Celebrate March 8 with us and join us for 48 hours of short films from around the world!
On International Women’s Day, you’re invited to travel the globe with an empowering short film showcase spanning 18 countries. Created by and centered on women, these stories will send you on a journey across continents and through time zones to experience the female gaze around the world. From navigating rites of passage, to challenging gender norms and negotiating power dynamics, the individuals in this collection question authority, overthrow others’ expectations, and succeed in taking ownership of their lives. A mosaic of animated, narrative and documentary works come together to reflect our unique perspectives and celebrate our shared wisdom.
Meet the curators
It’s an extraordinary joy and honour to have these short films curated by the programming team Lucy Mukerjee and Charlie Hidalgo, who share their perspective of the world through the camera lens with us.
Charlie Hidalgo is a Colombian trans man, filmmaker, film curator, and a graduate of the Canadian Film Centre’s Producers’ Lab.
Lucy Mukerjee is a queer British-Asian film curator, and a co-founder of the Programmers Of Colour Collective, comprising of 300 BIPOC film festival curators around the globe.
As inclusion activists, Charlie and Lucy formed Meraki Moving Pictures to empower queer and trans BIPOC storytellers and increase the visibility of marginalized voices in the media.
We also worked with our diversity partner Ceretai on analysing the films on women’s screen presence and speaking time:
We would like to invite you to the Affirmative Feminism Seminar Series: A series of three panel conversations exploring possible futures through affirmative statements and initiatives within contemporary film and digital screen culture.
This seminar series places in conversation researchers and professionals of the film and screen industry on the topic of affirmative initiatives in film production, representation and distribution, that is, acts or images that go beyond a lamentation of the status quo and produce feminist alternatives and possible futures.
The search for an affirmative feminism arises from the observation that feminist narratives are often created through negation and opposition. In contrast to narratives that lament women’s lack of power compared to men, affirmative arts produce models of gender and power that are fluid and in constant transformation rather than embedded in dichotomies. Following philosopher Rosi Braidotti’s work on ‘affirmative ethics’, affirmative arts use the limitations to our ‘freedom’ as a foundation for creating alternative futures, proposing solutions for enhancing our political, social, spatial freedom. Instead of presenting characters that are alienated by the binary systems of gender, race, sexuality, ability or class, affirmative films present narratives and aesthetic forms that manifest as what Braidotti would call ‘micropolitical instances of activism’. This theory is at the core of a feminist initiative to promote a fair, inclusive and diverse future. Taking an affirmative approach in one’s work is thus being critical of the present without being annihilated by it.
This series of events emerges from the Marie Skłodowska-Curie research project ‘Affirmative Post-Cinema: Narrative and Aesthetic Responses to Gender and Power’. This is also the subject of the recently published monograph by Maud Ceuterick, organiser of the seminar series, Affirmative Aesthetics and Wilful Women: Gender, Space and Mobility in Contemporary Cinema (Open access and available here:https://www.palgrave.com/gp/book/9783030370381).
The seminar series will take place digitally on 3 consecutive Fridays in March, with the participation of the following panelists:
12th of March 10-12am CET: Production/networks/policies
Amanda Coles, Arts and Cultural Management / Employment Relations, Deakin University
Helene Granqvist, Producer and President of Women in Film and Television International
Marcela Stolzmann, Producer at AdoAto Pictures, Amsterdam
19th of March 11-1pm CET: Aesthetics/representation
Anna Backman Rogers, Professor of Culture, Aesthetics and Feminist Theory at the University of Gothenburg
Rosalind Gill, Professor of Social and Cultural Analysis, City University London
Illya Szilak, Artist, Writer and VR Filmmaker of Queerskins
26th of March 10-12am CET: Curation/distribution
Miriam De Rosa, Senior Lecturer and Curator in cinema and contemporary visual arts, Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia
Nadia Dresti, International Advisor, Locarno Film Festival
Mathilde Henrot, Programmer at the Locarno Film Festival, and co-founder of Festival Scope and Festival Scope Pro
Skadi Loist, Professor of Production Cultures in Audiovisual Media Industries, Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF
All you need is love: Reimagining RomComs in Bollywood, Nollywood & Hollywood
Compelling storytelling with changing faces of love…
Love is universal and our shared language all around the globe. The quest for love is everlasting, and so is the quest for relevant romantic comedies. As in life and the entertainment industry, women are becoming more empowered and today’s romantic comedies are embracing more diverse relationships across ethnicities, backgrounds, sexes and ages.
From Asia to Africa, and from Europe to the Americas…
With this event we will explore the cultural perspectives on love across the world’s most influential film industries: Bollywood, Nollywood and Hollywood. Experts will discuss the beloved genre’s classics as well as new opportunities of storytelling today and for the future.
Moderated by Wendy Mitchell. With writer-director Alankrita Shrivastava (India), writer-director Hamisha Daryani Ahuja (Nigeria), writer-director Clea DuVall (USA) and producer Lisa Blumenberg (Germany).
Queen’s Tables (ca 20min) Each table with a focus theme, introduced by a moderator, followed by a quick intro (30sec) of each of the 10 attendees from the audience. Each table will be moderated by a special guest, to be announced soon. (exclusive access for WIFT members from all around the world)
Speed Networking (ca. 20min) Transfer of the traditional format from our physical event at Berlinale into the virtual world. Quick 2min-meetings allocated by Zoom’s random generator. (exclusive access for WIFT members from all around the world)
After a year of crisis, how can we tackle this new year, what do we need to build resilience for the unknown? We invited producer and psychologist Rebecca Day from Film in Mind to help us navigate through the manifold pressures we might encounter. Join us for this informal coffee chat and share your outlooks, fears, dreams for this new year, listen to others and get some gentle insights.
