Announcing the Fork Films and Chicken & Egg Pictures Story Workshop!

We’re proud to announce (via Women & Hollywood) our joint creative story workshop with Fork Films, a collaboration that combines our values-driven missions of propelling underrepresented stories.

Filmmakers from both the Fork Films’ alumnae roster and Chicken & Egg Pictures’ AlumNest will receive supportive, strategic feedback from their peers, as well as mentors from both organizations to explore story structure, learn production best practices, and leave with a sharper vision for their films.

Still from Fight Song by Denali Tiller

“Together we are stronger! This opportunity to combine our mission-aligned organizations and take advantage of our organic synergy to champion filmmakers is so valuable. It allows us to further support and elevate filmmakers as they continue to explore the stories in their films and learn about production best practices. We couldn’t be more excited about this partnership,” said Chicken & Egg Pictures Program Director Lucila Moctezuma.

Learn about the Fork Films and Chicken & Egg Pictures Story Workshop participants below:

Body Parts

Directed by Kristy Guevara-Flanagan (AlumNest & Fork Films Alumna)
Produced by Helen Hood Scheer

Body Parts explores the making of Hollywood intimacy scenes in a post #MeToo era. From a kaleidoscopic range of perspectives, the film traces how a cinematic legacy of exploitation and ingenuity have shaped the entertainment industry and audiences. Can an authentic, more ethical vision of female sexuality be conveyed? The answers go beyond movie-making and impact the world at large.


Fight Song

Directed and produced by Denali Tiller (AlumNest)

Maia, Kayla and Alli are three young women who have aspirations as many young women do: to find love, success, and purpose in their work. But for these three women, their work involves getting hit, punched, body-slammed, kicked, tackled – and doing the same to others. As these women emerge from tender teenage years to a rough, brutal world of punching bags, dummies, broken bones, and razor’s edge competition, we will witness the emotional and physical strength that’s required to compete at a high level, and explore the threshold between fighting for fitness, validation, control, or self-defense in the face of trauma.


The Half Truths

Directed by Hemal Trivedi (AlumNest)
Produced by Hemal Trivedi, Amelia Hanibelsz, Cynthia Kane

India’s bloodiest conflict zone is Chhattisgarh, an environmentally fragile region and state where the country’s last dense forest exists, the “lungs of India”.  A multinational mining company is eviscerating the land while simultaneously at war with rebel tribal forces. Soni, a tribal school teacher, runs an orphanage and is unexpectedly caught in the crossfire.  She is arrested, tortured, and raped. Her arduous quest for justice makes her an international symbol of resistance against state oppression. After release from prison term, and with little choice in the matter, a leader emerges to save her cherished forest and find a path to peace.


Merkel

Directed by Eva Weber (AlumNest)
Produced by Lizzie Gillett, Sigrid Dyekjaer, Eva Weber, Sonja Henrici

As Angela Merkel leaves the world stage, Merkel explores how a triple outsider—a woman, an East German and a scientist—re-invented herself to become one of the world’s most powerful politicians. Told from an international perspective for an international audience, this film is the definitive re-examination of Angela Merkel’s life and career, delicately told with humor, subtlety, and poignancy.


Power & Light

Directed by Marion Lipschutz, Rose Rosenblatt (AlumNest & Fork Films Alumnae)
Produced by Rose Rosenblatt, Sabrina Alvarez, Jesse Epstein

In Lawrence, MA a Dominican Pastor and his Anglo wife transform a fractious group of evangelical LatinX clergy into a fighting force for climate justice, determined to make their town a showcase for a green future. Power & Light is a portrait of a marriage that sits on the fault lines of race, culture, gender and religion, mirroring the larger tensions of a story about organizing for climate justice. Sue and Joel’s perspective, and their marriage, emotionally anchor the larger story of how a community informed by spiritual faith struggles to organize around man-made disasters.


The Total Trust

Directed and produced by Jialing Zhang (2021 Chicken & Egg Award Recipient* & Fork Film Alumna)

The Total Trust (working title) takes a visceral look at the realities of a society in the throes of a digital invasion. From cameras to AI profiling, China is facing an unprecedented level of surveillance, upheld in equal measure through fear and trust. By exploring the relationship between the watched and the watching, our film uncovers the trauma and hope engendered by these measures and lends a voice to those that stand in resilient defiance of such blatant abuse of power.

*The Total Trust is also supported by Chicken & Egg Pictures through Jialing Zhang’s Chicken & Egg Award this year.

Nest filmmakers and staff at the 2021 Gotham Week Conference!

The 2021 Gotham Week Conference started this Sunday, September 19 and will run through Friday, September 24, with public panels and workshops exploring storytelling through film, TV, and audio. This year’s edition will focus on how the pandemic pushed media and entertainment to reinvent itself as well as focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion. 

