INDUSTRY INITIATIVES 

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UPCOMING 

11th ANNUAL DIRECTORS ROUND TABLE

​Saturday, March 27 - 12PM

​Click for more information

 

WOMEN SHATTERING

the GLASS CEILING

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SUNDAY, MARCH 28 - 12PM

Click to join us​ FREE

 

 

Join us for an informative and lively discussion with the heads of Canada's most revered screen-based media organizations who have been advocating and demanding equity, diversity and inclusion for decades. Hear from each organization on their founding principles, what's changed during the pandemic and new initiatives they are excited to share.  

Moderated by

​Karen Bruce

Executive Director, Women

in Film & Television – Toronto.

 

Executive Director at Women in Film & Television - Toronto (WIFT Toronto), Karen leads the team dedicated to the professional development, advancement and celebration of its members in the screen based industry.

Prior to joining WIFT Toronto, Karen was the Director of Membership & Fan Engagement at the Canadian Academy, where she was responsible for membership, year-round programming and developing the national Directors Program for Women.

Karen also served as Director, Canadian Initiatives at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), where she was instrumental in supporting the Canadian film industry and nurturing emerging talent through programs like Talent Lab and TIFF Rising Stars.

Ella Cooper

Founder of Black Women Film! Canada

 

Ella is an award winning cultural leader, producer, facilitator, photo-video artist, educator and programmer based in Toronto.

Founder of Black Women Film! Canada, a not for profit  and leadership initiative supporting the development of Black women filmmakers, Ella is known for facilitating and designing transformational workshops and programs around the world. 

She recently received the Tiffany’s Hometown Hero Award, Was nominated for the 2019 TAC Mayors Arts Award for cultural leadership and featured as one of 33 Black Women making change in Chatelaine magazine. Her current photo series ‘Witness’ was just selected as Editors Pick in Canadian Art Magazine and she has been presented in galleries, public spaces and film festivals in Toronto, Vancouver, Winnipeg, Calgary, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Amsterdam and Berlin.

Moderated by

Dr. Carol Whiteman, EdD

Co-creator & Producer,

Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC)

Executive Producer, WIDC Feature Film Award

Professional Coach & Private Consultant.

 

Dr. Carol Whiteman’s passion for creating space for authentic creative voice to thrive has been recognized by two Governor General’s award nominations and multiple awards for promoting women’s equality in Canada’s film arts community. She was also nominated for the 2020 Tällberg Eliasson Global Leadership Prize. As the producer and co-creator of the acclaimed, one-of-a-kind professional development initiative, Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC), Whiteman has helped advance the careers and scripted projects of a generation of women screen directors. Through WIDC she produced over 150 short films and executive produced eight auteur-driven feature films directed by Canadian women, including the multi-award-winning Lucille’s Ball (dir, Lulu Keating), The Birdwatcher (dir, Siobhan Devine), Never Steady, Never Still (dir, Kathleen Hepburn), Suck It Up (dir, Jordan Canning), Red Snow (dir, Marie Clements), Queen of the Moring Calm (dir, Gloria Ui Young Kim), Rustic Oracle (dir, Sonia Bonspille Boileau), and the upcoming Dawn, Her Dad & the Tractor (dir, Shelley Thompson) now in post production.

Whiteman holds a BFA with Honours from York University’s Theatre Performance program. She is a member of a variety of professional organizations, including ACTRA/UBCP, Canadian Actors Equity Association (CAEA), the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television, (ACCT), and Women In Film where she is a member of the Alberta, Atlantic and Toronto Chapters and a Life Member of the Vancouver Chapter. She has spear-headed collaborations and coalitions among like-minded organizations, led and served on dozens of committees and advisory boards including the ACTRA National Women’s Committee, Female Eye Film Festival, Langara College Film Arts, and the BC MPPIA Education and Training Committee.

In 2019, Whiteman completed her doctorate in education at SFU. Her dissertation chronicles the tenacity and transformative leadership behind WIDC’s decades-long efforts to achieve gender equity in Canada’s screen industry.. 

Tonya Williams

Executive Director | Founder | Reelworld

 

Tonya Williams is an award-winning actress and Founder/Executive Director of Reelworld Screen Institute, and Reelworld Film Festival now celebrating its 21st Year.  She has over 45 years working in the entertainment industry in Canada and the USA. She launched Reelworld to create more access and opportunities for Canadian Indigenous, Black, Brown and other People of Colour in the screen-based sector.  In 2020 Reelworld launched AccessReelworld.ca, now the largest searchable recruiting platform for racially diverse talent in North American.  Tonya currently sits on Wow Unlimited Media Board of Directors, The Black Academy Board of Directors, Telefilm's Diversity & Inclusion Group, the Canadian Media Fund Black Industry Leaders Group, Ontario Creates Industry Advisory Committee and is one of the founders and a Board Member of the Black Screen Office.  A UK, Canadian and USA citizen she lives in Los Angeles.

