The Chicago Film Office, Seed&Spark and the Illinois Film Office presents “Career Sustainability Panel: Filmmakers Who Teach”.
The Chicago Film Office, Seed&Spark and the Illinois Film Office present a panel discussion with “filmmakers who teach” about creating and sustaining a film career. They will discuss how their career journeys challenge the typical narrative of “making it in the business” and offer alternative narratives to what are typically taught as ideal roles to aspire to (i.e. working in Hollywood). Professional development panels often discuss the craft of filmmaking. We will instead discuss what it looks like; and what it takes to actually create a sustainable career in film; one that is both financially and creatively sustaining. Ultimately, there is more than one way to creating and sustaining a “film career” and the path will look different for everyone.
Bri Castellini is the Film Community Manager for Seed&Spark, a graduate-level adjunct professor for digital media, an award-winning independent filmmaker, and, regrettably, a podcaster. She’s known for the 2017 short film Ace and Anxious (writer/director, 141k views on YouTube) and for her podcasts Burn, Noticed and Breaking Out of Breaking in , covering the USA television show Burn Notice and practical filmmaking advice, respectively. She has been described by collaborators as a “human bulldozer” and is honestly kind of flattered. Full work history can be found on her website BriCastellini.com .
Missy Hernandez is an independent filmmaker, writer, and assistant professor in the Cinema and Television Arts Department at Columbia College Chicago where she teaches courses in screenwriting, television writing, and producing. She graduated from Columbia University in New York with a BA in Cinema Studies and an MFA in Screenwriting. Her recent credits include Co-Producer and Writer for AMERICAN THIEF (2020), a feature-length narrative/documentary hybrid, and Writing Assistant and Associate Producer for Terence Nance’s Peabody Award-winning series RANDOM ACTS OF FLYNESS (2018). Hernandez is currently in post-production for a second narrative/documentary hybrid filmed on election day 2020. Her works in development include female-centric series and feature projects that highlight and investigate the diversity and complexities of Latinx experiences within the United States.
Producer in Residence/Professional Lecturer at DePaul University in the School of Cinematic Arts. Steve grew up in Brooklyn New York and was educated at The Institute of Design at The Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Design. After being a director of animated TV commercials for many national clients such as Cap’n Crunch and McDonalds, he teamed up with director John McNaughton to produce the controversial “Henry – Portrait of a Serial Killer”, followed by films including “Mad Dog and Glory”, “Normal Life”, “Wild Things”, and “The Harvest”. He also worked with other directors on the films “Finding North”, “Drunkboat”, “The Promotion” and “The Merry Gentleman”. Steve also directs music videos, video wall content, and documentary material for the bands Styx and Collective Soul.
Ines Sommer is a filmmaker, curator, and media arts advocate whose films have tackled topics including the environment, the arts, participatory democracy, and human rights. Her recent documentary Seasons of Change on Henry’s Farm follows organic farmer Henry Brockman as he grapples with the impact of a changing climate on his family farm in rural Illinois. The film is currently making the festival rounds and won the “Best Documentary” award at the 2020 Vail Film Festival. Other projects include the human rights documentary Beneath the Blindfold and the MacArthur Foundation-funded Count Me In , which aired on PBS stations across the nation in 2016. Ines has also directed a good number of short experimental and hybrid projects and her camerawork has been featured in numerous award-winning documentaries by Chicago’s Kartemquin Films, Kindling Group, and many other filmmakers.
Link to Livestream on YouTube: