Filmmaker Bios

Photo Credit: Lee Choo   

Alexis Krasilovsky
Writer/Director/Producer
http://alexiskrasilovsky.com

Alexis Krasilovsky is writer/director/producer of the global feature documentary, Women Behind the Camera, which won four "Best Documentary" awards (and the shorter version, Shooting Women, distributed by wmm.com, which won the "Best International Documentary" award at the WOW [Women of the World] Film Festival).  The film is based on her book, also entitled Women Behind the Camera (Praeger); the book Shooting Women: Behind the Camera, Around the World by Harriet Margolis, Alexis Kraslovsky, and Julia Stein, was recently published by Intellect Press UK and U. Chicago Press (October 2015). Other films and videos written and directed by Alexis Krasilovsky include Let Them Eat Cake (www.LetThemEatCakeFilm.com), What Memphis Needs, Exile, Blood, and End of the Art World, which Artforum praised for its “quality of humor possible only with depth of understanding.” Her films have aired nationally on PBS and The Learning Channel and screened in museums and festivals here and abroad, including the Museum of Modern Art and the Viennale. At Yale University, Krasilovsky studied with film historian and compilation expert Jay Leyda.  She received her MFA in Film/Video from California Institute of the Arts. In addition to the 2000 Roy W. Dean Video Award and the 2006 Women in Film Finishing Fund Award for Women Behind the Camera, Alexis Krasilovsky has received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts, the Brody Arts Fund, the Barbra Streisand Center, the Western Regional Media Arts Fellowship Program, California State University, Northridge’s Office of Research and Sponsored Projects, and the California N.O.W. Foundation.  She is a Professor of Screenwriting and Media Theory & Criticism in the Department of Cinema and Television Arts, California State University, Northridge.

email:  alexis@alexiskrasilovsky.com
twitter:  @WomenBehindCam
Instagram: @womenbehindthecamera
Facebook:  Shooting Women/Women Behind the Camera
 

Vanessa H. Smith
Executive Producer/Associate Producer
http://www.vanessasmithfilm.com/

After graduation from Stanford University, Vanessa Smith lived and worked in India, Nepal, London, New York and Los Angeles. She has worked on productions for PBS, BBC, Encore, and Columbia Pictures, and served as Historical Consultant and Location Manager for In Search of Kundun with Martin Scorsese. A BBC Correspondent documentary she produced about a rape victim unfairly imprisoned for having an abortion, helped an international effort to free the fourteen year old subject of the film from prison. The film was instrumental in helping to change Nepalese law, and won the Amnestly International Media Award for television news.

Reseda Mickey
Associate Producer/Music Editor

Reseda Mickey has worked as Associate Producer on several of Alexis Krasilovsky’s previous films and videos, including the award-winning Best Gal in the West, What Memphis Needs, and the underground video, Camp Terezin. She has worked on numerous projects in Los Angeles and New York including films, videos, books and music and also works around the world as a musician, most recently as a member of The DonkeyBiters in Switzerland.  Reseda is currently working at Warner Brothers.

Katey Bright
Editor

A graduate of the Art Center College of Design, Katey Bright studied editing with Howard Heard and Monte Bramer and served as president and founder of Art Center’s women’s group, focusing on the woman’s role in filmmaking. She currently specializes in film editing and post-production in Los Angeles.

Elizabeth Sellers
Composer

Elizabeth Sellers composed, orchestrated and conducted the score and title song for the independent feature, UnBowed, which premiered in Hollywood and won festival awards, and received Primetime Emmy honors for contributing to the Emmy Award winning achievement of Outstanding Music Direction for the 2002 Winter Olympics.  She has studied with leading teachers from Aspen, Juilliard and Yale and completed advanced studies in Scoring for Films at the University of Southern California.  Her work as director of the newly established Media Composition Option for the Music Department at California State University, Northridge was recently featured in FilmScore Magzine.

            Our Camerawomen and Unit Directors include:

“I’m in love with films and filmmaking.  I’ll never give up working— trying to get a chance to do something that will perhaps challenge the way I look at things, that might expand someone else’s vision as well.”

Kristin Glover: (Hollywood)

A founding member of Behind the Lens: An Association of Professional Camerawomen, and currently National Chair of the International Cinematographers Guild’s Diversity Committee, Kristin Glover has worked in Hollywood as Camera Operator on such films as Star Trek VI, The Undiscovered Country and The Rocketeer.  She has also served as Director of Photography/Camera Operator on documentaries such as The Legacy of the Hollywood Blacklist, and Unit Directed, interviewed and shot our interviews with Steadicam Operator Liz Ziegler and Director/DP Haskell Wexler, ASC.
 

