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Nine Women Filmmakers Chosen For Future Directors of Studio Features Initiative — Film News in Brief

·3-min read

Mon. March. 15

Nine Female Filmmakers Chosen For Future Directors of Studio Features Initiative

Nine female filmmakers have been selected to participate in the inaugural Future Directors of Studio Features Initiative.

Blackmagic Design announced the initiative, which is designed to elevate and polish undiscovered and underrepresented female-identifying storytellers who are poised to make the transition to feature directing. The fellows – each with a strong body of work, distinctive style and clear voice – were professionally recommended and vetted.

As the anticipated new faces of feature film directing, fellows will meet with industry mentors, advisors and studio partners to prepare their portfolios, amplify their creative brand and learn how to navigate studio-level feature production.

Catherine Hardwicke (“Twilight”), who is a mentor for the program, shared “It’s so fun to be an FDSF advisor this year – not only to meet more and more women storytellers, but also to watch them thrive!”

“The women we’ve selected don’t need another mentorship program – they are skilled, working professionals,” explained Blackmagic Collective’s Executive Director Jenn Page. “They need someone to open the door and allow them an opportunity to put their skills into action. We’re hoping to facilitate that.”

The Future Director of Studio Features fellows are Alexandra Velasco, an award-winning writer and director from Mexico City working in narrative films, branded content and music videos; Cate Carson, Ebony Blanding, Kylie Eaton, Natalie Simpkins, Olia Oparina, Robyn Paris, Susan Dynner (“Punk’s Not Dead”, “Brick”), a band photographer turned award-winning director, producer, writer and Sundance Fellow and Tiffany Frances, a Taiwanese American writer and director.

Cinedigm Acquires North American Rights to ‘The Stairs’

Cinedigm announced today that it has acquired all North American rights to the horror film “The Stairs.”

Directed by Peter “Drago” Tiemann, “The Stairs” blends the sweeping natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest with the stomach-churning gore of Hollywood in a modern-day monster movie. Tiemann co-wrote the screenplay with Jason L. Lowe, both men took on additional roles for the film; Tiemann Producing and Lowe working as an Executive Producer.

Other producers include Amanda Rae Jones, with additional Executive Producers Andrew Nevils, Christopher Hill & Amy Bovenkamp, John Kritsonis, Karl Lindor, Thomas Lowe, Wesley Barker and Scott Riefler.

“I am thrilled to finally be able to share ‘The Stairs’ with everyone,” said the first-time director Tiemann. “I fell in love with horror as a young boy, and soon found a way to turn my passion into a career. For this story, I wanted to give the cast, crew and audience a visceral experience, and I hope you enjoy watching it as much as we enjoyed making it.”

“’The Stairs’ truly delivers for horror fans looking for a movie with real scares, suspense and a terrifying conclusion,” said Melody Fowler, Vice-President of Acquisitions for Cinedigm. “Along with its satisfying story and well-developed characters, the film features superb stunts and inventive creature design and effects. All of these elements together elevate the film’s strong festival reception with genre fans further confirms that it is a must-see.”

This film is currently on the festival circuit and was just nominated for six awards at the HorrorHound Film Festival – Best Directing, Best Writing, Best Cinematography, Best Sound Design, Best Special Effects Feature and Best Feature Film. Winners will be announced on March 21.

The deal was negotiated by Melody Fowler, Vice-President, Acquisitions, on behalf of Cinedigm, with Amanda Rae Jones and Peter “Drago”Tiemann, on behalf of Wandering Dragon Productions.

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