Jonathan Lee served as producer of the FEAR OF DISCLOSURE PROJECT, a series of videos that explore the act of revealing that one is HIV+ or has AIDS, which began with a video by the late Phil Zwickler and David Wojnarowicz. Under Lee’s direction, the project produced and distributed (IN)VISIBLE WOMEN, Ellen Spiro and Marina Alvarez, NON, JE NE REGRETTE RIEN (NO REGRET), Marlon T. Riggs, and OUT IN SILENCE & NOT A SIMPLE STORY, Christine Choy.
From 1995-2003, Lee was the founder/director of the Maine Speakout Project, a statewide organization that trained and deployed volunteer speakers to share their personal experiences as sexual minority Mainers with mainstream groups throughout the state. In 2003, Lee returned to New York City to begin working on PAUL GOODMAN CHANGED MY LIFE.
Kimberly Reed is a filmmaker living in New York City. She was named one of Filmmaker Magazine’s 25 New Faces of Independent Film, and has been awarded a Yaddo Artists’ Community Fellowship, a Squaw Valley Community of Writers Workshop Fellowship, and a spot in Al Gore’s Current TV Symposium on the Future of Non-Fiction Film. Her work has been featured four consecutive years at IFP’s Independent Film Week. Her film PRODIGAL SONS — a co-production with BBC Storyville, Sundance Channel, and CBC/Canada — has been shown around the world in festivals and on television. Reed is a summa cum laude graduate of UC Berkeley and a Montana native.
Ben Shapiro’s is a shooter and producer/director whose projects and collaborations have received many awards including the Peabody, Dupont, American Film Institute, Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award, and three Emmys. He has worked on documentary projects for HBO, National Geographic, PBS, Channel 4 (UK), WNET-TV, KCET, among others. These productions have aired from Australia to Europe, and have been screened at the Museum of Modern Art and other museums and colleges around the U.S. and Europe.
Robert Hawk, longtime advisor to filmmakers and film festivals, has had his own business, ICI (Independent Consultation for Independents) for over 13 years, and been a part of the independent film scene for 23 years. Producer credits include Dan Geller and Dayna Goldfine’s acclaimed documentary, BALLETS RUSSES. Starting with his involvement in documentary as a researcher on Rob Epstein’s Oscar-winning THE TIMES OF HARVEY MILK, he has been credited with discovering and/or nurturing the talents of such filmmakers as Epstein, Nathaniel Kahn (MY ARCHITECT), Kevin Smith (beginning with CLERKS), Ed Burns (BROTHERS McMULLEN), David Siegel and Scott McGehee (DEEP END; BEE SEASON), ) and Geller & Goldfine. He has consulted on films as varied as Moises Kaufman’s LARAMIE PROJECT, Terry George’s SOME MOTHER’S SON, and Tim Blake Nelson’s EYE OF GOD. He has also consulted on hundreds of documentaries, including Oscar winners/nominees such as COMMON THREADS: TALES FROM THE QUILT, COMPLAINTS OF A DUTIFUL DAUGHTER, IN THE SHADOW OF THE STARS, REGRET TO INFORM and TROUBLESOME CREEK. Other documentaries includes THE CELLULOID CLOSET and GAY SEX IN THE ’70s.
Hawk was on the Advisory Selection Committee of the Sundance Film Festival for its entire existence (1987-1998), and has served on numerous juries at festivals both domestic and foreign. He has been an advisory board member for AIFA (American Independents and Features Abroad) at the Berlin Film Festival and First Look (Tribeca Film Center/Eastman Kodak), the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival and numerous other festivals. He has curated special film series for, among others, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., the M.H. de Young Museum in San Francisco, the International Documentary Congress in Los Angeles, the Melbourne Film Festival and the Sundance Film Festival.
Hawk founded San Francisco’s Film Arts Festival, a showcase for independent filmmakers of Northern California, and was its director for eight years. As Exhibition Coordinator for the Film Arts Foundation, he not only programmed exhibition events but viewed and critiqued films at all stages of production, consulted with makers on festival and distribution strategies, and was an outreach resource for exhibitors, programmers, curators, festival directors and distributors throughout the world. Before his involvement in film, Hawk was a production stage manager in the theater. www.filmhawk.com
Israel Ehrisman was Associate Producer on Kimberly Reed’s PRODIGAL SONS. He also co-produced Michael Aker’s PHOENIX, a re-imagining of Michelangelo Antonioni’s L’AVVENTURA, and is set to produce A HOUSE DIVIDED, a courtroom drama set in the Civil War. He has also been the Director of Logistics for the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, and has worked at NewFest, the North Carolina Gay & Lesbian Film Festival, and the Sundance Film Festival.
Composer Miriam Cutler has an extensive background in scoring for independent film & TV projects, as well as two circuses. Her passion for documentary film has led to a focus in non-fiction with credits including award winning and festival favorites: POSTER GIRL (IDFA,Telluride, HBO), ONE LUCKY ELEPHANT (LAFF,IDFA, OWN), FAMILY AFFAIR (Sundance, OWN), THE FENCE (Sundance/HBO), DESERT OF FORBIDDEN ART (Santa Barbara FF, Cleveland, Cinequest), SHOUTING FIRE: STORIES FROM THE EDGE OF FREE SPEECH (Sundance, HBO); GHOSTS OF ABU GHRAIB (Sundance, Emmy, HBO); THIN (Sundance, HBO, Emmy Nom), CHRIS AND DON: A LOVE STORY (Telluride, Theatrical); CHINA BLUE (Toronto, IDFA, Independent Lens); ABSOLUTE WILSON (Berlin); LOST IN LA MANCHA (Telluride, Berlin, BAFTA nom); SCOUTS HONOR (PBS, 2 Sundance awards); PANDEMIC: FACING AIDS (HBO); LICENSED TO KILL (Berlin, 2 Sundance awards) and more. Miriam has served as lab advisor for the Sundance Institute Documentary Composers Lab, as well as on documentary juries for the Sundance Film Festival, Independent Spirit Awards, International Documentary Association Awards, and American Film Institute’s Film Festival Awards and is a Society of Composers and Lyricists Board member. She has also co-produced live jazz albums on PolyGram/Verve for Joe Williams (two Grammy nominated albums), Nina Simone, Shirley Horn, and Marlena Shaw as well as independently released albums of her own songs and soundtracks.
Roger K. Smith is a freelance writer based in Ithaca, New York. He writes on politics, government, history, business, media, and literature for educational and reference publishers including CQ Press, and contributes opinion pieces to the Common Dreams website. He has taught writing, journalism, and media studies at Ithaca College, Rutgers University, New Jersey Institute of Technology, and Ithaca’s Northern Light Learning Center. In the 1990s he worked at the United Nations as an NGO network coordinator in the peace and disarmament movement, and was an activist coordinator for Fairness and Accuracy In Reporting (FAIR) in the San Francisco Bay Area. This is his first blog.