Chicken & Egg Pictures at the Hot Docs Forum

Congratulations to Farming the Revolution for taking home the Best International Documentary Feature award at the 31st edition of Hot Docs in Toronto. The film was supported through Nishtha Jain’s 2020 Chicken & Egg Award. The festival also featured six supported films and five films from supported filmmakers in the lineup, multiple of which were premieres, and a spotlight on 2022 Chicken & Egg Award recipient Brett Story.

Our Senior Program Manager Elaisha Stokes and Program Assistant Will Tamura were in attendance at the festival and the Hot Docs Forum. This year’s Forum had “20 projects—represented by 22 filmmakers, 11 of whom are BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Colour) and 16 of whom are women—representing 18 countries” (Business Doc Europe) presenting to key funders, decisionmakers, filmmakers, producers, and observers. There were a total of 58 projects being pitched across the industry events. Among the projects were 2024 (Egg)celerator Lab grantees Anatomy of a Life, Jaripeo, War on Women, Holder of the Sky, and Matininó. There were also films from the following supported filmmakers: Leah Galant, Kelly Duane de la Vega, Mila Turajlić, Chelsi Bullard, Geeta Gandbhir, Mars Veronne, Yvonne Welbon, Carine Chichkowsky, Ina Fichman, Valérie Montmartin, Lorena Luciano, Filippo Piscopo, Diane Becker, Melanie Miller, Kenya Jade Pinto, Brit Fryer, and Sona Jo.

We are extremely proud of 2024 (Egg)celerator Lab grantee Anatomy of a Life on being awarded the Cuban Hat Award. This award, given to the best pitch as decided by Forum attendees, offers funding for powerful and unique projects. The award also includes numerous other gifts, including a feedback call with our very own Elaisha Stokes. 

Learn more about the selected projects here.

Academy Invitations to AlumNest Filmmakers

Chicken & Egg Pictures is extremely proud to share some big news: Five AlumNest filmmakers have been invited to become members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The new members include Project: Hatched 2020 grantee Erika Cohn (Belly of the Beast), 2022 Critical Issues Fund grantee Katja Esson (Razing Liberty Square), 2020 (Egg)celerator Lab grantee Violet Du Feng (Hidden Letters), 2023 Chicken & Egg Award recipient Sonia Kennebeck, and Nest-supported filmmaker Nancy Schwartzman (Roll Red Roll, One Shot One Kill). 

We also want to congratulate Lindsey Dryden (producer of Nest-supported Unrest) and Melanie Miller (producer of Project: Hatched 2021 grantee On The Divide) for their invitations!   

Of the 2023 Class, 40% identify as women, 34% belong to underrepresented ethnic/racial communities, and 52% are from 50 countries and territories outside the United States.

Congratulations to the Class of 2023!

Meet Our Seven New Project: Hatched Grantees! 🐣

Project: Hatched 2021 grantees

Chicken & Egg Pictures proudly announced via Women & Hollywood seven new grantees of our 2021 Project: Hatched program. Both short- and feature-length projects will participate. Each project receives $20,000 toward film completion and impact campaigns and filmmaking teams participate in a six-month program with tailored mentorship and goal-setting.

“From water rights to reproductive health, the subjects of Chicken & Egg Pictures’ newest grantees are ones that come up constantly in our cultural and political conversations. These seven films push past the headlines to reveal intimate character studies that investigate how social issues impact everyday lives,” said Program Director Lucila Moctezuma. “For the first time in our Project: Hatched program, two short films were selected alongside features. Not only can shorts act as critical stepping stones to help emerging filmmakers build careers, but they also have strong potential to create impact and engage broader audiences.” 

Please click the granted films titles for more information on each project, and give these passionate and committed women and gender nonconforming directors a warm welcome to the Nest!

And So I Stayed

Directors & producers: Natalie Pattillo, Daniel A. Nelson (SINGAPORE/UNITED STATES)

And So I Stayed is a documentary about survivors of domestic violence who are unjustly incarcerated for killing their abusers in self-defense.

Daughter of a Lost Bird

Director & producer: Brooke Pepion Swaney (UNITED STATES) 
Producers: Jeri Rafter, Kendra Mylnechuk Potter

A Native adoptee reconnects with her birth family and her Lummi heritage—confronting her identity. Her singular story represents many affected by the Indian Child Welfare Act and Indian Adoption Project in the US.

Manzanar, Diverted: When Water Becomes Dust

Director & producer: Ann Kaneko (UNITED STATES)
Producer: Jin Yoo-Kim 

This film poetically weaves together memories of Payahuunadü, “the land of flowing water,” where Native Americans, Japanese-Americans, and environmentalists defend land and water from Los Angeles.

I’m Free Now, You Are Free 

Director: Ash Goh Hua (SINGAPORE) 
Producer: Arielle Knight

I’m Free Now, You Are Free is a short documentary about the reunion and repair between Mike Africa Jr. and his mother Debbie Africa—a formerly incarcerated political prisoner of the MOVE 9.

On The Divide

Directors: Maya Cueva, Leah Galant (UNITED STATES) 
Producers: Melanie Miller, Diane Becker, Amanda Spain, Elizabeth Woodward

On The Divide follows the story of three Latinx people living in McAllen, Texas who, despite their views, are connected by the most unexpected of places: the last abortion clinic on the US/Mexico border. As threats to the clinic and their personal safety mount, these three are forced to make decisions they never could have imagined.

Change The Name

Director & producer: Cai Thomas (UNITED STATES) 
Producer: Donald Conley

Student activists and educators from Village Leadership Academy campaign to change the name of a park from a slaveholder to abolitionists Anna Murray and Frederick Douglass in Chicago’s North Lawndale neighborhood.

Storm Lake 

Directors: Beth Levison, Jerry Risius (UNITED STATES) 
Producer: Beth Levison

Pulitzer Prize-winner Art Cullen and his family fight to protect their Iowan farming community through their biweekly newspaper, The Storm Lake Times—come hell or pandemic.

Read more about Project: Hatched.

Post by 2021 Communications Intern Mariana Sanson.