ANNETTE DANTO has 25 years of film and television production experience. She has extensive credits in film/television production, documentary and sound recording, including BBC, Channel Four, NHK, Canal Plus, NBC, HBO and Showtime. Danto has directed 19 fiction and documentary films for nonprofit organizations, including UNIFEM, Pathfinder International and Ted Turner Foundation. Recent documentaries include Reflections on Media Ethics (2011), Gandhi's Wheel (2010) and The Never Ending Path (2005), distributed internationally through Forward In Time. Her grants and awards include Fulbright Scholar in Filmmaking (2002, 2004), Tow Fellowship (2004, 2008), Eastman Foundation Award (2007) and Rotary Award. She is a member of Fulbright ArtsTask Force and president of Fulbright India Alumni (FFI), www.fulbrightindiaalumni.org.
JODY DOBSON is a director, producer, and founder of box25cinema. After directing Rain (2004) he produced and directed Boxing Day (2005). Dobson co-produced both York Street and Lucid with Park Slope Films, and his directing and producing credits include various theatrical and film projects throughout the U.S. Jody’s marketing and design work can be seen in Rolling Stone, XXL, Blender, Alternative Press, Village Voice and Filmmaker magazines.
MARY ENGEL is an award-winning filmmaker and the director of the Orkin/Engel Film and Photo Archive. Her first film RUTH ORKIN: FRAMES OF LIFE premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 1996, and was selected by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences as one of the “Outstanding Documentaries of 1996.” Her second film MORRIS ENGEL: THE INDEPENDENT premiered on Turner Classic Movies in 2009. Engel co-produced a remake of her parent’s classic 1953 feature film LITTLE FUGITIVE in 2004. Her most recent film ORDINARY MIRACLES: THE PHOTO LEAGUE’S NEW YORK is currently being shown throughout the US. Engel recently formed a 501c3 non-profit called Photo Legacy Foundation, which will help support the archive group she founded, the American Photography Archives Group, APAG.
HEATHER FREUDENTHAL is a Brooklyn born and bred independent filmmaker, film teacher, and film programmer, with a special interest in documentary film. When programming and teaching film, she puts a special emphasis on independent films, and films which are especially meaningful to the community that view them. She has a special interest in films which reveal gritty truths, personal stories, and real human emotions, and stray from the typical Hollywood, 3-act structure, happy ending films. Heather has a BA in Film and an MA in Media Studies, and has been working on personal films for the last several years. Her first feature film, "No Regrets, But"- a documentary about relationships, told from the perspectives of 20's something women, is premiering at the Queens World Film Festival in March 2013. Her documentary short, "Raising Filmwax"- a human portrait of a Brooklyn-based film programmer who sacrifices personal and financial gain to grow his film series, premiered at the Red Hook International Film and Video Festival in October 2012.
Heather currently lives in Brooklyn, and has no plans to move any time soon.
LOUIS HAMWEY has screened films at the Cannes Film Festival where he won top award for his producing role in the short documentary Ludo. He recently graduated from NYU with an MA in Cinema Studies, with a concentration on documentaries and film philosophy. His thesis explored Terrence Malick's Tree of Life as an exposition in Wittgensteinean philosophy. Louis currently teaches Film Production at St. Francis College as well as a course on writing for online publication. He is also a video editor for the sports website Bleacher Report.
ELLIOTT LESTER is a multi-disciplinary director, with a love for advertising. He shines as a comedic storyteller and is well known for his action oriented projects across all mediums. Most recently Elliott completed branded content for NOS Energy Drink and he directed his second feature film BLITZ, starring action star Jason Statham. Before that he directed the Slamdance hit LOVE IS THE DRUG starring among others Lizzy Caplan. He can tell a story in 30 seconds, 2 minutes, or even 2 hours, take your pick. This is a rare attribute in advertising, but no doubt a valuable one as our industry travels at a rapid rate beyond what is considered traditional. Elliott has done work for major brands including McDonalds, Lexus, and Sony. He is also an award winner, taking home Clios, Telly Awards, and Cannes Lions for his work.
