Film Directors’ Bios and Film Titles, March 8-31, 2022
Congratulations to the filmmakers! We love you! Keep telling your stories in your unique ways! Thank you. Here are the filmmakers’ bios and the film titles selected for Auntyland Film Festival’s inaugural event! Click on Auntyland Film Festival, top of this page, for more Festival information!
Beverly Bonner (STEAMED!) Ms. Bonner is a cult horror movie actress, theatre extraordinaire, and comedian. She is known for her starring roles in Basket Case (1982), Frankenhooker (1990), and Basket Case 2 (1990). STEAMED! was her directorial debut. Sadly, we recently learned that Ms. Bonner passed away. No cause of death was revealed. But the news was confirmed by her former director, Frank Henenlotter, of the horror series Basket Cases.’ Frank wrote on Facebook: “I’m on the phone with Beverly (Bonner) a few weeks ago and she’s gushing nonstop about how much she loved directing her short film STEAMED, and how she is already writing the script for her next one.” Rest in Eternal Peace, Queen.
Tiffany Bradley (Carnival Queens) is the founder of Colored Criticism, a place for people of color to be seen and heard in the arts. Her focus is on intersectional, interpersonal, and interdisciplinary art. During the COVID-19 crisis, she convened #ArtOffPause, a Livestream series for artists and curators working in affected communities. Tiffany’s film work has been shown at Guild Hall of East Hampton, Brooklyn Community Foundation, and Rush Arts Foundation. Her writing has appeared in The Nation, Westchester Magazine, Colorlines, Racialicious, and the Americans for the Arts blog. Tiffany has worked in audience development at the U.S. Department of Arts & Culture, Race Forward, Americans for the Arts, and Fractured Atlas. She holds a B.A. in Africana Studies from Brown University, studied abroad at American University in Cairo, and was a Fulbright scholar in Museum Studies at the University of Haifa.
Eileen Caniling (Basurero)Basurero is Eileen’s directorial debut. She is a Filipino-American filmmaker who has been described by mentor Anna Thomas (Screenwriter Frieda, IFP Founder) as “an artist whose stories magically come to life like in a painting.” A graduate fellow of the prestigious American Film Institute and a recipient of grants like the Women in Film Scholarship Award, the AFI William J. Fadiman award for best screenplay in her graduating class, and the ABC/DISNEY Talent Development Grant. Eileen has worked in the ranks of film and TV for fifteen years and it has always been her dream to direct her own films. Born in Baltimore, Eileen grew up as the only Asian in her class in conservative Richmond, Virginia. Her passion is Filipino Diaspora stories, the un-layering of the Filipino face along with the complex nuances of colonial psychology and the Filipino- identity.
Danielle Chu (hold—fuel—when—burning) Danielle 大敏 Chu, sometimes credited as dd. Chu, dd. chu (she/they) is a researcher, archivist, and filmmaker with an interest in exploring the usefulness and limitations of a visual archive, as well as the collisions and solidarities between diasporic mythos. They have collaborated on films that have premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, SXSW, and IDFA, as well as programs that have aired on Arte and PBS, among others.
Lenore Thomas Douglas (Weep Not) A Boston University alum, Douglas worked at the Today Show for Matt Lauer & Al Roker. ‘Weep Not’ marks her directorial film debut loosely based on the 2018 two-time NAACP nominated one-woman theater show, ‘Journey this’,’ created and starring Cheray O’Neal, which she also directed. Other writing credits include the Xbox-produced short film, ‘Miracle of Phil’ which premiered at Comic-Con. She recently acted opposite Wes Bentley in the Terrance Malik produced the film, ‘After The Fall’. twitter: @weepnotfilm
Pat Doyen (Creole Love Call) makes, preserves, programs, and writes about films and other media arts. She works independently and as part of the Arsenic Cookie Film Collective in Baltimore, MD. By day she is a film archivist with a passion for home movies and orphan films. Her work has been exhibited both nationally and internationally and she has taught hand processing and filmmaking workshops for both children and adults. She is a contributor to “The DIY Guide to Film & Video” published by Parcell Press and editor of the recent book “Hell Yeah! Heavy Metal Parking Lot @ 30”.
