Announcing our 2022 Chicken & Egg Award Recipients!

a series of headshots of six women looking at the camera

Announced via Women & Hollywood today, Chicken & Egg Pictures is proud to introduce the seventh cohort of our Chicken & Egg Award, which supports six advanced-career women and gender nonconforming filmmakers with unrestricted funding. The directors will receive a $50,000 grant, and for the first time ever two directors will receive a $15,000 finalist grant.

“The Chicken & Egg Award makes bold investments in the personal and professional wellbeing of visionary women and gender nonconforming documentary makers. Over the past seven years, we have given unrestricted cash grants totaling $1.9 million US dollars to 38 change-making directors,” said Program Director Lucila Moctezuma. “Because filmmakers—especially those affected by roadblocks tied to their gender, race, class, and location—deserve financial freedom while they create new projects.”

Please click on the Recipients’ names for more information on each filmmaker and give these visionary directors a warm welcome to the Nest!


Director Petra Costa’s headshot in black and whitePetra Costa is a Brazilian documentary filmmaker whose work lives on the borderlines of the personal and political. She directed The Edge of Democracy (2019), which was nominated for the Academy Award® for Documentary Feature in 2020; Undertow Eyes (2009); Elena (2012); and Olmo and the Seagull (2015). Petra is associate producer of Barbara Paz’s Babenco (2019), producer of Moara Passoni’s Ecstasy (2020), and EP of Rebeca Huntt’s BEBA (2021).   

Black & White medium image of Dr Bev in an Afro hairstyle, wearing a black tux and black tie, looking directly at camera.

Dr. Bev Palesa Ditsie (Hon) is a radical gender nonconforming lesbian activist and award winning filmmaker, disruptor and change agent who was instrumental in bringing LGBTIQA+ rights into focus in the late 80’s and 90’s in South Africa and the world. She is also a reality TV director whose credits include Big Brother Africa, Survivor South Africa, and Project Runway South Africa. Among her film credits are Simon & I, A Family Affair, and The Commission. Lesbians Free Everyone (2020), their latest work filmed during lockdown, takes the viewer along their journey as the first African Lesbian to address the UN at the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing 1995.

A woman with dark skin, long, wavy black hair and black eyes sits on a bright red/orange sofa, her hands resting on the sofa's arm rest. She's smiling while looking into straight into the camera. She is wearing a long sleeve black dress with a V-neck,has on a turquoise necklace and matching earrings.Anayansi Prado is an award-winning documentary filmmaker whose work has focused on issues of undocumented immigration, indigenous rights, and race identity. Her feature films have aired nationally on PBS including The Unafraid (2018), Paraiso for Sale (2010), and Maid in America (2005). Anayansi is a Rockefeller Media Fellow and a Creative Capital Artist; her work has been supported by the MacArthur Foundation, Ford Foundation, Chicken & Egg Pictures, amongst others.

This is a headshot of Brett Story, a white woman with freckles and long brown hair and bangs. She is sitting at a table against a white wall, wearing a black turtleneck and jeans.Brett Story is an award-winning filmmaker and writer based out of Toronto. She is the director of the critically acclaimed feature documentaries The Prison in Twelve Landscapes (2016) and The Hottest August (2019), both of which have screened around the world. Brett has held fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and Sundance Institute, and she was named one of Variety’s 10 Documentary Filmmakers to Watch 2019.

Director Margreth Olin in a coat, background winter landscape in OsloMargreth Olin is a director and producer with a large cinema audience in Norway. She has made 13 films, which have received critical acclaim, participated at numerous festivals abroad, and won several Norwegian and international awards. Margreth has managed to catalyze important dialogues with the topics her films shed light on. She has personally received 26 honorary awards for her commitment and focus on human rights. Her credits include My Body (Tribeca 2002), EFA-nominated Raw Youth (2004), The Angel (TIFF 2010), Nowhere Home (IDFA 2012), Cathedrals of Culture (Berlinale 2013), Self Portrait (DOC NYC 2020).

Tracy Heather Strain, a two-time Peabody Award-winning and Emmy-nominated filmmaker, explores stories about the ways diverse peoples have experienced life in the US. She won an NAACP Image Award for Motion Picture Directing for Lorraine Hansberry: Sighted Eyes/Feeling Heart, which premiered at TIFF and made its television debut on American Masters. She is presently developing Survival Floating, a hybrid documentary investigating African-descended peoples’ relationships with swimming.


Ditsi Carolino studied filmmaking at the National Film & Television School in the UK on a Chevening Scholarship. Her past projects include Life on the Tracks, about a couple who live by the railway slums (IDFA World Premiere, BBC Storyville Broadcast); and Bunso: The Youngest, about three imprisoned boys from 11–13, which was used by child rights advocates to pass the juvenile justice law. Ditsi is a member of Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.   

Sonia Kennebeck is an award-winning director and producer and has released three critically-acclaimed independent feature films: National Bird (Berlinale Special 2016), Enemies of the State (TIFF 2020), and United States vs. Reality Winner (SXSW 2021). She received the Adrienne Shelly Excellence in Filmmaking Award and Ridenhour Documentary Film Prize. She is a first-generation college graduate who was born in Malaysia, raised in Germany, and lives in the US.  

Read the Women & Hollywood article about the 2022 Chicken & Egg Award.