”I think that your looking through the lens has to do with your socialization, it has to do with your politics... So a woman who is clued into feminist debates will try and shoot maybe differently."

Sabeena Gadihoke: (Delhi, India)

A member of India’s  renowned Media Storm Collective, Sabeena Unit Directed, interviewed and shot our interview with Vijayalakshmi, India’s first feature Director of Photography.
 

Divya Pande: (Bollywood, India)

An Assistant Director on major Bollywood films, Divya Pande served as Unit Director, interviewer and camerawoman on interviews with Nirmal Jani, one of Bollywood’s most important cameramen, as well as shooting and assist directing on our other interviews in Mumbai.  Divya Pande is currently working on her own documentary, comparing the wealth of Bollywood to the poverty of Mumbai.
 

”In Mexico there are two unions:  In STPyC, the one I belong to, I was the first woman in the Camera Department, and I’m still the only one.”
www.hildamercado.com

Hilda Mercado, AMC: (Mexico City and Los Angeles)

One of the first camerawomen to be invited to join Mexico City's camera union (STYPyC).  A member of the International Cinematographers Guild, Local 600 (Hollywood), and the Mexican Association of Cinematographers (AMC), Hilda Mercado, AMC served as Unit Director, interviewer and camerawoman for our interviews with Celiana Cardenas (Mexico City) and Stephanie Martin (Argentina/Los Angeles).
 

“We can really help each other.  We are really valiant and intelligent women, and look what organizing can do.”

Mairi Gunn: (New Zealand)

New Zealand’s first female Director of Photography, Mairi Gunn’s films include Point Your Toes, Cushla.  Mairi Unit Directed, interviewed and shot our interview with Hollywood camerawoman Michelle Crenshaw while visiting Los Angeles as a guest of Women in Film’s Summit Conference.  She is currently directing and shooting a film about water.
 

“I went to places like Vietnam, Cambodia, Lebanon, Syria, China-- all over the world.  I think to prove to myself that I could do it.  That I could do exactly what ABC wouldn't allow me to do.”

Lisa Seidenberg: (New York)

After shooting news for ABC, Lisa Seidenberg started her own company, Metro Video, working as an independent television producer and camerawoman in Southeast Asia, the Soviet Union/Russia, the Middle East, China, and Europe.  She served as Unit Director, interviewer and camerawoman on our interview with the pioneer video documentarian, Joan Giummo in New York City.
 

“The Vistavision camera--the big monster camera we use on all the epics is very heavy, and you have to hold the handle and climb the ladder to be on the rostrum. Splat!, and they're not going to hire another woman for 10 years.” 
Madelyn Most (in striped shirt, bottom row)

Madelyn Most: (London/Paris)

Starting her camera career as a Camera Assistant on Star Wars, Superman, and The Empire Strikes Back, Madelyn Most currently works as a documentary filmmaker based in London and Paris, producing and directing opera, theater and dance films.  Madelyn was one of our Unit Directors and camerawomen interviewing Sue Gibson, BSC, England’s foremost female Director of Photography.
 

”To run with a 20 kilo case is quite an achievement, but to actually run on sand dunes is extraordinary…But I made myself do it then, because I was not going to be seen to be weak in any way.”

Erika Addis: (Australia)

One of Australia’s foremost documentary cinematographers, Erika Addis Unit Produced, interviewed and shot our interview with Jan Kenny, ACS in Sydney, Australia.
 

“The language of film is male -- it's the vocabulary of war.”

Eva Testor, AAC  (Vienna, Austria)

Working with Unit Producer Herbert Krill, Eva served as videocamerawoman on our interview with producer/camerawoman Astrid Heubrandtner, AAC, who worked as DP-2nd Unit on the famous European television action series, Medicopter.
 

“Sexual harassment is an issue that has to be dealt with, not just in the film industry, but also in every aspect of our lives.”
Susan Walsh (center, with Amy Halpern and Estelle Kirsh)

Susan Walsh: (Hollywood)

A specialist in filming underwater and on mountaintops, Susan Walsh’s credits as a camera assistant included Personal Best, Silverado and Continental Divide.  Currently a psychotherapist and martial arts instructor in addition to being a camerawoman, she is an expert on sexual harassment issues.  Susan Walsh served as the first president of Behind the Lens: An Association of Professional Camerawomen.

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