Gender Parity & Nest-supported Films at at Sundance

At Chicken & Egg Pictures we are egg-static to see two (Egg)celerator grantees and feature documentary debuts on the 2022 Sundance Film Festival program: Mija and Midwives, as well as six films by the AlumNest. The festival will come back with a hybrid format, with in-person activities in Park City, Salt Lake City and the Sundance Mountain Resort in Utah and with online events from Thursday, January 20 to Sunday, January 30. We are also excited to see that nonfiction films are once again one of the strongest sections of the festival’s program. 

Last week, Director Tabitha Jackson and Director of Programming Kim Yutani, announced this edition’s details. Yutani and Jackson shared important statistics about women filmmakers in their program selection: 

“Of the submissions to Sundance this year, only 28 percent were from women. Yet among all the features selected, 52 percent were directed by women. When asked whether the programmers decided to boost women auteurs over men, they steered around the question, saying they are always looking to promote female filmmakers. Jackson added: “The slightly depressing fact is that the figure of 28 percent submissions from women has remained pretty static across the years. It is a figure that we would wish to see higher because of what it indicates about the state of the industry. It’s surprising that so few are submitting.”

Sundance Film Festival Unveils 2022 Lineup That Reflects ‘Age of Reckoning’, Nicole Sperling

Learn more about Mija, Midwives, and AlumNest films below:


Mija

dir. Isabel Castro

prod. Tabs Breese, Isabel Castro, Yesenia Tlahuel

Still from Mija

Selected as part of the Next category
Premiering on Friday, January 21 

Get your tickets

With Doris’ voice as our guide, Mija uses VHS archive, verité footage, and camcorder vlogging to tell the story of two young women’s coming-of-age journeys as they look for success and belonging. The film is an immensely emotional and intimate portrait honoring the resilience of immigrants and their children. 


Midwives

dir. & prod. Snow Hnin Ei Hlaing

prods. Bob Moore, Ulla Lehmann, Mila Aung-Thwin

Still from Midwives
Still from Midwives

Selected as part of the World Cinema Documentary Competition 
Premiering on Monday, January 24 
Get your tickets

Hla and Nyo Nyo are two midwives that work side by side in a makeshift medical clinic in western Myanmar, where the Rohingya (a Muslim minority community) are persecuted and denied basic rights. Filmed over three tumultuous years, their remarkable relationship reveals both tensions and the hope inherent in their common cause.


From the AlumNest

AlumNest filmmakers are soaring into Sundance’s program in the U.S. Documentary Competition to the World Cinema Documentary Competition:

A special shoutout to 2018 Chicken & Egg Award recipient Natalia Almada, whose 2002 short documentary film All Water Has a Perfect Memory,  will screen online as part of the “From the Collection” program, a line-up of 40 short films selected to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Sundance Institute. Ticket sales start Friday, December, 17.

Project: Hatched Grantees at the New Orleans Film Festival

The 32nd annual New Orleans Film Festival will take place from Friday, November 5 through Sunday, November 14, with in-person screenings and a Virtual Cinema accessible worldwide 🌍🐣! At Chicken & Egg Pictures we are egg-cited to see three Project: Hatched 2021 films and a film from the AlumNest as part of their lineup. Take a look at them below and get your tickets with this link.

Fruits of Labor

dir. & prod. Emily Cohen Ibañez

Still from Fruits of Labor

Manzanar, Diverted: When Water Becomes Dust

dir. & prod. Ann Kaneko 

prod. Jin Yoo-Kim

Still from Manzanar, Diverted: When Water Becomes Dust
Still from Manzanar, Diverted: When Water Becomes Dust

On The Divide

dirs. Maya Cueva, Leah Galant

prods. Melanie Miller, Diane Becker, Amanda Spain, Elizabeth Woodward

Still from On The Divide
Still from On The Divide

From the AlumNest

Ale Libre, directed by Project: Hatched 2021 grantee Maya Cueva, prods. Mayra Amaya, Melissa Bueno-Woerner, Daniel Tantalean, is part of the Documentary shorts section.