Moderated by

Leslie Ann Coles

Filmmaker/ FeFF Founder

and Executive Director.

 

Coles is an independent filmmaker and the founder and executive director of the Female Eye Film Festival (FeFF), which she founded in 2001 to address gender inequality in the film industry. She has executive-produced 46 short films directed by at-risk female youth through FeFF’s Young Filmmaker Development Workshop (YFDW). In her capacity as festival director for the past 17 years, she has overseen the rigorous evaluation and selection of independent films from more than 2,500 entries every year.

T

Telefilm Canada recently awarded Coles two script-development grants: for the feature screenplays “Soiled Dove,” winner of 10 finalist international screenwritingawards, and “Love in Vein.” She also received a Creation grant from the Canada Council for the Arts for her short film “The Curtain,” which she wrote and will direct in summer 2021.

Coles’s multi-award-winning documentary “Melody Makers” (2018), which she wrote, directed, and produced, was released in 2019, along with a companion app, in Canada, the United States, and the UK. Coles has garnered several best-film awards for “Melody Makers” and is the recipient of the Lois J. Weber Legacy Award from the Bare Bones International Film Festival for her dedication as a producer, director, festival director, and mentor. She is an alumnus of Women in the Director’s Chair (WIDC) program, and a member of the Writers Guild of Canada and the Directors Guild of Canada.

Leslie Ann dedicated 18 years to modern dance as a choreographer/performer, and arts Educator before transitioning from the stage to the film in 2001, with her debut drama, “In the Refrigerator,” which she wrote, directed, and starred in which coincided with the inaugural Female Eye Film Festival. She has been producing FeFF, acting, and making films ever since!

Aisha Jamal

Women In View

 

Aisha is a filmmaker, programmer and college professor. She is Canadian film programmer at Hot Docs Documentary Festival and previously worked for TIFF and Syria Film Festival Toronto, amongst others. Her feature documentary "A Kandahar Away" is now screening on CBC Gem and she is currently working on a documentary web series on emerging alternative death industries entitled "How We Die" with Telus. Her previous short films have played at various international festivals worldwide. Aisha has been a board member of Women In View since 2015.

 

Moderated by

Dr. Carol Whiteman, EdD

Co-creator & Producer,

Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC)

Executive Producer, WIDC Feature Film Award

Professional Coach & Private Consultant.

 

Dr. Carol Whiteman’s passion for creating space for authentic creative voice to thrive has been recognized by two Governor General’s award nominations and multiple awards for promoting women’s equality in Canada’s film arts community. She was also nominated for the 2020 Tällberg Eliasson Global Leadership Prize. As the producer and co-creator of the acclaimed, one-of-a-kind professional development initiative, Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC), Whiteman has helped advance the careers and scripted projects of a generation of women screen directors. Through WIDC she produced over 150 short films and executive produced eight auteur-driven feature films directed by Canadian women, including the multi-award-winning Lucille’s Ball (dir, Lulu Keating), The Birdwatcher (dir, Siobhan Devine), Never Steady, Never Still (dir, Kathleen Hepburn), Suck It Up (dir, Jordan Canning), Red Snow (dir, Marie Clements), Queen of the Moring Calm (dir, Gloria Ui Young Kim), Rustic Oracle (dir, Sonia Bonspille Boileau), and the upcoming Dawn, Her Dad & the Tractor (dir, Shelley Thompson) now in post production.

Whiteman holds a BFA with Honours from York University’s Theatre Performance program. She is a member of a variety of professional organizations, including ACTRA/UBCP, Canadian Actors Equity Association (CAEA), the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television, (ACCT), and Women In Film where she is a member of the Alberta, Atlantic and Toronto Chapters and a Life Member of the Vancouver Chapter. She has spear-headed collaborations and coalitions among like-minded organizations, led and served on dozens of committees and advisory boards including the ACTRA National Women’s Committee, Female Eye Film Festival, Langara College Film Arts, and the BC MPPIA Education and Training Committee.

In 2019, Whiteman completed her doctorate in education at SFU. Her dissertation chronicles the tenacity and transformative leadership behind WIDC’s decades-long efforts to achieve gender equity in Canada’s screen industry.. 

Moderated by

Leslie Ann Coles

Filmmaker/ FeFF Founder

and Executive Director.