Their programming will feature the work of a number of filmmakers from the AlumNest: Amber Fares, Jessica Devaney, Nanfu Wang, and Beth Levison; plus 2021 (Egg)celerator Lab grantees Jude Chehab and 2019 Chicken & Egg Award Recipient Kimberly Reed are participating in theGotham Week (Virtual) Project Market.

Collaboration in convergence

Sunday, September 19 

4:00 –⁠ 5:00 pm EDT 

A conversation with the filmmaking team behind Netflix’s Convergence: Courage In A Crisis,  where they will discuss the tools and tactics they used to create a globally collaborative film. Featuring Nest-supported filmmaker Amber Fares (Speed Sisters)

Women Owned Production Companies — Creating Your Path to Career Sustainability

Monday, September 20

10:00 am –⁠ 11:00 am EDT  

A conversation between the leaders of women owned production companies discussing the difficulties they face to produce the work they want to make and build a strategic and long-lasting career. Featuring Nest-supported filmmaker and friend Jessica Devaney (Love the Sinner)

Exploring In the Same Breath

Dir. Nanfu Wang, prods. Nanfu Wang, Christopher Clements, Carolyn Hepburn, Sara Rodriguez, and Jialing Zhang

Thursday, September 23 

1:00 pm –⁠ 2:00 pm EDT  

A conversation with the production team of In the Same Breath, directed by 2017 Chicken & Egg Award Recipient Nanfu Wang and produced by current Chicken & Egg Award Recipient Jialing Zhang.

More than money: How film commissioners and other partnerships can help nurture your next project sponsored

Friday, September 24 

12:00 pm –⁠ 1:00 pm EDT 

Panel: learn how a film commissioner can become a meaningful partner to help build the collaborations that give a more authentic dimension to film projects. Featuring Beth Levison (producer of Made in Boise

Free access through IGTV


Gotham Week (Virtual) Project Market

Still from Q
Still from Q

Q  (2021 (Egg)celerator Lab grantee)

dir & prod. Jude Chehab

The Gender Project 

dir. Kimberly Reed (2020 Chicken & Egg Award Recipient) 

prods. Louise Rosen & Robin Honan


AlumNest Films

  • Boycott, directed by 2019 Chicken & Egg Award recipient Julia Bacha, prods. Suhad Babaa & Danel Chalfen
  • HER, directed by 2017 Chicken & Egg Award recipient Geeta Gandbhir, prods. Sonita Gale & Austyn Biggers
  • JFK8 (working title), directed by AlumNest filmmaker Brett Story, prods. Marianne Verrone & Samantha Curley
  • Coexistence, My Ass!, directed by Nest-supported filmmaker Amber Fares, prods. Rachel Leah Jones & Rabab Haj Yahya 

Meet Our Team at CIFF

Headshot Jaad Asante
Headshot Iva Dimitrova

Representing Chicken & Egg Pictures, our Program Coordinator Iva Dimitrova and Filmmaker Engagement Manager Jaad Asante will be participating in the Gotham Week (Virtual) Project Market and taking meetings with women and gender nonconforming filmmakers and producers with projects in all stages of production.


Check the 2021 Gotham Week Conference here and get your tickets here.

Post by 2021 Summer Communications Intern Mariana Sanson. 

Belly of the Beast Receives Four News and Documentary Emmy® Noms!

Nominations for the 42nd Annual News and Documentary Emmy® Awards were announced today by The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS): Project: Hatched 2020 grantee Belly of the Beast received FOUR nominations! Also nominated were two films by Chicken & Egg Award recipients and one produced by our Co-founder & Board President Julie Parker Benello.  

Belly of the Beast (Project: Hatched 2020)

dir. Erika Cohn

prods. Nicole Docta, Christen Marquez & Angela Tucker


Nominated for Outstanding Direction: Documentary, Outstanding Current Affairs Documentary, Best Documentary, Outstanding Editing: Documentary

AlumNest Films


The Sit-In: Harry Belafonte Hosts The Tonight Show

Nominated for Outstanding Arts and Culture Documentary
dir. Yoruba Richen (2016 Chicken & Egg Award Recipient)
prods. Valerie Thomas & Joan Walsh

Tutwiler

Nominated for Outstanding Short Documentary
dir. Elaine McMillion Sheldon (2016 Chicken & Egg Award Recipient)
prod. Alysia Santo

John Lewis: Good Trouble

Nominated by Outstanding Research: Documentary, Outstanding Historical Documentary, Outstanding Lighting Direction and Scenic Design
dir. Dawn Porter (2017 Chicken & Egg Award recipient)
prods. Erika Alexander & Ben Arnon

Special Congratulations


A special congratulations to our Co-Founder & Board President Julie Parker Benello, producer of Athlete A (dirs. Bonni Cohen & Jon Shenk, prods. Serin Marshall, Julie Parker Benello & Jen Say). The film was nominated for Best Documentary and Outstanding Investigative Documentary. 