Cheri Gaulke (Miss Alma Thomas: A Life in Color) is a pioneer in the feminist art movement in Los Angeles. Her work has been presented in film festivals internationally, in galleries and museums, and in alternative settings including buses, churches, and prehistoric temples. Initially known as a performance artist, her work addressed themes such as the body, religion, sexual identity, and the environment. Gaulke’s art continues to be a vehicle for social commentary, and as a way to tell the stories of individuals and groups under-represented in society. As an educator, Gaulke has mentored hundreds of award-winning youth videos. Her recent film, Gloria’s Call, has screened in over 40 film festivals and won Best Documentary at the Ann Arbor Film Festival amongst other awards.
Kristin Reiber Harris (City Trees) Ms. Harris is an artist, animator, and educator with a passion for sharing the treasures and insights of the natural world. She specializes in producing and animating media exploring science with art, producing over 100 short form animations. Her life’s work is a direct result of her growing up on an old farm in Northern Virginia. Harris’s films have been included in numerous film festivals around the world. She is a member of NYWIFT and Women in Film & Video Washington DC. She received a BA in Fine Arts from UCLA and an MFA from George Washington University.
Tiffany Jiang (Exhausted) is a Chinese-American documentary filmmaker and designer based in Brooklyn, NY. She is currently pursuing a graduate degree in Documentary Media Studies at The New School. Prior to this, she studied narrative filmmaking at the Northwest Film Forum and helped out on local film sets around Seattle, WA. Tiffany’s creative work has been featured by Pioneer Works, The International Center of Photography, and POV Docs.
Vivian Lee (The Healing Game Part 2) Vivian Lee works at the intersection of art and science. She is an artist, filmmaker, photographer, musician, and designer. She worked as a creative associate at Narrative Network, a video production manager at the Museum of Chinese in America, (MOCA), and currently works as a senior product designer at DesignMap. The Mount Holyoke College graduate is a New York Film Academy (NYFA) alum. Follow her on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/in/vivian-e-lee or IG at lee22v.
RayMartell Moore (A Ring) is an actor, model, producer, and filmmaker. A Ring is his directorial debut. He’s known for his work with the Finding Me films and series. Season two, which he executive produced. RayMartell is focused on doing more collaborative projects. He is also creating virtual reality short stories. Nearly finished editing his 22-minute scene from a book adaptation of “The Wind-Up Bird” by Haruki Murakami also starring Monique A. Robinson. You can follow his work and journey on Instagram, @raymartell.
Catherine Murphy (Voluntary Teachers / Maestras Voluntarias) is the founder & director of The Literacy Project, a multi-media documentary project on adult literacy in the Americas. As an independent producer, Murphy’s work has focused on social documentaries, producing and field producing documentaries for independent directors including Matt Dillon, Saul Landau, and Eugene Corr. She subtitled Dorothy Fadiman’s Stealing America and The Greening of Cuba by Jaime Kibben. She served as an archival researcher for Susanne Rostock’s biography of Harry Belafonte, Sing Your Song.
Her directorial debut was the documentary MAESTRA, which was released in 2012 and picked up for distribution by Women Make Movies. MAESTRA enjoyed robust educational distribution since its release. “Voluntary Teachers / Maestras Voluntarias” was pulled from Murphy’s own archives during the Covid pandemic and released to tell the backstory of her previous film.
Robin Noonan-Price (Tell Me About Orange) earned her M.A. in Film and Video Production from American University. By day, Robin works as a full-time producer/director for Fairfax County Public Schools where she produces MEET THE AUTHOR, a distance learning program that promotes literacy and gives students, nationally, direct access to some of their favorite writers. She is a five-time Emmy Award Nominee, a five-time Telly Award winner, and has earned three TIVA-DC Peer Awards, as the producer of Meet The Author. Since 2010, Robin has been working with local DC metro filmmakers on short films in various capacities. She is the director of Tell Me About Orange. Robin is currently preparing to direct another short film in the spring of 2022.
