Women in Film & TV Panel
The Bushwick Film Festival is a female-founded organization that loves to highlight the contributions that women in the film industry make, in an industry lacking in gender diversity. Our Women In Film & TV Panel is part of WOMEN IN FILM DAY—a full-day of films and discussions on Saturday, October 1st from 12pm – 10pm at House of Yes, highlighting women’s stories and featuring leading women in the industry.
Web Series Director, American Koko
Diarra is a writer/creator and actress. A native Detroiter, she studied drama at NYU’s Tisch School of the arts. Diarra is the creator and star of the American KoKo, which received the Best Web Series Award at American Black Film Festival (ABFF) in 2015 and has been featured as a web series standout by Essence and many others. The digital series, which tackles issues of race, has been called “fearless” and “hilarious” and caught the attention of Viola Davis, whose production company, Juvee, will produce the show for ABC Digital Studios. For her work on stage in In the Red and Brown Water, Diarra’s won the LA Weekly and NAACP Theater award for Best Leading Actress in a Drama. She’s also garnered numerous other nominations including two Ovation nods, and 5 NAACP Theater nods, including one for Best Playwriting for her one-woman show. Other acting TV/Film credits include Mike and Molly, Southland, Private Practice, Major Crimes, Hollywood Je T’aime and Lila and Eve opposite Viola Davis and Jennifer Lopez. She was also a regular on MTV’s dating, prank show, Disaster Date. Diarra also stars in the feature Salton Sea, written and directed by Veena Sud creator of AMC’s The Killing. On the writing side, Diarra worked as a staff writer for NBC’s Mysteries of Laura, co-writing three episodes in season one . She was also selected as one of the eleven honorees of the WGA’s Writer’s Access Program 2015, for her drama pilot The Dirty Dozen. (WAP is a script-writing competition that identifies excellent diverse writers within the guild.) Inspired by Tina Fey, Louie CK, Mindy Kaling, Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson, she is thrilled to be among the newest crop of writer/performers with fresh, unique voices. She lives in LA with her husband writer/director Miles Orion Feldsott.
Director of White Girl
Elizabeth Wood, an Oklahoma City native, moved to NYC to study writing at the New School. After a few years of making experimental and documentary films, Wood received a screenwriting fellowship to Columbia where she received her MFA. One of Variety’s ‘10 Directors to Watch’ in 2016, Elizabeth makes her narrative directorial debut with WHITE
GIRL, inspired by her true story, which debuted at Sundance Film Festival this past January.
Joyce San Pedro
Creative Executive, Sony Pictures Entertainment
Joyce San Pedro is a Producer working with Zhiv Productions and Escape Artists at Sony. A Native New Yorker, Joyce started in publishing, covering Foreign Rights and International Sales for Golden Books, Friedman/Fairfax, and Parragon Books. She then moved to Los Angeles to work in entertainment, where she worked in talent management with J.C. Robbins, then onto Metropolitan Talent Agency’s literary department. She then moved into feature development, working with Sid Ganis at Out of the Blue Entertainment, Happy Madison, and the Robert Simonds Company. She is now working to expand the independent and co-production slate of Zhiv Productions, splitting her time between Los Angeles and New York. She is an Associate Producer of WILDE SALOME, directed by Al Pacino, starring Jessica Chastain and is currently producing TROUPE ZERO by Lucy Alibar (Beasts of Southern Wild) for Amazon Studios and LIFE: ROUND 2, a family dramedy with director Raja Gosnell (Smurfs, Yours, Mine & Ours).