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Free and open to the public.

 Workshops and Panels

SR Film Festival Industry Workshops


SR Socially Relevant Film Festival panels and workshops are free of charge and open to all filmmakers and members of the audience. 


RSVP is required as in some cases space is limited

Smartphone filmmaking workshop by Ching Juhl


Where: SRFF - Thurgood Marshall Room - location to be emailed to participants

When: March 15, 7:00 pm

Ching Juhl / Filmmaker/educator/concert violist

Ching Juhl is the owner of the Juhl Media. She has been creating documentary shorts, news and live classical music videos for more than 17 years. Her documentary short "That Moment" (2017) and “Lingering Time” (2015) were world premiered at SR Socially Relevant Film Festival NY. "The Only One" (2012), a promo video, was commissioned by Kaufman Center, won a NEA grant. She is a certified Video Producer from New York University. She has shot, edited and produced many shorts on iPhone. Graduated from Shanghai Conservatory of Music, Ching Juhl received full scholarships from Indiana University, where she gained a Master of Music degree. As a violist, she has performed with the Jade String Trio, Phoenix Symphony Orchestra and Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. She has appeared in Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. She is a senior lecturer at St. Joseph's College, NY.

Editing your Documentary footage


When: March 17, 10:15-11:30am

Where: School of Visual Arts MFA Social Documentary Film Theater - 136 West 21st Street, 1st floor, New York, NY 10011























Eve Cuyen - Cinematographer  filmmaker, editor and sound designer

Eve Cuyen is a cinematographer  filmmaker, editor and sound designer. Her company Harlem Pictures Inc. works and collaborates with independent productions with shooting and editing.  Films she was involved in as a cinematographer, editor or sound designer were shown at numerous film festivals all over the world. Her full credit list can be seen on and

Mar Trevino - Filmmaker

New York City based filmmaker Mar Trevino focuses on directing, editing and producing both short and feature length films that include documentaries, narratives, reality television, webseries and promotional campaign videos. Trevino's films work centers on gender, ethnography, ritual, and memory. His editorial work has been screened Europe and television in major networks including BBC and BBC America. He has taught film editing at Maysles Documentary Center, TriBeca Film Institute, and DCTV. Mr. Trevino currently teaches video editing for the Entertainment Technology Department at the New York City College of Technology in Brooklyn.

E. Donna Shepherd - Award-winning editor

Donna Shepherd is an award-winning editor whose work has appeared on A&E, Bravo, CNN, VH1, MSNBC, PBS, and HBO. She has been editing films for 20 years, including the Emmy-winning 10-part series Carrier for PBS; the six-part series Circus for PBS; the Emmy-winning Bravo series Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List; Grammy and Emmy nominated Soundbreaking: Stories from the Cutting Edge of Recorded Music; the multi-part series Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide and its follow-up series A Path Appears;  the Emmy-winning and Peabody Award-winning film Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present, and the Emmy-winning All the President's Men Revisited for executive director Robert Redford. She has been on the editing faculty of the Social Documentary Masters Program at the SVA in New York City for 8 years.

Peter S. Crosby - Producer and cyclist

Social entrepreneur using media, technology & linguistics to promote systemic progress on global issues of fairness, gender equality & climate change.  He is currenlty Chief Growth Officer at, translating any video into any language, for filmmakers and distributors like Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Spotify.  Peter is also ExecProducer/Speaker/Host of 'Belly Of The Dragon', a documentary series about China's past, present, and future, based on his 1994 bicycle ride from Beijing to Hong Kong.  Man of Mission: global vision, local living, universal heart.

Cheree Dillon - documentary editor

Cheree Dillon is an award-winning documentary editor based in New York City. Her work has shown at festivals around the world including the Tribeca Film Festival, Sheffield Doc Festival, Visions du Reel, Outfest, and Big Sky Film Festival. Cheree’s work has also aired on PBS, Discovery, The World Channel, TSR2 in Switzerland and NBC. When she’s not making films, she’s volunteering in Harlem’s community gardens, learning to speak Spanish, watching movies and biking along the Hudson River.