Post by Communications Intern Mariana Sanson

Supported Films at DOC NYC Film Festival

Chicken & Egg Pictures is part of DOC NYC 2021 line up. With an in-person return to theatrical screenings and virtual options available throughout the US, the festival will run from Wednesday, November 10 to Thursday, November 18. Take a look at the five Nest-supported films, and projects from the AlumNest below and get your tickets with this link.

Nest-supported Films


Once Upon a Time in Uganda

dir. Cathryne Czubek, co-dir. Hugo Perez
prods. Gigi Dement, Cathryne Czubek, Matt Porwoll, Hugo Perez, Kyaligamba Ark Martin

2017 Accelerator Lab Cathryne Czubek Hugo Perez Lights Camera Uganda
Still from Once Upon a Time in Uganda

US Premiere 
Friday, Nov. 12
Tickets here
Against all odds, former bricklayer and teacher Isaac Nabwana has turned his small home in the slums of Uganda’s capital city into the Wakaliwood action movie studio. After 10 years and 40+ films, Wakaliwood has become an overnight international media sensation, inspiring others around the world to follow in his footsteps. When New York film nerd Alan Hofmanis shows up on his doorstep one day, everything is bound to change.


Storm Lake

dirs. Beth Levison & Jerry Risius
prod. Beth Levison

Still from Storm Lake
Still from Storm Lake

NYC Premiere
Friday, Nov. 12 
Sunday, Nov. 14 
Tickets here 
Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Art Cullen and his family fight to unite and inform their rural Iowan farming community through their biweekly newspaper, The Storm Lake Times—even as the paper hangs on by a thread. Twice a week, they work as civic watchdogs to protect their hometown and the legacy of credible journalism, at large—come hell or pandemic.


Writing With Fire

dirs. & prods. Rintu Thomas, Sushmit Ghosh

Still from Writing With Fire
Still from Writing With Fire

NYC Premiere
Thursday, Nov. 11 
Tickets here 
In a cluttered news landscape dominated by men, emerges India’s only newspaper run by Dalit women. Armed with smartphones, Chief Reporter Meera and her journalists break traditions, be it on the frontlines of India’s biggest issues or within the confines of their homes, redefining what it means to be powerful.


United States Vs. Reality Winner

dir & prod. Sonia Kennebeck 
prod. Ines Hofmann Kanna

NYC Premiere
Saturday, Nov. 13 
Tickets here
Reality Winner (her actual birth name) is a U.S. Air Force veteran who became a whistleblower in her 20s by leaking classified documents about Russian cyber-warfare attacks on the 2016 U.S. elections. Award-winning filmmaker Sonia Kennebeck (National Bird; Enemies of the State), supported by executive producer Wim Wenders, digs into her case, exploring mistakes made by journalists at The Intercept that led the FBI to discover Winner’s identity.*


Boycott

dir & prod. Julia Bacha
prod. Suhad Babaa, Daniel J. Chalfen

NYC Premiere
Monday, Nov. 14 
Tickets here  
Boycotts have long been a tool used by Americans rallying for social and political change, from civil rights leaders to anti-apartheid activists. But in recent years, 33 U.S. states have introduced anti-boycott legislation or executive orders designed to penalize individuals and companies who choose to boycott Israel due to its human rights record. Boycott looks at the cases of a news publisher in Arkansas, an attorney in Arizona and a speech therapist in Texas whose careers are threatened by the harsh measures of these new laws. A legal thriller with “accidental plaintiffs” at the center, the film is a bracing look at the far-reaching implications of anti-boycott legislation and an inspiring tale of everyday Americans standing up to protect our rights in an age of shifting politics and threats to freedom of speech.


