VETERAN FILMMAKERS RAISE THE BAR ON AN EVEN PLAYING FIELD
Frank M Calo is an Independent Producer and Director whose film THE BELIEVER, starring Ryan Gosling and Billy Zane won the Grand Jury Prize at the 2001 Sundance Festival. That film won all the festivals that year including The Berlin Film Festival. It was shown nation wide and had a great box office run.
His film, HERE & THERE with Cyndi Lauper and David Thornton has won the BEST NY NARRITIVE IN WORLD COMPETITION 2009 at Robert DeNiro’s, Tribeca Film Festival in NYC and had it’s official News York premier played to wide audiences domestically and overseas.
Mr. Calo has worked with Robert DeNiro (Godsend) Demi Moore, Mike Myers Shelly Winters, Marlon Brando and many more. His film THE COOKOUT with Queen Latifah also had a great box office run distributed by Lions Gate Films.
He also worked for two years with The Motion Picture Bond Company under Robert Bordiga, as a Producer working on films throughout the tri-state areas.
He was one of the few and only directors who studied privately under Mr. Elia Kazan.
BEST FULL LENGTH FEATURE
Kevin Bernhardt’s work on well over 30 very different screenplays – resulted in produced films. They range from commercial action – to critically and spiritually-acclaimed. In the past 4 years, he has had four films shoot as a writer, with budgets up to $30 million – and casts including Michael Caine, Orlando Bloom, Michael Shannon, Alex Pettyfer, Patti LuPone, Christopher Plummer and Ben Foster.
Bernhardt’s work has resulted in produced films with Academy Award winners and nominees (in addition to those above) – including Donald Sutherland, John Lithgow, Nick Nolte, Djimon Hounsou, Sylvester Stallone and Dennis Hopper. Other prestigious notables include Kevin Bacon, Patrick Swayze, Chris Rock, Roy Scheider, Lesley Ann Warren, Michael Biehn, Charlie Sheen, Dolph Lundgren, Peter Weller, Jennifer Beals, Tom Berenger, Daryl Hannah, Amy Smart, Matthew Goode, Til Schweiger and Wesley Snipes.
While building a career as a writer Bernhardt supported himself as an actor, with multi year CONTRACT ROLES on GENERAL HOSPITAL and DYNASTY, followed by numerous lead roles in films such as Clive Barker’s HELLRAISER. Recently, he returned to a lead role opposite Amy Redford in HATE CRIME, which won 17 film festivals. He followed that with a supporting role opposite Michael Caine and Ben Foster in Medieval, to be released in 2021. But screenwriting remains his passion. He is presently co-writing a screenplay with John Cleese.
BEST FULL LENGTH DOCUMENTARY
D’Arbanville acted in her first film in 1960 at age eight; a New York University student film about a girl and her cat, entitled Tuesday and Blue Silk. Andy Warhol discovered her during a gig as a club disc jockey when she was 13, and three years later at 16 cast her in his film Flesh (1968)
After Flesh, D’Arbanville performed in Warhol’s L’Amour (1973), and as the title character in the David Hamilton film Bilitis (1977)
After her unabashedly risqué performances in her youth, D’Arbanville has worked steadily in film and television series in the United States and France. In 1987, D’Arbanville won a Drama-Logue Award as Best Actress for her stage performance in Italian American Reconciliation (1987). She was well known for her role as Lt. Virginia Cooper on the FOX series New York Undercover.
BEST SHORT DRAMATIC
Johnathan Brownlee is an award-winning Canadian-American director, producer, writer, and actor with a diverse, international body of work spanning more than 20 years. His feature films, documentaries, scripted and unscripted broadcast television, and digital content have been viewed in theaters and on television in more than 100 countries in 14 languages and appeared on every major network and many specialty channels in the United States and Canada.
Brownlee has produced in 20+ countries and worked with Academy Award-, Golden Globe- and Emmy Award-winning talent including Helen Hunt, Angelina Jolie, Jerry Seinfeld, Luciano Pavarotti, Michael Douglas, Annette Bening, Susan Sarandon, Barry Bostwick, Rashida Jones, Dan Aykroyd, Richard Gere, Aaron Paul, and William H. Macy.
He has produced, written or co-written, and directed award-winning films, including The Standoff at Sparrow Creek, Decoding Annie Parker with Helen Hunt, and Three Days in August with Barry Bostwick, Meg Foster and Mariette Hartley. Brownlee has several feature-length films in development or in production, including The Eyes of Jefferson, The Only Jewels I Need, and The Devil’s Country.
Brownlee owns and operates two production companies, Torfoot Films and Ubiquimedia.