 

Coles is an independent filmmaker and the founder and executive director of the Female Eye Film Festival (FeFF), which she founded in 2001 to address gender inequality in the film industry. She has executive-produced 46 short films directed by at-risk female youth through FeFF’s Young Filmmaker Development Workshop (YFDW). In her capacity as festival director for the past 17 years, she has overseen the rigorous evaluation and selection of independent films from more than 2,500 entries every year.

Telefilm Canada recently awarded Coles two script - development grants: for the feature screenplays “Soiled Dove,” winner of 10 finalist international screenwritingawards, and “Love in Vein.” She also received a Creation grant from the Canada Council for the Arts for her short film “The Curtain,” which she wrote and will direct in summer 2021.

Coles’s multi-award-winning documentary “Melody Makers” (2018), which she wrote, directed, and produced, was released in 2019, along with a companion app, in Canada, the United States, and the UK. Coles has garnered several best-film awards for “Melody Makers” and is the recipient of the Lois J. Weber Legacy Award from the Bare Bones International Film Festival for her dedication as a producer, director, festival director, and mentor. She is an alumnus of Women in the Director’s Chair (WIDC) program, and a member of the Writers Guild of Canada and the Directors Guild of Canada.

 

Leslie Ann dedicated 18 years to modern dance as a choreographer/performer, and arts Educator before transitioning from the stage to the film in 2001, with her debut drama, “In the Refrigerator,” which she wrote, directed, and starred in which coincided with the inaugural Female Eye Film Festival. She has been producing FeFF, acting, and making films ever since!

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11th ANNUAL DIRECTORS ROUND TABLE

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SATURDAY, MARCH 27 - 12PM 

A CLOSED DOOR SESSION FOR FILMMAKERS 2021

In this Female Eye signature series, FeFF delegates will share networking/relationship-building strategies with fellow filmmakers, producers, and writers as a means of building potential for collaborations and new business opportunities. The Directors’ Round Table aims to develop industry feedback on key issues facing women in screen-based media.

 

Issues around gender, inclusion and diversity in filmmaking resonate around the globe. Data released today (March 25) from the Women In View On Screen Report 2021 shows there is still more work to be done to ensure women’s equitable participation in the Canadian film and television industry, particularly to ensure the inclusion of Indigenous Women, Black Women, Women of Color, and Under-represented Gender Identities. 

 

Since 2014, the Directors’ Round table, co-hosted annually by the Female Eye Film Festival (FeFF) and Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC)  has invited FeFF delegates and industry guests to gather in a safe space to build collegial relationships and strategies with fellow filmmakers, directors, producers, and writers around key issues facing women in screen-based media. The DRT also creates space for potential creative collaborations and business opportunities to germinate. 

 

INTERNATIONAL SHORT

​FILM PANEL DISCUSSION

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LIVE on StreamYard and available on the 

19th Female Eye Film Festival YouTube playlist

Click to join us​ FREE

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BOUNDLESS

 Directed by Kate Cambell (Canada)

Join us for a spectacular international panel discussion with an outstanding group of

directors whose short films are being presented at digital TIFF Bell Lightbox, March 26 - 29.

 

Moderated by Leslie Ann Coles, FeFF Founder and Executive Director

 

 BOUNDLESS

Directed by Kate Cambell (Canada).

  PADDY

 Directed by oisin Kearney (Ireland).

 HIGH SCORE

 Directed by Serena Ryen (USA).

DOll

Directed by Nasrin Golreyhan (Iran)

UNKNOWN BEING

 Directed by Inanna Cusi (Canada).

UNCLE ZSIGA

 Directed by Edit Jakab (Budapest)

 

 

INDUSTRY PANELS

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MEET THE

DECISION MAKERS

 Representatives from the funding sector will provide information necessary for filmmakers, screenwriters, and producers to evolve their projects, steer them through the development phase, and get their pictures made through the public-funding sector. 

Ayesha Husain

Lead, Inclusion Initiatives

and Content Analyst.

 

Ayesha Husain is the Lead for Inclusion Initiatives and a Content Analyst at Telefilm Canada, joining the team in 2020. In this role, Ayesha supports filmmakers and content creators throughout the country with analysis of creative materials and applications, engages external stakeholders and industry members for continued dialogue on equity and representation initiatives, and collaborates with Executive team members on strategy and policy that aims to increase funding equity for creative teams from underrepresented communities. Ayesha has over thirteen years of experience in the screen-based media sector, developing her career on the CMFPA side at Telefilm Canada, Corus Entertainment, the Directors Guild of Canada, TIFF and Toronto Outdoor Picture Show, where she recently served as a board member.

