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136 W. 21st Street in Chelsea, 1st Floor, NYC

Panel on Distribution

Saturday, March 21. 2015, 10:15 am - 11:45 am

How best to distribute or self-distribute your film. Discussion about Theatrical, Non-Theatrical, Digital and unconventional distribution channels between Exhibitors, Established Distributors, Digital Platforms and successful Self-Distributing film directors.



Jason Ward - Jason is a film producer and distributor and the Founder/CEO of Candy Factory Films


Beth Portello - Cinema Libre Studio (from Los Angeles)

Elliott Kanbar - Exhibitor - President of CINEMAflix Distribution

Adeline Monzier - Unifrance

Rola Nashef - Filmmaker ‘Detroit Unleaded’ - self and hybrid distributor

Panel on Storytelling

Saturday, March 21, 2015, 12:00 pm - 1.30 pm

Successful Screenwriters, Directors and critics come together to discuss best storytelling practices and how the story is the filmmaker’s most important ally.


Louis Proyect (Writer/Film critic)



Morgan Jenness - Dramaturg, Literary Agent. Morgan has worked as an agent,  associate producer (including at The Public Theater), activist, educator and dramaturg/creative consultant for theater and film and is currently Creative Director for This Distracted Globe Consultancy.




Brigitte Gauthier - Scriptwriting Professor. Brigitte is Head of the Research Center SLAM, Head of SCRIPT & S.C.R.I.P.T. and of the Master Program Langues & Image. She is a Professor at Evry-Val-d’Essonne University (France). She translated Linda Seger's Making a Good Script Great and Robert McKee’s Story, among others. She’s written many books on Harold Pinter and Pina Bausch and has adapted her novel Game Boy into a script. Her new novel Personne ne le saura will be published next fall.


Ann Collins - Film Editor/Producer, School of Visual Arts. Ann has been editing documentary films for over 25 years. Her work has shown at The Sundance FIlm Festival and has been nominated for an academy award. She has worked extensively as a story consultant and teaches at the School of Visual Arts MFA in Social Documentary Film. She is currently editing and co-producing Swim Team, an independent feature documentary about a swim team for teams with autism, with film maker Lara Stolman.


Lorena Luciano - Filmmaker (winner Social Justice Award 2014). Born and raised in Italy, Lorena moved to New York City in 1996 to pursue her career in documentary filmmaking. She is the recipient of several prestigious artist grants such as the MacArthur Foundation, the New York State Council on the Arts, the Ben & Jerry Foundation, and Chicken & Egg Pictures. Her media work focuses on social issues, the environment, the human rights as well as on the arts. Her films, winners of numerous awards, have been screened and distributed internationally.
She lives in New York with her 2 children and her husband Filippo Piscopo.


Filippo Piscopo - New York based documentary filmmaker, producer and cinematographer (winner Social Justice Award 2014). He directed, among others, Variety and New York Times-praised Urbanscapes, Venice Film Festival official selection Dario Fo and Franca Rame: A Nobel for Two and multiple awards winner Coal Rush. Filippo’s documentary work, a collaboration with his wife and film partner Lorena Luciano, has been internationally recognized with several audience and jury prizes.

Casting panel

Sunday, March 22, 11:00 am - 12:30 pm

SAG-AFTRA presents Onscreen in 2015:

The Why’s & How’s of Diversity in Entertainment Media


Join a candid conversation about today’s media landscape, what is driving the seemingly increased levels of inclusion and diverse stories on our screens and, most importantly, what creators and audiences alike can do to ensure lasting and positive change.


Led by SAG-AFTRA National Director of EEO & Diversity, Adam Moore, we will be joined by a panel of industry professionals who are making the most of this moment and will discuss how we all can take part in the most interactive and dynamic period in the history of entertainment.



Adam Moore - A National Director of EEO & Diversity for SAG-AFTRA, he is responsible for developing and implementing a national diversity plan of action





Panelists SAG-AFTRA

Jennifer Betit Yen - Actor, writer and attorney, Jennifer is the President of the Asian American Film Lab, a not for profit dedicated to the support of diversity in media and founded MyJennyBook, a company dedicated to helping improve literacy in children. Jennifer voiced the lead character of Avery in the popular Random House series, The Beacon Street Girls. Her film credits include the leads in Interrogation, Stalemates and A Reading of Tristan & Isolde. Jennifer also played Beauty in the short film The Delivery.



Carmen Palaez - Actor. Carmen has won the HBO New York International Latino Film Festival Short Film Competition in 2012 with The Acting Lesson. Most recently she was featured in Steven Soderbergh’s SIDE EFFECTS and in 666 Park Avenue. Currently she is in pre-production for the live theatrical shoot of Rum & Coke and in development with her first feature screenplay OCHO.





Jennifer Peralta-Ajemian - Casting Director. A professionally trained ballet dancer, Jennifer worked at Henderson/Hogan Talent Agency and CESD during college. From 2005 to 2011, she assisted veteran casting directors Cindy Tolan, Bernard Telsey, Avy Kaufman, and Liz Lewis. Jennifer then collaborated with theatrical casting director Robin Carus under the banner of J&R creative. In January 2014, Jennifer opened her own office with a focus on film and television.



Hoji Fortuna – Actor and writer. Born in Africa, living most his adult age in Portugal and then immigrating to New York in 2008, Hoji has since worked in film, theatre and TV in the U.S. and abroad (Europe and Africa). He is the author of an e-book for new and aspiring actors entitled 'New York for Actors'. Among his current projects are 'In The Morning', a feature film to be  screened this month at the New Voices in Black Cinema at BAM and winner of the Audience Award Best Film at the UrbanWorld Film Festival.




Pejman Khorsand-Pejman – Actor and filmmaker. Born in Tehran, Iran and raised in Copenhagen, Denmark. In his film, “Pearl”, which will have its world premier at this year’s Socially Relevant Film Festival. Pejman has drawn inspiration from his own background and his experiences of being a minority in Denmark, to show how preconceptions and intolerance affect us all. He aspires to touch, help and entertain people all over the world by making movies that deal with socially relevant topics.


INDUSTRY PANEL at the Center for Remembering and Sharing

123 4th Avenue, NYC, near Union Square

Next: An Open Dialogue on the Potential of Art as a Revolutionary Tool

Sunday, March 22, 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Films are not distractions; they are documents, testaments, instruments of progress. How can festivals and filmmakers work together to not just talk about issues, but to do something about them? We will consider the conscious and unconscious limitations placed on the making and consumption of art, and then we will discuss tactics and strategies that allow us to circumvent these limitations or transform them into opportunities. How have the arts in revolutionary times been used as a tool for education, organization and action? What can art do that nothing else can? We will trace the history of art as a utilitarian social practice up to the modern moment - up to the last panel of the Socially Relevant Film Festival - and ask: "what next?" This panel is free and open to the public.



Moderated by Adam Kritzer

Storyteller, filmmaker and educator. Adam is currently in post-production on his first feature film, "Good Funk", about a Brooklyn community on the verge of gentrification.





Jessica Vale - A filmmaker whose first documentary, "Small Small Thing", won awards at the 2014 Socially Relevant Film Festival and screened on Al Jazeera, Jessica is an accomplished non-fiction film producer and editor. Originally from New Hope, Pennsylvania, Jessica now lives in New York City. Her credits include work for CBS News, National Geographic, Discovery Channel, History Channel, The Weinstein Co.


Cherrell Brown - A community and national organizer with Equal Justice, USA


Sean Starowitz - Bread baker and

community-based artist



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