Check out the full nomination list here. The awards for Documentary Categories will be presented on Wednesday, September 29, 2021. Post by 2021 Summer Communications Intern Mariana Sanson. 

Chicken & Egg Award Filmmakers receive Emmy® Nominations

The nomination list for the 73rd Primetime Emmy® Awards, was announced on Tuesday, July 13 and includes projects by three Chicken & Egg Award recipients. At Chicken & Egg Pictures, we are celebrating this egg-cellent news and wishing them the best!

Dick Johnson is Dead

dir. Kirsten Johnson

prods. Katy Chevigny & Marilyn Ness


Nominated for Outstanding Cinematography For a Nonfiction Program, Outstanding Directing For A Documentary/Nonfiction Program, and Exceptional Merit In Documentary Filmmaking

 

8:46 – Dave Chappelle

dirs. and prods. Julia Reichert, Steve Bognar & Dave Chappelle*


Nominated for Outstanding Directing For A Variety Special.


American Masters

The New Black Yoruba RichenA special congratulations to 2016 Chicken & Egg Award Recipient Yoruba Richen for her direction of How It Feels To Be Free. The film participated in the 35th season of the American Masters series, which was nominated for Outstanding Documentary Or Nonfiction Series. American Masters is produced by Julie Sacks.  

Check out the full nomination list here. The 73rd annual Emmy® Awards will take place next September 19, 2021.


*Chicken & Egg Pictures supported Julia Reichert through the 2016 Chicken & Egg Award but did not directly support her new project, Dave Chappelle.

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. 

Two Chicken & Egg Pictures-supported Films Win at Sundance!

The 2021 Sundance Film Festival Awards were announced Tuesday, February 3. We were egg-static to see two Nest-supported films receive major awards from the Park City festival, which was held online from January 28 to Wednesday, February 3. 


Users, directed by Natalia Almada

Natalia Almada received the “Directing Award: U.S. Documentary” for Users.

Natalia Almada worked on Users during her 2018 Chicken & Egg Award year and the project participated in NEXT GEN EGG. Check out the film’s Sundance page here.


Writing With Fire, directed by Rintu Thomas and Sushmit Ghosh

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

Writing With Fire received the “Audience Award: World Cinema Documentary” and “World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award: Impact for Change.”

Writing With Fire participated in our 2018 (Egg)elerator Lab and NEXT GEN EGG. Check out the film’s Sundance page here.


A special congratulations to AlumNest filmmaker Camilla Nielsson (Democrats) on her “World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award: Vérité Filmmaking” for President!

Nest-supported Films at the 2021 Sundance Film Festival

We’re soaring (digitally) into the 2021 Sundance Film Festival this month, taking place from Thursday, January 28 to Wednesday, February 3. Tickets are now on sale to see the following Nest-supported filmmakers and films from anywhere in the United States: 

Users, directed by Natalia Almada

“A mother wonders, will my children love their perfect machines more than they love me, their imperfect mother? She switches on a smart-crib lulling her crying baby to sleep. This perfect mother is everywhere. She watches over us, takes care of us. We listen to her. We trust her.”
Natalia Almada worked on Users during her 2018 Chicken & Egg Award year and the project participated in NEXT GEN EGG. Check out the film’s Sundance page here.


Writing With Fire, directed by 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 our 2018 (Egg)elerator Lab and NEXT GEN EGG. Check out the film’s Sundance page here.


The Changing Same — Lead Artists: Michèle Stephenson, Joe Brewster, and Yasmin Elayat

Changing Same Michèle Stephenson Joe Brewster Impact Innovation Initiative 2018

“This immersive, episodic experience uses time travel and magical realism to pilgrimage through the evolution of racial violence in the U.S., making vital connections between the past and present. Episode 1 introduces the time travel portal—the Cracker House—and begins with a police altercation in a quiet suburb of modern-day New Jersey. The police altercation leads to mass incarceration and a slave warehouse, while hurtling toward a glimpse of a radiant post-racial utopia.”
The Changing Same received a 2017 Impact and Innovation Grant, a past Chicken & Egg Pictures program. You need a Desktop-tethered VR Headset to participate; learn more about the project here.


AlumNest Filmmakers

Our AlumNest is the 325+ women and gender nonconforming filmmakers we have supported in our sixteen years as an organization. Check out these projects by supported filmmakers at the upcoming Sundance Film Festival:

Bring Your Own Brigade, directed by Lucy Walker (The Lion’s Mouth Opens)

Prison X – Chapter 1 : The Devil and The Sun — Lead Artists: Violeta Ayala (Cocaine Prison), Alap Parikh, Maria Corvera Vargas, Roly Elias

Try Harder! directed by Debbie Lum (Seeking Asian Female)

President, directed by Camilla Nielsson (Democrats)

In The Same Breath, directed by Nanfu Wang (2018 Chicken & Egg Award, One Child Nation)

Nishtha Jain: Dozen Days of Filmmakers — Day 12

Chicken & Egg Pictures is celebrating the holiday season and saying farewell to 2020 by featuring a dozen Nest-supported women and gender nonconforming filmmakers. For more Dozen Days of Filmmakers, see here.