AlumNest Films

Listening to Kenny G, directed by 2017 Chicken & Egg Award recipient Penny Lane, prod. Gabriel Sedgwick, will open the festival on Wednesday, Nov. 10. A Decent Home, directed and produced by AlumNest filmmaker Sara Terry, producer Alysa Nahmias, will screen on Tuesday, Nov. 16. Exposure, directed and produced by AlumNest filmmaker Holly Morris, producers Eleanor Wilson, Michael Kovnat, Jill Mazursky, will have its NYC premiere on Saturday, Nov. 13. The film Black and Missing, directed by 2017 Chicken & Egg Award recipient Geeta Gandbhir and Samantha Knowles, producers Samantha Knowles, Nimco Sheikhaden, will premiere on Wednesday, Nov. 17.   

 

*Language courtesy of DOC NYC.  

Post by Communications Intern Mariana Sanson

The Nest at CIFF

Camden International Film Festival will take place in person in Maine this Thursday, September 16 through Sunday, September 19, and online from September 19 to Sunday, September 26. Here at Chicken & Egg Pictures, we are egg-cited to participate and to see (Egg)celerator Lab film Ascension and AlumNest film Listening to Kenny G.

Special congratulations to the CIFF team who have been diligently working to bring us an immersive in-person festival experience “to share cinema as it was intended, on the big screen and surrounded by community.”

Ascension

Still from film Ascension
Still from Ascension

dir. Jessica Kingdon  
prods. Jessica Kingdon, Kira Simon-Kennedy & Nathan Truesdell
Available for in-person screening on Friday, September 17 at 3:00 pm ET | Tickets here 


From the AlumNest

Penny Lane 2017 Breakthrough Filmmaker Award

Listening to Kenny G, directed by 2017 Chicken & Egg Award recipient Penny Lane, and produced by Gabriel Sedgwick, will be available for in-person (including Drive-in🙌) and virtual screenings | Tickets here


Meet Our Team at CIFF

Representing Chicken & Egg Pictures, our External Engagement Manager will be taking in-person filmmaker meetings with projects from CIFF programming including Points North Fellowship, North Star Fellowship, 4th World Media Lab, and American Stories Doc Fund (sponsored by CNN Films). 



Our Co-Founder Wendy Ettinger will also be at CIFF, taking virtual meetings. Take a look at Camden International Film Festival full programming here




Post by 2021 Summer Communications Intern Mariana Sanson

2 (Egg)celerator Lab Films to Watch at BlackStar Film Festival

BlackStar Film Festival is an annual celebration of the visual and storytelling traditions of the African diaspora and of global communities of color, showcasing films by Black, Brown and Indigenous artists from around the world.

BlackStar Film Festival

BlackStar Film Festival takes place Wednesday, August 4 to Sunday, August 8 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and online. (Egg)celerator Lab grantee films Between Fire and Water and Writing With Fire are available to stream and to see in-person. Plus Nest-supported filmmakers such as Michèle Stephenson and Lyric R. Cabral are participating in online sessions at the fest. 🖤 ⭐

Between Fire and Water (Entre Fuego y Agua)

Paths of Fire and Water Viviana Gómez Echeverry
Still from Between Fire and Water, photo by Anton Wenzel

dir. Viviana Gómez Echeverry & Anton Wenzel
prod. Sonia Barrera Gutiérrez

Watch the trailer here, and stream the full film here here (available August 8 – 9).


Writing With Fire

Writing With Fire, directed by Rintu Thomas and Sushmit Ghosh 2018 Accelerator Lab
Still from Writing With Fire

dir. Rintu Thomas & Sushmit Ghosh
prod. Rintu Thomas & Sushmit Ghosh

Watch the trailer here, and stream the full film here here (available August 7 – 8).


AlumNest Films

A special shoutout to Chicken & Egg Award recipients Malika Zouhali-Worrall and Michèle Stephenson on their new short films screening in the same Shorts: Antumbra program. Watch here on Saturday, August 7 at 4:00 pm ET (virtual screening).

Elena
dir. Michèle Stephenson
prod. Joe Brewster

Video Visit
dir. Malika Zouhali-Worrall

Congratulations to Jessica Kingdon on her two Tribeca Film Festival Awards!