Moderated by: Christopher Atamian: storyteller, journalist and director

Christopher Atamian is a New York-based storyteller (fiction, film, theater), journalist and director. He has received a 2015 Ellis Island NECO Award and the Tololyan Literary Prize. He was also participant in the 2011 Venice Biennale as a video director and produced the 2006 OBIE Award-winning play Trouble in Paradise.

Distribution Revisited


When: March 17, 11:45 - 1:00 pm

Where: School of Visual Arts MFA Social Documentary Film Theater - 136 West 21st Street, 1st floor, New York, NY 10011



Wendy Lidell: Kino Lorber, Inc, Sr. VP Theatrical/Nontheatrical Distribution & Acquisitions

Wendy Lidell is Sr. VP, Theatrical/Nontheatrical Distribution & Acquisition at Kino Lorber Inc., a leader in independent art house distribution for over 30 years with a library of more than 1600 titles.  Prior to joining Kino Lorber in 2016, Lidell was President of International Film Circuit, a company she founded in 1987.  During its first decade, InFC earned a reputation for excellence, winning acclaim for its introduction into the US market of previously unknown filmmakers such as Raul Ruiz, Alexander Sokurov, Hou Hsiao-hsien and Nanni Moretti. She later turned to the documentary, releasing and handled such films as She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry, and Yoo-Hoo Mrs. Goldbergwhich grossed over a million dollars and ran academy campaigns for three documentaries that were nominated for Academy Awards.

Jeremy Workman - Creative Director of Wheelhouse Creative

Jeremy Workman is the Creative Director of NY-based movie marketing company Wheelhouse Creative, catering to indie films and hard-to-market documentaries. Jeremy has supervised the trailers, pitch promos, or fundraising reels for over 250 films including such recent stand-out “socially relevant” documentaries as Unrest, Quest, The Work, Tell Them We Are Rising, Naila Uprising, Intent To Destroy, Red Trees, Food Evolution, Swim Team, Birthright, A Plastic Ocean, among many others. He is also a filmmaker. His newest documentary The World Before Your Feet will be premiering in 2018.

Valerio Caruso: Director Cineuropa

Valerio Caruso is director of the web site, a portal about European cinema in four languages, offering news, databases, services and promoting the European cinema in Europe and outside. From February 2011 until January 2015, he has been Team Leader of Euromed Audiovisua, a cooperation cultural Program between Europe and the South Mediterranean countries financed by the European Union. From 2004 he is also project manager of the Euromedcafe site, dedicated to intercultural in the Euro-Mediterranean region. Caruso has been providing technical assistance to several national authorities, the European Commission and UNESCO in the field of cinema, culture and audiovisual. Since October 2014, he is communication expert in ACPCultures+, in African, Caribbean and Pacific countries.

Simon Taufique – NYC producer, composer and festival programmer

Simon Taufique is a UK-born, NYC-based producer, composer, festival programmer and two-time Sundance lab finalist (Composer’s Lab and Creative Producing Lab). After developing the world’s first online-Help Desk system as a student at NYU and then turning that into an award-winning tech startup (, Simon sought new creative outlets in Music, Film and TV. He has since teamed up with iconic director s Mary Harron (AMERICAN PSYCHO), M. Night Shyamalan (THE SIXTH SENSE), James Franco, as well as Grammy-winners Julian Casablancas (THE STROKES) and David Torn (DAVID BOWIE, LARS & THE REAL GIRL), with whom he co-composed the acclaimed music for JESUS HENRY CHRIST (starring Michael Sheen and executive producer Julia Roberts). 

Erica Peek: Indiepix

Erica Peek is a multidisciplinary artist and Creative Director at IndiePix Films. Her efforts include product and key art design, filmmaker deliverables, branding, marketing and occasionally speaking to producers at Cannes. She is most rewarded by filmmaker happiness.