Nishtha Jain is a multi-award-winning filmmaker based in Mumbai. She’s best known for her films Gulabi Gang (2012), Lakshmi and Me (2007), and City of Photos (2004). She’s been exploring the human condition in its myriad states. Politics of image making and self-representation, complexities of social hierarchies, women’s movements, and workers’ struggles have been some of the themes that her films have dealt with. She’s a graduate of the Film and Television Institute of India, Pune and A.J.K. Mass Communication Research Centre, New Delhi. She’s a Fulbright Scholar (2019), Global Media Maker (2019) at Film Independent, Los Angeles, and Chicken & Egg Award Recipient (2020). 

Still from Gulabi Gang, directed by Nishtha Jain

A recipient of two Indian National Film Awards and over 23 international awards, her films have been extensively shown in international film festivals and art-house cinemas and broadcast on international TV networks. She has served as a juror at several international festivals including IDFA and Zurich Film Festival. In 2020, Nishtha joined the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

She has given master classes and/or made artist presentations at universities including Stanford, NYU, Wellesley, Cambridge, St. Andrews, University of London, Heidelberg, Concordia, Danish Film School, and Film and Television Institute of India, Pune. When she’s not making films, she’s teaching, writing, and actively participating in social and political movements in India.

Yoruba Richen: Dozen Days of Filmmakers — Day 10

Chicken & Egg Pictures is celebrating the holiday season and saying farewell to 2020 by featuring a dozen Nest-supported women and gender nonconforming filmmakers. For more Dozen Days of Filmmakers, see here.


The New Black Yoruba RichenYoruba Richen is a 2016 Chicken & Egg Award filmmaker whose work explores issues of race, space, and power. She has directed films in the US and abroad, including The New Black, Promised Land, The Green Book: Guide to Freedom, and most recently The Sit In: Harry Belafonte Hosts the Tonight Show. Yoruba received the Creative Promise Award at Tribeca All Access, was a Sundance Producers Fellow, is a featured TED Speaker and a Guggenheim Fellow. She is director of the documentary program at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. 

Her last film, The Sit In: Harry Belafonte Hosts the Tonight Show was selected for the 2020 Tribeca Film Festival and is a Peacock Original. Her previous film The Green Book: Guide to Freedom was broadcast on the Smithsonian Channel to record audiences and was awarded the Henry Hampton Award for Excellence in Documentary Filmmaking.

Yoruba is currently working on How It Feels To Be Free, a two-part documentary chronicling how black entertainers like Lena Horne and Cicely Tyson navigated the industry and took control of their own images, all while fighting for civil rights through their art and actions.

The New Black Yoruba Richen
Still from The New Black, directed by Yoruba Richen

Kimberly Reed: Dozen Days of Filmmakers — Day 2

Chicken & Egg Pictures is celebrating the holiday season and saying farewell to 2020 by featuring a dozen Nest-supported women and gender nonconforming filmmakers. For more Dozen Days of Filmmakers, see here.

2020 Chicken & Egg Award Recipient Kimberly Reed’s most recent film, Dark Money, tells the story of a Montana fighting to preserve open and honest elections. The film was an award-winning selection at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and promptly named one of Vogue’s “66 Best Documentaries of All Time,” nominated for Best Feature at the IDA Awards, and nominated for four Critics’ Choice Awards. The Nest-supported film was also on the 2019 Oscar shortlist. Dark Money is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video with PBS Documentaries. 

Dark Money Kimberly Reed Chicken & Egg Pictures
Still from Dark Money, directed by Kimberly Reed

Kim also directed and produced the Cinema Eye Honors-winning Prodigal Sons, the the first documentary by a transgender filmmaker to be theatrically released; produced, edited, and wrote Paul Goodman Changed My Life; and produced The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson (Netflix). She was one of Filmmaker Magazine’s “25 New Faces of Independent Film,” and her work in broader artistic fields has also been acclaimed: she was published in The New York Times for “The Moth: 50 True Stories,” and has co-authored four operas, including As One, the most frequently produced American opera in the 21st century. Her film projections for opera have been called “worthy of Fellini or Bergman” (SF Classical Voice).

During the 2020 Chicken & Egg Award, Kimberly is working on The Gender Project, which uses bold cinematic language to confront the dichotomy of gender, exploding binary myths with scientific, historical, and cultural revelations.