You've probably noticed us mentioning a podcast called "A Female Lens" on the site. And for good reason. Here, we break down what the podcast is about and included a nifty link to each episode for you to devour with ease!

What is A Female Lens?

A Female Lens is a podcast for filmmakers and creatives co-hosted by Jennifer Zahlit and Larkin Bell. Each episode highlights women in the film industry at different points in their careers from various lines of work. In an industry dominated by men, women continue to face multiple barriers to entry. This podcast wants to change that.

SEASON 1

Elizabeth Chomko, Writer/Director

Elizabeth Chomko is a director and writer best known for What They Had (2018), starring Hilary Swank. Her screenplay for What They Had won an Academy Nicholl Fellowship in 2015 and premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. She is also a playwright and theatre actress, and has appeared in television and film roles on Terriers, Common Law, and South Boston Legal, among others. Chomko attended the Sundance Institute Screenwriting Lab in 2015. She was named by Variety a Top 10 Screenwriter to Watch at the 2018 Whistler Film Festival. She is originally from Chicago, Illinois.

Tiffany Little Canfield, Casting Director

Tiffany Little Canfield, CSA is a casting director for theatre, film, and television at the prestigious bi-coastal casting office, Telsey + Company. Some notable projects include This Is Us, Mary Poppins Returns, Atypical, Smash, The Intern, Into the Woods, The Intern, Ricki and The Flash, and Masters of Sex. She received the Independent Spirit Robert Altman Award for her work on Margin Call in 2012. She was also nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Casting for a Limited Series, Movie, or a Special for her work on Grease Live.

Jesi Nelson, Composer

Jesi Nelson is a Los Angeles based composer for film & media, conductor and orchestrator. She received her BFA in Music Composition and Technology from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and Master of Fine Arts in Music Composition for the Screen at Columbia College. Upon her move to LA, she interned for Danny Elfman at Studio Della Morte, and soon after started assisting composer Michael Kramer, writing additional music for the Emmy nominated Disney/LucasFilm Lego Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures TV series and Ninjago: The Legend of Spinjitzu, under his lead. She also scored the award winning film JINN, which made its premiere at this year's SXSW to great acclaim, with a theatrical and nationwide release later in the year. Lastly, Jesi also composed the original theme music for A Female Lens!

Amber Sealey, Writer/Director

Amber Sealey is an award-winning director, writer, producer and actor. She was selected for the WeForShe DirectHer program, as well as Film Independent’s Directing Lab and their Fast Track program. Her most recent film, HOW DOES IT START, premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival. Her film NO LIGHT & NO LAND ANYWHERE, was theatrically released and won a Special Jury Award at LA Film Festival and IndieWire said the film could “further cement Sealey’s reputation as one of the most promising directors of female-driven stories working the U.S. today” and the NY Times said it had, “a zing not only of originality, but of daring.” Executive Produced by Miranda July, it won the Indie Vision Breakthrough Feature Film Award at TCFF.

Sundance Film Critics: Beandrea July + Aramide Tinubu

Aramide Tinubu has her Master’s in Film Studies from Columbia University. She wrote her thesis on Girlhood in Black Cinema.

Beandrea July is a culture writer, audio producer, and rotten tomatoes-approved film critic.

Women of Virtual Reality at Sundance

This episode features interviews with:
Melissa Painter, who discusses her aikido, yoga, and dance-inspired project, Embody. Melissa Painter heads MAP Design Lab, focused on the intersection of spatial computing, learning, and wellness. She is an award-winning filmmaker and author, and she has premiered immersive content at many international film festivals.

The team behind the interactive wedding mystery, Mechanical Souls: Gaëlle Mourre, L.P. Lee, and Céline Tricart.

Experimental artist and dirctor Teek Mach who discusses her immersive art performance, Grisaille.

Britt Rentschler, Actress

Actress Britt Rentschler appeared in the film Instant Family, which is now available to watch on Amazon Prime, after wrapping up a theatrical run.

Alicia Malone, Film Reporter

Alicia Malone is a film reporter, film critic, and author of the new book, The Female Gaze.

Women's Weekend Film Challenge

The team behind the Women’s Weekend Film Challenge discusses the event and their personal backgrounds. The challenge places professional filmmakers on crews to write, shoot and edit a short film in one weekend with top-of-the-line gear. Since their first challenge in January 2018, they have made 24 short films and worked with over 500 women. This grassroots movement combats the gender imbalance of the current film industry by creating films with women behind and in front of the camera.

Amy Adrion, Director

Amy Adrion is the director of the documentary Half The Picture. Her work has screened at the Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca and Los Angeles Film Festivals, been broadcast on PBS and MTV, and won numerous awards.

Hadeel Reda, Producer

Hadeel Reda has over 25 year experience in developing, producing and financing feature films. Hadeel got her start in Feature Film development at The Walt Disney Company, where she was part of the initial team setting up distribution and marketing in Europe. She oversaw the international marketing campaigns for THE LION KING, POCAHANTAS and Tim Burton’s THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS. She later founded Winchester Films in 1998 as the Los Angeles division of the UK publicly-traded Winchester Entertainment, plc, a film company focused on film financing.

Nisha Ganatra, Director

Nisha Ganatra is the director of the film LATE NIGHT. LATE NIGHT stars Emma Thompson and Mindy Kaling, and is written by Mindy Kaling. Nisha is a prolific director, with projects and awards ranging from commercial to TV.

