Q&A moderated by Karyn Kusama (“Destroyer”, “Jennifer’s Body”, “Girlfight”) with Short Block 4 filmmakers, free event on Sunday, August 9th, 12 PM PT / 3 PM EST. Learn more about the films.

The Q&A will be featured on our Seed&Spark festival page and is free and open to the public. Tune in here.

Karyn Kusama – Short Block 4 Q&A Moderator

Karyn Kusama

Karyn Kusama wrote and directed her first feature film, “Girlfight”, in 1999.  The film won the Director’s Prize and shared the Grand Jury Prize at the 2000 Sundance Film Festival.  In 2004, Karyn directed the science fiction love story “Aeon Flux” for Paramount Pictures.  Her third feature was the comedy-horror film “Jennifer’s Body”, written by Diablo Cody, and released by 20th Century Fox. 
Karyn directed “The Invitation” in 2015, a psychological suspense film that won the Grand Prize at the Sitges Film Festival, among other awards.  “The Invitation” was released in 2016 by Drafthouse Films.  She also directed a short film entitled “Her Only Living Son”, part of the Magnolia anthology “XX”, released in 2017.

She directs for television as well, working on such shows as AMC’s “Halt and Catch Fire”, Amazon’s “The Man in the High Castle”, and Showtime’s “Billions”.

Her last feature, entitled “Destroyer”, is a crime thriller starring Nicole Kidman.  The film was released by Annapurna Pictures in early 2019.

After collaborating on three films together, Karyn formed Familystyle Film with Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi, so that they can continue to make personal stories in both the film and tv space.  She lives in Los Angeles with Phil (who is also her husband), and their son Michio.

Gabriela Ortega – Papi

Gabriela Ortega

Gabriela Ortega is a filmmaker from the Dominican Republic and a USC graduate currently based in LA and NYC. She is an Alum of the Sundance Institute Playwrights Intensive with her full-length play OUT HERE and the HBO/Hola Mexico Film Festival program: Tomorrow’s Filmmakers Today. Her work in film seeks to explore the intersection of poetry and cinema as well as pressing social issues. Her first short “A Rebellious Act a Day” about the growing gender violence in her home country, started an international awareness campaign and created workshops for healthy relationship in both low-income and privileged areas of the Dominican Republic.  The film played in the UNESCO headquarters, Google LA, ELAC college, The New School, USC and more. Her poetry has been featured in NPR’s LatinoUSA and she was commissioned as the official poet for the first Latinx Audible Original Audiobook: Talking While Female and Other Dangerous Acts, which is available now.  Films she has produced and starred in have won the Sundance Ignite competition, played in LALIFF 2020, the Hola Mexico Film Festival and more. She is currently in post-production for: MORENITA her first feature film supported by Women Make Movies in NYC and dealing with themes of displacement and modern-day immigration. http://www.gabrielaortega.com

Claudia Lee – Clan

Claudia Lee

Claudia Lee is a London based Writer/Director. She studied Film, Theatre and Television at the University of Bristol and graduated in 2016. At the core of her filmmaking interests is the desire to further the female narrative in film today and help tell the vital and complex female experience in an authentic way. ‘Clan’ is Claudia’s directorial debut. 

Desireé Moore – Over and Under and Through

Desireé Moore

Desireé Moore is a multidisciplinary artist with emphasis on the intersections of film, video and installation. Her work is dedicated to pointed examination of gender performance and the construction of gender found in American culture and media.

Her professional experience on film productions in camera, direction, and post-production has contributed to her video work, which often deconstructs narrative design.

She is an Assistant Teaching Professor of Digital Storytelling and Film Production at Mizzou. Moore has shown work nationally and internationally in theaters, drive-ins, film festivals and museums, including: The Armory Show in New York, the Aesthetica Film Festival in York, UK to the Borscht Film Festival in Miami and the Art and Culture Center in Hollywood, FL, The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota, Florida, the New Art Center in Massachusetts, CICA Museum in South Korea. 

Victoria Malinjod – Don’t Burst My Bubble

Victoria Malinjod

Victoria Malinjod is a European actress who was born in France to a German mom and a Swiss dad. She grew up in Belgium – Brussels – and she has been acting since the age of 11. She first started writing and directing actors showreel 4 years ago. Therefore, making a short film based on her own experience and on testimonies of many other women that she interviewed was important to her. This is her first movie as a director.

Jorja Hudson – Withdrawals

Jorja Hudson

Jorja is an award-winning comedy writer. Her series Myrtle & Willoughby was the winner of Just For Laughs 2018 Pitch Competition, and was an official selection at over a dozen festivals.

Jorja also created Low Budget Sketch Show, an online comedy series, which ran for two seasons and was written about in The AV Club, The New York Times, The Observer and more. Other credits include Funny or Die, College Humor, Elite Daily, Reductress, Points in Case and more. Jorja is half of writing duo ‘JOMEY’, whose half-hour pilot “Millennial Divorce Club” was a finalist at Catalyst Content Festival in 2019 and in the Scriptation Showcase 2020.

Jorja is an alumni of The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre and in her work, she likes to explore serious issues through comedy, such as mental health, climate change, divorce, and more fun stuff like that.

See more at: http://www.jorjahudsonportfolio.com