Industry guests:

Moderated by

Dr. Carol Whiteman

Co-creator & Producer, Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC) Executive Producer, WIDC Feature Film Award.

 

Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC)

Advancing the careers and screen fiction projects of  Canadian women directors since 1997

Mentorship - Development - Production Awards

Anna Newallo

Program Consultant, Film &TV, Industry Initiatives at Ontario Creates

 

Anna Newallo has three decades of proven experience in the Film and Television industry. As a Program Consultant at Ontario Creates, her portfolio contains a wide range of programs and initiatives including the Film Fund (Production and Development), Marketing and Distribution Initiative and Industry Development Program. As a producer, her award-winning independent films have played major international festivals and, as a writer, her short stories have appeared in numerous publications. Prior to joining Ontario Creates, she worked on projects for The Disney Channel, CTV, Discovery Channel, CBC, TMN (now Crave), CityTV and BRAVO!

LIVE on the 

19th Female Eye Film Festival YouTube playlist

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CONTENT ​IN REVIEW

With the advent of digital content delivery platforms the conversation will reflect  upon traditional,  emerging, and hybrid distribution.

Moderated by

Dr. Carol Whiteman

Co-creator & Producer, Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC) Executive Producer, WIDC Feature Film Award.

 

Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC)

Advancing the careers and screen fiction projects of  Canadian women directors since 1997

Mentorship - Development - Production Awards

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ROBIN SMITH, KINO Smith Inc

 

Robin Smith is currently the CEO of Blue Ice Docs Inc. – a distribution and equity funding company dedicated to funding, acquiring and distributing the best non-fiction work from around the world.

 

Robin brings a strong background of over 25 years of film, video and arts-related work to the marketplace having worked at a variety of distribution companies including The National Film Board of Canada, Alliance Films, Lions Gate Film Entertainment, Seville Pictures and Capri Releasing and has managed and navigated the release of such hits as CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON, ALL ABOUT MY MOTHER, AWAY FROM HER, CAVE OF FORGOTTEN DREAMS, BLACKFISH and the recent hit KEDI.

 

Robin has also acted as Executive Producer on a variety of award-winning documentaries including the Oscar-nominated ABACUS: SMALL ENOUGH TO JAIL (dir: Steve James), the Emmy-Award winning SOLITARY (dir: Kristi Jacobson), recent multiple-award winning doc ADVOCATE (dir: Rachel Leah Jones, Philippe Bellaiche) and the soon-to-be-released feature A GLITCH IN THE MATRIX (dir: Rodney Asher).

 

Robin also acts as the Cinema Programmer for the Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema in Toronto that is operated by the Hot Docs International Documentary Festival. The Hot Docs Cinema Ted Rogers Cinema is a 700 seat cinema dedicated to screening documentaries throughout the year.

 

In Conversation with filmmakers,

CAYTHA JENTIS, “POOLING TO PARADISE” (USA), NÓRA LAKOS, "CREAM" (HUNGARY) and

LETICIA TONOS, “A STATE OF MADNESS” (DR)

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Join us for an intimate conversation with these award winning filmmakers.

LIVE on the

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POOLING  TO  PARADISE

Directed by Roxy Shih.

 

This indie comedy written by Caytha Jentis depicts an LA ride-share that turns into an unexpected road trip to Paradise, Nevada, for four strangers, each at a crossroads in their lives, who find connection.

(World Premiere, Drama, 1:20:42,

Los Angeles, USA)

CAYTHA  JENTIS

Caytha Jentis has written five feature films, short films, a short form episodic series, and two stage plays. Several that she has directed and and/or produced.  Her latest feature film is Pooling to Paradise will be released later this year.  Her previous film Bad Parents that she wrote and directed is currently on HBO.  Caytha has an MFA in Screenwriting from UCLA and a BS in TV/Film from Syracuse University.  She is a member of the Writers Guild, the Producers Guild, and Film Fatales.  She began her career as a literary agent in New York and has been profiled by the Writers Guild as well as Screenwriter Magazine.

DIRECTOR

CREAM

Directed by Nóra Lakos.

 

Dora opens a pastry shop after the love of her life leaves. She names pastries after famous failed relationships, but new love calls.

(Canadian Premiere, Comedy, 01:29:00, Hungary, 2020)

​NÓRA LAKOS

Nóra Lakos is a Budapest-based director/producer graduated at the National Theatre and Film Academy (SZFE) and studied film directing at London Film School and at INSAS / Brussels Film Academy.

Her debut feature: HAB / CREAM was released in the Hungarian cinemas to critical acclaim in 2020 and has its HBO premiere in 2021. CREAM has started its festival circuit and has already won 8 awards among Best director and Best Feature Film Awards.

