals is to produce documentaries that showcase the multifaceted lifestyles and untold stories of Africans living in the diaspora. Her films are meant to capture, celebrate and share these stories that normally do not get the light of day on the global stage. She is currently working on creating a 13-episode documentary TV series, a fictional short film and a feature documentary. Gladys Edeh has been a resident of Atlanta, Georgia for over 20 years and currently lives with her husband and two kids.
53 minutes | 2 years ago
TOY LEI shares her journey of acting that led her to becoming a filmmaker. Toy was tired of being offered roles as a masseuse or nail technician. She took her career in her own hands by writing, directing and producing action films. TOY LEI has had a fascination with action films ever since her parents took her to Chinatown as a kid. They watched kung-fu movies every Saturday afternoon. After lamenting the lack of roles for Asian females over 30, she began writing, directing and producing her own projects. Her directorial debut, THE WEDDING, won her the Top 5 Women Filmmakers award from the Asian-American Film Lab and New York Women in Film and Television. BOXER, won not only Best Actress, Best Action and the Grand Prize at the 2015 Asian-American Film Lab 72-hr Shootout, but also won Awards of Merit from the highly competitive Accolade Global Competition for Short Film, Women Filmmakers and Leading Actress. It also won the Maverick Movie Award for Special Achievement in Stunts and a nomination from the Connect Film Fest for Best Drama. The film opened its fest run at the coveted Etheria Film Night and won Best Action. She has now expanded BOXER into a feature and has signed on Kristina Reed, a two-time Oscar winner, as Consulting Producer. BOXER was a finalist in the PGA Diversity Program. Her latest short she directed, TRANSITION, won the Jury Runner-up Prize in the Collaboration Filmmaker Contest.
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