The 2021 Tribeca Film Festival awards were announced last Thursday, June 17, and Chicken & Egg Pictures is proud to celebrate 2019 (Egg)celerator Lab grantee Jessica Kingdon’s two Awards! Her film Ascension received the Award for Best Documentary Feature, and Jessica received the 2021 Albert Maysles Award for Best New Documentary Director. Congratulations Jessica! 


Ascension

Ascension, dir. Jessica Kingdon

Dir. Jessica Kingdon
Prod. Kira Simon-Kennedy, Jessica Kingdon, Nathan Truesdell

Ascension examines the contemporary “Chinese Dream” through staggering observations of labor, consumerism and wealth. In cinematically exploring the aspiration that drives today’s People’s Republic of China, the film plunges into universal paradoxes of economic progress.

Post by 2021 Summer Communications Intern Mariana Sanson. 

We’re Back to the Cinemas at the 2021 Tribeca Film Festival!

The Tribeca Film Festival is celebrating its 20th anniversary with a return to the cinemas in 2021. The festival runs from Wednesday, June 9 to Sunday, June 20 with programming that can be accessed in person and virtually.

At Chicken & Egg Pictures, we are looking forward to the shared experience of film, as New Yorkers head back to the movies again. Viewers within the US can access Tribeca’s virtual programming through $15 online stream tickets.

We are also thrilled to let you know that films slated to premiere at the 2020 Tribeca Film Festival, but postponed due to COVID-19, will also screen at this year’s edition. Granted films featured in the festival include four (Egg)celerator Lab grantees from 2018 and 2019, one Project: Hatched grantee, one Chicken & Egg Award recipient film, three films from the AlumNest, and one VR project. Learn more about the films below, and get your tickets here

Ascension, dir. Jessica Kingdon


Ascension examines the contemporary “Chinese Dream” through staggering observations of labor, consumerism and wealth. In cinematically exploring the aspiration that drives today’s People’s Republic of China, the film plunges into universal paradoxes of economic progress.

World Premiere │ Tribeca Documentary Competition │ 2019 (Egg)celerator Lab

Enemies of the State, dir. Sonia Kennebeck


Enemies of the State Sonia Kennebeck 2018 Accelerator Lab

An American family becomes entangled in a bizarre web of secrets and lies when their hacker son is targeted by the U.S. government, making them all Enemies of the State.

US Premiere │ 2018 (Egg)celerator Lab

Pray Away, dir. Kristine Stolakis


Former leaders of the “pray away the gay” movement contend with the aftermath unleashed by their actions, while a survivor seeks healing and acceptance from more than a decade of trauma.

World Premiere │ 2019 (Egg)celerator Lab

Through the Night, dir. Loira Limbal


To make ends meet, Americans are working longer hours across multiple jobs. This modern reality of nonstop work has resulted in an unexpected phenomenon: the flourishing of 24-hour daycare centers. Through the Night is a verité documentary that explores the personal cost of our modern economy through the stories of two working mothers and a child care provider, whose lives intersect at a 24-hour daycare center in New Rochelle, NY.

New York Premiere │ 2018 (Egg)celerator Lab

Landfall, dir. Cecilia Aldarondo


Through shard-like glimpses of everyday life in post-Hurricane María Puerto Rico, Landfall examines a ruined world at the brink of transformation, spinning a cautionary tale for our times.

Project: Hatched 2020

Stateless, dir. Michèle Stephenson


Through the grassroots campaign of electoral hopeful Rosa Iris, director Michèle Stephenson’s new documentary reveals the depths of racial hatred and institutionalized oppression that divide Haiti and the Dominican Republic.

2016 Chicken & Egg Award

Simple as Water, dir. Megan Mylan


A look at war and displacement through the lens of parenthood from Megan Mylan, Academy-Award winning director of Lost Boys of Sudan and Smile Pinki. This feature documentary unfolds as a sequence of cinematic short stories revolving around Syrian families living in Turkey, Greece, the US, Germany, and Syria. Each chapter is an intimate portrait of parents—often mothers alone—as they work to rebuild their children’s lost sense of security and possibility. It is a story that is both urgent and timeless.