Nóra is recently developing her family feature film with the support of the National Film Fund. It based on a multi-award winning Dutch novel and the script is selected to the Amsterdam based Cinekid Script Lab that is considered the most important European platform for the young audience.

Between 2013-2018 Nóra was busy directing TV shows for Hungarian TV channels. Between 2010 and 2015 she wrote and directed four fictional short films, which were screened in numerous international film festivals such as Sarajevo Film Festival, Encounters and won awards all over the world.

She is most interested in everyday heroes, creating strong, complex female and unique children characters. She loves mixing humour with drama, and likes to create playful visual design in her films. Nóra is also dedicated to create and distribute quality family films. She has founded Cinemira - International Children’s and Youth Film Festival. Nóra named her festival after her daughter: Míra.

DIRECTOR

A STATE OF MADNESS

Directed by Leticia Tonos. 

Based on a psychiatrist’s autobiographical novel, Mis 500 Locos, that portrays Dominican society during the Trujillo dictatorship.

(Canadian Premiere, Drama/Noir, 1:33:51, Dominican Republic, 2020)

​LETICIA TONOS

Award-winning Dominican Director, Producer and Screenwriter born in Santo Domingo, graduated from The London Film School in 2001. Pioneer in the area of film co- productions in her country, having made co-productions with Spain, France, Puerto Rico, Haiti, among others. Co- founder of ADOCINE (Dominican Association of Film Industry Professionals). Three of her feature films have been selected to represent the Dominican Republic at the Oscars. In February 2020 she was awarded the Medal of Cinematographic Merit, becoming the first woman in the Dominican Republic to receive such distinction. Her work has been characterized as a constant exploration of the Caribbean identity within the Latin context and for her firm belief in the potential that these stories have to be of global impact.

DIRECTOR

 

In Conversation with

THE FILMMAKERS OF ONE(NINE)

A panel discussion with 

Directors, and Executive Producer/Director

INGRID VENINGER

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​Join us for a panel discussion with filmmakers

TOUCH - Mina Shum (Canada)

TIME GAP - Dorothee Wenner (Germany) 

BIRTH - Ingrid Veninger (Canada) 

SPIRIT - Jennifer Podemski (Canada) 

SOAR  - Slater Jewell-Kemker (Canada) 

UNCERTAINTY - Carmen Sangion (South Africa) 

ENCOUNTER - Lydia Zimmermann (Spain)

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​ONE (NINE)

Directors: Mina Shum, Isa Benn, Dorothee Wenner, Shengze Zhu, Ingrid Veninger, Jennifer Podemski, Slater Jewell-Kemker, Carmen Sangion, and Lydia Zimmermann.

Executive produced by Ingrid Veninger.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, nine filmmakers, isolated in different parts of the world, join to make a timeless multiversal experience of what it means to find connection in a time of isolation. (World Premiere, Chaptered, 2021, 1:23:00, Canada)

Moderated by Leslie Ann Coles, FeFF founder and executive director

Join is for the World Premiere of ONE(NINE) on Friday, March 26th, 7PM

In partnership with ENCORE+

 

INTERNATIONAL SCREENWRITER/

DIRECTOR PANEL DISCUSSION

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Join us for an entertaining, and lively discussion as this panel of international directors share the stories behind the making of their films, and offer insight into their creative processes.

​LEFT OF CHOPIN

Screenwriter and director Yoshino Takemoto (Japan)

 SMALL TIME

Screenwriter and director Niav Conty (USA)

MICKEY ON THE ROAD

Screenwriter and director Mian Mian LU (Taiwan)

CREAM

Co-writer and director Nora Lakos (Hungary)

FALL BACK DOWN

Screenwriter and director Sara Beth (SB) Edwards (Canada)

SOME HAPPY DAY

Screenwriter and director Catherine Hill (Australia)

Moderated by Leslie Ann Coles, FeFF founder and executive director

INTERNATIONAL DOCUMENTARY

​PANEL DISCUSSION

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Join us for an enlightening discussion with an eclectic group of documentary filmmakers from around the world who will share the stories behind the making of their films. 

SIX ANGRY WOMEN

Directed by Megan Jones (New Zealand)

​SISTERS: DREAM & VARIATIONS

Directed by Catherine Legault (Canada)

THE INVISIBLE FATHER

Directed by Therese Heliczer (USA)

BEYOND THE CLOUDS

Directed by Caroline D'hondt (Belgium)

DETERMINED

Directed by Melissa Godoy (USA)

 

Moderated by Leslie Ann Coles, FeFF founder and executive director