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48th Seattle International Film Festival announces Jury, Mentors, and New Works-in-Progress Forum for Return to In-Person Fest

The Festival returns as an 11 day hybrid event, April 14-24, 2022

New Works-in-Progress Forum to highlight two features from Sweden and Belarus/Ukraine

SIFF has announced the Jury, Industry Mentors and New Works-in-Progress Forum films for their first in-person edition of the Seattle International Film Festival since 2019. The new, streamlined Festival will run 11 days, April 14-24, 2022, and include an online portal in addition to in-cinema screenings.

“We are so happy to have the Festival back in person with our SIFF audiences, and very grateful to the industry who are joining us,” said SIFF Artistic Director Beth Barrett. “For all of our films and signature events, such as the New Works-in- Progress Forum, it is the relationship between filmmakers, our legendary audience and our industry’s top international professionals that makes the Festival such a stand-out event. It is nice to have them all sharing the screen together in-person again.”

A wide cross section of international industry guests will participate at the festival as Jury Members including Marie Therese Guirgis, an executive producer on the Oscar® award-winning “Summer of Soul”; Festival Director, and Sundance programmer Ania Trzebiatowska; ground-breaking producer and CEO of Gamechanger Films, Effie Brown; Senior Director Acquisitions, Roadside Attractions Angel An; former NFB Animation Studio head Michael Fukishima; Director of Development for Adult Swim, Missy Laney, Dublin Film Festival Director Grainne Humphreys, Producer Kimberely Browning, Programmer David Ansen, and Vimeo Senior Curator, Meghan Oretsky, among others (*please see full list below).

In addition, the following Jury Members are also serving as New Works-in-Progress Industry Mentors: Effie Brown, Kimberely Browning, Michael Fukushima, Marie Therese Guirgis, Grainne Humphreys, and Ania Trzebiatowska. The mission of New Works-in-Progress Forum, created by Curator Kathleen McInnis, is to bring together the three vital parts of the cinema experience -- filmmaker, industry and audience -- at a critical junction just before the film is locked in a safe space for filmmakers to discover how well their films translate on the global stage.

New Works-in-Progress: Session One

Motherland (Sweden/Ukraine/Belarus), Sisyfos Films

The past is prologue in Hanna Badziaka and Alexander Mihalkovich’s feature documentary film, Motherland. Exposing violent bullying and abuse in the Belarus army, the Ukrainian/Belarusian filmmakers also unexpectedly chronicle the systematic destruction of free-will societies and democratic ideals.

Directors Hanna Badziaka and Alexander Mihalkovich are scheduled to attend.


New Works-in-Progress: Session Two

Broadcast (Sweden) Plattform Produktion

Award-winning filmmakers Axel Danielson and Maximilien Van Aertryck (Ten Meter Tower) turn their lens on us once more—chronicling the impact of Camera Obscura, the advent of the personal phone camera, and the explosion of social media communication upon society’s concepts of self and images.

Director/producers Axel Danielson and Maximilien Van Aertyck are scheduled to attend.

I’m thrilled to be back in-person for New Works-in-Progress Forum,” said McInnis.

“One of the most serendipitous gifts the forum has given us is the annual creation of family with our filmmakers, audience and industry mentors. It is wonderful to have the family back together and continue to grow the event again this year.”

“The remarkable success of our New Works-in-Progress Forum films over the past six years now has really showcased how important understanding the audience voice is to filmmakers,” added Barrett, “This year, in the festival program we will be screening Vera Dreams of the Sea, a 2019 WiP participant that was nominated for the Venice Horizons Award at its World Premiere at Venice Film Festival, and which won the Ingmar Bergman Award at Göteborg Film Festival. We are so proud of the role our Festival audiences had in helping Director Kaltrina Krasniqi shape her final edit."



Documentary Jury

Kimberley Browning* Producer, Hollywood Shorts Film Festival Director

Marie-Therese Guirgis* Executive Producer, “Summer of Soul” (Oscar winner)

Ania Trzebiatowska* Sundance Programmer; Sands International Film Festival Director


Ibero-American Jury

Carlos Aguilar Journalist, Film Critic

Alvaro Delgado Aparicio Writer/Director “Retablo” (BAFTA and Film Independent Spirit

Award nominated, 2019; WiP alum)

Jasmine Jaisinghani Partner, Lodestar Films; Ojalá Ignition Lab


New American Cinema Jury

Thelma Adams Author, Film Critic

Andrew Carlin Oscilloscope Laboratories

Bill Guentzler Gravitas Ventures Acquisitions


New Directors Jury

Effie Brown* Producer, Gamechanger Films (CEO)

Drea Clark Producer; Curator, Bentonville Film Festival; Programming team, Sundance Film Festival

Grainne Humphreys* Artistic Director, Dublin International Film Festival


Official Competition Jury

Angel An Senior Director Acquisitions, Roadside Attractions

David Ansen Lead Programmer Palm Springs International Film Festival, Journalist

Matt Campbell Artistic Director, Denver International Film Festival


Shorts Jury

Narrative Shorts-

Celine Roustan Festival Programmer, Festival Coordinator/Short of the Week

Michael Fukushima* Executive Producer (retd.) National Film Board of Canada—English Animation Studio

Inga Diev General Manager, Ouat Media

Documentary Shorts-

Missy Laney Director of Development, Adult Swim

Meghan Oretsky Senior Curator, Vimeo

Farihah Zaman Producer, Critic, Programmer, Production Manager/ Field of Vision

*WiP Industry Mentors


About SIFF: We are dedicated to fostering an informed, aware, and vibrant community of film lovers.

SIFF believes in film’s unique power to share original stories, diverse perspectives, and rich emotional journeys.

Beginning in 1976 with the annual Seattle International Film Festival, then expanding into year-round programming, and our five-screen SIFF Cinema, we have offered experiences that bring people together to discover extraordinary films from around the world for nearly five decades. Our audiences allow us to take risks, host complex conversations, and truly appreciate film.


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