Moderated by: Christopher Atamian: storyteller, journalist and director

Christopher Atamian is a New York-based storyteller (fiction, film, theater), journalist and director. He has received a 2015 Ellis Island NECO Award and the Tololyan Literary Prize. He was also participant in the 2011 Venice Biennale as a video director and produced the 2006 OBIE Award-winning play Trouble in Paradise.


Low Budget Film Production workshop - SAG-AFTRA


When: Tuesday, March 20, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm

Where: SAG-AFTRA NY Local, 1900 Broadway, 5th Fl, New York, NY 10023

Meet the SAGindie staff and the Theatrical Business team of SAG-AFTRA to learn the ins and outs of low budget Motion Picture & Television production.  Join SAGindie staff and SAG-AFTRA Theatrical Business Representatives to walk you through the process of signing SAG-AFTRA Low Budget Agreements from start to finish. The SAGindie workshop highlights the Student/Short Film and Low Budget Theatrical Agreements. If you want to learn about new media contracts, the SAG-AFTRA New Media department holds their own workshop in Los Angeles.

NY Loves Film Roundtable

When: March 20, 1:30 pm

Where: Cinema Village

Meet the team from the New York State Governor’s Office of Motion Picture & Television Development for a roundtable discussion of all things productive in New York State – tax credits, location scouting, finding stages and crew, and more.  Whether you’re a first-time filmmaker wondering where to start or a veteran producer looking to catch up on the latest, this informal face-to-face Q&A is an invaluable opportunity to Meet Team NY and hear firsthand about all the great things New York State has to offer.

Sustainable filmmaking


When: March 21st, 1:00 PM

Where: Cinema Village


Mick Reed

Mick Reed is an award-winning producer with roots in the independent film world. As Founder and CEO of Clippn, Mick is dedicated to helping filmmakers gain independence by creating new streams of revenue from their content via the stock footage market.

Tina DiFeliciantonio - Naked Eye Productions

From cinema vérité to impressionistic documentaries, Tina DiFeliciantonio's critically acclaimed films have been screened and broadcast in countries throughout the world, garnering dozens of top honors, including the Sundance Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary, two National Emmy Awards for Outstanding Cultural Programming, and an Emmy nomination.

Jennifer Cherrier - Professor Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Brooklyn College

Jennifer Cherrier is a Professor in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Brooklyn College-The City University of New York. She is also the Departmental Chair. Jennifer studies how carbon and nitrogen cycle in freshwater and marine environments with a more recent research focus on water resource sustainability and solution-based approaches for offsetting the human impacts on aquatic systems.  She is co-inventor of a novel ecosystem-based 'blue' technology (eco-WEIRTM, patented) to maximize stormwater runoff related pollutant removal and also allows for water storage and reuse.  She is a Stanford Woods Leopold Leadership Fellow for Sustainability as well as a National Academy of Sciences Frontiers of Science Kalvi Alum. 

Moderated by Lucie Tripon: writer

A French native, Lucie has been with the festival from the beginning. She writes plays and sketches. She was part of a French-Colombian women duo (Yorkville Theater) with Nadia Menco which wrote and performed plays around New York and then produced in 2015 a short film called Pink Dolphin that made it to several international festivals including the Cannes short corner. She is currently working on a play and a poetry project.

Anna Bessendorf - Policy Analyst 

Anna Bessendorf is a policy analyst with the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment. She spearheaded efforts to create NYC Film Green, the first governmental sustainability program for the film and television production industry in the United States. 

