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Programs Thu 1.18.2018

Park City Peeps: Your Guide to Spotting Fi Fellows at Sundance

At barely two weeks old, 2018 has already been an exceptionally weird year for weather. Freak snow flurries have turned the Florida panhandle (and environs) into a frozen deathscape resembling the ice planet Hoth, while other places more typically associated with winter wonderland conditions—like Park City, UT—have been unseasonably warm and wet, with rain falling from the sky instead of snow. And waterproof Kenneth Cole volunteer ponchos aside, it should make for an interesting Sundance—which kicks off tonight, January 18.

The 34-year-old (give or take a rebranding or two) indie film marketplace is, of course, a key part of the calendar of any hardcore cineaste, whether you’re a content creator, festival volunteer, journalist, movie lover or simply an armchair industry-watcher tsk tsk-ing at overeager acquisition figures from the comfort of your web browser. But! If you happen to be one of the talented folks lucky enough to actually have a project playing in the festival this year, well… [extremely Jeff Foxworthy voice] you just might be a Film Independent Fellow.

This year, we’re proud to tout an incredible 57 Film Independent Fellows who’ll be putting their stamp on Sundance ’18—representing 43 separate projects, four of which (Kusama-Infinity, Minding the Gap, Emergency and Nancy) were directly supported by Film Independent’s Lab Programs, Project Involve and Fast Track. So! Let’s meet ‘em, shall we?



  • Josh Penn, producer, Monsters and Men
    • Grant/award winner, 2014
  • Mary Jane Skalski, producer, American Animals
    • Grant/award winner, 2004
  • Geoff Quan, co-producer, Blindspotting
    • Project Involve, 2011
  • Cole Wiley, screenwriter, Monster
    • Project Involve, 2014
  • Rei Green, writer/director, Monsters and Men
    • Fast Track, 2016
  • Christina Choe, writer/director, Nancy
    • Directors Lab, 2015; Fast Track, 2014
  • Amy Lo, producer, Nancy
    • Fast Track, 2011
  • Jonathan Duffy, producer, Sorry to Bother You
    • Fast Track, 2016
  • Kelly Williams, producer, Sorry to Bother You
    • Fast Track, 2016
  • Mynette Louie, producer, The Tale
    • Fast Track, 2009
  • Jenny Halper, executive producer, The Kindergarten Teacher
    • Producing Lab, 2016

NOTE: Christina Chloe’s Nancy was directly supported by Film Independent as part of Fast Track 2014 and the 2015 Directing Lab.



  • Laura Nix, director, Inventing Tomorrow
    • Documentary Lab, 2011
  • Derek Doneen, director, Kailash
    • Documentary Lab, 2016
  • Heather Lenz, writer/director, Kusama-Infinity
    • Doumentary Lab, 2013
  • Diane Quon, producer, Minding the Gap
    • Fast Track, 2017; Documentary Lab, 2017
  • Bing Liu, director/producer, Minding the Gap
    • Fast Track, 2017; Documentary Lab, 2017
  • Brock Williams, producer, On Her Shoulders
    • Producing Lab, 2014

NOTE: Heather Lenz’s Kusama-Infinity and Bing Liu and Diane Quon’s Minding the Gap were directly supported by Film Independent as part of the 2013 and 2017 (respectively) Documentary Lab.



‘The Oslo Diaries’
  • Isold Uggadotirr, writer/director, And Breathe Normally
    • Screenwriting Lab, 2012
  • Paul Mezey, producer, MATANGI/MAYA/M.I.A.
    • Grant/award winner, 2001
  • Hilla Medalia, producer, The Oslo Diaries
    • Documentary Lab, 2012; Fast Track, 2012



‘Night Comes On’
  • Krista Parris, producer, Madeline’s Madeline
    • Fast Track, 2009
  • Danielle Renfrew, producer, Night Comes On
    • Grant/award winner, 2017
  • Aslihan Unaldi, writer, Skate Kitchen
    • Documentary Lab, 2016




Nausheen Dadabhoy, cinematographer, Lenny

  • Project Involve, 2011



‘A Thousand Thoughts’
  • Josh Penn, producer, A Thousand Thoughts
    • Grant/award winner, 2014