Melisa Resch (The Line) Ms. Resch is a writer, director, and producer based in the Los Angeles area, is known for John Wick: Chapter 2, The Line, and The Last Two Lovers at the End of the World. She was creative executive at Freedom Road Productions, Executive Assistant to COMMON. She holds a Masters of Science, in Digital Cinema. Twitter @melisaresch
Ebony R. Roberts (United We Heal) With a degree in Communications/Broadcasting from the University of Pittsburgh, Ms. Roberts, and her sisters combined their love of travel and production to create a web series called ‘Global Lipstick’ that showcased their carefree, comedic spirit as well as their creative genius. While working on her independent production company, Ebony took a job at QVC, the home shopping channel, where she is an Associate Producer on the studio broadcast team. During the year of 2020, in the wake of the murders of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, Ebony became inspired to use her creative energy to promote unity in the Black community. That creative energy spawned ‘United We Heal.’ Whether it’s producing, directing or writing, Ebony intends to make her mark on the television and film industry by constantly striving for excellence.
Nandini Sikand (One, if by land) Ms. Sikand is an anthropologist, filmmaker, and Odissi dancer. Her documentary and experimental films have screened and won awards at over 100 domestic and international film festivals and aired on PBS. She has been awarded grants from The Jerome Foundation, the Center for Asian American Media and she is a two-time awardee of the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA). Sikand is an Assistant Professor of an interdisciplinary film and media studies program at Lafayette College, PA. Sikand’s career as a filmmaker has spanned 18 years and has explored subjects such as nationalism, breast cancer, identity politics, music in the diaspora, and sex work. She has served on the board of directors of Women Make Movies, a non-profit feminist media distribution organization from 1997 to 2006. In television, she has worked as a producer and director on projects for Channel Four: UK, Ovation, HBO, Oxygen, and The History Channel.
Donna Bonilla Wheeler (The Girl Next Door) is a Peruvian-American U.S.-based writer, director, and filmmaker, with original screenplays that are Nicholl Fellowship semi/quarter-finalists, Austin 2ndRounders, Slamdance Lab selects, Sundance Lab finalists, IFP No Borders selects, STOWE Story Labs projects, CineStory quarterfinalists, and DTLA Film Fest screenplay award winners, among others. She created and is developing the CannesMIPTV Finalist series, CLASH. Her feature and short films sold at Cannes, at Berlinale, and screened at festivals in North America, South America, and EU, as well as SVOD / AVOD platforms domestically and internationally. Donna is a Cannes/MIPTV Producer-to-Watch, Alliance of Women Directors Board member and Industry Support Fellow, Film Fatales member, #Startwith8Hollywood mentee, #ReadLatinxWriters mentee, Women in Film mentee, Sundance Institute Collab member, and Outfest Directing Shadow. Donna is a co-founder and ongoing Board Member of the Broad Humor Film Festival in Venice, CA, and founder of the Alliance of Women Directors’ #MentorLatinaDirectors Initiative. She also writes and directs branded and commercial content for a variety of global clients.
Tilsa C. Wright (Star Boy) Wright is the creator and co-director of Star Boy. Wright is a self-published author of several books on romantic relationships. She transformed her book, Star Boy into her first animation film production that has been featured in several film festivals. A proud Jamaican, Wright graduated from Kingston’s famed Camperdown High School. The Brooklyn resident who also attended City College Fort Lauderdale is passionate about sharing stories for film lovers.
Danielle Vishlitzky (Haunted) Danielle Vishlitzky graduated from Smith College in 2020 with a degree in Film & Media studies. The following pandemic-filled years have brought many a misadventure her way, but she finds solace listening to podcasts and spending time with her cat. These days she can be found hiking and shooting 16mm near her home in Western Massachusetts. She hopes to keep exploring experimental filmmaking and the ways in which the spaces around her are haunted. Her Instagram is: dani_vish
Real Aunties Day, March 8!
Hey Aunties! Get ready to dance! We are here for you!
Hola Tías, Estamos aqui para ustedes!
Real Aunties Day, #RealAuntiesDay, is observed on March 8 – International Women’s Day, and throughout March in honor of Women’s History Month.
Stay tuned for our Auntyland Film Festival (AFF), and public events about food, gardens, dance, sports, theater, art, literature, and more!
We believe that it’s important for aunts to be recognized and feel cherished. Aunts hold a special place in our hearts, from everyday life stability, teaching family and community values, to rescuing us from traumas. Aunts represent fun, laughter, drama, love, joy, resilience, and incredible memories. Aunts deserve appreciation.