Date: Thursday, 28th January, 2021. Time: 3pm EST / 9pm CET
The five Nordic Embassies in the U.S., WIFT International and WIFV Washington are presenting a digital screening series of fiercely intelligent and radiant Nordic cinema!
Nordic Women in Film is five weeks of artistic ambition. Five weeks of cultural exchange. Five weeks of fearless film screenings and conversations.
The Nordic countries have a proud history of firmly embracing the complexities of gender equality. With this common voice of urgency, we invite you to a space where bold, creative and distinctive female voices are examined, amplified and celebrated.
Date: During five weeks between February 2 and March 3, 2021.
During five weeks between February 2 and March 3, you can watch five films from across the Nordic countries, meet their directors and host five conversations with Nordic and American filmmakers. Themes range from inconvenient women to borderless filmmaking, from women who define their own reality to those making our blood boil. Meet Sundance-winner Ísold Uggadóttir, May el-Toukhy, Oscar-contenders Zaida Bergroth and Maria Søhdahl and Samí-director Suvi West; award-winning actresses Sofia Helin, Trine Dyrholm; and many more.
Every week, you will have the chance to watch a contemporary Nordic film between Tuesday and Thursday, and meet online for a Q&A and themed conversation each Wednesday.
The films will only be available to watch in the US and Canada. The coffee conversations will be open to the whole world.
Registration for week 3 and 4 is now open. Stay updated on here and at @wiftinternational on Facebook and Instagram.
And Breathe Normally, Director: Ísold Uggadóttir
Tove, Director: Zaida Bergroth
Queen of Hearts, Director: May el-Toukhy
Hope, Director: Maria Sødahl
Lucky One, Director: Mia Engberg
Week 1: BOUNDLESS ART, BOUNDLESS SUCCESS
February 2-3: Tove (dir. Zaida Bergroth, Finland, 2020)
In the midst of her artistic struggles and unconventional personal life, Tove Jansson found worldwide success from an unexpected side project: the creation of the beloved world of the Moomins. TOVE is a captivating drama about the creative energy of an iconic talent and her turbulent search for identity, desire, and freedom.
Registration for the film screening is now closed.
February 3, 3:00-4:30 PM (EST): Q&A and panel discussion
What does it mean to live and create freely? What lies behind artistic ambition and who is to judge the worth of one’s work?
3-3.30pm EST: Q&A on TOVE with director Zaida Bergroth, actress Alma Pöysti, producer Andrea Reuter and screenwriter Eeva Putro.
3.30-4.30pm EST: Online Special Conversation on Boundless Art, Boundless Success. Speakers: Zaida Bergroth (FIN), Isabella Eklöf (SWE), Terry Pheto (ZAF/US), Pamela Green (US) and Silja Hauksdóttir (ISL).
February 16-18: Hope (dir. Maria Sødahl, Norway, 2019)
What happens with love when a woman in the middle of her life gets three months left to live?
The screening is now sold out and registration is closed.
February 17, 3:00-4:30 PM (EST): Q&A and panel discussion
Movies about personal stories tend to receive less attention and smaller budgets than films about broader topics. Why is that and what makes the personal political?
3-3.30pm EST: Q&A on Hope with director Maria Sødahl.
3.30-4.30pm EST: Online Special Conversation on ‘Personal Stories, Big Budgets’. Speakers: Maria Sødahl (NOR), Ninja Thyberg (SWE), Malou Reymann (DK) and Nisha Ganatra (US). Moderated by Kirsten Schaffer, Executive Director of Women in Film LA.
Register herefor the Q&A and panel discussion (available globally).
Week 4: THE GAZE
February 23-25: Lucky One(dir. Mia Engberg, Sweden, 2019)
Ageing gangster Vincent works long nights and dreams of another life. When he is unexpectedly given responsibility for his teenage daughter Grace, his life starts to change.
The screening is now sold out.
February 24, 3:00-4:30 PM (EST): Q&A and panel discussion
What happens with the world when young women define their own reality instead of being defined by others?
3-3.30pm EST: Keynote on The Gaze in Film with director Mia Engberg.
3.30-4.30pm EST: Online Special Conversation on ‘The Gaze in Film’. Speakers: Mia Engberg (Sweden), Selma Vilhunen (Finland), Suvi West (Sapmí) and Michèle Stephenson (US). Moderated by Cynthia Lopez, Executive Director of New York Women in Film.
March 2-4: And Breathe Normally(dir. Ísold Uggadóttir, Iceland, 2018)
Two women’s lives will intersect while trapped in circumstances unforeseen. Between a struggling Icelandic mother and an asylum seeker from Guinea-Bissau, a delicate bond will form as both strategize to get their lives back on track.
March 3, 3:00-4:30 PM (EST): Q&A and panel discussion
How do filmmakers influence physical, geographical, and emotional boundaries?
3-3.30pm EST: Online Q&A with director Ísold Uggadóttir
3.30-4.30pm EST: Online Special Conversation on Borders and Boundaries. Speakers: Ísold Uggadóttir (Iceland), Heather Rae (US, Frozen River), Elisabeth Ronaldsdottir (Iceland), Elisa Fernanda Pirir Ruiz (Norway). Moderated by Robyn Watson (WIFT Atlanta).
Nordic Women in Film is presented by the five Nordic Embassies in the U.S. (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden), Women in Film and Television International and Women in Film & Video Washington, DC.