Janet S. Kim, Shannon Morrall, Stacey Maltin, and MARS named Guest Festival Directors for the 2023 Art of Brooklyn Film Festival
Every year the Art of Brooklyn Film Festival invites a different filmmaker to be our Guest Festival Director to ensure that no single POV dominates our curation. Women are always on our shortlist, and two female filmmakers have taken the position, Victoria Negri (2017) and Christie Conochalla (2021)-- but that isn't enough. Over the years we have produced events with women-led organizations like New York Women in Film and Television, Alliance of Women Directors and the streaming platform Lesflicks, and one of the recurring themes in those conversations is simple parity.
So for our Lucky 13th season we're doing something different: The 2023 Art of Brooklyn Film Festival will be curated by three women and a non-binary filmmaker, working in tandem. Any one of these filmmakers would make a great Guest Festival Director, so we are thrilled they've agreed to work together to curate the 2023 AoBFF.
We are happy to announce that Janet S Kim (she/her) will curate Documentaries, Shannon Morrall (she/her) will curate Narrative Shorts and the filmmaking team of Stacey Maltin (she/her) and Margarita "MARS" Zhitnikova (they/them) will curate Narrative Features.
ABOUT OUR 2023 GUEST FESTIVAL DIRECTORS:
JANET S. KIM is an award-nominated Filmmaker based out of New York City. She specializes in finding stories that reflect experiences from unexpected spaces. Most recently documentary short Feeling Asian American will be premiering at this year's Philadelphia Asian American Film festival and her narrative work has screened a film festivals worldwide. She's directed and produced commercials for numerous clients, including Verizon, Petco, Samsung, Amazon, Starbucks, AT&T, Addidas, Chipotle, Mandalay Bay and many many more.
She was instrumental in helping to produce the 2021 Emmy-nominated Sesame Street special “See Us Come Together” that brought a star- studded cast of celebrities and guests to celebrate the diversity of the AAPI community, as well as introduce Sesame Street’s first Asian American Muppet, Ji-Young.
SHANNON MORRALL is a filmmaker and actor currently pursuing an MFA in Film Production at USC's School of Cinematic Arts. Prior to enrolling she served as the Multi-Media Producer for the Cinema Life Film Festival Collective's inaugural season. Her stories tend to explore human connection, joy, and play, often through the escapism of grand adventure genres.
As a writer, her work has garnered recognition from Sundance (Ignite), ISA, and the Catalyst Content Festival. As a Director, she was recently awarded the $25,000 Natural Florida Film Grant to direct her first documentary film, which will premiere at the Oscar Qualifying AmDocs this spring. Her narrative shorts have screened and taken home awards at film festivals nationwide. As an actor, she trained at the American Conservatory Theater (SF) and the Stella Adler Studio (NY), with appearances Off-Broadway and on screen with independent short and feature films.
Beyond her artistic pursuits, Shannon worked as a women's rights representative at the United Nations and has a Bachelor's degree in International Politics and Mandarin Chinese from Fordham University.
MARS (they/them) is a non-binary performer, writer and producer. Born in Stalingrad, Russia, MARS came to America with their family as Jewish refugees when they were six. They found acting and creating to be a salvation of sorts, to see the world from many angles and to figure out what drives their characters. MARS is passionate about leaving the world better than they found it, for everyone. Through their art they strive to cultivate empathy and action. MARS Co-Founded BMM to tackle their mission from all sides. Most recently MARS appeared on the final season of NBC’s acclaimed show New Amsterdam and as a lead character in the award-winning feature film Triple Threat, distributed by Gravitas Ventures. Zasha, the screenplay they co-wrote was a finalist for the Sundance Development Track in 2022. MASHED, a digital series, which they performed in and produced with their partners at BMM has won awards at Bushwick FF, Nashville FF, and Buffalo FF. They have also served as a judge for Revolution Me FF and Run & Gun FF.
STACEY MALTIN (she/her) is an award-winning filmmaker and performer. She has been creating antics on stage since she was eight and after graduating NYU Tisch School of the Arts, she realized that she wanted to create new and authentic stories from the ground up. After a stint living in Tel Aviv, she became immersed in the film world and became passionate about directing gritty and entertaining projects. Through her work she strives to show that humanity is nuanced and empathy is universal. Stacey Directed, wrote, and starred in the feature film Triple Threat which, after winning several awards on the festival circuit, was distributed by Gravitas Ventures in 2022. She Directed the mini-series MASHED which has won awards at Series Fest, Nashville FF, Bushwick FF, and Buffalo FF. Her first feature film Landing Up, was a finalist for the Tribeca All Access Grant and was distributed by The Orchard. Her feature script The Other Side, was produced as a radio play by The Black List starring Darren Criss. On the acting front, she can be seen in the newest season of The L Word: Generation Q. She is a proud member of Film Fatales.
Margarita Zhitnikova (they/them) & Stacey Maltin (she/her)
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The Art of Brooklyn’s signature Guest Festival Director program is the reason our curation is exceptionally creative year after year— and the industry has noticed. Over the past 12 seasons 17 of our premieres have gotten distribution, and one became an HBO series. We can't wait to see the program this exciting group of filmmakers select for our 13th season.
Submissions for films, series, and screenplays are open now.
CLICK HERE for guidelines, fees, and deadlines.