SEASON 2

Alma Har'el + Free the Work

Listen to Alma Har’el discuss the mission behind FREE THE WORK!

Lynn Shelton, Director

Director Lynn Shelton discusses her new film, Sword of Trust, which stars Marc Maron, Jillian Bell, Michaela Watkins, and Jon Bass. Lynn touches on taking improvisational approach to the film, what she looks for in fellow collaborators, and her filmmaking process.

Summer Movie Roundup with Beandrea July

Beandrea returns to discuss her take on what a "summer movie" is, how it's changed over the years, and what's on her summer 2019 box office radar!

FTW x AFL Presents: Liza Mandelup

Liza Mandelup is the director of the new documentary film, Jawline (available on Hulu). She talks to us about her process and approach to documentaries, how she stays inspired to keep working, and her experience in the commercial world.

Christina Choe, Writer/Director

Writer and director Christina Choe is the director behind the feature film Nancy. Nancy was her feature film debut and premiered at Sundance in the 2018 US Dramatic Competition. There, it won the Waldo Salt Best Screenplay Award.

Amey René, Casting Director

Amey René is an Artios Award nominated casting director. Many of her films have premiered at Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca, Cannes and Toronto International Film Festivals. She had three films premiere at the Sundance 2019 Film Festival, including Greener Grass.

Nena Erb, Editor

Nena Erb, ACE, is an Emmy-winning editor based in Los Angeles. Nena has been the editor on productions for HBO, Universal, CBS, ABC, and others. In 2016, she received an Emmy award for her work on HBO’s documentary series Project Greenlight, and in 2019, she received an ACE Eddie nomination for her work on HBO's Peabody award-winning series Insecure. Currently, she is editing Little America, an anthology series on America's immigrants, produced by Kumail Najiani, Emily V. Gordon, Alan Yang, and Lee Eisenberg.

Alison Kelly, Cinematographer

Alison is the cinematographer behind the ABC drama Grand Hotel, which is executive produced by and stars Eva Longoria. Alison has worked on other notable projects including AMC’s Dietland, MTV’s Finding Carter, Who's Afraid of Vagina Wolf?, and STARZ’s Counterpart.

Sherri Chung, Composer

Film and television composer Sherri Chung currently composes the scores for Riverdale (CW) and Blindspot (NBC). Her most recent show, The Red Line, produced by Greg Berlanti and Ava DuVernay, is a limited series which premiered on CBS and currently airs on CBS All Access. Her latest Warner Bros. film, Nancy Drew and The Hidden Staircase was released March 2019 in theaters nationwide.

FTW x AFL Presents: Minhal Baig

Minhal Baig is the writer/director of Hala. Hala is her debut feature film, about a Muslim teenager coping with the unraveling of her family as she comes into her own. It premiered in the U.S. Dramatic Competition at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival. Hala is now available on Apple TV+.

Gersha Phillips, Costume Designer

Gersha is a costume designer who has designed for more than 30 films and numerous TV series. She currently designs for CBS’s Emmy-nominated Star Trek: Discovery, now in its second season. Her work on Season 1 earned her a Costume Designers Guild Award nomination. She has also worked on House of Cards, Black Panther, and American Psycho.

Yvonne Huff Lee, Actress and Producer

Yvonne Huff Lee is an actress, producer, and co-CEO of Lagralane Group. This year, Yvonne has executive produced The Body Remembers When The World Broken Open, as well as Sundance darling The Infiltrators through Lagralane Group. Yvonne currently serves as president of the board at Lower Depth Theatre Ensemble and is also a board member of Array Alliance, an initiative founded by Ava Duvernay.

Samantha Mcintyre, Writer

Samantha McIntyre recently wrote Netflix’s Unicorn Store, directed by Brie Larson. Samantha has written for HBO’s Bored to Death, TBS’s People of Earth and is an alumnus of both the Warner Bros. Writers Workshop and the Sundance Screenwriters Lab (where Unicorn Store received the Annenberg Film Fellowship Grant). Samantha is currently a Supervising Producer on NBC’s upcoming musical dramedy, Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist.

FTW x AFL Presents: Sophia Takal

Sophia directed ALWAYS SHINE starring Mackenzie Davis and Caitlin FitzGerald, which played at the Venice Film Festival and the Tribeca Film Festival. Takal co-wrote and directed NEW YEAR, NEW YOU, the January installment of the INTO THE DARK Hulu horror anthology series. And Sophia’s latest film is the Blumhouse / Universal feature BLACK CHRISTMAS, which she directed and co-wrote. Black Christmas will be released in theaters today, Friday the 13th!

Natalie Bronfman, Costume Designer

Natalie Bronfman is a costume designer for film, TV, and theatre. Most recently, she has designed for The Handmaid's Tale. In between projects, she can be found doing runway shows during fashion week.

Sandra Mae Frank, Actress

Sandra is a Deaf stage and film actress, best known for her role as Wendla from Deaf West’s Spring Awakening on Broadway. She’s performed in numerous regional theatre productions, as well as Netflix's Daybreak and Freeform’s Switched at Birth. We interview her with the help of her translator, Paul Racy. Please find a transcript of our interview on our website under Sandra’s profile page via the link in our show notes!
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