‘Hearts Beat Loud’
  • Silas Howard, director, A Kid like Jake
    • Directing Lab, 2007; Fast Track 2007
  • Veronica Nickel, producer, A Kid like Jake
    • Fast Track, 2015
  • Pamela Koffler, producer, Colette
    • Grant/award winner, 2000
  • Chris Ohlson, producer, Damsel
    • Grant/award winner, 2015
  • Brett Haley, writer/director, Hearts Beat Loud
    • Fast Track, 2014
  • Houston King, producer, Hearts Beat Loud
    • Grant/award winner, 2014
  • Eric Lin, cinematographer, Hearts Beat Loud
    • Directing Lab, 2009; Fast Track, 2009
  • Jim Young, producer, The Catcher Was a Spy
    • Producing Lab, 2008; Grant/award winner, 2008
  • Andrew Droz Palermo, cinematographer, The Long Dumb Road
    • Documentary Lab, 2013
  • Jonathan Duffy, producer, The Long Dumb Road
    • Fast Track, 2016
  • Mynette Louie, executive producer, The Long Dumb Road
    • Fast Track, 2009
  • Kelly Williams, producer, The Long Dumb Road
    • Fast Track, 2016
  • Debra Granik, writer/director, Untitled Debra Granik Project
    • Grant/award winner, 2014



‘Akicita: The Battle of Standing Rock’
  • Reena Dutt,line producer, Akicita: The Battle of Standing Rock
    • Project Involve, 2014
  • Heather Rae, producer, Akicita: The Battle of Standing Rock
    • Grant/award winner, 2009
  • Jeff Malmberg, editor, Won’t You Be My Neighbor?
    • Producing Lab, 2009; Grant/award winner, 2011
  • Isiah Donte Lee, cinematographer, Wild Wild West: A Beautiful Rant by Mark Bradford
    • Project Involve, 2016



‘Never Goin’ Back’
  • Liz Cardenas Franke, producer, Never Goin’ Back
    • Project Involve, 2017
  • Toby Halbrooks, producer, Never Goin’ Back
    • Grant/award winner, 2014
  • James Johnston, producer, Never Goin’ Back
    • Grant/award winner, 2014



‘The Rider’
  • Mollye Asher,producer, Spotlight
    • Producing Lab, 2014
  • Chloē Zhao, director, The Rider
    • Screenwriting Lab, 2011



‘Leimert Park’
  • Bing Liu, segment producer, America to Me
    • Documentary Lab, 2017; Fast Track, 2017
  • Mel Jones, director/screenwriter, Leimert Park
    • Project Involve, 2012
  • Kady Kamakatē, screenwriter, Leimert Park
    • Project Involve, 2017
  • Aaliyah Williams, executive producer, Leimert Park
    • Project Involve, 2010
  • Isiah Donte Lee, cinematographer, Leimert Park
    • Project Involve, 2016
  • Andrew Ahn, director, This Close
    • Project Involve, 2012; Screenwriting Lab, 2013; Directing Lab, 2014



  • Jonathan Duffy, executive producer, Don’t Be a Hero
    • Fast Track, 2016
  • Kelly Williams, executive producer, Don’t Be a Hero
    • Fast Track, 2016
  • David Aristizabal, editor, Emergency
    • Project Involve, 2016
  • KD Davila, writer, Emergency
    • Project Involve, 2017; Episodic Lab, 2017
  • Jomo Fray, cinematographer, Emergency
    • Project Involve, 2017
  • Joenique Rose, producer, Emergency
    • Project Involve, 2017
  • Carey Williams, director, Emergency
    • Project Involve, 2017
  • Jessica Sanders, producer/director, End of the Line
    • Project Involve, 2000; Producing Lab, 2003; Fast Track, 2004; Screenwriting Lab, 2007
  • Jim Frohna, cinematographer, Eve
    • Directing Lab, 2001
  • Shaka King, writer/producer/director, LaZercism
    • Grant/award winner, 2014
  • Andrew Carlberg, producer, The Blazing World
    • Fast Track, 2014
  • Ed Wu, cinematographer, The Blazing World
    • Project Involve, 2015

NOTE: Emergency was produced as part of the 2017 edition of Film Independent’s signature diversity program, Project Involve.

Whew! But before you head out to the Beehive state, be sure to brush up on you Sundance survival skill with the below video. See you in Park City!

To learn more about Film Independent’s Programs, click here. To learn about applying to our Filmmaker Labs click here. For more information about becoming a Member of Film Independent visit our website or subscribe to our YouTube channel.

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