He currently serves as CEO & President of Dallas Film, which produces the internationally recognized Dallas International Film Festival and the new North Texas Film Festival. He recently created The Veterans Institute for Film & Media (VIFM), a training program for military veterans.
GREGG Jamback & JAMIE Huss
BEST SHORT DOCUMENTARY
Gregg (BA, University of New Hampshire, MS, Brooklyn College (CUNY)) is a film and video professional. For over thirty years his work has been seen on broadcast outlets, NatGeo, Animal Planet, ESPN, public television, and others. His clients have included corporations, IBM, Amex, Pitney Bowes, Deloitte & Touche, and many others. Institutional clients include numerous foundations such as the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, the Winston-Salem Foundation, Save the Children, and non-profits.
As a filmmaker Gregg has produced independent projects including, Discover Yourself with the Enneagram, The Little America’s Cup Challenge, Peelers, Busters, and Soft Shell Crabs (broadcast on UNC-TV), The Real Cost of Coal, and Greg Taylor – Ghost.
Awards have included “Best of the Fest” – Down East Flick Fest, “Judge’s Choice” – Eastern North Carolina Film Festival, and “Best Documentary” – Rugged Phoenix Underground Film Festival.
Jamie has worked as a producing partner at Swiftwater Media on three independent productions (and consulted on many others).
Discover Yourself with the Enneagram – 2001
The Real Cost of Coal – 2010
Greg Taylor – Ghost – 2014
With 11 years experience in a Fortune 500 corporate position involving communications, presentations, and training sessions spanning all levels of employees and executives, she is comfortable with organizing materials for comprehension and meeting new people….skills critical as we launched the PR part of this project. With 30 years experience in being a partner or a sole-proprietor of healthcare-related practices, she is able to oversee every aspect of a project as well as she has honed interview skills used when dealing with confidential, traumatic or emotional subjects. A longstanding commitment to social justice issues led her to devote 4 years to a local foundation where she focused her energies on donor development, re- branding, and creating marketing materials (including producing 3 annual fundraising “testimonial” videos)….skills also now critical to our film project. Jamie has been intimately involved with this cause and the film project from the first day. She conducted the majority of the interviews for our current project, In Pursuit of Justice, and offers a critical ear and eye as we complete post-production.
Esteb is a versatile filmmaker that has worked as an actor, a Hollywood screenwriter and director of commercials, music videos, documentaries and features.
Esteb’s film “Hate Crime” won both Best Feature and Human Right & Dignity categories in the 2016 Tryon International Film Festival. Other films include DIRTY POLITICS, a dark comedy starring Judd Nelson, Beau Bridges, Howard Hesseman.
“BALLER BLOCKIN”, a rap film for Universal starring Lil Wayne, hit #1 on the Billboard charts in DVD and video sales eventually going quadruple platinum. Steve’s been represented by top agencies like ICM and Paradigm as a screenwriter and worked as a script doctor, coach and screenwriting teacher.
Esteb is currently teaching film and screenwriting at Loyola University in New Orleans. He lived and worked at an AIDS hospice for two years while making the feature length documentary, LIVING WITH…A FILM ABOUT LOVE AND AIDS. It premiered at the Santa Barbara Film Festival and traveled the world, contributing to the opening of new AIDS Hospices, his proudest acomplishment. Steve studied film production in the graduate program at Boston University and also has a degree in Political Science. He now lives in rural Louisiana, his adopted home, with his wife and two kids.
HUMAN RIGHTS & DIGNITY
Founder of Innocence in Danger (IID) – IID is an international child protection organization, operating in eight countries (France, United Kingdom, Colombia, Germany, Switzerland, United States of America, Austria, Iran and Morocco). Sellier, who lives in Europe & travels constantly to her many offices, has also agreed to speak remotely to the TRIFF audience, about the relevance and importance of the category. Sellier was instrumental in arranging for Cecilia Peck’s inclusion of “Brave Miss World” to the 2016 programming schedule. Since Sellier is multilingual, fluent in Spanish, French, English and Farsi, she will also be selecting all films submitted to the HRHD category. Sellier has been devoting her life to human rights issues, thus she is well suited for the task.
Over the years, Sellier’s organization has utilized television documentaries, billboard campaigns and other media platforms to help raise awareness on human abuse. A number of the French, Swiss, and German films & visual works which Sellier and her offices have been involved with have been nominated for the PRIX DEBOUZY, one of Frances most prestigious awards, and short films/spots at Cannes film competition categories. Sellier was also the primary inspiration for “Illegitimate Advantage”, a 2016 novel written by Kirk Gollwitzer, the cofounder of TRIFF. Sellier and Gollwitzer are actively working together to adapt the novel to a major motion picture.