Director BIO: Kaitlyn Fae

Director Biography

Directors headshot

Kaitlyn Fae was born in Los Angeles, California. She attended the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she earned a degree in English in 2012. Since graduating, she has written for a number of magazines. She is currently writing the libretto to an opera, ​Los Californios, a comedy set during the Californian Civil War.

Director Statement

“To create anything is an act of self-love, because to create is to bring the self into the physical.”

Short Film: MADEIRA, 14min., USA, Drama

Madeira poster

Carmen arrives at Pacey’s house and presents him with a gift of Madeira wine. As the night unfolds, the nature of their relationship is revealed, and it becomes apparent Carmen has something up her sleeve.

  • Film Type:
    Short
  • Runtime:
    14 minutes 23 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    April 23, 2017
  • Production Budget:
    3,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Film Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    16.9
  • Film Color:
    Color

Director BIO: Heath Harris

Director Biography

Heatherheadshot

Heath Harris was born and raised in the Cayman Islands. She
began her entertainment career working on Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games while earning her undergraduate degree at NYU. Since then Heath has worked with various global youth entertainment labels. She currently studies directing at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts and is an active member of BAFTA’s Newcomers Program.

Short Film: PAPER PALACES, 6min., USA, Drama

Paperpalacespostercopy

Paper Palaces is a film about a teenage boy named Charlie (played by Emmy winning actor Austin Trace), during the onset of schizophrenia. Tormented and unable to tell reality from fiction, Charlie begins to believe his mother is out to get him. Taking matters into his own hands, Charlie finds a gun in the spare bedroom.

  • Film Type:
    Short, Student
  • Runtime:
    5 minutes 59 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    August 20, 2016
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Film Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    1:85
  • Film Color:
    Color

Director BIOS: Sara Zia Ebrahimi & Lindsey Martin

Director Biography

Directors

Sara Zia Ebrahimi is a curator of film, visual art and new media and for over a decade has produced film screenings and exhibits in the Philadelphia area. A MFA graduate of Temple University, her short films have screened internationally and been awarded grants from Chicken & Egg Pictures, Rooftop Films and the Leeway Foundation. In Spring of 2015 she released her first web series, Bailout, which she wrote and directed.

Lindsey Martin is a filmmaker and animator living in Ohio. Her work tends to be humorous takes on the inner workings of families going through crisis, often embracing the absurd. She has screened nationally and internationally including the Slamdance Film Festival, the Philadelphia Institute of Contemporary Art, and the Brooklyn International film festival as well as various conferences and symposiums around the U.S. Lindsey received her BFA from Virginia Commonwealth University and her MFA from Temple University. She is currently working on her first feature film, Little Wilderness.

Director Statement

Set in the winter of 1980 during the Iran Hostage Crisis, The FBI Blew Up My Ice Skates tells the story of Haleh, an eight year old girl whose purchase of a pair of ice skates from a Sears catalog becomes subject to international politics. This 5 minute animated film uses humor to humanize a story from the Iran Hostage Crisis, fictionalizing the real life events that occurred to an Iranian American family under heavy surveillance.

The Iranian Hostage Crisis (1979-1981) marked a significant shift in Western views toward Middle Easterners from one of an antiquated, exotic Other to one of irrationality and violent fundamentalism. The actions of a few extremists were compounded to represent the beliefs and desires of millions of people worldwide. The rise of Ayatollah Khomeini to power and the establishment of the Islamic Republic of Iran was told as a story of unified extremism, rather than an unfortunate outcome of several splintered social movements and years of community organizing that had been taking place.

The shift in perception has led to increased levels of fear, resulting in increased surveillance domestically and increased militarization abroad. In a climate of fear, there are increasingly less opportunities to consider diplomatic solutions. The “enemy” becomes an inhuman other and with that dehumanization comes the absence of stories of individuals, a lack of representation of the wide spectrum of beliefs, and the punishment of the many for the actions of a few.

The effects can be found in the foreign policy decisions which have resulted in thousands of people on both sides paying the price of their lives in Afghanistan and Iraq while the U.S. government tries to bomb people into submission. There are strong echoes in the recent backlash against welcoming Syrian and Iraqi refugees to the U.S..

The film was made using a technique called cut out animation. Original animations using this process were cut from paper sources such as newspapers, magazines, and advertisements and photographed frame by frame. Although the process has been digitized, the method is still the same. What makes this technique significant, is the way the it maintains tension between old and new. By using images from the late 70’s and early 80’s for the backgrounds, and applying those to a personal story of profiling, surveillance, and cultural identity, we are forced to reconcile with conflicts happening during the Iran Hostage crisis, and now.

The role of artists in social change movements is to raise questions about how we exist together by offering a different way to look at our day to day. This film is an attempt to raise questions about the unfortunate, and in this case absurd, effects that a climate of fear can create.

Short Film: THE FBI BLEW UP MY ICE SKATES, 7min., USA, Animation/Drama

Skates

Based on a true story, the film tells a story from the Iran Hostage Crisis in 1980 from the perspective of Haleh, an eight year old who just wants to enjoy her ice skates. The film raises questions about the human cost of surveillance and the criminalization of immigrant communities, linking past policy decisions with current national discussions around security and xenophobia.

Project Links
  • Film Type:
    Animation, Short
  • Runtime:
    7 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    April 15, 2016
  • Production Budget:
    5,500 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Film Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    animation
  • Aspect Ratio:
    16:9
  • Film Color:
    Color

Short Film: AN ACTOR PREPARES, 4min., USA, Comedy

 

Img 2756An ode to “An Actor Prepares” by Constantin Stanislavsky as a how-to instructional… Or more like a how-not-to.

  • Film Type:
    Short
  • Runtime:
    4 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    May 16, 2017
  • Production Budget:
    0 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Film Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    16:19
  • Film Color:
    Color