DEMIAN LICHTENSTEIN, best known for directing 3000 Miles to Graceland, has been mentored by James Cameron on Avatar, and has been trained in 3-D techniques by James Mainard and Phil McNally of Dreamworks. Lichtenstein has over twenty motion picture projects, five television shows, multiple music acts, and a new video gaming division in active development, in addition to running a full service production and post-production company. Currently, he is preparing to produce and direct Relentless, a $25 million dollar 3-D action thriller starring Kiwi actor, Karl Urban. Relentless is currently being sold at the Cannes Film Festival by international sales agent, Velvet Octopus, a division of Spice Factory in London. Relentless is being produced in association with Baldwin Entertainment Group, the producers of Mystery Alaska starring Russell Crowe, Sahara featuring Matthew McConaughey and Academy Award winning Ray with Jamie Foxx. Lichtenstein is a member of the Director's Guild of America, The Writer's Guild of America and the Screen Actor's Guild. As a founding member of the Senior Leadership Council of the Director's Guild of America, along with Steven Spielberg and Taylor Hackford, Mr. Lichtenstein works closely with award-winning directors to protect the rights of filmmakers worldwide by having a direct influence on domestic and global politics in the entertainment world.
ERIC MABIUS is an actor and frequent Brooklyn resident who first came to the attention of movie fans with his film debut in Welcome to the Dollhouse (1995). Since then, he has taken on a wide variety of roles, avoiding being typecast. He earned favorable notice for his performance as a high school gang leader in Black Circle Boys (1997). More roles followed, his best known being in the box office smash Cruel Intentions (1999), where he plays a prep school athlete who gets blackmailed. He got a starring role in The Crow: Salvation (2000), a sequel to the Brandon Lee film from a few years earlier. Another horror film which he appeared in was the science fiction action film Resident Evil (2002), in which he plays a policeman in the future. He won another prominent role in the Showtime TV drama "The L Word" (2004), which won him a new audience. In 2006, he gained more aplomb for his role in the surprise hit series "Ugly Betty" (2006), playing a womanizing executive. Eric continues to have a devoted fan base, particularly among audiences of independent films. In 2012 he co-starred with Parker Posey in Price Check which premiered at Sundance.
CHRISTINE ELISE McCARTHY has been acting professionally for 25 years. She has been seen on many television shows - most notably as Emily Valentine on Beverly Hills 90210, ER, HBO’s Tell Me You Love Me, Law & Order: SVU, China Beach and In the Heat of the Night. Her film credits include many indie projects (Route 30 and Mojave Phone Booth) as well as Child’s Play 2, Boiling Point & Vanishing Point (both with Viggo Mortenson), Defenseless and Abel Ferrara’s Bodysnatchers. Also a writer -- she has three episodes of Beverly Hills 90210 to her credit, had a pilot optioned by Aaron Spelling & contributed characters & storylines through several seasons of the original 90210. She has also appeared at the Los Angeles comedy theaters – Upright Citizens Brigade (Four Stories & a Cover) & Naked Angels (Tuesdays at 9) - reading comical true-life essays. She has been on the selection committee of Michigan’s Waterfront Film Festival for all or its 14 years. 2011 saw her directorial debut, Bathing & the Single Girl, get accepted into 82 film festivals (including Art of Brooklyn) and won seventeen awards. She is currently shopping her mockumemoir novel, also entitled Bathing & the Single Girl.
DIGGER T. MESCH The multi-hyphenate New York Artist/ Director/ Writer/ Producer has run the gamut of all the arts over the past 25 years. He was ranked Cinescape Magazine’s “POWER 100” in 2001 and 2002 for the most influential personalities in science fiction and entertainment alongside the likes of George Lucas, James Cameron, Clive Barker, Robert Rodriquez, and Stephen King. Digger was the creator of the toy sensation MINIMATES and founder of the world renowned design company ART ASYLUM. The youngest toy company to ever be awarded the worldwide master rights for Star Trek by Viacom. Over the years Digger has worked with the likes of Marvel Entertainment, Lucas Film, Warner Brothers, Paramount, Clive Barker, Kevin Eastman, Ozzy Osbourne, Kiss, Rob Zombie, and more. He has acted in a host of films including “Ultraviolet”, “The Counting House”, “The Medallion”, “The Twins Effect”, “Heat Team”, “The Heir Apparent: Largo Winch”, and the animated “X-Men/Dark Tide” where he voiced the character Wolverine. Digger’s new endeavor, Dig Deep Entertainment, is dedicated to creating proprietary transmedia entertainment for the global market . Projects in development include the web series and feature film "Agent 88", the western horror film “Sundown Seven” with Kevin Eastman (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) and upcoming graphic novel “The Other Dead” with Joshua Ortega (Gears of War II and III).
SCOTT NAWROCKI Bio to come.
TERRY NELSON has worked in film & television for the past 25 years in various capacities - editor, post production supervisor and
voice over artist just to name a few. His love and passion for film led him to create the Beacon Independent Film Festival. As Festival Director, Terry and his fellow board members will curate the inaugural festival this coming September 13-15 in Beacon, NY. He is also on the Board of Directors of BeaconArts (BACA).
ANNABELLA SCIORRA Bio to come.