World Premiere │ 2018 Grant


VR Experience

The Changing Same: Episode 1, dirs. Michèle Stephenson, Joe Brewster & Yasmin Elayat


AlumNest Films

The Sit-In: Harry Belafonte Hosts The Tonight Show, dir. Yoruba Richen (2016 Chicken & Egg Award recipient)
Selected for the 2020 Tribeca Film Festival

Women In Blue, dir. Deirdre Fishel (AlumNest for Care)
Selected for the 2020 Tribeca Film Festival

Untitled Dave Chappelle Documentary, dirs. Julia Reichert (2016 Chicken & Egg Award recipient) and Steve Bognar
Egg-citing news! This world premiere will be Tribeca’s closing night film.

See you at the cinema! Post by 2021 Summer Communications Intern Mariana Sanson. 

A Half Dozen Nest-supported Films at Hot Docs This Year!

Hot Docs Film Festival, the largest doc festival in North America, is on now until May 9. Get your tickets here, and watch the following Chicken & Egg Pictures-supported films at the virtual festival:

Still from Bangla Surf Girls
  • Apart, dir. Jennifer Redfearn | International Premiere
  • Bangla Surf Girls, dir. Elizabeth D. Costa | World Premiere
  • Between Fire and Water, dirs. Viviana Gómez Echeverry and Anton Wenzel | North American Premiere
  • Through the Night, dir. Loira Limbal
  • Writing with Fire, dirs. Rintu Thomas and Sushmit Ghosh
  • Users, dir. Natalia Almada
AlumNest films:
  • In the Same Breath, dir. Nanfu Wang | International Premiere 
  • Until Further Notice, dir. Tiffany Hsiung
(Egg)celerator Lab granted films participating in the Hot Docs Forum:
  • Against the Tide, dir. Sarvnik Kaur
  • Black Mothers, dir. Débora Souza Silva
  • The Last Nomads, dir. Biljana Tutorov and Petar Glomazić 

7 Supported Films to Stream at the Cleveland International Film Festival

There’s plenty to stream at the 2021 Cleveland International Film Festival, which runs virtually from Wednesday, April 7 to Tuesday, April 20 on their website.

Granted films featured in the online festival include four 2018 (Egg)celerator Lab grantees: A Cops and Robbers Story, Apart, Through the Night, and Writing With Fire, as well as three additional Nest-supported films. The (Egg)celerator Lab supports first- and second-time filmmakers who are working on a feature length documentary, with a special focus on underrepresented voices. Learn more about the films below, and get your tickets here. Online stream tickets are just $10!

Apart, dir. Jennifer Redfearn


The number of women in U.S. prisons has grown by 800% over the past 40 years. And the vast majority are mothers. In a Midwestern state caught between the opioid epidemic, drug sentencing, and rising incarceration for women, three unforgettable mothers—Tomika, Lydia, and Amanda— return home from prison and rebuild their lives after being separated from their children for years.

Apart participated in the 2018 (Egg)celerator Lab.

A Cops and Robbers Story, dir. Ilinca Calgureanu


Ilinca Calugareanu A Cops and Robbers Story Accelerator Lab 2018

Corey Pegues, one of the highest ranking black executives in the NYPD, reveals a few months after retirement that before joining the NYPD he worked the streets dealing crack cocaine for one of the most notorious drug gangs in the US, the Supreme Team. To many he is either a perp in cop costume or a criminal turned hero. But who is the real Corey Pegues?

A Cops and Robbers Story participated in the 2018 (Egg)celerator Lab.

The Dilemma of Desire, dir. Maria Finitzo


An exploration of “cliteracy,” and the clash between the gender politics and the imperatives of female sexual desire.

The Dilemma of Desire participated in Project: Hatched 2020.

Down A Dark Stairwell, dir. Ursula Liang


A nuanced look at how two communities of color navigate an uneven criminal justice system, anchored by one polarizing New York City case.

