Panel on Women in Science Fiction and Horror Film at Geek Girl Con

I’m pleased to share with you that I had the chance to curate a panel for Geek Girl Con on the topic of Women in Horror and Science Fiction Film. I joined filmmakers Abie Ekenezar, Sarah MacAaron, Lorraine Montez and Lindy Boustedt. We were so thankful for the insightful questions and thought-provoking conversation!

Left to Right: Abie Ekenezar, Sarah MacAaron, Lorraine Montez, myself and Lindy Boustedt.

Here’s the gist:

Filmmaking in the Pacific Northwest is a growing scene, with recent efforts to extend tax incentives through the state legislature and increased efforts to create network of media makers, it’s hard to spit and not hit someone who makes movies.

But what does this mean for women and non-binary gender people interested in breaking into indie filmmaking, especially science fiction or horror? Sci-fi and Horror filmmakers who are women are doubly marginalized by their lack of representation in the industry as well as these genres being derided as “b-horror”, “cheesy sci-fi”, or ignored because of the perception of these films being unprofitable.

This panel will focus on introducing local producers/directors involved in these genres, showing short examples of their work, and having a Q&A on getting started, the entrepreneurial side of filmmaking, and why our stories are important for us to tell.


VIDEO: Women in Film Panel Discussion

The Puget Sound All Girls Film Challenge is a yearly competition in which young women create 2-4 minute films on a chosen theme. They also feature screenings, panels, networking events, and a summer camp. Their goal is to “give young women filmmakers in the Puget Sound area the opportunity to create films that showcase their perspective, juried by experienced women filmmakers and screened at high profile, high quality events that help to connect our students with women in the media industry.”

I recently sat on a panel for a great discussion on young women making careers for themselves in film. Take a peek at the video below:

Stronger Together: Northwest Media Summit Welcomes Public Media Advocates and Practitioners

The Alliance for Community Media Northwest Region invites local media makers and organizations to attend a conference on the state of community and public media in our region. The focus of the summit will be to encourage collaboration and partnerships that will sustain our work for years to come.

Sessions will include panels in which members of the community, public media organizations, and city staff will describe the various collaborations they’ve worked on. Small group sessions of strategy mapping will follow, focusing on the planning and implementation of campaigns and partnerships tailored to organization-specific needs.

Notable organizations participating in the event are KPLU, which will present on the topic of Public Radio Day and joint fundraising for all Seattle public radio; KBCS, which will present on their partnership with the City of Bellevue; Seattle Public Library will discuss their emerging partnerships with community media; and the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs will talk about their partnerships with numerous ethnic media outlets in Seattle.

The summit promises a day and a half of collaboration and connection between various stakeholders in community and public media. Leaders from national groups that represent community radio and TV will share important perspectives on local and national policy changes that impact us all. Speakers include National Alliance for Community Media President Mike Wassenaar, and Ann Alquist from the National Federation of Community Broadcasters.

Attendees will be encouraged to share what resources and skills they can provide in addition to what resources and skills they are lacking within their organizations. Interested organizations will be paired with one another, thus connecting everyone’s networks.

In addition to the summit, the ACMNWR hosts an annual media awards program, the Best of the Northwest Awards, which recognizes and honors exemplary non-commercial video, radio, podcast, and transmedia content from Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Alaska, Alberta, and British Columbia. Winners are presented with a plaque noting the title of the work, the producer, and the nature of the award.

The Northwest Media Summit takes place at the Doubletree Suites from March 27-28, 2015 at Southcenter at 16500 Southcenter Parkway Seattle, WA. The event is presented by the Alliance for Community Media Northwest, and is sponsored by Castus Corporation. Interested parties can register through Brown Paper Tickets.

Learn more about the ACMNWR, and the Northwest Media Summit by visiting Facebook or Twitter. Attendees are invited to participate through social media by using the hashtag #NWMedia and #BOTNW2015 during the awards ceremony.

This post originally appeared on the ACMNWR blog.


A New Adventure

It’s almost unbelievable that in less that 48 hours I’ll be on a plane headed to a completely different country, continent, season, and hemisphere. Just yesterday I graduated from Pacific Lutheran University, following in the same steps of Edwin and the others. It is surreal to be beginning a new challenge so suddenly. I have my passport and my itinerary. I have a phone with a Namibian number and power adaptors; these are the mundanities that make it real. So, I know I’m not imagining things.

Me, hugging one of my surrogate moms after graduating. Something Edwin, Penda, and the others probably did two decades ago. Credit: Nathan Roemmich

I am so fortunate and privileged to have this opportunity, and I only hope that I can learn from their life histories and I can help to tell their story respectfully. Filmmaking has always been a love of mine, and I think it is necessary to do so with social justice at the heart of it. That is the power of documentary film that I find so arresting – the power to help make the world a little more thoughtful and contemplative.

Nothing gets me more impassioned than a meaningful story. I still remember when Joanne asked me if I wanted to be a part of this thing. She knows how to make the pitch. She makes the hardest work sound phenomenal (and it usually is!). I am not one to turn down an adventure like the one I am about to embark on. This is the stuff independent filmmakers dream of.

When I think about the obstacles that The Nine faced I know there are few stories that are more meaningful to us now than equity, education, and social change. I never faced the realities of coming of age in a newly independent country that codified laws keeping Black Namibians out of higher education. However, I am not so naive to think that the United States has not had similar legal structures in place to disadvantage those of darker skin. After all, it’s not that long ago that the Brown v. Board of Education case was heard in our Supreme Court. We still feel the aftermath of education tracking even now in this country. This is a story not only meaningful to Namibia, but all over the world.

Pre Production
All of us, at the second to last meeting before flying out. Left to Right: Joanne Lisosky, Princess Reese, Andrea Capere, Maurice Byrd. Credit: Shunying Wang

So, no pressure.

I am feeling a lot of excitement mixed with a healthy dose of self-doubt. No complex storytelling project dependent upon technological and narrative skills is devoid of that. But I do know that nothing beats a hardworking, committed, enthusiastic, and open-minded team. And my fellow filmmakers have those qualities in spades.

Here’s to 20+ hours of plane travel, jet lag, learning, and a lot of the unknown.

❤ Andrea

You can learn more about Namibia Nine on Facebook and Twitter

This Post Originally Appeared on the Namibia Nine blog.