For more information on NYC Film Green:

Measuring the Impact of Documentary Films


When: March 22. 1:00 PM

Where: Cinema Village



Christie Marchese - Founder and CEO of Picture Motion

Founder and CEO of Picture Motion, Christie leads a team in developing grassroots marketing and social action campaigns for films. Working with filmmakers, distributors, brands, and NGOs with stories that have the potential to inspire action, Picture Motion educates and inspires audiences to think critically, take action and drive lasting change. Recent projects include Michael Moore’s Where to Invade Next, Katie Couric’s Fed Up and Under the Gun, Shonda Rhimes and Norman Lear’s America Divided, Dick’s Sporting Goods’ Keepers of the Game, Whole Foods Markets’ At the Fork, Discovery’s Racing Extinction, The Weinstein Co’s BULLY and Fruitvale Station, and JR’s Ellis.

Clarinda Mac Low - Executive Director Culture Push

Clarinda Mac Low started out working in dance and molecular biology and now creates participatory installations and events that investigate social constructs and corporeal experience. She is Executive Director of Culture Push, an experimental organization that links artistic practice, social justice, and civic engagement, and a medical journalist specializing in HIV/AIDS. Grants and honors include a BAX Award in 2004, a Foundation for Contemporary Arts grant, 2007 and a 2010 Franklin Furnace Fund for Performance Art grant. Mac Low holds a BA, double major in Dance and Molecular Biology, from Wesleyan University and an MFA in Digital and Interdisciplinary Arts Practice from CCNY-CUNY.

Lauren Brady - Producer

A Denver native, Lauren graduated from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She produced “Jane Wants a Boyfriend” (dir. William C. Sullivan, starring Eliza Dushku and Louisa Krause), “Live Cargo” (dir. Logan Sandler, starring Keith Stanfield and Dree Hemingway), and is a Co-Producer on “Women Who Kill,” which took home the Jury Award for Best Screenplay at the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival. She is currently a Creative Producer at Vox Media’s in-house branded and sponsored content studio.

Alexandra Drobac Diagne - Artistic Director and Co-Founder Philadelphia Environmental Film Festival

Alexandra is the artistic director and co-founder of the Philadelphia Environmental Film Festival. Before founding the festival, Alexandra was an art historian who worked in the Los Angeles film industry for 15 years and assisted in the founding of Lightstorm Entertainment. She also serves as a judge for the Greater Philadelphia Film Office’s annual “Set in Philadelphia” screenwriting competition.

Davar Ardalan is the founder and storyteller in chief of IVOW with extensive international experience in storytelling campaigns and social impact solutions. With a background in public broadcasting and open innovation, Ardalan is uniquely positioned to take storytelling to the "next level" by designing the framework that will incorporate artificial intelligence and social context. Most recently Ardalan was the Director of Storytelling and Engagement at SecondMuse where she leads immersive storytelling projects in the Indo-Pacific. As an award-winning journalist for over two decades at NPR News in Washington D.C., her real-time storytelling campaigns cultivated thought leaders across social media.

Script reading - excerpts from the seven finalist scripts


Where: March 22, 3:30 PM

When: Cinema Village


Directed by: Jillie Simon


Read by:
Adela Maria Bolet, Tom Bozell, Natalie Hoy, Alex Emanuel, Barry Hirsch, Asa James, Jason Kellerman, Brian Linden, Dominic Marcus, Chris McDonnell, Chiko Mendez, Melissa Murray, Celester Rich, Doug Rossi, Jillie Simon, Fred Velde, Jonathon Wexler, Dwayne Daniels II

Jillie Simon - award-winning actor/singer-songwriter/producer

Jillie Simon is an award-winning actor/singer-songwriter/producer who's performed nationally and internationally on stage and screen. She's also co-directed, co-produced and performed in two multi-award-winning music videos, “Legalize” and “So Many Ways (For Safe, Green, Sane Energy)” with partner Thomas Simon prior to writing, co-directing and co-producing the multi-award-winning narrative short “Hungry”, one of the films at the SR Socially Relevant Film Festival in 2016 for which she's won 7 awards (3 of them acting awards, and one Honorable Mention.

Jillie was happy to run/direct the inaugural Screenplay Finalist Reading for the SR Socially Relevant Film Festival last year and looks forward to another super year at the fest.

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