Question: How is our #RealAuntiesDay different and maybe better than other family holidays?
Answer: Flavor. We bring ‘realness.’ We go beyond genealogy, siblings, and pronouns! We’re about identity, kinship, and intersectional – race, gender, and age. We’re talking about dreaming up new food and conversations for body, mind, and soul. This holiday is personal, authentic, and ad-free.
Question: Is #RealAuntiesDay listed on national holiday registries?
Answer: Not yet. We are inventing and claiming our own registry. We are endorsed by local New York and national elected officials, thought leaders, businesses, community organizations, artists, and educators. We were surprised to learn that most ‘national holiday’ registries are not ‘official’ nor ‘government’ endorsed. Not one! Most of those national holidays registries out there are marketing strategies. You pay money. You get listed with a lot of pop-up irrelevant advertising. We’re different. We’re about realness.
Question: How you can help #RealAuntiesDay
Answer: By spreading the word through the grapevine and Googling “RealAuntiesDay,” you will lead a massive search activity online, create search trends, and organically and effectively publish our stories and awareness of #RealAuntiesDay and Auntyland’s stories and events.
For BIPOC communities & Allies
We understand the pivotal and traditional roles that aunts play in Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities; that is why we center #RealAuntiesDay on diverse, global, Diasporan cultures, communities, traditions, and knowledge that aunts bring to shaping families and communities.
Our aunt’s holiday presents an opportunity to be intentional, multicultural, and multi-generational as we lift biological and chosen non-biological aunts — aunts who are alive and those who live with the Ancestors.
HOW TO OBSERVE #RealAuntiesDay on March 8
Some aunts teach us about winning and losing. In their honor, take your aunt to a ball game. Attend a game or other sports events. Play, teach, and coach sports and games. Be a good sport. #BecauseofAuntie
Do hashtags shout-outs on social media on March 8: #HappyAuntiesDay #CallAuntie #TellAuntie #IloveBeingAuntie #AuntylandHappy, #RealAuntiesDay, #ILoveMyAunties, #RealAunt, #OtherMother, #VigilanteAunty, #LiberatedAunties, #ForeverFamily, #Kinship, #ChosenFamily, #CelebrateAunties #StraightOuttaAuntyland #NotMyAuntie #ToAuntiewithLove
Any crazy aunts out there? Some aunts are doers and creators. Do arts and crafts. Be creative. Be different. Design something. Write a poem or letter. Choreograph a dance, sing a song, grow something, create performance art in honor of your aunts.
Food and Toasts – Many aunts feed us. Cook, call a chef or go to a restaurant to eat food that reminds you of your aunts. Toast the special times or life lessons that aunties taught you.
Get political. Be an activist in your aunts’ honor. Make a difference. Run for public office and help a cause or campaign that help people, the environment, and Earth.
#MarchisAuntiesMonth: March is Women’s History Month, a perfect time to honor aunts. Learn about women’s history around the world. Learn family history. Understand how women’s lives are all connected.
Know any drama queens? Aunts are not perfect. Some lie, steal and bring a lot of special drama. Find the good in your challenging aunt. Remind them that no matter what, they hold a special place in your life.
List their names – Make a list of all the aunts in your life, both related by blood and chosen community aunties. Then, share with your family and post on your social media.
Light a candle – And if they are no longer here to celebrate with you, light a candle, be mindful, and say a prayer.
Call, Text, Meet-up – Celebrate the day is by giving them a call or planning a meet-up. Regardless of where they may be in the world, it is a special day worth celebrating over a coffee or lunch date.
Honor your roots – Do genealogy. Search for great aunts and great-great aunts in your paternal and maternal family history, and learn about their lives. Teach the younger generation and community about ancestral aunts in the community and family.
Thank you – It is never too late to say thank you and remind our aunties of how thankful you feel to be or have been graced by their presence and existence.
Storytelling – Do a Storycorp oral history recording. Aunt stories lend nuance to your family narrative. Learning about their lives reveals surprising details about you and your family. Affirm aunt stories and record them to empower future generations.
Be an Event Sponsor or Partner
#RealAuntiesDay welcomes event sponsors and partners. Would you please respond with your interest by sending a note to firstname.lastname@example.org?