Landfall, dir. Cecilia Aldarondo


Through shard-like glimpses of everyday life in post-Hurricane María Puerto Rico, Landfall examines a ruined world at the brink of transformation, spinning a cautionary tale for our times.

Landfall participated in Project: Hatched 2020.

Through the Night, dir. Loira Limbal


To make ends meet, Americans are working longer hours across multiple jobs. This modern reality of nonstop work has resulted in an unexpected phenomenon: the flourishing of 24-hour daycare centers. Through the Night is a verité documentary that explores the personal cost of our modern economy through the stories of two working mothers and a child care provider, whose lives intersect at a 24-hour daycare center in New Rochelle, NY.

Through the Night participated in the 2018 (Egg)celerator Lab. Director Loira Limbal is supported through the 2021 Chicken & Egg Award.

Writing with Fire, dirs. Rintu Thomas and Sushmit Ghosh


Writing With Fire, directed by Rintu Thomas and Sushmit Ghosh 2018 Accelerator Lab

In a cluttered news landscape dominated by men, emerges India’s only newspaper run by Dalit women. Armed with smartphones, Chief Reporter Meera and her journalists break traditions, be it on the frontlines of India’s biggest issues or within the confines of their homes, redefining what it means to be powerful.

Writing With Fire participated in the 2018 (Egg)celerator Lab.


In the Same Breath, dir. Nanfu Wang is also screening at the festival. Chicken & Egg Pictures supported Nanfu’s previous film, as well as supported Nanfu through the 2018 Chicken & Egg Award.

The Nest on the DOC NYC Short List

A special congratulations to the following Nest-supported filmmakers who were selected for DOC NYC’s famous Short Lists for contenders for the documentary short category and contenders for feature documentary category. DOC NYC Film Festival is the largest nonfiction film festival in the US and runs from Wednesday, November 11 to Thursday, November 19.

DOC NYC’s Short Lists are influential for their steady track record of anticipating Academy Award nominees and winners. Check out the Nest-supported films screening at the festival here; the films are available to watch across the US.


DOC NYC Short List: Features

Production still from A Thousand Cuts, directed by Ramona Diaz.

A Thousand Cuts
Directed by Ramona Diaz (2018 Chicken & Egg Award recipient)*

Nowhere is the worldwide erosion of democracy, fueled by social media disinformation campaigns, more starkly evident than in the authoritarian regime of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte. Journalist Maria Ressa places the tools of the free press—and her freedom—on the line in defense of truth and democracy.

Dick Johnson Is Dead
Directed by Recipient Kirsten Johnson (2017 Chicken & Egg Award recipient)*

With this inventive portrait, a cameraperson seeks a way to keep her 86-year-old father alive forever. Utilizing moviemaking magic and her family’s dark humor, she celebrates Dr. Dick Johnson’s last years by staging fantasies of death and beyond. Together, dad and daughter confront the great inevitability awaiting us all.

Still from The Fight, co-directed by Elyse Steinberg, Josh Kriegman, and
Eli Despres.

The Fight, co-directed by Elyse SteinbergJosh Kriegman, and
Eli Despres (Project: Hatched 2020)

The Fight documents a team of scrappy ACLU lawyers battling Trump’s historic assault on civil liberties.

Congratulations to AlumNest filmmakers Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering, whose new film On the Record made the DOC NYC Short List: Features and will screen at the fest. Kirby and Amy were supported by Chicken & Egg Pictures for their project The Invisible War


DOC NYC Short List: Shorts

Congratulations to the following AlumNest filmmakers on their shortlisted short films: Chicken & Egg Award Recipient Geeta Gandbhir for Call Center Blues, Tiffany Hsiung for Sing Me A Lullaby, Alison Klayman for Flower Punk, and Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy for A Life Too Short.


In the Winner’s Circle section of DOC NYC, catch The Mole Agent directed by 2020 Chicken & Egg Award Recipient Maite Alberdi.

*These projects were supported by Chicken & Egg Pictures during the filmmakers’ Chicken & Egg Award year.